Beach Bag Must-Haves for a Stress-Free Beach Trip

Headed to the beach? Pack the beach bag with the essentials for the family!

Beach Bag Must Haves for a Stress Free Beach Trip

It’s hard to believe but summer is coming to a close! My family and I made plans for a late season beach trip and we are gearing up to leave in the next few weeks. As I scrambled around, pulling summer bags and clothes out of storage, I realized just how unorganized I have become the longer I delve into motherhood.

Prior to my daughter being born, I made lists and lists and lists. A list for what to pack, what to make sure I bring back with me from the trip, lists of things to do while on vacation, the best restaurants in the area.  Needless to say, after almost four years of being a mom, the lists have gone out the window. I usually toss some clothes into a tote and cram it into the trunk of my too small Kia.

How to Keep Your Family Beach Trip as Stress-Free as Possible

This beach trip is mommy’s birthday gift for herself (yay!). On this vacation, I am determined to make the process go as smoothly as possible.

Beach Tote Essentials

Now that our daughter is potty trained, we have less that needs to be packed. Mostly clothes, her favorite blanky, and some toys. Of course, bathroom essentials will be tossed into a luggage bag and our clothes will be packed away as well.

One tote that I ALWAYS keep stocked and organized is my beach bag. I thought I would share some tips with you guys on how to pack a decent beach bag to keep both you and your toddler sane!

Beach Bag Essentials

  1. The most obvious beach bag essential is towels. I don’t buy anything expensive. My towels are those $3 Mainstays brand from Walmart because let me just tell you – people in my house turn the beach towels into bath towels and they end up used and abused. For $3 – I really don’t care where they end up. It’s also good to carry cheap towels in case you forget one by the pool or if you left one outside to dry and it disappears or doesn’t make it home. *
  2. Sunscreen – baby and adult – another obvious one. If your children are like my daughter, they are not happy to have sunscreen rubbed all over them because that means they have to sit still AND wait for it to dry. Save yourself (and them) some grief and buy the spray cans. I like to buy the cans targeted specifically for babies as they tend to be 75 SPF or higher
  3. Baby powder – not necessarily just for changing dirty diapers! I like to throw a Dollar Store container of powder in my beach bag as it is quite efficient in removing sand. Sometimes it’s hard to get sand off little hands in time for snacks or get it out of all the little nooks and crannies before heading back inside. Sprinkle some baby powder on the area and it will swipe right off without irritating any skin
  4. Be sure to pack LOTS of water. Being out in the sun and the salty water all day will definitely drain energy and will make everyone tired. Make sure to have water and flavor packets packed to ensure both the littles and adults are all taking in as much water as they are sweating out. While you’re packing water – put some snacks in a large gallon size ziplock bag. I add snacks such as crackers, gummies, and chips (basically things that don’t have to be refrigerated)
  5. Ziplock bags – these will come in handy for your money and ID as well as your phone. I skip those expensive, water-resistant phone cases and use a regular zip-top back. Once inside the bag, the phone is protected from water and sand AND it’s still usable! The phone will still recognize finger/thumbprint through the plastic. I also keep a zip top bag with my driver’s license and about $10. I never know when someone (lifeguard or beach police officer) may need to see it. The money is for when my daughter goes crazy over those carts with frozen lemonade!
  6. Hats and sunglasses – I keep a hat for myself and my little one as well as sunglasses. She has sensitive little baby blue’s and the sun shining in her face keeps her from being able to enjoy playing in the sand. Plus – hats and sunglasses protect you from sun damage!

Some additional items you may want add to your beach bag:

  • Diapers – swim and regular. My toddler is potty trained but if your littles are not, you may want to pack extras to avoid catastrophes at the pool
  • A separate mesh bag with beach toys – using a mesh bag allows you to load up all the toys and give it a good shake to get all the sand off
  • Small, personal sized cooler – these are super helpful if you want to keep waters or snacks cold
  • A beach cart or child’s wagon – someone has to carry all that stuff across the road and the hot sand! If you don’t have enough people or enough hands – put some of the bags or even the kids in the wagon
  • Water shoes – my daughter will not keep shoes on her feet regardless of the weather – but you may want to try these to protect little feet from hot sand, broken shells, and sea life that has washed up on shore
  • A COLD ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGE – if you’re into that! My S.O will be the first to tell you he is packing a cold beer in the cooler. If momma is being honest, there’s probably a wine cooler in there for me too

Beach Trip - Beach tote

Did we miss anything that you think will help ease our trip? What are your beach bag essentials?

** Note – some of these ideas listed throughout come from Pinterest and other Google inspired websites. I do not own any of these ideas but I do give credit to all the mommas out there who inspired this list – I also do not receive any endorsement or monetary gain from any brand or store listed – I list them out of my own personal preference**

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