I am not one of those people who is dying to take an Alaskan cruise. If I’m going on vacation, chances are I’m headed somewhere with a beautiful body of water and a beach.
I tell you that to tell this:
I’m an expert on packing for a beach vacation.
OK, maybe “expert” is going a little far. But I have loads of experience that I’m dying to share with those of you headed to the beach on your summer vacations.
Packing List for A Summer Vacation To The Beach
1. Pack more than one swimsuit.
Oh, sure, you’d remember to bring your bathing suit. But you should really consider taking at least two. Late night swims are great – but putting on a cold, damp suit first thing the next morning is ick. Plus, since a swimsuit is basically a requirement for enjoying the beach, it’s good to have a back up in case something happens to one suit.
2. Pack swimsuit cover ups.
A swimsuit cover-up can come in many shapes and styles. A t-shirt usually works fine for boys and men, and women can choose from a sundress, t-shirt and shorts, or a wrap.
3. Bring lots of sunscreen.
Obviously. SPF 30 is ideal – and make sure it’s waterproof!
4. Remember flip flops for everyone.
Women almost always remember to pack flip flops when they’re going to the beach. But I know tons of men who don’t wear flip flops on a regular basis and end up forgetting to bring a pair when they’re packing. Make sure the kids have some kind of beach friendly footwear as well.
Of course. Like there’s any way you could forget sunglasses and have to run to the nearest beach shack and pay a ridiculous amount of money for a crappy pair of sunglasses because you forgot yours at home. Of course that wouldn’t happen to you.
6. Pack hats.
Make sure everyone brings a hat. When you’re spending your vacation beachside, there will come a time when you want and/or need a break from the sun. This is especially important if anyone in your traveling group has a bald spot. (Hi, Dad!!)
7. Bring beach bags.
You don’t want to lug your suitcase down to the beach every day. Bring a bag that can easily be cleaned when it gets filled with sand. It will get filled with sand.
8. Pack separate bags for seashells.
If you’re headed to the beach, you will want to bring home a few sea shells. Bring a large ziplock bag or a plastic container to keep them safe on your trip home.
9. Bring snacks and water from home – or get it at the local grocery store.
Unless you’re staying at an all inclusive resort, it’s a good idea to bring your own snacks – or at least pick them up at a local grocery store when you get into town. Sitting in the sun all day is draining and it’s important to stay hydrated.
10. Pack your own beach towels.
Some hotels will have towels available for guests, but only if they are right on the beach. Even then, they are usually itty bitty towels. Bring your own.
11. Bring age appropriate beach toys for all the kids.
This could be as simple as a bucket and shovel if you have young, easily amused kids. If you have teenagers, it might be a good idea to bring a volleyball or some more active games.
12. If there’s room, bring chairs and umbrellas.
If you’re flying to your beach destination, you’re obviously not bringing lawn chairs. If you’re staying at a hotel directly on the beach, they might have some kind of seating available on the beach. But if you’re driving and can spare the room, a beach trip is much more comfortable with beach chairs and a beach umbrella to provide shade.
13. Pack music and reading material, just in case.
On the off chance that you get some time to yourself on the beach, it’s nice to have an mp3 player and headphones close by. And there are few things more relaxing than reading on the beach.
14. Pack an umbrella. The rain kind
If you’re going to a beach near a large body of water – like, say, an ocean – chances are good that it will rain at some point on your vacation (unless you’re in southern California and then it will only rain if you are me and are on your first vacation in forever). Take an umbrella.
15. Remember to bring something to wear when you aren’t on the beach.
Now that you’ve loaded up 4 suitcases with your beach gear, remember that there’s a good chance you’ll have to put clothes on at some point during your vacation. Bring something you can go out to eat in and make sure everyone has options available in case you decide to do something away from the beach one day (like, say, if it rains the entire time you’re there).
16. And don’t forget the regular lotion!
When you come in from the sun and finally get all of that sand off of you, your skin is going to be parched and begging for a good lathering of moisturizer.
17. Do I have to tell you to bring underwear and a toothbrush?
Probably not. On any vacation you go on you have your basic toiletries and necessities that you need to remember to pack, and the beach is no exception.
Just make sure to throw in the beach specific extras – and enjoy your summer vacation!
Don’t forget to stay in shape this summer too.