In the span of a single year, about 340,754,691 people visited the beach to soak up the sun. Before taking your family to the beach, it helps to have a plan. Otherwise, you might make the drive out and realize you’ve forgotten the essentials.

With this guide, you can prepare ahead of time. Forgetting something could disrupt your day of fun in the sun. Instead, pack what you need and enjoy the day with this list of 10 things to bring to the beach!

1. Some Shade

Before driving out to the beach, consider your timing. Do you want to get the kids up early to head out before the beach gets crowded? If you have younger kids, you might want to go after nap time instead.

Either way, try to plan your trip around your child’s usual schedule. It helps to avoid the middle of the day when the sun is at its peak.

Regardless of when you go, make sure to plan for shade. Consider taking a:

  • Utility wagon to carry all your stuff in
  • Beach umbrella
  • Folding snack table
  • Shade tent
  • Beach chairs
  • Blankets to sit on

These things to bring on vacation to the beach will help you build your own shade. At the same time, you can sit in the sand without scorching your skin. 

Soak up the Sun (In Moderation)

It helps to get a little sun, though. In fact, sunlight encourages your body to produce vitamin D. This vitamin is responsible for:

  • Building strong bones
  • Aiding your immune system
  • Encouraging weight loss
  • Reducing the risk of depression
  • Helping to prevent colon, prostate, ovarian, and pancreatic cancer
  • Potentially treat thyroiditis, inflammatory bowel disease, and rheumatoid arthritis
  • Helping with skin conditions like acne, eczema, and psoriasis

Remember, everything in moderation. Too much sunlight can cause ultraviolet (UV) rays to penetrate your skin. Excessive UV light can contribute to skin cancer and cell DNA damage.

With that in mind, time your trip to avoid excessive sunlight.

Taking a utility wagon with you will help you carry everything from the car to the beach and back again. You won’t have to worry about potential back pain or dropping something during the trek. 

Consider creating a “things to bring to the beach” checklist for yourself as you read this guide. That way, you won’t forget anything on the day of your trip!

2. Tons of Toys

Do your kids get bored easily? Consider taking their favorite toys for the tip. Other fun things to bring to the beach include a:

  • Frisbee
  • Kite
  • Football
  • Soccer ball
  • Spike ball
  • Beach bocce set
  • Paddleball

Bringing toys that won’t get damaged from exposure to water. Waterproof toys can allow your kids to have fun on the sand or in the waves.

Bringing toys will keep your kids active, too. Play along or turn your games into a friendly competition.

3. Lots of Water

It’s suggested that kids should drink six to eight cups of water a day. While you’re out in the sun, it’s important to remain hydrated. Your kids might need to drink more than the recommended amount if you’re in the sun for the entire day.

As you develop your list of things to bring to the beach, don’t forget to take refillable water bottles. You might find a water fountain near the entryway to the beach. A refillable water bottle is eco-friendly.

You also won’t make the mistake of tossing the bottle out once it’s empty. Instead, you’ll feel reminded to refill it and keep drinking.

4. A Snack

Before heading out to the beach, don’t forget to pack a refreshing snack. Consider taking snacks that will help your family members remain hydrated. For example, you can pack cucumbers, grapes, and watermelon.

Try taking a cooler with you to keep your snacks and water on ice.

Are you taking younger kids to the beach? Cut up their snacks before your trip. If their food is easier to eat, they’re more likely to finish their snack and get the nutrients they need.

5. Plenty of Sunscreen

Every time your kids run into the water, their sunscreen washes off a little. Instead of relying on one coat of sunscreen, take a bottle with you. Reapply the sunscreen every hour to protect your family from sun damage.

6. Beach-Appropriate Clothing

Dress for success! When reviewing your list of things to bring to the beach, make sure to take the right clothing, including:

  • Water shoes
  • Swim diapers
  • A wide-brimmed hat or cap
  • Sunglasses
  • Cover-ups
  • Swimsuits
  • Tank tops and shorts
  • Sleep clothes
  • Sandals and flip flops

You can also wear sun protective clothing to minimize UV ray damage.

7. A First Aid Kit

Accidents happen all the time. Consider taking a first aid kit with you on your beach trip. If someone steps on a sharp shell, you’ll have antiseptic wipes and bandaids at hand.

8. Personal Items

You could become so focused on packing beach-appropriate items that you forget the basics. Here are a few personal items you might want to pack:

  • Reading glasses
  • A book, magazine, or e-book reader
  • Hairbrush and hair ties
  • Wallet and extra cash
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Hand wipes
  • Your cell phone and a battery pack
  • Feminine products
  • Medications

Have a little extra cash ready in case you want to treat the kids to ice cream.

9. Ocean Gear

Do your kids love playing in the water? Make sure to pack water gear, such as:

  • Goggles
  • Life jackets
  • Floatable rafts and tubes
  • A waterproof camera and phone case
  • Snorkels and masks
  • Swim fins

Make sure to keep an eye on the kids while they’re in the water.

10. Sand Gear

If your kids prefer playing in the sand, plan on packing sand toys, too. You can show your kids how to make a sandcastle with a shovel and bucket. Host a competition to see who can create the best sandcastle!

Building Sandcastles and Memories: 10 Things to Bring to the Beach

Ready for a day in the sun? Keep these 10 things to bring to the beach in mind before you go. With this list, you can avoid forgetting something important before your day at the beach. 

Looking for more vacation ideas? Explore the Travel section of the blog today.