Going to the beach this summer? Remember to pack these must-have summer beach essentials.
Blue skies, summer breezes and a great body of water makes for one beautiful day at the beach. But before you and your family head to your favorite lake or seaside haunt, make sure you have packed these summer beach essentials.
You probably wouldn’t go on a trip without packing the essentials for your family. Well, the same can be said for going to the beach. Savvy beach combers know that a great time depends upon just a little preparation and the right gear to make your time in the surf and sand a success.
So, this summer don’t forget to pack these beach essentials:
1. Beach Bag
One thing everyone needs is a water resistant beach bag. It is ideal for carrying your gear to and from the beach. And, make sure that it is large enough to hold all of those must-have items, if you know what I mean!
No one wants skin cancer (melanoma) and with so many great products out on the market today, you can spare yourself with taking a bit of precaution by using one that has a high SPF (Sun Protection Formula). The one that was recommended to our family years ago was BULLFROG SPF +50. Doctors recommend that whether you use spray or cream, be sure to reapply it periodically, because it does wear off from excessive sun, sand and spray (water, that is).
3. Beach Blanket
Regardless if you have a beach mat or not, sometimes it can get a bit cool down at the beach. A microfiber beach blanket is your best best. Not only is it lightweight and super fast drying but it is large enough to lay out on it and won’t blow away if you use anchors or corner sand catchers, if your blanket comes with these.
4. Beach Mat
Worried about sitting on the hot sand? You won’t have to if you bring a beach mat. Make sure that it is large and roomy and is easy to carry. This one pictured folds up to the size of a small purse and has straps that allows you to sling it over your shoulder. Sweet!
5. Beach Towel
No one wants to lug around a heavy beach towel–trust me, I’ve been there, done that. My best advice is to leave your terry towels at home. Instead give microfiber sports towels a try. They are now sized right for the beach, plus they are quick-drying and fold up small. Sweet and neat!
6. Swim Suit
7. Cover Up
I think for women cover ups are a necessity. Whether you throw on a t-shirt or even something more fashionable like this one-size-fits-all net swimsuit cover up, you won’t be disappointed. Cover ups give protection from the sun and wind and also provides a bit of warmth when the sun goes down.
When it comes to your eyes and the glaring sun, you need the very best. Don’t skimp on this. A great recommendation is RAY-BAN sunglasses. Whether you choose this or something similar, make sure that your sunglasses provide you with 100% UV400 protection. Another tip: Make sure the frames are lightweight and durable. You will want to be comfortable wearing them all day. Your eyes will thank you!
Besides messing up or even (ugh!) sun-bleaching your tresses during beach outings, you’ll want to think about protecting your head to keep the sun at bay to minimize heat stroke. Pick something like this stylish beach hat. It has a good size brim and also offers UPF 50+, so you can’t go wrong. Just provide the sunshine and slip it on.
Beside suntan lotion, you will want to protect your tooties. Not every beach has soft sand or even a cushy ocean bottom. So wear water shoes whenever possible. Not only will they ensure that your feet are safe and sound during your beach time, but it will also allow you great stability for that long trek back to the car in the evening.
11. First Aid Kit
No one wants to think about it but it accidents do happen at the beach. Be prepared for minor sunburns, cuts, scrapes and such with a fully-stocked first aid kit. Make sure that it also includes ice packs just in case your little ones (or big ones) get bumps or bruises.
12. Water Bottles
You might think that running in and out of water will keep you hydrated, quite the contrary. You need fresh water–all throughout your stay at the beach. So make sure you’ve packed a water bottle that is made from a BPA-free, impact resistant material, because you don’t want to have brake while you are out and about. And, make sure that it is also dishwasher safe for easy cleaning.
Beach Tip: If your water bottle has a handy carrying loop like the one pictured below, you can use a carabiner to hook your water bottle to your beach bag.
Hungry yet? Well, going to the beach can make one’s tummy growl from all of the fun activities. Make sure that you allow time to refuel with delicious healthy snacks like humus, veggies, pre-made sandwiches, and of course, fresh fruit.
If you want prepackaged options, there are many healthy choices like EARTH’S BEST on the market. Otherwise, you can always opt for a snack that comes in handy bags that are easy to carry in your beach bag or cooler.
11. Beach Toys
The beach wouldn’t be fun without its share of beach toys. Make sure that you have plenty of shovels, buckets and sifters, like this beach set. Other ideas might be a beach ball and sand brick maker, so that young and old can make their very own sand castles in the sand.
12. Beach Umbrella
You’ll definitely want something sturdy to protect you and your family from the winds, sand and sun. Many families bring a large umbrella that will fit the whole family. The one pictured below has an SPF 125 sun protection.
Beach Tip: Make sure that your umbrella comes with with anchors, because it can be easily blown away by cascading winds.
13. Sun Tent
It’s nice to be able to have some privacy changing diapers, out of swimsuits and even taking a well-deserved nap. With a light and airy beach shade, you will be afforded a space that will keep even the littlest beach combers comfortable in the hot midday sun.
14. Great Reads
Reading at the beach is one of those must-dos. It’s a great to be able to snuggle under your favorite umbrella or beach shade and have a good read. Young and old there’s something for everyone. So take advantage of the moment and get your read on!
15. Hot Beach Music
The beach wouldn’t be the beach without some music to rev up your beach outing. Somehow music sets the scene and the beach is fun, fun, fun. Whether you choose the Oldies or the rockin’ hits of today, be ready for some hot, hot, hot sounds of the sand.
For more great family travel ideas and tips be sure to check out Wisconsin Homemaker Travel Section.