Beach Day Essentials: What To Pack For A Day At The Beach

When you’re planning a beach day, you can’t just haphazardly throw some sunscreen and a towel into a beach bag, and run out the door. There are certain beach day essentials that you’ll wish you remembered to pack for your beach day, and other beach day essentials that are simply essential if you want to have the best, safest and most comfortable beach day possible.

The same applies to a day at the lake. You need to keep yourself safe, hydrated, fed, comfortable, and shaded from the sun while also packing items that make your beach day more fun and enjoyable – because you deserve it.

Below are some beach day essentials to remember when organizing your beach day this summer:


Beach Umbrella

Easily one of the most common items to forget, the beach umbrella can save a beach day. You can’t assume that you’ll find a shaded spot at the beach. It can get busy, and all the spots with shade might be taken. Your beach umbrella will help prevent heat stroke, sunburn, and keep you shaded so that you can spend more time at the beach, safely.

Beach Chairs

Some people only pack a large beach towel to lie on, but that can get uncomfortable quickly. Foldable beach chairs or camping chairs are easy to transport and allow you to find a more comfortable seated position at the beach to enjoy the view or read your book.

For the ultimate beach day, buy one of those foldable lounge chairs for the beach. They’re even more comfortable than the average folding chair, since they allow you to lie down, with an adjustable incline.

Face Sunscreen and Body Sunscreen

Typically, face sunscreen is of a higher quality, and it’s best to pack both face sunscreen and body sunscreen when you go to the beach. You should follow the instructions on the sunscreen and reapply it every hour.

You should also pack lip balm with SPF in it, to protect your lips from sun exposure in addition to the rest of your body.

If your DNA test reveals that you have a higher genetic risk of skin cancer, you’ll need to wear sun-protection clothing, be in shade, and apply lots of sunscreen.

Cooler with Ice and Refreshing Drinks (Including Bottled Water)

Your cooler is one of the beach day essentials you need the most. When you’re out in the heat, you need to stay hydrated. You’ll be grateful to have a cooler full of bottled water, coconut water (for electrolytes), and even some juice.

As for beach day essentials, a bonus tip is to include cold water in a spray bottle to place in your cooler. You can take it out and spritz yourself with cold water whenever you’re feeling too hot.


If you want to spend the day at the beach, you’ll need plenty of snacks. Unless you have extra room in your cooler, you may want to consider the types of snacks that are nourishing, but don’t melt. Consider packing some ziplock bags of trail mix, a couple of apples, some granola bars and bananas. If there is room in your cooler, pack some sandwiches.

Polarized Sunglasses and a Hat

You’ll need sunglasses at the beach, but polarized sunglasses will enhance your vision and allow you to enjoy the views much better.

Your hat is another one of those beach day essentials that you’ll regret forgetting. You need to be able to shield your face from the sun whenever possible. Direct sun exposure to your face (especially for prolonged periods of time at the beach) can lead to sun damage, age spots and premature wrinkles.

Beach Towel or Beach Blanket

Large beach blankets are the best, because you can lie on them and still have room for a friend to lie on it with you. In addition to a beach blanket or picnic blanket, you may also want to pack some regular towels to dry yourself off after a swim. Extra towels can also be rolled up and used as pillows when you’re in your beach chair or laying on your beach blanket, so they have multiple uses.


Swimsuit, Beach Cover-Up, and a Change of Clothes

While you know that your time on the beach will likely involve you mostly wearing your swimsuit and beach cover-up, you’ll also need a change of clothes, including underwear. Nobody wants to put a wet bathing suit back on after a sweaty beach day full of fun, sand, swimming and sweating. Pack a change of clothes to put on at the end of your beach day.

Portable Speaker

Everyone is doing it these days: Bringing portable speakers to enjoy music at the beach. If you find a semi-private section of the beach, you can play your music in peace and it might help you relax and enjoy the day.

Book, Frisbee, Volleyball or Other Fun Beach Toys

When it comes to which beach day essentials you should pack to ensure you have the most fun possible at the beach, that comes down to your personal preferences. What do you like to do? Do you like to read a book, or would you rather do something active like stand-up paddle boarding, or playing frisbee? Be sure to pack some beach day essentials that facilitate having a great time at the beach. If you’re going to a lake instead of a beach, and it allows inflatable floatation devices, bring your favorite floatie as well.

Beach Day Essentials for Carrying Everything: Try a Rolling Carry-All Buggy or Backpack

If you have to walk home from the beach, you’ll need one of those rolling carry-all buggies, or a big backpack that fits everything. Logistically, you’ll need to ensure you have what you need to carry everything, especially if you won’t have help.

Beach Day Essentials: The Bottom Line

Since a beach day is one of the most fun summer activities to do with your friends, family, or significant other, they’ll be grateful if you’re organized enough to remember to pack some of the above beach day essentials.

Bonus beach day essentials you could pack for your beach day include a portable BBQ, and some marinated meat ready-to-go in your cooler to make lunch for everyone with you. Or, perhaps you’ll pack a surprise picnic with a nice bottle of wine and some gourmet snacks.

The right beach day items all depend on your personal preferences. Some might be more important than others, but we hope this list helped you plan for the perfect beach day.

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