When families head to the beach, there is a lot to remember. First and foremost, don’t forget the kids! Next, grab a waterproof beach bag. Some of the bigger varieties include compartments that help to keep everything organized. A waterproof backpack, especially for larger families and longer days, is ideal. Here are some items to include in your beach bag that will make your day a more enjoyable one:

Fun items

Goggles – There is so much life in our oceans, lakes and rivers. Dive in and find fish, shells, and plant life. Goggles help little ones, and adults, open their eyes underwater to take it all in.

Snorkels – In addition to goggles, snorkels let swimmers breathe longer while underwater. They can more easily explore aquamarine life up close with this inexpensive breathing aid.

Toys – Water soakers, pails, shovels and more. Beach toys allow kids to play for hours in the sand so parents are able to relax. Children can explore their imagination building castles surrounded by moats of water. Or they can create sand sculptures such as mermaids, fish, and towers.

Camera – A waterproof camera or a waterproof phone case allows you to take amazing pictures, in and out of the water. Upload them later to social media or your own personal library.

Speakers – Portable, and waterproof, speakers hook up to your phone or music streaming service. Listen to your favorite songs while enjoying the waves, birds and breeze.

BooksSummer reading lists are one of the best things about this season. While watching the kids, catch up with your favorite books, magazines or websites.

Chairs and Umbrella – Many public beaches allow families to rent chairs and umbrellas by the hour or day. If you’re able to bring your own, that’s a great way to save some money. They won’t fit in your beach bag, but toting umbrellas especially comes in handy when that afternoon sun beats down on everyone. And chairs are more comfortable than sitting on a towel, especially for mom and dad. Maybe worth bringing along in a portable beach cart.

Put these on

Hats – In addition to sunblock and umbrellas, hats are good protection against the sun.

Sunglasses – Protect your eyes from the damage powerful UV rays can do, such as macular degeneration, by covering them up. Click here to find the best kind of protection according to experts.

Cover Ups – These light and loose clothes go comfortably over bathing suits. They also keep you dry in between dips in the water.

Change of clothes for everyone – Dry duds make the ride home way more comfortable than wet and sandy suits.

Towels – Old blankets are better than towels to spread out on the beach. However, some people like to lay down on soft towels while working on their tans. Towels can also be placed under wet bottoms for the car ride home if no one brings extra clothing. Stow two or three more towels than you need in your beach bag. They will come in handy.

Flip-Flops – Parking lots and sand get hot under bare feet. Slide on your favorite flip-flops. And if the beach or water has sharp rocks, splurge and purchase some water shoes. They allow swimmers to explore without injury.

Personal Care Items

A beach bag must: sun protection

Sunscreen or sunblock – Protect your children and yourself from skin related diseases, such as cancer, later in life by using sunscreen now. Make sure to choose mineral-based options with a minimum SPF of 30. Find a good brand that’s waterproof and reapply every two hours. Pro tip: Use lotion rather than spray, it protects for longer periods of time. Click here for more information.

Wet Wipes – These come in handy if someone needs to use the restroom, clean their hands before a meal or if a seagull poops on someone’s foot. It happens.

Lip Balm – Your lips need protection from the sun, too. Fun fact: Dermatologists recommend finding shade during peak hours of 10am-2pm. If you’re out during this time period, really consider an umbrella and bodysuits, plus sunblock and SPF 30 lip balm.

First aid items – Basic kits can be purchased at most stores. They contain antibiotic ointment, bandages, pain relievers and sanitary wipes. Children walking along the beach sometimes step on a shell or rock. On-duty lifeguards help with serious stuff but first aid kits are a beach bag “must-have” for minor emergencies.

Sea-salt spray – Salt isn’t good for hair. Spray or coat your hair with leave-In conditioner to keep it shiny and healthy. Some products even come with sunscreen. Grab some from your beach bag and spray it on right before you get into the water. Sometimes a swim cap can protect especially long hair.

Vinegar and tweezers – Jellyfish make their home in warm waters. And they don’t always take kindly to swimming humans. A jellyfish sting doesn’t feel good, but it’s usually not fatal. If you can remove the stinger with tweezers and then treat the sting site with vinegar, the day and fun can go on.

Sand brushes – These come in handy removing sand from clothes and your car.

Extra items

Snacks Pack some healthy items and plenty of water. The night before, put some granola, raisins, nuts and coconut shreds into baggies. You won’t be tempted to buy junk food and soda from nearby vending machines or beach stands.

Heat-proof baggies or cooling packets – These allow you to store snacks and other small food items without worrying they’ll melt or go bad in that afternoon sun.

Money for parking or food huts – Many parking meters and food stands only take cash. Plan ahead and keep some dollars/coins in a waterproof wallet.

Waterproof bags – For cell phones, cameras, headphones, keys and other items you don’t want to get wet.

A day at the beach with the kids is a lot of fun. Include these items in your beach bag to make your day a more enjoyable one. Don’t forget to take along a diaper bag, if needed. If there are grills and picnic areas, bring a separate cooler for drinks, potato salad and other treats.

Have a great time! 


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