15 MUST-PACK Best Baby Beach Gear Items + Printable Packing List

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Best Baby Beach Gear!

Heading to the beach with a baby? Do yourself a big favor and round up the must-have baby beach gear below. We logged so many beach trips with our kids when they were babies and had the packing down to a science!  When it comes to taking a baby to the beach, the better prepared you are, the better day you will have! 

Landon Bahamas Beach

Happy Baby Means More Beach Time!

Vacations, long weekends and days spent at the beach are in the near future for many of you.  Last month we spent several days at the Jersey Shore, during which time we got a real crash course in BEACHING with a BABY.  Yeah, that was interesting.  Don’t get me wrong – we had a GREAT time!  But going to the beach with a baby is like packing for a jungle safari, a riverboat cruise and an all-inclusive week on a desert ranch, all at once.  A bit of an exaggeration? Maybe.  Just kidding.  I’m not exaggerating at all.

It’s hard to replicate the comforts of your own home on a vacation when you have a baby.  All of that handy “GEAR” that takes up every square inch of your house is convenient and turns into part of your daily pattern with the baby.  High chair, swing, pack ‘n play, exersaucer, crib, etc – we pretty much use ’em all on a daily basis – but short of renting a small box truck for a long weekend at the beach, it ain’t coming along for the ride.

In the last 11 years, we have covered all kinds of family travel tips.

Let’s talk beach gear for the youngest crowd around – babies!   (Find a free printable packing checklist of these items at the bottom of this post!)

How baby beach gear much is TOO much?

This “BRING ALL THE THINGS” line of thinking is hard to shake – and my list of things to pack hit a fever pitch when I started to list every single baby item that I NEEDED to bring ON the actual beach.

I finally hit rock bottom when I considered renting a pack mule AND a cabana boy to help move my Keurig, a small sink, Landon’s entire collection of Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn toys plus Lily’s Sofia the First easy chair onto the beach.  It was time to sit down and get serious.  I could only bring what I could carry.  And I hate carrying things.

Must-have baby beach gear!

My sister and I put our heads together and we came up with a list of 15 must-have items when taking a baby to the beach.

Other family beach lists we have compiled:

Baby Beach Tent for Shade and Rest

Top honors on our list of baby beach essentials goes to the Baby Beach Tent. These easy-up shelters make the perfect spot to provide  shade and escape the hustle and bustle of the busy beach. These little tents are incredibly convenient.

A couple of things to look for: one that is extremely simple to set up and a bonus if it offers some sort of UV Guard Protection from the sun’s harmful rays.  While Lily never succumbed to a nice little beach nap in our tent, she did enjoy playing inside of it when she was a baby.  Landon, on the other hand, was only too happy to nap on many beach trips in the tent.

These tents fold down to practically nothing and usually come with some sort of storage pouch which makes them super easy to store and travel with.

This Pop Up Beach Shade Shelter is a great tent option for your shady beach retreat. We also like the Coleman Beach Shade Shelter!

baby beach cabana tent mc

Protective Clothing: Hat/Cover Up/Rash Guard

Make sure you pack your baby a beach hat, cover up, or rash guard (or all of the above)  Hats keep sun out of baby’s eyes and off of his scalp.  A baby’s skin is super sensitive.

Sand is the archenemy of sensitive.  It is scratchy, itchy and finds a way into EVERYTHING.  Cover ups and rash guards help to protect a baby from all things sun and sand.

castaway cay landon

Spray Bottle

Take a  Spray bottle with fresh water with you. Or take an empty spray bottle and fill it with bottled water from your cooler. Nothing fancy here, folks.  Pick up a run-of-the-mill spray bottle (dollar store, travel section of Walmart or Target, etc).  Fill it with clean tap water.

These came in handy multiple times on the beach when, despite our best efforts, the babies insisted on grabbing, holding, scraping and eating sand.  A quick spray of water on them (or on our hands first and then splashed onto them) and we were able to significantly cut down on the amount of sand that they ate for lunch.

We suggest using fresh water instead of ocean water in case you have to spray some on baby’s face or near their mouth. Salt water stings your eyes and would likely lead to an unhappy kid.

Water Spray Bottle

Flipple Water Bottle Converter

Get a Flipple – A what?  Yep.  A Flipple.  LOL  I bought this little gadget a couple of months ago, on a whim, during a sale.  I figured since we are frequently on the go and almost always have bottles of water on us, this could come in handy with Landon.  The Flipple allows you to adapt a standard water bottle into a baby bottle or (sold separately) a sippy cup.  Genius!

We have now used the Flipple at the beach and countless horse shows.  He loves it, we love it.  Great product.

Update: Looks like the Flipple keeps going in and out of stock. Try this sippy cup version from Green sprouts!


Munchkin Click Lock Food Pouch Spoon Tips

Update: I am having trouble finding these in stores! These Infantino Pouch Spoons look very similar!

These spoon tips are not just a beach essential – they are a diaper bag staple! The day that my sister gave these spoon tips to me, I knew they were going to be life-changing.  We frequently feed Landon baby food from pouches – especially when we are out and about.

No more remembering to pack a spoon, no more toting around dirty spoons in the diaper bag until we finally remember to take them out.  No need for a bowl either.  Simply twist the spoon tip onto the baby food pouch and squeeze food onto the spoon.  Too easy!  I love the included cap – eliminates the need to clean the spoon right away.

munchkin baby food pouch spoon feeder mc

Small Inflatable Baby Pool & Bath Toys

Beach entertaining is super easy with a  small inflatable baby pool and bath toysYears ago, my cousin suggested buying a tiny little baby pool for the beach.  Time and time again, it proves to be the best boredom buster to keep the babies cool and entertained.

My sister threw some bath toys in for my niece last month and they were an instant hit.  The only problem we ran into was trying to keep the big kids OUT of the tiny pool.  LOL!


Check out this AWESOME Baby Beach Tent with Pool… the pool cavity nestles into the sand!!

Monobeach baby pool beach tent mc

Stroller or Wagon with All-Terrain or Off-Road Wheels

Use a  stroller or wagon with all-terrain/off-road wheels for easy baby and gear toting across the sand.  We picked up a jogging stroller with big ‘ol tires at the last consignment sale specifically for things like the beach.  We loaded up Landon and our beach gear and pushed him pretty effortlessly across the sand.  The dry sand was a little tough in spots, but the wet sand was a breeze.  Landon was happy to sit and eat or lay down to nap in his stroller and I loved that it kept him out of the sand.

It was also convenient for those just-before-naptime moments when he was cranky.  I simply took him for a walk down the beach and he was out for the count.

landon beach jeep jogging stroller mc

Mesh Baby Carrier

We LOVE this  Mesh Baby Carrier! Another great way to keep baby off the sand is to carry her. But you’re probably thinking, “I don’t want to get my carrier or wrap all full of sand, plus the fabric will be so HOT sitting on the beach.”

My sister had the great idea to bring a mesh sling.  It was breathable AND water proof.  Perfect for baby wearing on the beach, in the water, etc. Excellent must-have baby beach gear!

caitlin with genny mesh sling baby carrier mc

Water Resistant Blanket

We always keep a Water-Resistant Blanket in our car. These things are all the rage!  We have actually owned a couple for a few years.  They have earned a permanent spot in each of our cars and have given us a nice dry spot to sit at many horse shows, beach trips, fireworks nights and more.

You can see my sister’s blanket in this pic that I took of Lily while she was hiding from the attack seagulls as she ate her lunch!

hiding from seagulls beach avalon mc

Baby Powder

Pack some Baby Powder for easy sand removal. Regular old baby powder comes in handy at the beach for sand removal.  Just rub some powder on those sandy legs, feet, arms, you get the idea.  The powder helps the sand come off without irritating the skin.

baby powder


I know,  Sunscreen  sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s easy to forget to throw the sunscreen into your beach bag.  So let this be your reminder! Make sure you lather up the kids before you leave for the beach and then reapply according to your product’s instructions.

Coppertone Sunscreen Stick

Swim Diapers and Other Baby Essentials

Don’t forget the Swim Diapers and Other Essentials.  Maybe you’re not going to haul the entire diaper bag to the beach with you, but be sure to pack enough diapers (regular and swim) and wipes to get you through your day!  While we’re at it, don’t forget the burp clothes, a change of clothing (or three) and bibs.

Built Diaper Bag Night Damask Packed Up

Snacks and Water

Make sure you pack lots of Snacks and water! Think about what meals and snack time(s) are going to occur as you sit on the beach.  Pack plenty of bottled water as well as snacks and food for yourself AND your baby.

Think about any bottles, formula or other feeding essentials that you might need and pack for them into your beach bag. We love our Pack-It Cool bags for beach days and road trips.  The entire bag is essentially a big ice pack, keeping everything cool for hours.

Bring Snacks To Disney
Pack It Cool Picnic Bag

Ziploc or Waterproof Bags

Add some  Ziploc bags to your beach bag.  I admit, I am pretty obsessed with ziploc bags when we go on a trip.  They help me to compartmentalize and organize all of our STUFF from snacks to toiletries.  The beach is no exception.  Since ziplocs are sealed WATERproof bags, they are ideal for keeping items away from the water and sand.

I like to pack food, diaper essentials and also spare outfits in ziploc bags.  Bonus – turn an empty ziploc into a trash bag for any food wrappers, dirty diapers, etc.

beach packing with ziploc bags mc

Mesh Bags

Nope, these  Mesh Bags aren’t for laundry day! Pick these bags up anywhere from Walmart to the dollar store.  Sometimes they even come in sets of multiple bags.  Tuck these bags into your beach bag and at the end of the day, throw anything super sandy inside.

Clothes, toys, etc will shake some of their excess sand off as you walk to your car or hotel, cutting down on the amount of sand that is dragged into your living space.

mesh laundry bags mc

Free Printable Baby Beach Gear Packing List

Get your free checklist: Baby Beach Gear Printable Packing List

You can grab our printable right here. Simply enter your email address in the box and opt-in to receive our free newsletter.  Check your inbox for this printable, which you will receive as a subscriber bonus. 

beach supplies for baby packing list

So, to recap, Top 15 MUST-PACK baby beach gear Items for Taking a Baby to the Beach:

Baby Beach Tent
Hat/Cover Up/Rash Guard
Flipple (here’s the Greensprouts version)
Food Pouch Spoon Tips
Small Inflatable Baby Pool and Bath Toys
Check out this AWESOME Baby Beach Tent with Pool… it nestles into the sand!!
Stroller or wagon
Mesh Baby Carrier
Water-Resistant Blanket
Baby Powder
Swim Diaper and Other Essentials
Snacks and water
Ziploc bags
Mesh Bags
Spray Bottle

What are YOUR absolute must-haves for baby beach gear when it comes to beaching it with a baby?  Leave your suggestions in the comments below!


Baby Beach Gear PIN

Baby Beach Gear Checklist PIN

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