Going to the beach is a great day out – whether it’s with your partner, your family, or your friends. Hey, you could even have a great time there on your own! With most people not being lucky enough to have a beach right on their doorstep, a bit of forwarding planning is required before a day at the beach. Let us help you with that.
In this post, we’ll take a look at the essential things you need to pack for a day out at the beach. Hopefully, it’ll take the stress out of planning your trip! Let’s get started.
The first and most important thing to decide is how you’re going to take everything you need to the beach. There are three types of a bag that are great for this, and there’s not a suitcase in sight! They are:
- Backpack: While you don’t need a huge backpack that you might take for a gap year in South America, a day pack is a good option for transporting your stuff to the beach. This convenient and handy piece of kit shouldn’t be filled to the top – about 75% full is the right amount. That’ll still give you plenty of space for all the important things listed below.
- Duffel Bag: A duffel bag is the perfect alternative to a backpack – its soft and squishy sides mean that you can manipulate the shape to fit in a small space in your car or on public transport. If you don’t already have a bag, they’re the cheapest of our 3 selections too.
- Dry Bag: A dry bag is not a necessity for everyone. However, if you’re planning on doing water sports where you’ll be away from the sand for a while, such as stand up paddle boarding, a dry bag will keep your stuff protected from water damage.
Another thing you’ll need if you’re planning water sports (or just a dip in the sea) is your swimsuit. Usually one of the first things you pack for the beach, you could even put it on under your clothes so as to save space in your luggage. Just make sure that you have a towel or spare bag to put it in for the journey back – it won’t be very pleasant to wear if it’s still wet!
One of the first things on people’s minds regarding the beach is the sun. And while it’s great to top up your levels of Vitamin D and perhaps even work on a tan, it’s important to protect yourself from the sun. Too much time under those UV rays can pose a significant health risk! Thankfully, all it takes to mitigate that risk is a good sunscreen, routinely re-applied. If you’re planning on going in the water, try to use a reef-safe sunscreen as it’s better for the environment.
Obviously you can’t rub sunscreen in your eyes (you could try, but it would be extremely painful) so you’ll need something else to protect them. Sunglasses are one of the easiest things to forget if you’re not used to wearing them, but they’re also easy to get hold of if there are any shops near your chosen beach. Either way, they’re an essential thing to have!
Wow, we really are big on sun protection. Another tricky place to apply sunscreen is your scalp, but those UV rays don’t discriminate. A hat will add an extra layer of protection. And if you get the right one, you’ll look pretty cool too!
Want to economise on space in your backpack or duffel bag? A towel is one of the largest beach items you’re likely to pack, and if it gets damp it can damage other stuff when you put it back in. Avoid that by taking a microfibre towel. This awesome, quick-drying gear is a must for a day at the beach. Not only does it fold up into a much smaller space but it also won’t get your stuff wet!
Sand in your shoes is a big no-no at the beach. You’ll still be emptying little particles out days, if not weeks later! Avoid that with a pair of flip flops or sandals. These are super easy to clean afterwards, and they make it more comfortable to walk on the sand. Especially when it’s so hot that it burns the soles of your feet!
Stand up paddle board
Want to try a water sport at the beach? How about stand up paddle boarding. This is a relaxed and gentle way to explore your surroundings while giving yourself a gentle workout. SUPs are hugely versatile, so you could also practice yoga or surfing during your trip. If you want to take your own equipment, consider getting an inflatable stand up paddle board. They’re easy to fold up and transport. You also may enjoy fishing from a SUP more than a kayak, as well!
Travelling to the beach with a big group of friends or family? If you have enough space, you need no excuse to start a game of soccer, baseball, or even beach tennis (that one works for couples). Just be sure to take a ball with you, and also some bats or rackets. You can use towels or bags to mark the edges of your pitch.
A great activity to do with kids, snorkelling allows you to dip your head beneath the ocean and see what’s happening down there. This is especially fun if you’re at a beach known for marine life. You could see anything from tropical fish, to turtles, to perhaps even small and harmless sharks. If you’re heading to a beach known for its large and very harmful sharks… perhaps leave the snorkel at home!