The warm sea breeze gently touching your body, delicate grains of sand between your toes and the relaxing sound of waves crashing against the shore – it doesn’t get much better than a beach getaway.
Just booked a holiday? Get your sun-filled trip off to a great start as we list 25 things to take to the beach. From shoreside essentials to handy gadgets, we want to make sure you have everything you need for a safe and unforgettable day on the sand.
1. A top-rated sun cream
Let’s kick things off with a shore essential. The right SPF for your skin is highly important, not only does it stop you from burning, but no one wants to come off the beach sporting a bright, red nose or sore feet after too much sun exposure. But this doesn’t mean you should pick up just any sun cream.
Top tip: We always advise choosing a water-resistant lotion as you’re likely to be dipping in and out of the sea. You should also use a minimum of SPF 30 on all exposed areas.
2. Underwater camera
Underwater cameras are fantastic, they function exactly the same as a normal camera with one main difference – you can get them wet. Used frequently by snorkelers and scuba divers in a bid to capture that perfect submerged snap, this is a great way to document your explorations.
We would suggest investing in one of these gadgets if you’re heading somewhere like Egypt. As one of the world’s best diving spots, you can spend hours photographing the diverse marine life.
3. Beach towels
You can never pack enough towels when it comes to a beach outing. As the sun shines down on us we often find ourselves dipping in and out of the sea to cool off, leaving us with a soggy, dirty towel. Pack a spare and you’ll be able to wrap yourself in a clean, dry towel at the end of the day.
This is particularly beneficial if you’re travelling with children or you have fair skin as there is often little to no shade on the beach. And before you start wondering how you’re going to fit it in your suitcase, this may be something you want to pick up once you get to your resort.
5. Waterproof phone case
This one is for all those selfie takers. If you’ve ever wanted to take your phone into the sea, now is your chance. Invest in waterproof phone case and you can use your device as normal without the risk of getting it wet or covered in sand – genius, right?
6. Bat and ball
If you get easily bored sunbathing for hours on end, nothing beats a game of bat and ball. Not only is it a great way to burn off all those extra holiday calories, but it also allows you channel your competitive streak.
7. Cooler box
If you’re planning on staying on the coast all day, why not create your very own beach picnic. Whether you’re feeding fussy littles ones or you’ve planned a romantic date for two, this is a great way to keep your snacks fresh. Plus, you’ll be the envy of every beach-goer when they witness your endless supply of drinks and handmade sandwiches.
It doesn’t matter if you’re on a busy shore in Spain or a secluded cove in Greece, there’s nothing more relaxing than reading a book on the beach. Whether you’re a lover of fiction or you prefer something factual, get lost in the pages as you listen to the sound of waves hitting the shore.
9. Plenty of water
It sounds simple, but it’s surprising how many people forget to carry water when they head to the beach for a long sunbathing session. Keeping hydrated in the sun is extremely important, particularly when those stifling summer temperatures hit.
10. A cheap pair of sunglasses
It’s safe to say most of us own more than one pair of sunglasses, some more expensive than others. As much as we all want to look good along the sand, we always advise packing cheap eye wear for the beach. With countless pairs of sunglasses going missing in the sea or lenses getting trampled on, it’s a no-brainer.
11. Portable speaker
If you’re planning on staying on the beach all day, a portable speaker is your go-to gadget. Relaxing beats as you sunbathe or the latest chart toppers for a shoreside singalong – whatever genre you prefer, bringing your music to the coast has never been so easy. Of course, we always advise investing in a waterproof option to avoid any damage.
Top tip: If you’re planning on investing in a portable speaker for your trip, we can’t recommend the Bose SoundLink Micro Bluetooth Speaker enough. Perfect for outdoor use, this waterproof device comes with six hours of playtime and is made from a scratch-resistant rubber. It’s also extremely compact, making it easy to carry.
Headphones are ideal when you’re looking for complete escapism. Blocking out background noise, means you can enjoy stunning sea views to the sound of your summer playlist.
13. Bucket and spade
Long associated with traditional seaside holidays, buckets and spades have stood the test of time with everyone from small children to adults joining in on the sculpting fun. Spend all day perfecting your sandy carvings, or use your bucket to gather objects which have been washed up on the shore from seashells to pebbles and rocks.
14. Giant inflatables
You can’t go to the beach without purchasing an inflatable. From giant unicorns to half-eaten doughnuts and every kind of fruit-shaped dingy imaginable, funky floats are all the rage. Take in that refreshing sea breeze as you drift solo along the Mediterranean or buy a family-sized inflatable and enjoy some joint relaxation.
15. A snorkel
If you’re lover of all things adventure, a snorkel should be at the top of your packing list. Providing hours of underwater fun, discover what lies beneath the ocean surface as you swim deeper and deeper.Trust us, you won’t regret carry this entertaining piece of equipment.
Top tip: Always check which are the best snorkelling spots before packing your gear as it’s not advisable to snorkel at every beach.
16. A bottle opener
Some of us like to enjoy a few alcoholic drinks on the beach, but what use are few bottles of cold beer if you have nothing to open them with? Instead of trying to figure out a way to remove the top before your drink goes warm, put this beach essential on your packing list and do everyone a favour.
17. Hair protection
This is one for those with long locks. If you’re worried about wayward hair during you time at the coast, simply carry some protection spray or serum. Not only will this protect your mane from those harmful UV rays, but it will tackle dryness from the salt water. Now, pack a comb and look forward to tangle-free tresses.
Beach cover-ups are essential for a day on the sand. Whether you want to prevent certain areas from burning or you’re looking for something that you can quickly throw on as you dry off – these comfortable garments are a vital shore accessory.
19. Handheld fan
We can’t recommend this handheld device enough. Ideal for cooling off when you’re body starts to overheat, this cheap item is a lifesaver on those humid beach days.
Top tip: We always advise carrying a portable fan if you’re travelling in the height of summer or hitting the coast at lunch time when the sun is at its hottest.
20. First aid kit
This is one of those items we hope you don’t have to use, but a basic first aid kit will put you at ease if someone gets hurt. Even if it’s just for a minor injury, it’s always better to be prepared. It should contain items such as plasters, bandages and tape as well as over-the counter medicines and tablets.
Top tip: This is a must-pack if you’re travelling with active toddlers as we know how difficult it can be to keep your eye on their every move.
21. A kite
Perfect for all ages, flying a kite at the beach never gets old. You don’t have to be an expert either, all you need is a bit of wind, an open space, some persistence, and you’re on your way. Happy flying.
22. Beach mat
Beach mats always come in handy, from getting dry at the end of the day to planning a picnic and keeping your belongings sand-free. If you haven’t purchased one of these multi-purpose must-haves yet, it’s about time you do. Just make sure there is plenty of weight on your mat, no one wants to be left chasing their possessions down the beach when a strong sea breeze hits.
23. Sea shoes
We know they may not be the most attractive shoes, but they are fantastic for entering the water. With rough shells and uneven rocks, this protective footwear will keep your feet safe from any sharp sea objects. They are also great if you’re visiting pebbled shores as they are often uncomfortable to walk on barefoot.
It’s surprising how much fun you can have with a frisbee. This old-school beach toy should be on everyone’s packing list, and if it isn’t, we suggest you purchase one from a nearby shop. Create your own frisbee tournament and see how long you can go without dropping it.
25. Beach Bag
Wondering where you’re going to store all these items, well maybe not all of them, this is where a beach bag comes in. Opt for an oversized tote or even a backpack and stuff as much essentials in there as you need.
Whether you’re heading off on a last minute holiday or a summer getaway, pack these useful items and make those days at the beach extra special.