Beach essentials for babies and toddlers


Baby’s First Beach Vacation

Are you packing for baby’s first beach vacation? Wondering what baby beach essentials you’ll need to keep them busy? The idea of going to the beach with your baby or toddler sounds great, doesn’t it?

You picture yourself sitting in your chair bathing in the sun, toes in the sand, and your baby or toddler playing and loving the waves!

Then reality sets in….and you realize this isn’t going the way you pictured it! There is NO relaxing on the beach with a toddler!

Well, I’m here to help you with that.

I learned this the hard way our first year taking our baby to the beach. I did have a bit of warning from my neighbor’s bad experience, so she gave me a few good tips which I’ll share, and then some others I’ve learned along the way!

If you have a young baby or toddler, make sure to pack these 13 beach must-haves for your baby’s vacation. Otherwise, you’ll have to go out and buy them at the beach which will end up costing you ten times more than what you would’ve paid on Amazon!

Not to mention, it’s more of a hassle!

So keep on reading for the top beach essentials for babies and toddlers and the best beach packing list! If you have all these beach essentials, you might actually get to sit down in that beach chair for more than 2 min! 😎

Baby Pool


A baby pool you might say? Yes, I said the same thing to my neighbor when she mentioned this to me.

Why the heck would I need a baby pool when I’m sitting on the beach and we have a pool back at our hotel room?

Trust me….get this tiny blow-up pool and you’ll thank me later!

This is the exact one that I have from Amazon and it’s compact enough to travel and blow up in a pinch! Put this baby right under your umbrella and your baby/toddler will love it!

Most babies are scared of the ocean and some are too young to even be that close to it. So, what’s the solution? A small baby pool! They can sit in it, play with their toys, and let you enjoy the beach for a little bit!

If this is your first time at the beach with your baby, don’t ask questions, just bring one and thank me later! 😜

I have the rainbow pool below, this was perfect for us because we put it under our umbrella. If you don’t have an umbrella or want a baby pool with its own shade, then click on the second one. Both are under $13 and you can use them at home when you’re done!

Click the photos below for more detailsπŸ‘‡

Beach Umbrella or Beach tent

Yes, I know you can rent these when you get to the beach but trust me when I tell you, you’ll pay more and it’s a pain with a baby in tow.

Without a doubt, you need an umbrella when you’re going to the beach with a baby and sometimes you might need more than one.

Save yourself some cash and get a compact umbrella that fits great in your car and you won’t have to worry about renting one down there.

The beach umbrella below is nice because it gives you a bit of privacy if you have to nurse your baby or they fall asleep. I personally don’t like to bring a huge tent because I already have enough luggage with 3 kids, so bringing a small umbrella for the family or baby tent worked great for us! This will give you great sun protection and is perfect for a beach day!

Sun Tent With Pool – even better, get the sun tent with mini pool inside below:

Baby Floaty

This one we had was awesome because not only could my baby use it in the water but she would also lay on it on the beach or poolside as well. It was comfortable to lay on plus gave her the shade she needed!

Your baby will need some type of floaty device and this one is the best! We had the blue one below but they have other similar options to choose from now that also work great!

Click the photos for more details.

Toddler Floaty or Puddle Jumper

I have tried TONS of floaties for toddlers and I’m not even kidding when I say tons. Don’t waste your money like I did, the ones below are amazing!

These floaties or otherwise known as puddle jumpers are more for kids ages 18 months and up depending on their size. They are comfortable and safe! These are so good to have if you have one toddler in the pool and a baby to take care of.

I took my 3 girls to the pool alone when my youngest was just a few months old. I threw these floaties on my 2-year-old and it was so great not to have to worry about her because they supported her so well.

Beach blanket

For years I took a regular blanket to the beach and never tried a sand-free quick drying beach blanket! OMG….what was I waiting for?

This is a must-have for families with little kids who always get sand all over your beach blanket and you end up with sand all over you!

The first one below is a big sand-free blanket and great deal and is also quick drying. The orange blanket is very affordable, a bit smaller, but is sand-free and waterproof!


Swim Diapers

This is a must-have for the beach! These things can get expensive too! You can use the reusable swim diapers but I don’t feel like they are convenient for a week at the beach.

I like the reusable swim diapers for a day at the pool back home, not for a beach trip.

Do yourself a favor and buy them in bulk on Amazon or check out Target’s prices and save yourself some money. These swim diapers aren’t cheap and kids can smoke through them.

Also, be sure to get the right size because if they’re too small or too big, you’ll have a mess on your hands! For small babies that tend to have blow-outs, I like to use both disposable swim diapers and a good reusable swim diaper over it if possible.

Here are some great options from Amazon below!


Beach pro tip: I always pack one or two regular diapers to put on my baby once she’s done with the water. All 4 of my kiddos always fell asleep either under the tent or on the way home from the beach. If I kept them in a wet swim diaper, they never napped long and just felt uncomfortable. It’s always good to have them on hand in case you need them! 

Best Beach Toys

Because you need your kiddos to be busy while trying to get a tan, right?

That’s why you have to bring some great beach toys!

Babies love playing with water table toys so if you brought that blow-up pool, make sure to bring some water table toys like pouring cups and things like that. Obviously, your basic shovels and pails work great as well and will keep them busy if they love the sand!

Pack some race cars or trucks for the boys and some swimsuit Barbies for the girls! My toddlers loved when I brought a watering can and they would run down to the ocean and fill it and pour it into a hole over and over!

Beach balls work like magic for young babies and toddlers. Pack a few water balls for the older kids!

Click the photos below for more info!


A Good Beach Bag

Yes, we all want a beach bag that looks nice but trust me, once you have little ones with you at the beach, all you care about is if your beach bag keeps up with what your baby needs!

I use a great beach bag that has a cooler attached that keeps snacks and water cold. Here are a few of the best beach bags on Amazon that are perfect for beach hopping with your baby in tow!

These bags have plenty of room for diapers, bottles, towels, and drinks! The striped bag even has a bottle opener attached to it!

Another favorite bag this year is the BOGG bag! The BOGG bag is top-rated, washable, durable, comes in 34 different colors, and waterproof! Perfect for those family beach trips! If you don’t mind spending a little more then check this BOGG bag out here or click below:


More affordable bags here:



Baby Bottle Adapter for Water Bottles and Thermos

These things are genius! I always have tons of water bottles around and then I have to bring extra sippy cups for my daughter.

Get a bunch of these and you can attach them right to the water bottle! They have them in both baby bottle nipple form and sippy cup form.



Beach Chairs

When I was younger I never used beach chairs. We always just used towels to lay on. As I’ve gotten older I realized a beach chair is a must, especially with little ones.

Now, I’m not saying you may actually get to sit in the chair for very long because if your toddler is anything like mine, sitting just doesn’t happen for me!

However, if your baby is occupied and does start to dig in the sand, you won’t be able to lay down. You’ll need a chair to finally relax for two minutes until they’re onto their next move!

Get a backpack beach chair or one with a strap for yourself at least so it’s easy to carry!

Do yourself a favor and go to Target ahead of time and buy some beach chairs or get some on Amazon. They will be much cheaper than the ones they sell down at the beach.

Better yet, get your toddler their very own chair and cup holder! This may encourage them to sit in it and use it more!

For parents:



For babies:


For toddlers:


A Great Sunscreen

I wrote a whole post on the safest all-natural sunscreens for your babies and children. I’ll add a few of our favorites below.

These sunscreens won’t harm your baby’s skin and you can use them for the entire family! Sunscreens on the market today have crazy amounts of chemicals in them to irritate your precious baby’s skin. Be choosy when picking out a good sunscreen.

We love Kiss My Face Organic sunscreen and Badger because it’s safe and made with all-natural ingredients. Works great and smells like heaven as well! 😍

Kiss My Face Organic sunscreen has a spray that’s fantastic for toddlers who won’t stand still long enough for you to get the sunscreen on them everywhere! I use this one on my whole family.

Badger is excellent and I mostly use that on my kid’s faces. You can find out more about how these sunscreens are rated by visiting the EWG’s website and search your product and they’ll let you know how safe it is!

Both of the sunscreens below are rated a 1 which is the best! πŸ‘‡

Click the photos for more info!


Best sunscreen for kids!

Water shoes

I know kids love flip-flops but my oldest daughter always fell when she wore them. It literally happened every time she tried to run in them and I had enough!

And let’s face it, when the sun is super hot, that means the sand is ten times hotter! If the sand is ten times hotter then that means your toddler’s feet in those flip-flops are burning like crazy and they’ll need you to carry them!

Don’t waste your time on flip-flops with hot sand until they’re older and get your little ones a great pair of water shoes.

I always got cute ones at Old Navy but Amazon also carries a bunch too! My kids loved these because they wore them to the pool, and the beach, and if they were cute enough, they wore them everywhere all summer long!


A great baby carrier

If you don’t have a stroller that works great on the sand then a baby carrier is your best bet!

Not only does the baby carrier have pockets to keep your keys and belongings in but it also frees up your hands to carry other things to the beach!

This is my favorite baby carrier and in fact it’s also my favorite thing I got that was on my baby registry list! It was a must-have for me especially once I had my second and third babies!

You can also wear this carrier on your back in case you have a toddler that doesn’t want to walk. These baby carriers hold children up to 3-4 years on your back!


Beach Wagon

Let me add here that I did not have a beach wagon on this post initially. However, we just got back from the beach and let me tell you, I wish I had this the first day!

Trust me when I say, get yourself one of these beach/utility wagons if you have a walk to the beach from your place. If you’re staying right on the beach then this item may not be as necessary if you have lots of hands to help you carry your beach essentials.

However, if you have a block or more to walk and a baby or toddlers in tow….this is something that you’ll definitely want to purchase! This will make your walk to the beach a breeze!

You can even have your toddler sit inside and ride along which they will love! This will also make your walk much faster since we all know how slow toddlers walk in the sand!

Here are a few favorites below:


Other items you’ll want to pack:

  • Baby wipes
  • Sippy cups/bottles of water or juice boxes for the kids
  • Snacks
  • Plastic bags for anything you want to keep dry and safe, also great for dirty diapers and wet clothing
  • baby hats/sunglasses
  • beach towels
  • extra clothes/outfits for baby because … just never know what could happen!
  • Baby powder -this helps remove sand easily from the baby’s skin! Always good to have on hand!
  • ice packs
  • first aid kit




Having these beach essentials helped my babies enjoy the beach and helped me and my husband enjoy it as well! If I could recommend one thing out of the list above besides your basic needs, I’d say get the little baby pool! It will help you so much and you won’t have to keep running down to the water to keep your little one cool!

I hope this list helps all of you! Let me know in the comments if there’s anything important I forgot! 😊

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