Beach days are back, baby. No matter where you are in the US, it’s finally warm enough to pack up the car and head to the coast — even if your “coast” is the local lake you’ve been pretending is the ocean since you were a kid.
The perfect beach day doesn’t really matter where you spend it. Hell, if you’re miles upon miles away from any body of water, you can even create the best beach day right in your backyard with the right beach accessories and gear. For real, snag your best beach chair a few beach blankets, and a couple of pounds of sand from Home Depot and you’ll have a beach right in your Nebraskan backyard. We can pretend, can’t we? But, it’s safe to say that those of you with access to the open ocean are especially lucky when summer comes around. From wicked waves and boardwalk ice cream to freezing cold drinks and pesky gulls hovering over your packed snacks, a day at the beach is incomparable to a day anywhere else.
It’s beyond important that when heading to the coast, you pack all of the best beach accessories and gear to ensure your day goes smoothly. Because let’s be honest, forgotten items can truly ruin your entire day in more ways than one. No one wants to panic purchase overpriced sunscreen at the seashore. It’s a big no from us.
From must-have necessities to beach accessories on the less important (yet fun) side of life, check out all of the beach gear you simply have to bring on your next coastal getaway. Whether you’re headed to the seaside for a week or a day, these staples will only amplify your time.
Water is one of the most important things, if not the most important thing you can bring to the beach. Let’s face it: a day on the sand can get steamy. Whether you’re planning on laying the day away in the sun or constantly heading in and out of the water, you’re going to get dehydrated. More than normal, too. Both the sun and salty water have the power to dehydrate the body quicker than it would normally, so be sure to pack a couple of bottles on your trip. While you won’t be able to fit all the water you need in one Hydro Flask, we still think it’s a stellar bottle to bring because it will help your water stay colder for longer. When you finish all the water inside your Hydro Flask, dump another bottle inside to ensure your water stays cold.
Now, where do you expect you’re going to need to store water if it ain’t a cooler? Keeping a bottle in your beach bag is a no-go — that baby will warm up in a matter of minutes. Instead, shove all of your beverages (and snacks) inside of the Arctic Zone Titan Deep Freeze 60. This is one of our favorite coolers to bring to the beach because of its size and wheels. Size-wise, this can carry up to 100-lbs of contents and keep them cold all day. Because some beaches across the country have size limits on coolers, we’re sure you’ll have no trouble with this one because it’s on the smaller side. Additionally, the wheels are grippy, which makes them easily ride on top of the sand.
We don’t care if the entire reason you came to the beach in the first place was to get a solid tan. You need to apply at least a little bit of sunscreen. While 50 SPF might be a lot for some, it’s better to be safe than sorry. No one wants sun poisoning. Banana Boat makes our favorite sunscreen because it allows you to essentially get as sweaty as you want and never worry about sun safety. Sure, you might have to reapply a couple of times, but it still has long-lasting qualities other sunscreens don’t. Also, it’s totally reef-friendly which is awesome for the ocean and the life inside it.
When it comes to a day at the beach, you’re going to need a spot to set up camp for the day. While some groups clump numerous beach towels together during their stay, we suggest a massive sand-free beach blanket instead so you can save your towels for drying off. The Wellax Beach Blanket is a waterproof, sand-proof option that can fit anywhere from four to seven full-grown adults on it at once. It packs up into a tiny bag to make life easier and even comes with a waterproof phone storage case.
Let us be straight with you for one second: great beach towels do not have to cost you an arm and a leg. We will always suggest you snag beach towels in a set rather than buying solo because you’ll get a deal every time. Plus, you’ll always a beach towel in the summer, even if you’re just working with a couple of at-home sprinklers for a DIY “beach day”. These beach towels from Amazon are a no-brainer. They get the job done and are color-coded, so everyone will know which is theirs. Dibs on green.
A beach day without a portable speaker is like a wedding with no guests: sad. Nobody wants to be left without a couple of their favorite jams as the waves crash nearby, that’s why the Ultimate Ears WONDERBOOM 2 is one of the best beach accessories to bring to the shore each and every time you go.
When it comes to laying out, some prefer to stay seated rather than sprawling out on a blanket — and nobody does a solid beach chair like Tommy. These beach chairs are a force to be reckoned with for more than one reason. Each one has a back cooler to keep some of your favorite drinks and snacks on hand, a pillow so your neck doesn’t cramp up, a side holder for your go-to beachside sipper and two straps for carrying this bad boy like a backpack. A not-so-simple beach chair made way too simple.
While it’s beyond important you keep these off when laying out in the sun (because nobody wants a sunglasses tan), sunnies are one of the most important beach accessories to bring on your trip. First and foremost, you’re going to look cool in a pair of sunglasses. Point black period. It’s just the way the cookie crumbles, especially when you’re wearing these handsome-looking Ray-Bans. Obviously, these sunnies will keep your eyes safe from the sun and are backed with a UV protection coating.
Oh, so we’ve got ourselves a seaside reader, don’t we? Good, then let us introduce you to the Kindle Oasis. This little buddy is our go-to e-reader for coastal getaways. It’s entirely waterproof, has a warm-screen option for low-light situations and will give readers access to millions of books whenever, wherever. Because we all know the last book you brought to the beach came back with water damage. Let’s not do that again.
As the beach umbrella of all beach umbrellas, the Sport-Brella is a staple to modern-day beach days. Stop renting overpriced beach umbrellas when you get to the shore and bring your own from here on out. Yeah, they might get a little annoying when lugging from the car to the coast, but trust us: when you’ve got yourself a beach umbrella as durable and covering as this one, it’s well worth it. It’s vented so it won’t blow away as easily and has side covering for extra shade. Additionally, its SPF 50+, promising limited sun exposure and burns when underneath.
Solo Stove Bonfire
Alright, it’s time to get a little more specific. Let us start off by saying to make sure you check with your local beach’s rules and regulations before bringing anything that causes an open fire, because in some areas, bringing the Solo Stove Bonfire to the beach is completely illegal. But, boy, if you can, bring it. Trust us. While the Solo Stove isn’t best for beach days per se, it’s awesome to use as the sun begins to set or if you’re camping on the beach with buds. The technology used means zero smoke whatsoever, just straight flames. Roast marshmallows and crack open another brew all night long.
Birks at the beach? Hell yeah, Birks at the beach. It’s best to invest in a solid pair of sandals you can be sure won’t break on your trip. We can’t tell you how many times we’ve been walking down the boardwalk and the toe divider of our flip flops have broken mid-step. A huge no-no. Birkenstocks are quality sandals that will last you summer after summer and eventually form to your foot after wearing them for some time. They make for the perfect seaside slip-on and slip-off.
If you’re headed to the beach without a game, don’t even go. Even if it’s just a deck of cards, you’re going to need something to play at least once. Our e-commerce editor Tyler Schoeber’s go-to is Kan Jam because of how easy it is to bring anywhere. “Before moving to Brooklyn, I’d keep Kan Jam laid flat in the back of my Chevy just in case I ever found myself at the Jersey Shore during the summer,” he mentions, “I’d accidentally keep it there season after season because it became so easy to store in my car that I barely knew it was there.”
Anybody that’s ever suffered from a scalp burn will know damn well just how bad they are. For real, scalp burns might even be some of the most painful burns on the planet. That’s why having a hat on when you start to feel the sun hitting your scalp too hard is the right move. Whether it be a straw hat or a dad cap, you’re going to need something, and we don’t think it gets any more beachy than this one from Volcom
We promise they aren’t lame! Water shoes are some of the most important beach accessories to bring to the beach, depending on where you’re headed. For those with access to rocky or beaches with more dangerous terrain, water shoes act as an excellent protective barrier between your feet and whatever’s under the water. These water shoes are available in a number of sizes and can fit men, women and children alike. They’re also super quick-drying!
When bringing kids to the beach, you have to keep them entertained. Beach toys are the way to do it. From building luxurious castles to creating MoMA-centric masterpieces to watering an imaginary garden, this 20-piece set from Amazon will let their imagination take off in the sand.
A beach wagon with wide wheels can make all the difference in the world when it comes to lugging stuff to and from the beach. This one from Mac Sports has a durable steel frame, extra-large all-terrain wheels, durable polyester fabric outer, and a telescoping handle that adjusts to your desired length. It folds down compactly for easy storage when not in use.
Play your favorite summer tunes as you enjoy the sun with this Anker Soundcore Bluetooth speaker. It offers great stereo sound, 24-hour battery life and it’s totally waterproof so you don’t have to worry about inadvertent splashes or spilling as you sip your favorite beer by the shore.
Waterproof Phone Case
Snap pictures and enjoy your phone while playing in the waves and sand with this waterproof phone case. It encloses your cell, sealing out water and sand, and can also hold credit cards, money, and more. When inside, your phone still maintains touchscreen capability so you won’t have to worry about taking it out when you need to use it.
Solar Power Bank and Charger
Your phones, speakers, e-readers, tablets, and computers will never run out of power with this solar-powered portable charger and power bank. It’s lightweight, compact, and comes equipped with a dual bright flashlight, and a portable compass kit.
Sit back and sip your favorite beverages in this Yeti can insulator. It features double-wall construction that keeps cans cool throughout the day and comes with a durable outer that won’t chip or break. Choose from a selection of amazing colors.