Beach Packing List for Toddlers

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Beach Packing List for ToddlersA trip to the beach: Nothing but the sun in your hair, sand in your toes, and a much needed dose of relaxation, right?

Maybe, but that’s only if you discount the frantic packing and shopping and list-making that occurs the week before you go. And adding a toddler to the equation guarantees at least triple the amount of planning, packing, and stuff to cart along with you.

Honestly, the immense degree of forethought required of a beach trip with a toddler might make it tempting to skip the salty waves and board walk strolls altogether.

To make the process a wee bit less intimidating, today I’m sharing the list I used to pack for the beach with my not-quite-two-year-old.

Beach Packing List for Toddlers

Surviving the Drive

– lots of snacks
– an assortment of new and exciting small toys from the Dollar Store (pull a new one out every hour you’re on the road)
– children’s CDs or an iPod/iPhone loaded with kid-friendly tunes (we’re partial to our Milkshake station on Pandora because the songs aren’t overly cheesy or annoying!)

Beach Packing List for Toddlers 2

Soaking Up the Sun

– Bathing suits (2)
Sun hat with a wide brim for protecting both face and ears
Swim/water shoes
– Floatation device/life jacket to keep kids safe while swimming (We LOVE our Puddle Jumper, but whatever you use, just make sure it’s US Coast Guard-approved.)
– Towel (one that can be used for both beach and bath time)
Wet-dry bag for wet clothes and bathing suits
– Kid-friendly sunscreen
– Beach sandals
– Baby powder (helps get the sand off sticky hands and feet)
– Bug spray for preventing insect bites
– More drinks and snacks (our favorites are graham crackers, Cheerios, animal crackers, fresh fruit, fruit/veggie pouches, and granola bars), plus a few reusable containers to keep them in
– Small cooler or picnic thermal to keep snacks and drinks cold and fresh
– Hand sanitizer (give your toddler’s hands a squirt before he/she has a snack)
– Sand/swim toys
– Beach blanket
Canopy, umbrella, or sun tent to provide much-needed shade
Toddler-size beach chair (obviously optional but super adorable)

Beach Packing for Toddlers

Chowing Down

– Sippy cups
– Plastic/reusable plate and utensils
– Bibs
– Portable high chair or booster seat

Beach Packing List for Toddlers 3

When Nature Calls

– Diapers (twice as many as you think you’ll need, just to be safe)
– Wipes (see above)
– Swim diapers
Portable training potty (if you’re at that stage, in which case I salute you—potty training on vacation doesn’t sound like a vacation to me at all!)
– Diaper bag with changing pad

Beach Packing List for Toddlers

Evening Shenanigans

– Clothes—shorts/pants, shirts, dresses, etc. (2 outfits per day is the general rule of thumb, to account for toddlers being toddlers)
– Sneakers or other non-beach shoes
– Socks and underwear
– Jacket or sweatshirt for chilly evenings
– A small assortment of familiar toys and books from home
Umbrella stroller
– Baby carrier (nice for beach strolls when your kid is too tired to walk)
– Bath supplies—small container of shampoo/soap/bubble bath, maybe a rubber ducky
– Comb/brush, if you use one on your toddler

Beach Packing List for Toddlers 5

Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star

– PJs (2 pairs)
– Toothbrush and toothpaste
– Travel crib or pack-and-play with 2 sets of sheets (We have this one, and while pricey, it is SO fast and easy to set up!)
– Blanket
– Favorite stuffed animal (ours is a tiger named Glenn because, why not?)
– Baby monitor, if you use one
Sound machine, if you use one (the Pandora Lullaby station works well, too, if you’re willing to part with your smartphone)
– Nightlight, if you use one

Beach Packing List for Toddlers 6

Other Random Items to Toss in Your Suitcase

– Small First Aid kit
– Plastic bags (for stinky diapers, wet clothes, etc.)
– Tissues
– Socket protectors, if you’re worried about living in a non-toddler-proofed location for a week

Are you going to the beach this summer? What are the kid-essentials on your packing list?