Essential things to take to the beach with a toddler

We can agree on one thing: if you have children, you can forget about leaving home with a fancy beach bag matching your bikini, a light cover-up, sunscreen and towel only. When taking small kids to the sea, it is normal that you want to take a lot of stuff to make the day as comfortable and enjoyable as possible, but it is easy to overstress the packing process. To avoid panicking and stuffing up your car with unnecessary items while leaving the useful ones at home, keep reading this post that will list you 10 essentials things to take to the beach with a toddler!

10 must-have beach items for toddlers

Beach umbrella or sun tent

It is always a challenge to find a shaded place on the beach, therefore an easy-to-set-up sun tent or a simple beach umbrella is one of the most important things to take to the beach with a toddler.

Kid is sleeping under the beach tent

The best choice is getting a lightweight, breathable pop-up tent so your baby can play or sleep in the shade without getting sunburn. It provides permanent protection from the sun, moreover it is easy to move around if needed.

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Beach wagon

Forget about classical strollers, a collapsible wagon is what you need when heading to the beach! It is not only a must- have beach item for toddlers, but something that will make your life easier thanks to its multifunctional usability.

SeaSpiration Tip: Read more tips on what to arrange before you travel in our beach vacation planning guide!

A beach wagon provides adults with a comfortable way of transporting the kids, toys, and any other stuff you might need during the day. Moreover, the best models come with a lot of extra features such as sun protection canopy, practical storage pockets, or a cooler bag and cup holder.

Baby Stroller Wagon

  • durable yet lightweight versatile stroller wagon for active families
  • 110lb capacity for comfortable transportation of your kids or any stuff
  • with practical features such as storages, cooler box and canopy

UV Protective clothing

The best way to prevent sunburn is to avoid sun exposure, but it is difficult to keep kids who constantly explore and run around always in the shade. In order to protect their sensitive skin, get them a full swimsuit that covers the arms and legs too.

Baby in sun protective clothing

A comfortable, skin-friendly UV protective clothing doesn’t restrict the movements but provides high-level sun protection and effective against stingers too when playing in the water. And don’t forget the sun hat!

Sun Protection Swimsuit for infant/toddler

  • one-piece baby swimsuit with UPF 50 sun protection
  • comfortable, flexible and saltwater resistant material that is delicate to the skin
  • in various sizes, with free sun hat


Babies have very sensitive skin that gets sunburn easily, therefore it is crucial to apply high SPF sunscreen on those areas that are not covered by UV protective clothing. A baby sunscreen has to be non-irritative, go on and spread out easily but provide high-level protection.

Goddess Garden Mineral Kids Sunscreen

  • powerful SPF50 protection with non-nano, organic shea butter, and coconut oil
  • easy-to-apply effective formula
  • reef-safe and cruelty-free

Think about the ocean too and choose a product that is reef-safe! Always apply the sunscreen generously, and don’t forget to reapply it after playing in the water even if it’s waterproof!

SeaSpiration Tip: Would you read more packing tips?
> How to pack for the beach when flying?
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Swim life jacket

Safety comes first, especially when heading to the beach with a toddler. Certainly, the whole family will have fun watching the kids enjoying the water, but to keep them safe don’t forget to get a kids-size life jacket.

Body Glove Swim Life Jacket

  • the safest swim aid for kids approved by US Coast Guard
  • with safety shoulder to prevent sliding off
  • fits for kids between 30 and 50 lbs (13-22 kg)

The best models have multi-panels for best comfort and come with rear safety buckle so the children can’t remove them by themselves.

Sand toys

Kids love playing in the sand and can keep themselves busy for hours building constructions, so a sand toys set is definitely a must-have beach item for toddlers.

Small kid is playing on the beach

Let your children use their creativity to create various shapes and sculptures. It is not only so much fun, but also promotes their physical development and helps to improve cognitive skills too. Make sure that the pieces are made of non-toxic material and are not too bulky so they fit babies’ small hands.

18 Pieces beach toys set for toddlers

  • the perfect sand playset for small kids with shovels, bucket, sand sifters, watering can, rakes and molds
  • small size pieces that are suited for babies and don’t take up much space to store
  • made of BPA free, durable and safe material

Dry bags

When it comes to a beach trip, dry bags are definitely among the most useful items you should take with you that can be used for various purposes like separating wet clothes from dry ones, keeping your electronics away from water and dirt, moreover, they can even be used as an emergency pillow for the kids when they get tired and fell asleep.

3 pieces dry bag set

  • easy to seal, lightweight and durable dry bags set
  • 5, 10- and 20-liter sizes to keep all your gear dry
  • airtight, floating and fully submersible

The best is to get a set that includes various sizes so you can use the small ones for your valuables, while the big ones will solve the problem of storing the clothes and towels.

Portable fan

Small kids need fresh air to stay happy and are more sensitive to heat than adults, therefore we suggest adding a medium-sized portable fan to your things to take to the beach with toddler packing list among the first items.

Battery operated 10-inch portable fan

  • 2-speed operation to accommodate your needs
  • runs on batteries but can be plugged in too
  • quiet and powerful

When they are tired of playing in the sun and in the water or just feel too hot, let them cool off a bit near the fan. To increase the cooling effect, keep a spray bottle filled with water in the beach cooler and spray a little cold water on them.

First aid kit

Better safe than sorry is a packing principle when thinking about what things to take to the beach with a toddler. Small injuries, such as cuts caused by shells in the sand and small wounds can happen in seconds, but don’t let these inconveniences ruin your day.

Waterproof Outdoor First Aid Kit

  • 100-piece emergency first aid kit to treat common outdoor injuries
  • comes in a durable waterproof, floating case
  • ideal for the beach, boating and camping

Keep a small outdoor medical kit in your beach bag that includes the most essential first aid and wound care supplies you will need to treat common injuries. The best if it comes in a waterproof box that seals out water and dirt so you can use it carefree while being near the ocean.

Baby Powder

A simple yet genius hack to stop sand from sticking! Just simply sprinkle baby powder on the body or hair that soaks up the moisture so the sand will easily fall off. Once you experience how easy becomes removing the sand off your kids’ feet and hands, you will never forget to include it in your things to take to the beach with toddlers.

Insider tip: baby powder helps to remove ants too. With babies in the house, using though chemicals is not an option, but if you put baby powder around the entryways, you will soon notice that the ants disappear.

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