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Family beach trip packing checklist

A family walk on the beach towards the oceanRemember when you used to head to the beach … pre-kids?

You took a towel, your bathers, a hat, your sunnies and some coins for an ice-cream (all of which you’d hide in your shoes when you went for a swim).

Unfortunately, post-kids, a trip to the beach is a good deal less casual. If you’re not prepared you’ll need about 90 minutes at least to get everyone ready – hats, sunscreen, bathers, swim nappies, towels, buckets, spades, blah, blah … ‘does anyone need to go to the toilet?’ etc. By the time you get to the beach you look like a pack horse and you’re exhausted.

But it doesn’t have to be so hard. Beach trips are very popular, especially in Australia, so knowing what to pack is essential if you want to get out of the house before the sun goes down. If you’re on holiday or live close to the beach, keep a packed ‘beach bag’ ready so you can head down when the moment takes you!

Here is a general beach trip packing checklist of things you may want to pack to take your kids to the beach.

General for everyone

  • Sunscreen: SPF 30 at least, waterproof, UVA and UVB protection.
  • Lots of water: dehydration happens easily.
  • A big bag: mesh ones work well to keep sand from coming home with you.
  • Plenty of snacks: playing and swimming drains energy quickly.
  • Towels: at least one for each person going, plus a couple of spares.
  • Hats
  • Normal clothes: you don’t need to always be in togs.
  • A blanket: so you can sit and don’t waste the towels.
  • Big umbrella: for those not moving around much.
  • Camera: record the fun moments, make sure it’s waterproof or with a waterproof case.
  • Zip lock bags: to keep important things dry.
  • Lip balm: avoid windburn on your lips.
  • Sunglasses: for you and your kids if they won’t lose or break them easily.
  • General first aid kit: for any accidents.
  • Brush or comb
  • Aloe Vera: just in case someone gets sunburnt, you can apply straight away.
  • Rules: set them before you go and make sure they’re adhered to.

Specifically Babies

  • Baby sunscreen: usually a stronger SPF and gentle on baby skin.
  • Nappies: enough for the whole day and more.
  • Swim nappies: if you let them go in the water.
  • Nappy changing necessities
  • Baby powder: helps get sand off everyone too.
  • Feeding necessities
  • Baby carrier
  • Toys: keep them entertained all day.

Specifically Kids

  • Beach toys: sandcastle-making tools, other toys you think they’ll play with.
  • Spare togs, rashies, boardies: just in case accidents happen.
  • Water shoes: if you’re worried about little feet getting injured.
  • Safety items/life jacket – whatever your kid needs at their level of swimming ability
  • Potty: if you are in the toilet training stage.
  • A good knowledge of beach safety: make sure you’re all prepared for everything.
Visit our family holiday and travel information hub for more tips and ideas

Image credit: ximagination/123RF Stock Photo

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