5 Tips for a Stress Free Beach Vacation with Kids

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Summer is just around the corner and that means many families will make the trek to the coast for a beach vacation. For some parents, planning a trip to the beach is a daunting task. Since my family is lucky enough to live where people vacation, we go to the beach quite often. and have developed a system to make our trips to the beach stress free. Today I’m sharing 5 tips for a Stress Free Beach Vacation with Kids.

5 Tips for a Stress Free Beach Vacation with Kids


1.  Arrive at the beach parking lot EARLY. In the peak of summer, plan to arrive by 8 am. At the beach where we live, the parking lot is full by 8:30. If we arrive any later, we run the risk of not finding a spot or having to wait and stalk people for spots.  This is not ideal if you have excited kids in the back seat.  This only applies if you are staying at a hotel that requires you to drive to the beach every morning.  If you are staying in a place that is walking distance from the beach, lucky you! But still plan on being there early as the beach gets more crowded as the day goes on.

2. Pack a lunch and snacks.  Once you get to the beach, you probably do not want to leave to go get lunch. When packing your lunch and snacks, use items such as bento boxes and coolers to make packing easier. Skip the soda and bring water instead. It will keep you hydrated in the hot sun.

beach vacation lunch

3. Be prepared. The beach requires a good amount of gear. From the sand toys to the boogie boards and the umbrella…it can get a bit too much to carry. Invest in a rolling beach cart. This was one of the best purchases we ever made. If you are unable to buy a cart, make each child responsible for carrying their own beach toys. Some hotels may have beach carts available for rent.

beach cart

4. Don’t skip the sunscreen. I don’t think I can stress this enough. Some kids will dig in their heels when it comes to applying sunscreen but stand your ground as a parent and make sure they get covered. Don’t forget to put some on yourself too. Most sunscreens are water resistant for 80 minutes so don’t forget to reapply after fun in the waves.

tips for beach vacation

5. Pack items to make clean up easy.  Nobody likes to eat lunch with sandy hands.  Wet-Nap wipes make cleaning super easy.

beach vacation

beach vacation tips

I purchased a canister at Walmart and I keep it in the cup holder in my car to clean all sorts of messes.   In addition to cleaning up before and after lunch, Wet-Nap wipes are also great at cleaning the sand off of the kids and the beach toys before getting into the car at the end of the day. Many beach access points don’t provide showers so items like Wet-Nap wipes can be lifesavers. They are especially good for cleaning in between those sandy toes! 

beach tips

I hope these tips will ease the stress of planning your next beach vacation.  Have fun this summer and be safe!

Free Stock Photo courtesy of picxclicx.com


  1. I love the rolling beach cart! I wish we lived closer to a real beach because then I could justify the purchase. And 100% agree with your sunscreen tip. I work in a dermatology office so I preach sun protection all the time. My daughter even knows she can’t go outside without her sunscreen.

    1. I bought a rolling beach cart and gave it away. It was too difficult to roll in the sand. If you have someone strong to pull it, you should be ok. Just something to remember when you go to buy one.

  2. We plan to hit the beach sometime this year. These are great tips! I especially like the beach cart and wet naps. Always nice to have an easy way to clean up before jumping back into the car.

  3. Awesome tips, I didn’t even know they made carts especially for the beach.

    Tip I’ve picked up is BABY POWDER gets sand off easily! Granted you then have to deal with the powder but it’s very … nice compared to rinsing with water, i’ve never tried the wipes approach.

  4. Great tips! We use our sons’ wagon as a beach cart! It also doubles as a place to nap for our two year old and has great shade with it’s canopy!

  5. Hi, I just this blog post across the Google search results. I find this very helpful tips for people who are planning to go out and have a beach vacation with the family. Thank you for sharing this one. 🙂

  6. Also u can use baby power to get the wet sand off the kiddos and yourself! It’s like magic!! I always pack baby powder for beach vacays!

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