Stress Free Beach Packing List (for kids!)


For most parents, summer is two full months of entertaining your kids. Now that school is {officially} out, it is time to relax, spend quality time with our kids, and get rid of all the stress. I learned very quickly when I had my son, that I had to stop carrying so much stuff. All it did was add stress and frustration everywhere I went, including the beach. Once we moved to the Coastal Bend, with two kids and a husband who is constantly working, I try to make our day trips as easy and stress-free as possible.

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Packed Wagon for the Beach | Coastal Bend Mom Collective | Corpus Christi

10 “Packing for the Beach” tips + tricks 

1. Invest in a good foldable wheel cart. They cost anywhere from $50-100, and you can get them at any large retail store. I use it for everything, including carrying groceries inside, sports games, etc. My wild daughter is the kid I always have to chase, so I let her ride on to
of the cooler and I have one less thing to worry about.

Wagon Cart | Beach Trip | Coastal Bend Mom Collective

  1. Pack as much as you can in a 58 QT bin organizer. It fits perfectly inside the cart and it makes for easy cleanup. I like to put all of our beach toys, dry food, and towels inside. Once we leave the beach, I put the rinsed buckets and toys, dirty towels, wet swimsuits, and dry food (in a bag) back inside. I will clip my daughter’s life jacket to the bag or lay it in the bucket. It makes for the easiest clean up when I get home. I wash and dry everything, and repack it on the shelves for next time.
  2. Bring a small cooler (check to be sure that it fits in the cart with the bin) full of water, drinks, and prepped food on ice. I like to fill up reusable baggies/containers of fruits, veggies with dips, and different types of sandwiches/wraps for everyone. I place what I can inside a larger reusable gallon bag so water doesn’t get inside the food. I usually just fill up a small bag with dry snacks as well, and a container of baby powder to dust off sand before we eat. I keep a grocery sack inside the cooler for anything with trash to throw away at home.

Food Prep | Beach Trip | Coastal Bend Mom Collective

4. If you have a small toddler, I highly recommend having something to entertain them ON the beach so you aren’t having to chase them into the water constantly. When my kids were smaller, I had a baby pool we would fill with ocean water, and put under the tent out of the sun with toys. No chasing, just fun splashing and mom can relax.

Baby Pool | Beach Trip | Coastal Bend Mom Collective

5. If you want the kids off the ground for lunchtime on the beach (and have the space!), bring a collapsible kids table, it comes with an umbrella for extra shade if needed. On days I don’t want to bring that, I have a great sand free towel they sit on.

Collapsible Kid Table | Beach Trip | Coastal Bend Mom Collective

6. Naptime on the beach is basically like a natural sound machine to help your kid sleep. My kids live for a nap on the beach – and have since they were babies. The easiest nap area for your littles is simply to use the inside of your handy-dandy cart! I lay a floatie or life jacket down floatie for a pillow, put down some towels, and roll the cart under some shade. EASY PEASY! Have a bigger kiddo? Bring a pop-up tent with SPF and a battery mini fan blowing on them.


  1. Hang bungee cords or carabiners on the side of your cart to hang your shoes/water bottles on so they don’t get covered in sand.
  2. Have a gallon of water in the trunk of your car to rinse everyone’s feet and shoes before they get in. It is also handy to have in case you need some fresh water for rinsing sand or saltwater out of eyes or a scrape.
  3. Bring a set of  “going-home” clothes in your beach bag to change into. Everyone is tired when you leave the beach, and the last thing you want to hear is complaining about being wet, or getting a rash from wet clothes rubbing. You can change them on the beach or back at the car after you rinse their feet off. I usually have a blankie ready in the car-seat, because 90% of the time they pass out headed home.

Sleepy Post Beach Kids | Coastal Bend Mom Collective

  1. Carry a small container of vinegar in your beach bag, just in case someone gets a jellyfish sting. My daughter was stung last time we were there, and it helped us tremendously… even though we still made a scene. 

BONUS TIP: WEAR THE SWIMSUIT, have fun, and enjoy these moments with your kids!

Stress Free Beach Packing List