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Travel Essentials: Beach Vacation Must-Haves

Travel Essentials: Beach Vacation Must-Haves

beach vacation essentials

I’ve been dreaming constantly about traveling lately. Tell me I'm not the only one!?

My mind keeps drifting back to the great time we had in Cabo a few months ago (I really need to blog this trip!) and we've got a few getaways in the near future that I'm so excited for.

Since travel will hopefully be a big part of our year (it's one of my biggest goals for 2017!) I decided to start a small blog series about my travel essentials. Sand, snow, and everything in between.

I'm starting off today with one of my favorite types of trips to pack for – a beach vacation! Don't forget these beach travel essentials for your next warm weather getaway.

Bathing Suits

I’ll admit, I usually overpack when it comes to swimsuits. They take up hardly any room, and I like to see what the vibe is at the pool or beach before I choose what I’m going to wear (am I the only one who does this!? I like to have options until I know what everyone’s wearing!)

Typically that means a variety of one-pieces and bikinis, as well as a mixture of color and classic black options. Excessive? Yes. But they’re swimsuits! Ryan doesn’t understand this logic, but I’m sure you ladies do…


I’ve always been crazy about sunscreen. I have super fair skin and burn easily, so it’s never really been an option – especially at the beach!

I don’t wear much makeup during the day on vacation, so my daily routine looks something like this: 1) Apply a tinted moisturizer with SPF first thing in the morning to get me through breakfast, pile on a traditional sunscreen lotion throughout the rest of the day and do my best not to burn!

Simple, but effective :)


I keep it pretty simple when it comes to packing shoes for a beach vacation. A pair of flip flops or sandals, some wedges for dinner, something comfortable for walking, and I’m good to go. (Luckily, this really helps when it comes to packing in a carry-on only!)

My best tip for packing shoes for vacation is to choose pairs that work with multiple outfits. No matter how good it looks, I’ll pass on a sandal or heel if it only works with one vacation outfit. Stick to classic colors and comfortable shoes that you can wear from day to night time to make the most of your suitcase space.


Dresses are my go-to outfit on vacation. I love that they can be dressed up or down, and they can even double as a swimsuit coverup when you’re just heading to the pool.

My favorite vacation dresses are lightweight, flowy, and almost always colorful. Here are a few great options that work for daytime exploring, romantic dinners, and everything in between - the first two options are under $60!


I typically carry two pairs of sunglasses: a cheap pair I can be super rough on and throw in my bag without thinking about it, and a nicer pair that I keep in a hard case within my bag/purse.

I usually wear the nicer pair if I’m away from the hotel, doing something like shopping or getting lunch, when I know I’ll take the time to “care” for my glasses. But when I’m at the pool or the beach, I throw on the cheap pair and don’t worry about getting in the water with them or leaving them on a sandy beach chair. I’ve used this method for the last few years, whether I’m traveling or not, and it works out really well for me.

I usually grab the cheapies at Target or the drugstore, but if you’re in the market for a nicer pair, here are a few versatile options I love:

Did I forget any of your beach travel essentials? Let me know in the comments below. I'd also love any suggestions on which type of travel you'd like to see next in the series!

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