My Top Tips for a Beach Day with a Baby

This week we are on vacation with my family in the Outer Banks, which means we've been making regular trips over to the beach. I know how intimidating taking a baby to the beach can seem, so I thought I'd share some tips that we've learned over our past couple of vacations (Hilton Head and OBX). Hopefully these are helpful for you!

What I'm going to cover in this post...

  1. What to bring to the beach.
  2. How to prep your baby for the beach.
  3. What to do with your baby on the beach.
  4. How to navigate naps on the beach.
  5. How to cleanup after the beach.

Without further ado, let's dive into my top tips for a beach day with a baby...

What to Bring to the Beach...

Here is a list of what I would recommend you bring with you to the beach! I'll include links to specific items that I'd recommend.

  • Beach Towels and Blankets
  • Bring more than you think you'll need!
  • I recommend beach blankets like THIS.
  • Shade
  • I recommend bringing either an umbrella or a Sit-Me-Up seat with a sun shade.
  • Check out our Sit-Me-Up seat HERE.
  • Check out this baby beach tent HERE.
  • Extra Clothing
  • Bring a change of clothes as well as some warmer layers in case the breeze is too cool for them.
  • Feeding Supplies
  • Diaper & Wipes
  • Toys
  • Full transparency, we didn't bring any toys to the beach this last time around. We knew the sand and water would be enough entertainment for Beckley. BUT, bringing some simple toys wouldn't be a bad idea!
  • Baby Carrier
  • We take a baby carrier almost everywhere we go. Strollers are a pain on the sand, so being able to pop Beckley into a baby carrier to free our hands when we're walking is a game changer. Also, if you want to go for a walk down the beach, then you can just carry your baby hands-free with you!
  • Check out our baby carrier HERE.
  • Sunscreen
  • You'll want to reapply sunscreen often! Make sure you have this with you.
  • THIS is the baby sunscreen we use.
  • Sunglasses & Hat
  • Beckley is ALWAYS wearing a hat, and often her sunglasses too. I'd highly recommend you have these for your baby!
  • Check out Beckley's SUNGLASSES and SUN HAT.

How to Prep Your Baby for the Beach...

Here are a few tips I have for prepping your baby for the beach! Every baby is different, so ultimately do what you think will help your baby feel most comfortable. This is what works for Beckley and what I'd recommend, but do what is best for you and your baby. ☺️

  • Apply sunscreen liberally.
  • Don't forget the face, ears, back of their neck, chest, hands, and bottom of their feet.
  • Dress them in breathable materials.
  • We usually have Beckley in a swimsuit or a tank-style onesie. You can always bring more layers or wrap them in a towel if they get chilly!
  • Give your baby a sunhat.
  • Beckley is almost always wearing one! These protect their head, face, ears, and neck from getting sunburnt.
  • Feed your baby before you leave.
  • We've had the most success on the beach if we feed Beckley right before we leave for the beach. This way she's full and happy! We always make sure to have at least one bottle with us though, because everyone (babies included) gets hungry on the beach!
  • Leave for the beach following a nap.
  • We usually wait to leave for the beach until after Beckley has woken from a nap. We get the car packed and ready while she's sleeping. Then once she's awake we will feed her and then head to the beach!

What to Do with Your Baby on the Beach...

Here are some ideas of what you could do with your baby on the beach! Again, you know your baby best. Plan ahead and think of ideas that you believe they'd enjoy. These are ideas based off of what we've done with Beckley and know she enjoys. 🌊

  • Play in the sand!
  • Toes in the waves.
  • Walk down the shore.
  • Tummy time on a beach blanket.
  • Play with a rattle or toy.
  • "Run" towards the waves.
  • Nap time! Which leads me too...

How to Navigate Naps on the Beach.

When we go to the beach we like to make the most of it while we're there! This means oftentimes Beckley ends up needing a nap while we're there. The good news is, taking a nap on the beach really isn't that hard. (Just ask anyone, lol. I'm sure we've all taken a great nap on the beach somewhere!)

Here is how we go about helping Beckley nap on the beach...

  • Watch for cues that they're getting tired.
  • Beckley will start getting restless and mildly fussy, maybe rubbing her eyes or trying to cuddle.
  • Take your baby for a walk outside of a carrier.
  • We will put Beckley up over our shoulder, cover her with a light, soft towel, and walk along the shore nice and slowly.
  • Let them watch the water, listen the waves, and doze off.
  • The beach is like a natural sound-machine. Trust me, it won't take much time for them to be completely dozed off!
  • Put your baby down to rest.
  • Sometimes we will hold and cuddle her while we she sleeps (my Mom did this yesterday!) or we will lay here down on a towel in the shade. Whatever you think your baby will prefer, go for that!

How to Cleanup After the Beach...

Once you're done at the beach you'll need to get your baby cleaned up and hit the reset button for the rest of the day. This is super simple! Here's what we like to do...

  • Wipe your baby clear of any sand.
  • Before you head home you'll want to make sure your baby is free of any sand on their hands or feet/legs. This way if your baby sucks on their hands or feet on the way home you know they won't be eating any sand.
  • Give your baby a bath!
  • Beckley is a huge fan of baths! This will get the rest of the sand off as well as wash off all the sunscreen you've applied (and reapplied) on your baby.
  • Carry on with your day/evening!
  • That's it! Once they're clean you're set to move on with the rest of your day/evening!

I hope you found this blog post helpful! We've had so much fun taking Beckley to the beach, and I want you to know that it doesn't have to be stressful or complicated! It can be fun and enjoyable! The most important thing is making sure your baby is safe and comfortable. You've got this, mama!

See you in the next post!

Katie xx

Scroll down for some more pictures from yesterday at the beach!