If you’re looking for the ultimate list of tips for taking a beach trip with a 1-year-old, then you’ve come to the right place! We took our first family vacation at the beginning of May to Myrtle Beach. We were just a 2-minute walk to the beach and it was a dream. You can catch the recap of our trip HERE.
It was Taya’s first time at the beach and though I had a feeling that she’d love it, I was still really focused on proper planning for the trip. I wanted to keep packing minimal but smart and I think I did a great job at it if I do say so myself, haha. It can be overwhelming reading all of the tips and suggestions out there, so I’m here to streamline and cut to the chase. 🙂Tips For The Beach With A 1-Year-Old Click To Tweet
TIPS FOR THE BEACH WITH A 1-YEAR-OLD
1. PACK MINIMAL – When you’re packing to take your 1-year-old to the beach, especially for a vacation, you’re definitely going to have more things packed for them than you are for yourself. That’s just toddlerhood and mama life for ya! Keep the packing minimal when it comes to toys, water bottles, and items for the beach. The more you bring to the beach, the more you’re going to have to worry about keeping track of. Your little one doesn’t need a bunch of beach toys because they’re going to want to explore. The only beach toy I packed for Taya was a sand bucket bundle that came with some shovels and other pieces. It was the perfect bit of downtime entertainment when she wasn’t running around. Skip the beach balls and bubbles (too windy at the beach!)
2. COLLAPSIBLE BEACH WAGON – A collapsible beach wagon is a must! We bought this one for our trip with the idea that Taya and beach essentials could both ride safely to the beach. We ended up just using it for our beach essentials because Taya wanted to talk or be held. I’m still so glad we ended up grabbing one because it made lugging everything to the beach much easier. It collapses nicely and was very durable. It’s a must! Plus, it’s great for any and all summer activities.
3. CONSIDER EXPOSURE TIMES – A full day at the beach without breaks is a lot for a little one. Consider short exposure and go in the morning or late in the day. The UV rays are the strongest midday. We chose to go to the beach for play in the morning before Taya’s nap and it worked out perfectly. Later in the day, either before or after dinner, we’d go back down to the beach so Taya could run around a bit. When we went out to explore the rest of Myrtle Beach, we used an umbrella stroller. Though, I wish I had packed my Solly baby wrap to babywear Taya for when she wanted to be held. If you babywear, definitely bring your wrap or carrier with you!
We brought a pop-up tent to use for shade and in case Taya napped on the beach. I wanted so badly to lay in the tent while she napped but she just wanted to adventure, haha. In my experience, it was best that Taya got to nap in the rental home we stayed at.
We didn’t use our pop-up tent as much as I expected but I know tents, like that 4 person hot tent, come in handy for all outdoor adventures this summer.
It’s UPF 50+ and is an instant pop-up and folds back into a circular backpack. Super compact! It’s such a great price, too! We got the pink one in size medium but it also comes in blue and other sizes.
I had some people ask how I kept to Taya’s usual schedule on vacation. To be honest, I went in with no expectations to stick to her usual schedule. But! We were lucky and she stuck to her usual schedule. She only has 1 nap a day now so that made it easy to stick to our usual times.
4. EMBRACE THE SAND – Chances are, your little one is going to want to embrace all of the beach… including the sand! Sand is such a great sensory activity. Yes, your little one will eat some sand. It’s basically inevitable. They’re simply curious! Do your best to distract them with snacks and water, their sand toys, and by bringing them down to the water. If all else fails, pop a binky in if they take one.Beach Essentials With A 1-Year-Old Click To Tweet
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5. WHAT TO WEAR/BRING TO THE BEACH – Keep it simple! No need to overpack. Of course, consider how close you are to where you’re staying. If you’re a few-minute walk like we were, I promise you won’t need to take a huge load with you.
- Apply before arrival and set a timer to reapply while you’re at the beach
- Chill sunscreen to help cool your babe when you reapply
- We love and use Thinkbaby sunscreen for Taya
- Rashguard Bathing Suit with UPF 50+
- Swim diapers
- Sun hat, sunglasses, cover-up
- Snacks and water in a small cooler
- Sandals or water shoes
- We have these water shoes and they’re great – they’re lightweight and have unique drainage holes so the water and sand can empty out.
- Wipes and/or cool damp washcloths
- Spray water bottle to keep baby cool
- After sun soother
- If there isn’t a shower spot when you leave the beach to wash the sand off, bring baby powder (talc-free) to help the sand slide off.
All of the tips you need to have a successful beach trip with your 1-year-old! Click To Tweet
I hope this was helpful for you, mamas! I promise beach with your little one is not as daunting as it might seem beforehand. You’re going to have a blast!