How To Prepare for Baby’s First Beach Trip

One of the best parts of being a parent is all the treasured moments you spend with your little one. There are many milestone moments to cherish—from the first feeding to their first steps to your first journey out into the big world together.

Another big moment that you might be looking forward to is your little darling’s first beach trip. While you might be ready to share the warm summer sun and the cool ocean waves, exploring the shore requires a lot of prep, like figuring out how to keep a baby cool in hot weather, to ensure your little miss or mister is ready for fun—and the elements.

If you’re not quite sure what to bring along to the beach, we’ve got you covered. This helpful guide to your baby's first beach trip will simplify your packing list and prepare you and your family for a day to remember.

Make Sure to Get Ready Beforehand

No one needs to tell you the benefits of preparing for outings in advance. With all the gear your baby has, you know you’ll need time to pack—and pack well—to avoid the quick trip back home for the diaper bag or baby bottle you forgot.

Since a beach trip packing list might be a bit longer than one you’d prepare for other trips, it’s best to give yourself as much time to pack as possible. For hassle-free adventuring, get started the night before. That way, you’ll avoid feeling rushed and running the risk of leaving a key item behind.

Another important part of prep work is making a list of all the items you plan to pack. The best beach trip lists will include the following items at minimum:

Pro parenting tip: Don’t forget to charge your phone, too. When your beach-loving baby is donning their Fab Flamingo One Piece to match, you’d be remiss not to catch it on camera.

Budget an Appropriate Amount of Time

If your bundle of joy loves the beach, it might be tempting to stay for longer than you’d planned. But just because your baby is having fun doesn’t mean you should stay from dawn to dusk.

Even a baby that’s enjoying themself can quickly become fussy, cranky, or downright exhausted if a trip drags on past an appropriate time frame.

The beach is an active place for babies, which means it’s essential to budget the right amount of time for the trip to stop your darling from becoming overtired, overstimulated, or affected by the heat.

To ensure your first beach trip with baby goes off without a hitch, make it a manageable endeavor by:

  • Opting for a short visit of a few hours—plenty of time to catch a few waves and some Zs in the sun
  • Visiting a beach near you to cut down on time spent in the car
  • Devising an alternative plan for if your baby feels tired and you need to cut the trip short

Sticking to your time frame for this trip will make sure that both you and your baby have a fun time and enjoy the beach to its full potential.

Keep Your Baby Shady

While your ideal beach agenda might include relaxing in a lounge chair with a good book, a cool drink, and a drop of sweat glistening at your temple, babies can’t regulate their body temperatures well enough for that yet.

That means it falls on you to make sure your baby stays cool when you take to the sea and sand.

For a baby-friendly adventure, follow these helpful tips:

  • Keep your baby in the shade – Since babies don’t usually sweat as much as adults, it limits their ability to cool themselves down. That means it’s vital to keep your little one out of the sun. Instead, set up a shady area under an umbrella for your darling to enjoy the sand.

Pro tip: Pack an easy-to-assemble beach tent so that there’s plenty of room for you and baby to enjoy a mid-day siesta on the shore.

  • Use a hat – Baby girl sun hats aren’t just cute—they’re also vital baby beach accessories for any beach trip. Wide-brimmed hats help keep the sun off your baby’s precious face and keep them nice and cool on a warm summer day. For extra protection, look for one with UPF 50+ fabric that will go the extra mile when it comes to blocking UVA and UVB rays. Visit our post answering the question, “what is UPF clothing?” for more information.
  • Offer your baby plenty of fluids – You’ll often find yourself reaching for a cold drink on the beach. Chances are, your baby would too if they had the ability. Try to offer regular feedings throughout the beach trip to make sure your little swimmer stays properly hydrated.
  • Go during cooler times in the day – The early afternoon can become scorching in the summer. This is certainly something to keep in mind when picking a time for your trip. The warmest hours of the day tend to be from 11:00am to 5:00pm, so an early morning or early evening outing might be best to beat the heat.

Keeping your baby shady is one of the most important to-dos during a beach trip. Fortunately, it’s easy to do—especially with your watchful eye and the proper, protective apparel.

Prevent Baby Sunburn

When you enjoy a day at the beach, you can sometimes leave with peeling, red skin. Even if you’re careful about reapplying sunblock, you may still notice sunburn on your shoulders and cheeks if you spend all day out of the shade. And your little darling burns faster than you do!

While keeping your baby shady and cool is vital during their first beach trip, the other mission-critical task is making sure you’re taking steps to reduce the chance your little one burns. You can do this in a variety of ways, such as:

  • Regularly reapplying sunblock – Sunblock works for you, and it can also help protect your baby, provided that he or she is older than six months. Sunblock isn’t recommended for babies less than half a year old, but once your little one is old enough, you can use a 30 SPF or higher and apply it at least every 90 minutes.
  • Taking sun breaks – Even when you properly and regularly apply sunblock, you can sometimes still wind up with a sunburn. That’s why the best way to prevent sunburn is to completely stay out of the sun. During your beach trip, this means making sure your baby takes periodic breaks in the shade. You’ll want to be particularly cautious between 10:00 to 4:00 when the sun is strongest.
  • Dressing your little one in protective wear – Baby swimwear can do more than look cute. It can also keep your little one shielded from the sun. RuffleButts baby girl swimsuits are made with sun protectant UPF fabric that helps shield your little one from the sun’s harmful rays. Plus, our long sleeve options, like our Periwinkle Long Sleeve Rash Guard Bikini, add an extra layer of coverage to your baby’s arms, so they can enjoy fun in the sun safely.

The above tips will help ward off the most harmful effects of the sun. That way, your little darling can come home from his or her first beach trip with nothing but fond memories.

Travel with Baby Powder

As a parent of a newborn, you’re always on baby mess duty. But if you haven’t taken your little one to the beach before, you likely haven’t dealt with one particular type of mess: sand.

Sand is a big part of the beach experience, but it doesn’t have the same effect when it’s on your living room floor. How do you prevent your little one from carrying sand back home with you after delighting in it all day long?

One easy and baby-safe trick to de-sanding your child is to use baby powder. That’s right—baby powder is useful for a lot more than preventing diaper rash. Since it takes moisture off the skin, it’s a champ at giving sand nothing to stick to.

To take advantage of baby powder’s sand-whisking powers on your beach trip, all you have to do is:

  • Sprinkle some baby powder on whatever parts of your little one are sandy
  • Wait a moment, then brush off the powder
  • Watch the sand fall away with it

If you want to make sure your hands stay clean and powder-free, you can use a cloth or soft towel to rub the powder and sand off your little miss or mister’s skin.

Want Swimwear You Can Trust? Try RuffleButts

When properly planned for, your baby’s first trip to the beach can be a milestone you’ll always look back on fondly. Preparing ahead of time, understanding what to expect when you get there, learning water safety, and providing your baby with the proper attire will help keep them cool, safe, and happy.

Fortunately, when it comes to sun protectant attire, RuffleButts can help. All our girls and boys bathing suits and rash guards are made with UPF 50+ fabric to block out the worst effects of the sun. Plus, they come in a variety of adorable styles and designs, from pastel floral one-pieces to bold rainbow bikinis.

So, if you’re ready to take your baby on their first beach trip and enjoy the summer sun in a fun, stylish way, browse our collection of baby swimwear today. With RuffleButts, sun protection has never looked so cute.

Sources: NSW Health. Babies and children in the heat., Healthline. How to Prevent and Treat Infant Sunburn.