What to Pack for 0-6 Month Old Baby's First Beach Trip
Updated: May 21, 2020
We just took our first vacation as a new family - myself, my husband, and our 3-month-old son (oh, and one of our three dogs). It was a road trip - a 5.5-hour drive to the beach. I started planning my packing list about a week in advance because I was super anxious that we wouldn't have what we needed to take care of our baby boy while away from home. If you ask my husband, he would say that I packed the entire house. I definitely did pack a lot of stuff for baby, but for the first time, I barely packed anything for myself! Funny how things change when you become a parent, hehe.
As I was making my packing list, I was searching the mommy blogs, Facebook Groups and discussion boards for recommendations on what to bring for a baby on a beach vacation (like, what I would really need and what I wouldn't), and it was honestly pretty hard to find good feedback on this. So, here's my experience on what I packed, what I actually used, what I didn't, and what I wish I had packed for our first vacation to the beach with baby. I've linked to the specific items I purchased or that we have (from Amazon, because I'm an Amazon junkie), in case that's helpful.
Absolute essentials for going basically anywhere:
- formula (unless you're EBF)
- swaddles / sleep suits
- burp rags
- onesies and other outfits
- car seat & stroller
- portable changing pad
What I packed and used every day on vacation:
- baby SPF swim outfit (although our LO was only out on the beach with us for a few days and a total of a few hours all week, under a massive tent... I was pretty nervous about him getting overheated and mostly kept him inside. I did have super cute baby sunglasses and a sunhat for him for extra sun protection, though!)
What I packed that I didn't use much on vacation (even though I use these at home all the time):
- too many clothes/outfits
- ErgoBaby carrier
- dishwasher cage
- most of our first aid stuff - i.e. NoseFrida, nail file, baby tylenol, gripe water, etc. (though I'm glad I had it all, just in case)
- mittens and socks
- video baby monitor
- black and white baby book
- a baby beach tent
- baby sunscreen (I know you're not supposed to use sunscreen on babies under 6 months old, but I wanted to have some just in case! I never did use it, but I'm glad I had it)
What I wish I had packed for our vacation:
- bottle brush (the dishwasher on vacation wasn't amazing, so I ended up trying to hand wash bottles but I couldn't reach into the bottoms easily to clean inside the bottles)
- knee pad for bath time (my knees were KILLING me during bath time, even using a folded up towel, especially after I got sunburn on them - ouch!!)
- more formula (I had to go to the store to get more a few days in)
- pack-n-play waterproof cover and sheets (I honestly don't even own any of these yet, that's next on my Amazon shopping list!)
Here's a picture from one of the few beach days we did (ignore my husband's awesome beach outfit - ha!):
He and I even squeezed in a little date night for ourselves, thanks to having family members with us that offered to watch babe for the evening!!
UPDATE AS OF MAY 2020:
I honestly feel like I "failed" at our first beach trip, only because I spent so little time out on the beach with babe. I was too anxious and too nervous about it all (overheating, sunburn, getting off schedule, etc.). Looking back now, I realize that I had some "baby blues" or maybe even a little postpartum depression going on in those first 6 months. That certainly didn't help. I'm so glad we ended up going back to the beach when he was a little older (last month, at 10 months old) and things were so much better!
You can see my updated post about that here: What to Pack for 6-12 Month Old Baby's First Beach Trip
PS - if you're interested to know where we stay in Destin, FL, we own 6 beachfront vacation rental properties where we always stay. We have become so spoiled staying beachfront! You can learn more and rent on our website: www.beachblissdestin.com
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