Headed Towards a Tropical Beach Destination for Spring Break? Here's What to Pack

From the perfect beachside reading recommendation to cute and functional beach accessories, we've rounded up all the packing essentials you need this spring break.

By Ella Chakarian, Camila Quimper Feb 22, 2024 3:15 PMTags
Shop Tropical Beach Vacation Packing ListPhoto Courtesy of Getty Images - Aleksandar Nakic

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If this gloomy weather has you feeling extra excited for spring break, we're right with you. All we can think about is transporting to a tropical island destination and sipping cold beverages on the beach, getting a sun-kissed glow from the sun and feeling sand beneath our toes.

If you're similarly daydreaming about your spring break trip to the beach, we're helping you get even more excited and prepared for the occasion. We rounded up a few of our must-have travel essentials for a tropical beach getaway. From functional packing cubes and filtered water bottles to adorable matching sets and bathing suits, shop them all below.

BAGAIL 8 Set Packing Cubes

Packing cubes are essential for keeping your suitcase organized. They make the packing experience so much easier! This set of eight packing cubes on Amazon has over 20,000 positive reviews, one saying, "A friend turned me on to packing cubes right before a trip out west and I'll never pack another way again! These came in the perfect sizes to fit into my carry on sized luggage. Cute pattern too! They all fold up nicely for storage as well. I've never felt more organized while living out of a suitcase."

HOXIS Mesh Beach Tote

This bestselling beach tote bag from Amazon is cute and functional. It's spacious enough for all your beach day essentials, and comes in so many stylish and vibrant colors. One reviewer shares, "I brought this bag on my honeymoon to Jamaica and it served as my personal item on the plane and my beach bag. It was spacious and held my towel, book, and sunscreens. I love that sand doesn't stick to the bottom, and it was easy to shake any residual sand out of the bag. I also threw this in the washing machine on cold and air dried it and it came out perfect!"

Vacation Classic Whip SPF 30 Sunscreen Mousse

You know you're going to want to avoid a sunburn at all costs while on your trip. This Vacation sunscreen mousse makes applying sunscreen fun and easy. The vegan formula is made with eco-friendly propellants and is reef compliant. It's also water resistant for up to 80 minutes!

The Moment Yellow Maxi Skirt

This yellow maxi skirt and matching top will have you living out your tropical vacation style daydreams. It's the perfect look for a beachside dinner. The pastel yellow shade will compliment your vacation glowing skin so nicely, too!

JASAMBAC Women's 2-Piece Halter Bikini Set

This floral halter bikini top has great coverage, is affordable, and super stylish. It also comes with matching bottoms that are just as cute! One reviewer shares, "I love this bikini! The colors are bold and bright and look amazingly well together. It is true to size, and fits like a glove."

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It Ends with Us: A Novel

If you're looking for a good read to accompany you while you lounge on the beach, Colleen Hoover's bestselling novel It Ends with Us is a stellar option. The romance novel is being adapted into a movie soon, too, so it's obviously a must-read.

Malee Crochet Knit Swim Cover-Up

Looking for an affordable and cute swim cover-up that will go with all your swimsuits? Snag this white crochet knit cover-up from Cupshe for just $24. One reviewer shares, "This is gorgeous! Runs true to size. Can't wait to wear it in Aruba."

Sun Bum Cool Down Hydrating After Sun Lotion

If you find yourself with a painful sunburn, you'll be glad to have packed an after sun lotion. This one from Sun Bum is super effective, and smells amazing. One reviewer shares, "Got very sunburnt my first day in florida. And this saved my vacation! Makes the burn go right away. And leaves your skin silky smooth. Smells great too!"

Ballast Beach Pillow

If you didn't think you needed an inflatable beach pillow, think again. The Ballast Beach Pillow will elevate your beach lounging game completely. It's a functional and comfortable pillow that isn't too heavy to carry around. One reviewer even shares, "I like to have a pillow when lounging on the beach - perfect for laying on the sand or on your lounger. Comes with me on all beach vacations."

Brita Insulated Filtered Water Bottle with Straw

It's always a smart idea to have a filtered water bottle on hand while traveling. Staying hydrated is a travel must! This reusable filtered water bottle from Brita is the sustainable and budget-friendly option that will come in handy on the beach, especially.

BRONAX Pillow Slippers

or a pair of comfy slides you can wear on the beach, around the pool or strolling around, these cloud slippers from Amazon are a cute and affordable option. They're on sale for just $24, and come in 19 different colors.

Want to shop more spring break packing lists? Here's every affordable essential you need for hitting the slopes.

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—Originally published Feb. 27, 2023 at 4:30 PM PT.