Beach House Diaries: 10 Summer Beach House Packing Tips

Posted May 30th 2013 03:00 PMUpdated Jun 20th 2013 04:33 PM


Beach House Diaries

If you own your beach house -- or return to the same one every year -- you already know what to take. Packing for a new place is trickier, so contacting the owner or manager in advance to ask specific questions about how well equipped the property is should be your first step. Here are some other been-there-done-that tips from Susan MacCallum-Whitcomb, our beach house expert.

Kitchen Essentials
  • Grocery prices can be high and selection low in beach communities, so raid your at-home cupboard for spices and specialty items.
  • Resourceful cooks can make do with most kitchenware supplied, but good knives are at a premium and easy to pack.
  • Addicted to your juicer? Need a blender to fulfill Margaritaville fantasies? You'll probably have to bring such appliances.

Bedding and Toiletries
  • Bed linens are usually included. But if getting a good night sleep requires the perfect pillow, take your own.
  • When packing toiletries, remember summer essentials like sunscreen, after-sun lotion, lip balm and insect repellent.
  • Bring your meds plus a basic first aid kit (it should include Pepto-Bismol in case that clam bake disagrees with you).
  • If you're traveling with young children, ensure you have all the necessary gear to keep them comfortable and safe.

Beach Gear
  • Know what type of beach you're prepping for. Boogie Boards, for instance, won't be used on a bathtub-calm lake.
  • Not all beach bottoms are blessed with sand. If yours is rocky (or covered with eelgrass), you'll want water shoes.
  • Ask if beach towels are available and pack accordingly. In either case, bring an old blanket for waterside lounging.

Susan MacCallum-Whitcomb will report on life at a summer beach house in AOL Travel's weekly Beach House Diaries. Follow along with her or share your beach house tips in the comments below.

Follow AOL Travel on Facebook | Twitter | Google+
Filed Under: Beach, Seasonal

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum


Filter by:

We have very similar experiences. My 15X18' cottage on Swans Island, ME was vacant for 14 years and was refurbished to its present splendor, thanks to a talented and thoughtful craftsman. The island is still in the early 1900's, thankfully, in many ways. The highlights of my stay there are hours spent in search of that perfect colored sea glass (lavender, for me), roaming around the island on my electric tricycle, gardening, or enjoying the simplicity and coziness inside my cottage. I'm curious about one thing: your water source. Do you have potable water? Anyway, thank you for your ideas and musings. I look forward to more diary entries. Your writing picks me up and places me where I long to be. Sincerely,
Bonnie Rothstein Brewer

June 04 2013 at 12:55 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Basha's comment

Hi Bonnie, thanks for your kind words. Regarding water, some Islanders have wells and pumps… we don’t. We take our drinking water over with us each weekend in a seven-gallon, camping-style container; and we have a large holding tank for rainwater, which we rely on for everything else. A portable propane heater allows us to have hot water on demand.

June 05 2013 at 7:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply