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Travel Wardrobe | Beach Holiday Packing List

what to pack: beach holiday packing list


It’s kinda ironic that I’m writing a post attempting to give advice on what to pack for anything, really. because anyone who’s ever travelled with me will know that my own packing list would say something like, “PACK ALL THE THINGS. HOPE FOR THE BEST.”

I don’t exactly travel light, is what I’m saying. And it’s not that I don’t know what to pack, or that I can’t put together a packing list that will allow me to take the minimum amount of clothes, and get the maximum use out them all: I can, and I have. It’s just that… well, I don’t really want to. What can I say, I love clothes, I have a lot of them, and I hate the thought of knowing I have the perfect dress for a particular situation … but that it’s 2,000 miles away. Hate that.

My holiday packing list might contain everything including the kitchen sink, however, but yours doesn’t have to, so here’s a quick packing list for a beach-type holiday, with a bit of sightseeing thrown in. Obviously everyone’s holiday packing list will be different, and it’ll depend very much on where you’re going, how long you’ll be staying, and what you’ll be doing when you get there. In my case, I also have to take into consideration that I’m permanently freezing – yes, even on a beach holiday, where it can get chilly at night, and where every restaurant and store I visit will typically have its air-con cranked up to the absolute max. For that reason, I always make sure I have a couple of pieces of long-sleeves knitwear with me, to keep me warm, and I’ll normally take a pair of trousers or jeans, too: well, you never know when bad weather’s going to strike, do you?

Here’s my beach holiday packing list…


 blue gingham swimsuit;  polka dot bikini; polka dot dress; floral dress

navy shorts; stripe shorts; sunglasses; gold wedges; pink peep toes; white sneakers

stripe pencil skirt; white a-line skirt; white shell top; pink blouse; white tank

white sweater; pink cardigan; white shirt

gingham capris; straw hat; small cross-body bag; stripe tote bag

… and here are some sample outfits I’ve created from the 20 items (I’m not counting the hat, bags and other accessories in that total!). You could easily get a few more outfits out of this selection, just by switching around the shoes etc, and one thing I haven’t included is jewellery, which can also help make things look a little bit different, but, well, you get the idea I’m sure!

beach holiday capsule wardrobe: what to pack for a beach vacation

Related: Capsule Wardrobes and Style Essentials | Maternity Essentials

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  • Joanna
    July 10, 2015

    Gorgeous outfit ideas, if only I was going on a holiday this summer *siiiigh* I’m definitely a panic packer though, throwing in everything and hoping for the best! x


  • Rotem
    July 10, 2015

    Honestly, this looks like the amount of stuff I would pack for a 3 day vacation… I’m horrible like that.
    How would you combine the floral dress with the pink blouse? It doesn’t look like they can physically be worn together

  • CiCi Marie
    July 10, 2015

    I love the idea of the white skirt for all the possibilities (I got so much wear out of a similar black one on holiday recently), but I give it 2 hours before I’ve dropped ice cream on it. Tops.

  • Christine Dodd
    July 10, 2015

    What a fun blog post – I always pack too much!

  • gio
    July 11, 2015

    Great tips! I love the gingham capris and the pink tops. But I’m not sure I could wear so much white. It gets dirty so easily, and I’m quite clumsy ahem…

  • Emily
    July 11, 2015

    Love this! Sadly I could only look this glamerous on holiday in my dreams…

  • Wild Tea Party
    July 15, 2015

    I recently traveled from Australia to Europe for three weeks. I made the most considered packing list in the world. Had it all organised. Opened the suitcase to pack…… and somehow extra items were added at the last minute… “But MAYBE the weather might be unseasonably warm in Stockholm, so I will just throw in this off the shoulder crop top, and it might be cold, so I need this wool a-line skirt. And an extra pair of black flats because you never know, I’ve only got three pairs in there already – it might rain, and one pair might have an accident, and another might give me blisters. And ALL the bras, because, bras, they don’t weigh anything. OOOH I need an extra 5 silk scarves, they don’t weigh anything either.”
    Next time I will just stick to the list. I didn’t need any of the extra items. Sigh.

  • Eli
    March 5, 2019

    What a fab post! Love they way you mix and match those pieces!