The 13 Best Beach Bags of 2021

Shore up your essentials in style before you hit the sand

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Beach Bags

Tripsavvy / Chloe Jeong

The Rundown

Best Overall: Dejaroo Mesh Beach Bag at Amazon

"A sprawling 18 x 29 inches and has a whopping eight pockets to store items in."

Best Budget: Surdoca Reusable Produce Cotton Mesh Bag at Amazon

"These bags couldn’t be more affordable nor lighter weight, so you can stock up on a bunch."

Best Splurge: Frette Lido Beach Bag at Frette

"The luxurious exterior will make you feel like you're at a five-star resort."

Best Sand-Proof: CGear Sand-Free Tote Bag at Amazon

"Made from a patented double-layer mesh weave that allows sand to sift right through."

Best Waterproof: YETI Camino Carryall at Amazon

"Waterproof, super durable, puncture resistant, and easy to clean."

Best Multipurpose: L.L. Bean Everyday Lightweight Tote at L.L. Bean

"A multi-functional bag that’s great at the beach as well as for day-to-day use."

Best Mesh: OdyseaCo Oahu Mesh Beach Bag Tote at Amazon

"The mesh material folds up so it can easily fit into your suitcase while traveling."

Best Straw Bag: Aqua Extra-Large Woven Tote at Bloomingdales

"This chic yet functional straw bag skates the best of both worlds."

Best Insulated: Hydro Flask Insulated Tote at Hydro Flask

"Does double duty as both a lightweight beach bag and a small cooler for drinks and snacks."

Best Canvas Bag: Lands’ End Open Top Canvas Tote Bag at Lands' End

"It’s made from durable 24-ounce cotton canvas and has reinforced handles to support a heavy load."

To prep for a beach day that delivers on the promise of big fun, make sure you have a beach bag that holds your stuff comfortably, tidily, and with style. Everyone’s ideal beach bag will look different: if you’re heading to the beach as part of a big day of solo sightseeing, you’ll want a solution that’s streamlined, secure, lightweight, and polished enough to be versatile. If you’re heading straight for the sand with a family, you’ll need something large, well organized, durable, and easily cleaned.

Keep reading for our picks of the best beach bags available, as well as what to look for in terms of size, fabric, pockets, and handles.

Best Overall: Dejaroo Mesh Beach Bag

Dejaroo Mesh Beach Bag

Courtesy of Amazon

What We Like
  • External and internal pockets

  • Waterproof

  • Roomy

What We Don't Like
  • Mesh makes it easy for sand to get into bag

  • The sides aren't structured

If you come fully prepared for anything at the beach and need more space for all that gear, the Dejaroo Mesh Beach Bag is a sprawling 16.5 x 15 x 8.5 inches and has a whopping eight pockets to store items in. There are seven external pockets for smaller belongings like electronics, sunblock, and flip flops, and one interior pocket for larger items. The bag is waterproof as well, so liquid won’t seep in if the bag is set on wet sand. There’s also a zippered pocket inside for keys so they don’t get buried at the bottom of this massive bag. Customers were surprised by how roomy the beach bag is and stated it was well constructed. 

It's much more convenient for travel than our bulky canvas beach bags, especially considering its large enough...to hold several towels, extra shoes, large water bottles, and even a big camera or lunchbox. - Suzie Dundas, Product Tester

Size: 16.5 x 15 x 8.5 in. | Waterproof: Yes | Closure: Zipper

Best Budget: Surdoca Reusable Produce Cotton Mesh Bag

What We Like
  • Compact

  • Stretches to accommodate gear

What We Don't Like
  • Doesn't offer much privacy

We love to use these bags, designed for farmers market produce, for a day at the beach. The mesh openings are small enough to keep beach essentials in but large enough to easily filter the sand out so you don’t end up taking it all home at the end of the day. They couldn’t be more affordable nor lighter weight; stock up on a bunch for various uses—even stash an extra or two in your luggage for an almost weightless beach bag solution. Plus, they just have this effortless, back-to-basics chic look about them.

Size: 2 x 6.5 x 2 in. | Waterproof: No | Closure: None

Best Splurge: Frette Lido Beach Bag

Frette Lido Beach Bag

Courtesy of Frette

What We Like
  • Soft

  • Stylish


What We Don't Like
  • Hangs onto moisture

Frette, a beloved brand for luxurious textiles, now has its own beach bag. Made of plush terrycloth, this bag is both soft and absorbent. Easily toss everything you need into it for a day at the beach—it's roomy enough to hold a book, sunscreen, sunglasses, and a towel. It comes in three different color-blocking patterns: black, grey, or muted yellow. Even though this bag is a bit pricey, the stylish exterior will make you feel like you're at a five-star resort and last for many beach trips to come.

Size: N/A | Waterproof: No | Closure: None

Best Sand-Proof: CGear Sand-Free Tote Bag

CGear Sand-Free Tote Bag

Courtesy of CGear

3.9
What We Like
  • Lightweight

  • Easy to pack

What We Don't Like
  • Only comes in one color

  • Could use more compartments

After a relaxing day at the beach, it’s frustrating to come home and realize you’ve brought a whole bunch of sand with you. A sand-proof beach bag can help minimize the mess, both in your house and in your car. The CGear Sand-Free Tote is different from other beach bags because it’s made from a patented double-layer mesh weave that allows sand to sift right through. Even if you throw in sand-covered shoes or beach toys, all that grit will fall out of the bottom of the bag the minute you pick it up. And while it lets sand out, it doesn’t let any in (a feature reviewers rave about).

This beach tote is made from water-resistant PVC with reinforced seams for added durability. To clean, just rinse it with water. And at a roomy 17 x 7.5 x 15 inches, it’s large enough to hold towels and toys alike. The bag has one smaller interior pocket for valuables and comes in an eye-catching blue plaid that’ll be easy to spot on the beach.  And, as our product tester Sage McHugh noted, "it lies entirely flat when empty, so it's very easy to pack and store."

Size: 17 x 7.5 x 15 in. | Waterproof: Yes | Closure: None

“No sand got in from the bottom or the sides and for the first few hours, we were totally impressed.” Sage McHugh, Product Tester

Best Waterproof: YETI Camino Carryall

YETI Camino Carryall

Courtesy of Yeti

What We Like
  • Sturdy

  • Multiple color options

  • Puncture resistant

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

This rugged bag is for serious beachgoers and boat goers. It’s waterproof, super durable, puncture resistant, and easy to clean. There's also a huge opening and zipped pockets, with a molded base that keeps the bag standing upright and protects from water seeping in. It measures 18 x 14 x 9 inches and is available in five different colors.

Size: 18 x 14 x 9 in. | Waterproof: Yes | Closure: None

“The straps aren't too long or too short—plus I love I can carry it with the big handles and throw it over my shoulder, or pinch the parallel bars right above the lip to carry at my side. It'll hold everyting you need for a day at the beach, or all the food you need for a day trip—and then some. I also use this bag as my daily grocery run since it keeps things relatively cold, and like I said, you can pack a lot (think a week's worth of groceries, plus some!).”Meg Lappe, Senior Commerce Editor

Best Multipurpose: L.L. Bean Everyday Lightweight Tote

L.L. Bean Everyday Lightweight Tote

Courtesy of L.L. Bean

What We Like
  • Available in seven different colors

  • Durable, but lightweight

  • Packable

What We Don't Like
  • Unstructured

  • Straps are a little short

For a multi-functional bag that’s great at the beach as well as for day-to-day use, the Everyday Lightweight Tote by L.L. Bean is an excellent option at a reasonable price. Available in two sizes, medium (12 x 6 x 13 inches) and large (15 x 7.5 x 17 inches), the bag is big enough for beach gear without being bulky. With several neutral colors to choose from like burgundy, navy blue, and sunflower with contrasting stitching, it’s an easy choice for men and women. For storage, there’s a front pocket for quick grab-and-go items, and the interior has a zipped pocket with a key clip. The well-built beach bag also has a zipped top, reinforced handles, and double-layered bottom.  

Sizes: M: 12 x 6 x 13 in., L: 15 x 7.5 x 17 in. | Waterproof: Yes | Closure: Zipper

Best Mesh: OdyseaCo Oahu Mesh Beach Bag Tote

4.5
What We Like
  • Extra-large capacity

  • Internal carabiner for keys

  • Waterproof zippered pocket for small items

What We Don't Like
  • Material gets hot in the sun

Measuring 18 x 29 inches, this extra-large mesh bag has enough space to carry everything you need to the beach. Despite its large size, the mesh material folds up so it can easily fit into your suitcase while traveling. An internal carabiner and zippered waterproof pocket keep keys, phones, and jewelry safe. Plus, the mesh material dries quickly and allows air to flow throughout the bag so your damp towels won't stink after a long day at the beach. However, Brie Dyas, our product tester thinks "the best feature of the the Oahu Mesh Beach Bag is its sturdiness."

Size: 18x 29 in. | Waterproof: No | Closure: None

“The OdyseaCo Oahu Mesh Beach Bag Tote might not be the most stylish bag, but it makes up for its plain appearance with its incredible size and durability.” — Brie Dyas, Product Tester

Best Straw Bag: Aqua Extra-Large Woven Tote

Aqua Extra-Large Woven Tote

Courtesy of Bloomingdales

What We Like
  • Lined interior

  • Stylish

  • Made from sustainable materials

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

This bag skates the best of both worlds: it’s perfectly polished for a day on the go, but functional and large enough for a day at the beach, too. Made from packable straw material, this tote has shoulder straps for a hands-free solution. A magnetic strap closure keeps your stuff secure and interior slip pockets keep essentials organized and compartmentalized.

Size: 23 x 14.5 x 5.5 in. | Waterproof: No | Closure: Snap

Best Insulated: Hydro Flask Insulated Tote

Hydro Flask Insulated Tote

Courtesy of Hydro Flask

What We Like
  • 35-liter capacity

  • Durable

  • Interior is easy to clean

What We Don't Like
  • Pricey

The Hydro Flask Insulated Tote does double duty as both a lightweight beach bag and a small cooler for perishable drinks and snacks. The inside of the bag is lined with insulation that keeps contents cold for up to four hours. It's waterproof and has welded seams too, so spills stay inside the bag and they're easy to clean. This bag can hold up to 35 liters, which is more than enough space to hold large beach towels and additional gear. The outside is made of durable fabric and features a zippered pocket for chapstick, sunglasses, sunscreen, or any other small items. It measures 15 x 20 x 7.75 inches, has sturdy handles and water-resistant zippers, and can stand up by itself. Best of all, the Hydro Flask Tote is available in four stylish colors and comes with a five-year limited warranty.

Size: 15 x 20 x 7.75 in. | Waterproof: Yes | Closure: Zipper

Best Canvas Bag: Lands’ End Open Top Canvas Tote Bag

Lands’ End Open Top Canvas Tote Bag

Courtesy of Lands' End

What We Like
  • It can be monogrammed

  • Comes in multiple handle lengths

  • Affordable

What We Don't Like
  • Colors will get dirty quickly

  • Heavy

Lands’ End's quintessential beach bag is ideal for families and is a perpetual best seller with a five-star rating. It’s made from ultra-durable 24-ounce cotton canvas and has reinforced handles to support a heavy load. It has a water-resistant base and trim for protection, and inside pockets for organization. With size options ranging from small to extra large, and seven color choices, it has plenty of options for everyone. Add a personal monogram or family name and make it your own.

Sizes: S: 12 x 5.5 x 9 in., M: 17 x 6 x 13.5 in., L: 22.5 x 9.5 x 17 in., XL: 26 x 10.25 x 17.5 in. | Waterproof: No | Closure: Zippered or none

Best Oversized: Ikea Large Shopping Bag

Ikea Large Shopping Bag

Courtesy of Ikea

What We Like
  • Easy to clean

  • Versatile

  • Lightweight

What We Don't Like
  • Thin straps

  • Doesn't zip

You normally only see Ikea's iconic tote bag when you're shopping inside the Swedish retailer, but these oversized bags are also great to bring to the beach. Weighing only 4 ounces, this lightweight tote can hold up 19 gallons. It's made out of durable polypropylene and can hold up to 55 pounds. The open top allows for effortless packing and unloading, it can fold down to fit into any storage area, and is easily cleaned with soap and water.

Size: 21.75 x 14.5 x 13.75 in. | Waterproof: Yes | Closure: None

“This bag may not have a closure but holds so much, I don't even mind. On beach days, I can fill it with towels, sunscreen, and snacks with plenty of room to spare but I use it most often as a bag for laundry days. Be careful about how much you place in the bag though. The straps are thin and can cut into your shoulder.”Sherri Gardner, Associate Editor

Best Design: Shylero Beach Bag

Best design beach bag
What We Like
  • Fun color options

  • Versatile

What We Don't Like
  • No hard bottom

The Shylero bag works well as a beach bag because it's made of durable, easily washable, waterproof fabric and has an interior water, dust and sand proof PVC case to put phones or other valuables in. In addition to convenience, the 17 x 15 x 6-inch bag is super spacious and can hold up to a 15-inch Macbook. We also love the range of colors the beach bag comes in and that it has a built-in key holder and bottle opener.

Sizes: Vertical: 17 x 15 x 6 in. | Waterproof: Yes | Closure: Zipper or magnet

Best Backpack: Venture Pal 40L Backpack

beach backpack
What We Like
  • Affordable

  • Tons of color options

  • Zippered wet pocket

What We Don't Like
  • Unstructured

Backpacks are a great way to bring towels and food to the beach because it leaves your hands free to carry extra essentials like an umbrella or folding chairs. And the Venture Pal backpack is a great option to bring with you. This bag features a waterproof pocket within the main compartment, perfect for separating wet swimsuits from other objects. The outside is made of durable material and heavy duty zippers, so it won't fall apart after your first outing. There's also many pockets, good to store car keys, sunglasses, or any other small items. It measures 9 x 6.5 x 2 inches and has comfortable shoulder straps. Reviewers loved how large the bag was: many reported that it could hold towels, shoes, goggles, and snorkeling gear, with room to spare.

Size: 9 x 6.5 x 2 in. | Waterproof: No | Closure: Zippered

Final Verdict

For a budget-friendly pick, we love the reusable cotton mesh produce bag from Surdoca (view at Amazon): there’s no lighter, cheaper, nor more functional solution. However, if we're trying to find a beach bag that goes with our beach ensembles, we're going with Aqua's straw tote (view at Bloomingdales). We also love that it goes seamlessly from the streets to the beach to the office.

What to Look for in a Beach Bag

Size

Whether you’re looking to bring just a book and a towel or gear for the whole family, you’ll want a bag that can haul everything you need. If electronics are part of your beach routine, you’ll also want a bag with waterproof inner pockets (or separate waterproof bags included). And naturally, if you want to carry cold drinks or food, a bag with an insulated section is a must.

Fabrics

Canvas, the most traditional beach bag material, is durable and offers a classic aesthetic. Straw bags are a close second in terms of style and functionality. If you need a waterproof bag, look for one made of nylon or polyester. Other materials offer additional benefits, like sand-resistant silicone. Pay attention to the handles as well—braided ones look great, but might bite your shoulders or hands if you’re hauling your bag for a long time, while flat cloth or canvas handles are both durable and comfortable.

Pockets

Pockets are a valuable feature in a beach bag: external pockets can hold liquid containers upright, and compartmentalize wet and sandy items. Inside pockets can help hide and secure your valuables while keeping them accessible, so you can easily grab your car keys or phone when your hands are full. For added security, consider pockets that zip or at least snap to close, versus slip pockets alone.

Handles

Some of the most stylish beach bags are hand carried: picture the most iconic, timeless straw bag silhouettes. However, these aren’t always the most practical, as they’ll tie up at least one hand for carrying. If you’re traveling with kids—or clutching an iced coffee or your smartphone—you’ll probably want a tote with shoulder or crossbody straps.

FAQs

How should you clean your beach bag?

You might be attracted to a cotton mesh bag for its sand-filtering property, which makes it easier to clean; just throw the whole thing in the wash. For a canvas beach bag, use a damp washcloth and soap to rub out any stains with cold water. When you’ve gotten out the visible dirt, rinse the soap out of the washcloth and rewet it to rub the soap out of the canvas bag. Let it air dry.

What supplies should you bring to the beach?

Pack your bag with the essentials: sunscreen, sunglasses, water, snacks, a towel, a hat, and dry clothes to change into. Stash a plastic bag to keep any wet gear separated. Use your inside pockets to tuck away your keys and phone, but ideally, you’ll bring as few valuables out on the sand as possible to mitigate the risk of theft and increase your peace of mind when you're in the water.

What type of beach bag should you travel with?

If you’re planning to pack your beach bag in your luggage, look for one that is super light by weight and volume, such as a cotton mesh bag. Avoid bulky, rigid bags that do not compress, such as structured straw. And look for a beach bag with a shoulder strap or crossbody option to keep your hands free when you’re out and about.

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