What to wear on a Beach Vacation
- You won't need much more than swimwear, sunhat and sunglasses for lazy days in the sun. But also consider…
- Will you be taking day trips away from the beach – and will these need particular clothing or footwear?
- Are there any cultural obligations in the area? See our destination pages for more advice on this.
- Is nightlife centered around smart hotels/restaurants where there is an expectation or an opportunity to dress up? Or is it more chilled out and relaxed?
- Whilst it may be hot during the day, how much cooler is it in the evenings? If there is mention of a breeze during the day it will feel even cooler at night.
- Hotel air conditioning can be fierce too, making it feel cold even when it's very hot outside. A sweater is useful to put around you if you feel chilly.
- Pick a simple color scheme of neutrals, plus one or two brighter shades if you like. Make sure all your clothes co-ordinate so they can be mixed and matched.
- Remember you will need an outfit to travel in! Wear your bulkiest clothes and shoes where possible.
- Download our complete packing list below for all quantities and a checklist of items.
- Also, see our Beach Capsule Wardrobe for Women
Men's Beach Vacation Capsule Wardrobe
Key Looks for a Beach Vacation
For smart casual dining, pair a relaxed long sleeve lined shirt with neutral linen pants, for a breezy look. Remember to roll up your sleeves of a sense of effortless style. Team with your fave deck shoes to complete the outfit.
Casual Drinks at the Bar
For casual drinks at the bar it's ok to experiment with some quirky prints! After all, you are on vacay so make the most of it and have some fun. Tropical prints work well with the beachy destination, but feel free to play around and try something new. Team your shirt up with some relaxed linen shorts and comfy deck shoes. Let the games begin!
For poolside shenanigans pair your favourite swim trunks with a relaxed white linen shirt. Wear with relaxed flip flops or sandals that will be easy to slip off poolside. Oh, and a good quality pair of sunglasses is a must. Don't forget to think of us while sipping your cocktails.
What to Pack for a Beach Vacation
Long Sleeve Linen Shirts
Choose smart shirts that can be dressed down with jeans or up with trousers. Short sleeved are fine if you prefer, but don't forget there may be chilly air-con in some restaurants.
We love: The Ernest Linen Shirt
Pack simple tops in your favorite colors that will match your trousers and shorts. Polo shirts can be worn for casual evenings, then wear by day for sightseeing.
We love: The 5 O'clock Polo
No beach capsule wardrobe is complete without a pair (or two) of high-quality linen shorts. They are breathable and lightweight, perfect for hot and humid weather. Make sure the shorts you buy are machine washable and pre-washed for long-wearing color.
We love: The Truman Linen Short
Essential for lazy days of sun-bathing – you won't need much more than this on days spent on the beach or by the pool.
Suggested buy: Sandbar Swim Trunks by MaddaFella
Choose casual for daytime including one pair with detachable legs that convert into shorts – these are a good option for variable temperatures. Pack a smarter pair for evenings too.
Suggested buy: Columbia Silver Ridge Convertible Pant by Amazon
Choose a pair that are comfy for day wear (team with a t-shirt and walking shoes) but can also be worn to dinner with smarter shoes and a shirt. Smart dark jeans would work well, or try a lighter Chino style in warmer weather. Some hotels and restaurants require men to wear long trousers (not shorts) in the evenings.
Suggested buy: AG 'Protégé' Straight Leg Twill Pants by Nordstrom
A ‘must pack' for sunny climes – check they have the right protection.
Suggested buy: Ray-Ban Original Wayfarer by Amazon
Good sunscreen is essential in hotter climes, and don't get caught out on cloudy days either – you can still get burnt. Remember that water will reflect the sun's rays too. Choose a product with a high SPF (protects from UVB rays) and also look for the star or PA rating which indicates protection from UVA.
Suggested buy: SPF 30 PA+++ Water Resistant Sunscreen by Murad
Some hotel restaurants may have a ‘smart' dress code and a jacket may be required (with or without a tie). Team it with your smart-casual trousers and deck shoes.
Suggested buy: Trim Fit Graph Print Blazer by Nordstrom
You'll need a lightweight bag for all your sightseeing essentials. Our packaway day sack folds up into itself and fits easily in your suitcase when not in use. It's surprisingly roomy, showerproof and light to carry – even in hot weather.
Suggested Buy: Fold Away Day Sack on Amazon
Essential for sun protection in hot weather – this ‘Breezy' hat has mesh sides to help keep you cool. Remember you may need to pack it in your case.
Suggested Buy: Dorfman Pacific Men's Safari Hat on Amazon
Take a lightweight comfy pair for evenings and casual exploring by day. Deck shoes have a ‘vacation' feel and look good with both shorts and trousers.
Suggested buy: Marine Deck Shoes by Hotter
Walking Shoes or Trainers
If you plan to go exploring you'll need some active shoes. Closed-toe are best on dusty roads, and if you're heading off the beaten track (cliff top or rocky paths, for example) do make sure you have something sturdy and supportive that are suited to the terrain.
We love : Logan Sneakers by Hotter
Sandals or Flip Flops
Add a pair of light flip flops or sandals for beach days.
Suggested buy: Birkenstock Arizona Sandals by Amazon
Fleece or Light Sweater
Even in hot climates a sea breeze can make it feel cool in the evening, whilst inside air-con can also make it chilly. A fleece is light, cosy and packs well – or opt for a smart sweater if that's more your style.
Suggested buy: The North Face Glacier 1/4 Zip Fleece by Amazon
Adds the finishing touch to an outfit. This Rogue money belt looks like a regular leather belt but has the added bonus of a secure zipped pocket to carry your cash – useful for emergencies, or when sightseeing in busy tourist spots that can be prone to pickpockets.
Suggested Buy: Hidden Money Pocket Travel Leather Belt on Amazon