Beach Gift Baskets are Great for Anyone Who Loves the Sun & Water

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beach gift basket ideasHere are the essential ingredients for great beach gift baskets. Fill your container with some or all of them depending on your budget, the recipient and the size of your container.

Beach gift basket container ideas

A bag is perfect container for this gift basket. It can be used both to “wrap” your present and to act as the “beach bag” when needed. Choose a nice straw bag, a pretty, durable, think plastic bag or a tot bag for this purpose. For smaller baskets use a hat as the container (See hat item below).
Last but not least is a beach towel! How on earth do you turn a beach towel into a basket? check out this quick tutorial and make a towel gift basket in 2 minutes!


beach bag


towel folded into basket
(instructions here)


  • Sun screen – there is a range of sun screens for every budget and skin type. From lotions to spray-ons, from transparent to bright coloured and of course dozens of SPFs to choose from. Pick one to match your recipient’s skin type and age.
  • After sun lotion – to help the skin recuperate from the sunny experience.
  • mineral water – a handy “must have” in the sun (I wouldn’t use fuzzy or other sweet drinks as they don’t taste well after a few hours in the sun).
  • water-proof pouch / ziploc plastic bag: useful for protecting “water sensitive” items such as cell phone, money, MP players etc. If you include a ziploc bag in your beach gift basket, use permanent marker to write something like “Joe’s safe- will self distract it messed with!” on it. This way Joe won’t wonder why you included an empty plastic bag in his gift…
  • Towel – one of the most useful items in beach gift baskets. It can be plain, patterned (some have backgammon/checkers board printed on them and can be used for playing), or even one of those towels that turns into a robe.
  • Snorkel, flippers & goggles – for sea lovers.
  • nose clip, silicon ear plugs – for pool lovers. You can also add a bathing cap.
  • Paint brush – for people who love the beach but hate the sand (I am a living example that such people do exist..), add a medium size paint brush – they can use it to brush the sand off their feet before getting in the car (stick a note to the brush explaining what it’s for).
  • Travel size soap + shampoo – for people who like to take a shower at the beach/pool before going home.


  • Hat – can be a nice big straw hat (for women), a baseball cap or a visor. If you prefer your hat to be the gift basket container I recommend you go for the larger straw hats.
  • sun glasses & case – an inexpensive pair of sun glasses is a nice addition for the younger crowd (older people tend to be more picky about what they view the world through).
    A case for glasses is also a great idea – how many times did you go to the beach and didn’t have a safe place for your expensive shades? If your recipient doesn’t wear glasses, the case can be used as a place for keys, change and other small items.
  • flip flops – they come in a variety of colours and patterns and are very affordable.


  • Crossword puzzle magazine & pen – for the relaxed folks. Any other type of magazine will also do the trick.
  • Beach games – for the energetic ones a beach paddleball set, Frisbee, kite or other beach games.
  • backgammon/checkers board – a great option for everyone (choose the magnetic one if possible, so pieces don’t get lost).
  • inflatables – How about an inflatable beach ball, swim ring etc?
  • bucket and shovel – for that inner child inside of us…

Here's the beach gift basket I came up with

beach theme gift basket ideas
  1. Tote bag.
  2. Large and small toiletry bags (the small one is filled with pocket money).
  3. Hat.
  4. Crossword puzzle magazine.
  5. Flip flops.
  6. Hairbrush.
  7. Goggles.
  8. Paint brush (had one at home – for swiping sand off your feet).
  9. Travel size sun screen.
  10. Water bottle.
  11. Travel size soap, shampoo and conditioner.
  12. Towel.

How to Build a gift basket with a bag as a container

Step 1: place all gift items in front of you so you have everything ready before you begin. It is also wise to have scissors, ribbons and sticky tape close by.

Step 2: If your bag is too large or too deep for the amount of gift items you have, insert a filler half way through such as news paper, shredded paper etc.

Step 3: If your filler is not aesthetic enough (e.g newspaper) cover it up with a layer of decorative paper such as gift wrapping paper, decorative tissue paper etc.

Step 4: Start by placing taller and larger gift items in the bag first. Place them at the back of the bag. They will provide background and support the smaller items that come next.

Step 5: Continue by adding smaller gift items in front of the larger ones. Keep them in place by sticking them to other items using sticky tape. It’s better to attach sticky tape behind the item, or at the lower part of the basket when possible so that it is kept out of sight.

Step 6: Once all your gift items are placed inside the bag you can decorate it with ribbons and bows. If you wish, you may also wrap it with cellophane paper.