Today I want to share our recent Bethany Beach trip & packing list with you. I want to start sharing more local spots and getaways with you here and this will be my first local highlight post.
Our vacation plans this summer were foiled by Covid and we didn’t really plan on going anywhere, but after being home for almost 3 months straight, the walls were closing in and we wanted a bit of a change of scenery. We knew we didn’t want to get on an airplane, so driving was our only option.
WHERE TO STAY
We all love the beach and wanted to go somewhere close, so the Outer Banks, and more local beaches like Ocean City and Rehoboth came to mind. After a bit of research, we settled on Bethany Beach as the safest, closest and most family friendly place to go. We knew we did not feel safe going to a hotel. So we rented a condo to be able to stay away from people, make our own meals, and also make sure it was clean when we arrived. You can check out sites such as Airbnb and VRBO, but we had luck by simply posting a request on our local neighborhood facebook page asking for anyone who had a last minute cancellation and we got lucky!
Bethany Beach is about a 2.5 hour drive from Annapolis. There is almost always traffic going over the Bay Bridge, but it helps to leave really early in the morning or really late at night! We did not follow our own advice and left around 2:30 pm in the afternoon, and with traffic made it there in perfect time to enjoy the beach in the evening, after 5 pm, which is our most favorite time to be there.
We found the State Beaches to be the least crowded and spent most of our days split between Inlet Beach, right by the bridge, and Towers beach (about 1.5 miles after the bridge). Both beaches have concessions, showers and restrooms, and masks are required in all public spaces and on the beach, until you get to your spot. The cost is a reasonable $10.00 per day for out of state license plates!
Inlet beach also has an outdoor restaurant, called the Big Chill Beach Club. The restaurant is entirely outdoors and reservations are currently required. We felt completely safe enjoying a meal on their beautiful and colorful deck. Everything was delicious and the Fish & Chips are incredible! Another option is to order your meal to go and enjoy it directly on the beach, which is our favorite way to have dinner while here!
We spent one evening at the public beach in Bethany, because our boys wanted to see the boardwalk, and it was great. There were hardly any crowds at all. Every store had hand sanitizer at the entrance and everyone was wearing masks. However, we went on a Monday evening and chose to avoid the boardwalk on the weekends. I will say that everyone was following rules and police were everywhere, so it is just a personal decision we made.
PRO TIP: The best time to hit the beach is after 3PM. Most people start to leave by then and the beach clears out quite a bit. After 5 PM is when the lifeguards leave and rental umbrellas and chairs need to be returned, so it calms down even more. We call it the second wave, and it is our favorite time at the beach. We would spend our mornings by the pool, or kayaking, and then get ready to hit the beach in the afternoon.
We spent most of our evenings eating dinner on the beach (our favorite thing to do) and didn’t really go to restaurants that much! We would either make sandwiches or get takeout. Here are some takeout favorites:
POMODORO PIZZA | Their pizza is delicious, but order 2 hours in advance if you want to enjoy it at a reasonable hour. They get extremely busy.
HEIDAWAY BAR | The Heidaway offers fresh ingredients and healthier food options along with craft cocktails. Their decor is beautiful. They also have a takeout window especially for cocktails. Grab one to enjoy with your pizza or just for a leisurely stroll down the boardwalk.
CEDAR LAND AND SEA KITCHEN | This cute and quaint market was right by our beach house and we ordered some salads and sandwiches to take to the beach one night. Everything was freshly prepared to order and delicious. They were so nice and accommodating too. We highly recommended them if you are in the area. They also offer outdoor seating.
MATT’S FISH CAMP| We never ended up making it here to eat, but everyone raved about this place. It is definitely on our list for next time!
BIG CHILL BEACH CLUB | The restaurant is entire outdoors and reservations are currently required. We felt completely safe enjoying a meal on their beautiful and colorful deck. Everything was delicious and the Fish & Chips are incredible!
THINGS TO DO (BESIDES GOING TO THE BEACH)
Our main objective was to hit the beach as much as possible, but we needed to fill our mornings, so they boys played a couple of rounds of golf at this affordable and family friendly course called Salt Pond. It also has a cute snack bar that is open for breakfast and lunch. Nothing fancy, but does the job.
We did decide to rent a Pontoon Boat for one day, or a change of scenery, and it was lovely. We floated down the canals to Lewes, while the boys fished, and we had a great outdoor lunch at the Wheelhouse. Another fun option and one of our favorite days!
We had a great and relaxing time and although it wasn’t what we had planned, it was perfection. I literally wore the same denim cutoffs and white t shirt everyday, and hardly washed my hair or did my makeup. But here is my list of things I used on repeat.
BETHANY BEACH TRIP & PACKING LIST
BATHING SUIT | I have talked about this suit endlesslesy. It is my most comfortable and flattering bathing suit I own. The quality is fantastic and the patter and ruching at the tummy is great for camouflaging my pooch. Totally woth every penny! You can find some other mom friendly bathing suits here.
MAKEUP CASE | I love this brand of makeup cases. It comes in various sizes and colors and the quality is great. I love storing my travel sized goodies in this case and I am ready to go at a moment’s notice.
FOUNDATION | I will never be without this stuff. It provides great coverage and also has n ample amount of sunscreen built in. The pump container makes it germ free and great for travel. One of my holy grail products.
TRAVEL SKINCARE SET | I love this brand and have enjoyed every product of theirs that I have tried. This travelset, geared towards dry & sensitive skin has everything I need for my skin in a neat little seat. It also comes in an oily skin version.
BRONZER | This is another summer staple for me and I use it daily. I either mix it in with my foundation or apply it separately to the high planes of my face. I share my best tricks in this Instagram Easy Summer Makeup tutorial.
VISOR | A great companion in your beach bag, because it rolls up, it takes up almost no space and provides great sun protection. It is also very affordable and comes in a few colors! I highly recommend it!
TANNING TOWELETTES | I didn’t like these at first. I tried them on my white and pasty skin and it came out streaky. I also found the size of the tanning towel awkward and hard to work with. However, they are great for maintaining a self tan and are super travel friendly. I cut the towel into quarters to make the size more manageable and use them everywhere, even on my face, to maintain a healthy glow!
SUNNIES | These are, hands down, my favorite sunnies. They are nice and big and the lenses are great, high quality. I get tons of compliments on them and they keep my sensitive eyes well protected. I love them so much, I purchased another backup pair.
LIPGLOSS | This is a great, swipe it on, neutral mauve lip gloss. It is perfect for summer and is like your lip color but better. You can’t go wrong with it. It doesn’t fell sticky or tacky and has pretty good staying power for a lip gloss. I am constantly reaching for it lately.
SHORTS | I wore these literally every single day, thanks to our washer and dryer in our beach house. They are the perfect cut offs and are super cute and made me feel like a cool mom. These, along with my white t-shirt were my easy peasy daily go-to.
GLOWSCREEN | This is a great sunscreen when you want just a little something to even out your complexion. It has that built in Instagram glowy filter and doesn’t break me out. It also makes a great summer makeup primer. I use it daily.
WHITE TEE | Everyone needs a good white t-shirt in their closet. I get a couple of new ones each season and were them endlessly. This one is great! it has a flattering v neck and fits not too tight and not too loose. Style tip: I always size up in t shirts for that flowy, casual look.
I hope you guys enjoyed my Bethany Beach trip & packing list post. Writing it makes me want to go back to the beach again. It has almost had my heart. Maybe it will inspire you to take a (safe) trip. It’s not too late!