The Best Beach Coolers to Keep Your Food and Drinks Cold

Clay Abney
·4 min read

Courtesy of Merchants

Whether you plan to spend a few hours or all day at the beach, a well-insulated (and well-stocked) cooler is as essential as sunscreen, towels and your swimsuit. Cooler technology and design has improved greatly in recent years and long gone are the days of retrieving soggy snacks and bobbing beverages from what remains of the ice that you packed prior to your outing. Today, beach coolers come with an array of price points and options, with some of the premium coolers boasting that they will keep items cold for multiple days.

When making the trek from your beachside lodging or having to navigate a public beach access, transporting said cooler and contents effectively and conveniently becomes paramount. From soft-sided coolers to those on wheels, there are a plethora of options to choose from as you begin to plan your next getaway. Here are the best beach coolers for that long day at the beach, lounging poolside or for your next backyard barbecue.

Best Beach Coolers

Hard-Sided Rolling Beach Coolers

Yeti Tundra Haul

Yeti finally created a mobile version of its popular Tundra line. Now, it's possible to go the extra mile with the large impact- and puncture-resistant wheels. Don't regret leaving anything at home as the roughly 14-gallon capacity can carry (and chill) anything you need for a day (or three) at the beach. And what's better, you will never have to lug that heavy cooler down the boardwalk or across a parking lot again.

etg - 399.99 Available at Backcountry

ROVR RollR 45

The RollR series is the multitool of the cooler world. It contains everything shy of the kitchen sink, though it is possible to have a little kitchen countertop. This smaller iteration of the larger 60- and 80-quart versions is ideal for trips when space is limited.

The removable, dual-compartment dry bin allows for separation of food items from the ice and beverages. The removable and collapsible storage bin can be deployed for easy use to carry other items atop the cooler and strapped away when not being used. And, if you're looking to trick your cooler out, the essentials pack (purchased separately) contains a prep board, dual cup holder and stash bag that each attach directly to the outside of the cooler.

etg - 399.99 Available at Backcountry

Coleman 62-Quart Xtreme 5-Day Heavy-Duty Cooler

The Coleman name has become synonymous with all things outdoors, and there is a bit of nostalgia in the name itself. For the budget-conscious beach seeker, look no further than this wheeled version. With an extra-large capacity (95 cans), and thanks to an insulated lid and extra insulation in the walls, it can keep the contents cold for up to five days even when the temperature rises.

etg - 43.76 Available at Walmart

Best Soft-Sided Beach Coolers

Yeti Hopper BackFlip 24

Free up those hands to carry more essentials with this backpack-style cooler that is the first in the Yeti line engineered to do just that. Shoulder straps, removable chest strap and a waist belt ensure an adjustable and ergonomic fit so you can fill the pack with your favorite drinks and food while reaching your destination unencumbered.

It's just like other items in the Hopper line but with backpack straps. The wide-mouth opening allows easy packing while the leakproof zipper insures that it won't leak if it falls over on the way to your beach outing.

etg - 299.99 Available at Dick's Sporting Goods

Hydro Flask 35L Insulated Tote

On a lighter note, this insulated tote is the perfect addition to shorter beach trips and doubles as a lunch tote when the vacation is over. The lightweight insulation keeps food and beverages chilled for longer than four hours and its collapsible design makes it perfect for travel and storage.

etg - 74.95 Available at Dick's Sporting Goods

IceMule Classic 15L

The IceMule Classic comes in an array of sizes from 9-liter to 20-liter (Mini to Large) though we're partial to the 15-liter model (Medium). Sling it over a shoulder or across the body for a secure fit. The roll-top design negates the need for zippers and allows for quick and easy deployment of food and beverages on demand. The insulation foam keeps items cold for over 24 hours and the bag is waterproof and floats (with or without contents).

etg - 69.95 Available at Backcountry