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13 Outdoor Summer Essentials to Keep Your Infant Comfortable

An toddler sitting outside in the shade playing with blocks.
Samuel Borges Photography/Shutterstock

Having outdoor summer fun with an infant can be more difficult than it seems. These handy essentials will help you keep your baby wrangled and sunburn free.

With babies under 1-year-old, you’re constantly worried about things like where they’re going to nap or if they’re going to get sunburnt (especially if they’re under 6 months and can’t wear sunscreen). Fortunately, there are some outdoor essentials for infants that will make your warm-weather adventures a lot less stressful.

The items below will help you keep baby safe, happy, entertained, and, most importantly, contained.

Summer Infant Pop ‘N Play Deluxe Ultimate Playard

Toddlers and older children can run around and play with various toys on the lawn. Infants, though, either can’t move yet, can only crawl, or walk unsteadily. They also put everything they can find in their mouths. When sitting outside, your best bet is to contain them in their own space so you can worry a bit less.

The Summer Infant Pop ‘N Play Deluxe Ultimate Playard is perfect for this. It has enough space for your little one to play comfortably with all her toys. It also folds up quickly and easily to a compact, portable size. The removable canopy means it will protect baby from the sun when.

We especially love the individual gates and the mat on the bottom, which is ideal for infants who aren’t moving around much yet.

Little Tikes 2-in-1 Snug ‘N Secure Grow with Me Swing

If your baby’s old enough to hold his head up, then he’s likely ready for a swing like Little Tikes 2-in-1 Snug ‘N Secure Grow with Me Swing. It’s a great way to entertain a little one who isn’t all that mobile yet, but it also “grows” with them through toddler age (the T-bar and strap are removable).

It’s easy to set up, affordable, comfortable for small babies and toddlers, and the perfect addition for a swing set (or you can hang it from a tree).

Little Tikes Snug 'n Secure Blue Swing with Adjustable Straps, 2-in-1 for Baby and Toddlers Ages 9 Months - 4 Years

The Little Tikes 2-in-1 Swing grows with your baby and can be used through the toddler years.

Summer Infant Pop ‘N Jump Portable Activity Center

Activity centers are kind of a miracle. From 5-9 months old, my daughter was obsessed with hers. IN fact, it was one of the only ways I could keep her entertained without holding her. The Summer Infant Pop ‘N Jump Portable Activity Center is easy to set up and collapse, so it’s ideal for taking outside (although, you can use it inside, too).

It comes with a few toys to keep baby busy, as well as a removable canopy to shield him from the sun. The seat is comfortable and soft, and the bottom pad will keep tiny feet off the ground. It’s handy to pop up, whether you’re in the backyard or at the beach, and need to put baby down for a bit.

Summer-Pop 'N Jump Portable Baby Activity Center - Lightweight Baby Jumper with Toys and Canopy for Indoor and Outdoor Use

The Summer Infant Pop 'N Jump Portable Activity Center is easy to take with you wherever you go.

Fisher-Price On-the-Go Baby Dome

The Fisher-Price On-the-Go Baby Dome was made with smaller infants in mind. It’s a lifesaver during those first few months, when you just need a safe spot to put baby down for a nap or to play with her toys.

The mesh sides keep baby cool and prevent her from getting overheated, while the adjustable canopy protects her from the sun. Two removable toys give her something to look at, and she can easily sit up if she wants to. It’s also compact and easy to fold up. Plus, since it’s so small, you can truly take it anywhere.

Fisher-Price On-the-Go Baby Dome Pixel Forest, portable travel play space with canopy and toys

The Fisher-Price On-the-Go Baby Dome is the perfect way to keep baby safe and happy outside.

iGeeKid Baby Beach Tent

I found out the hard way that bringing an infant to the beach is just as difficult as it seems. First and foremost, you need a tent to shade your little one from the sun and wind. A big tent is great if you need extra room, but for infants, a small one will do.

This iGeeKid Baby Beach Tent is a great option because not only does it keep baby shaded, but it also will entertain him. The bottom can easily be turned into a tiny pool—you just dig a little depression in the sand, place the bottom over it, and then fill it with water! Then, baby can safely splash around right next to you.

Summer Infant Pop ‘N Sit Portable Booster Chair

Once your infant learns how to sit up, that’s basically all she’ll want to do. The Summer Infant Pop ‘N Sit Portable Booster Chair is versatile enough to take anywhere, making it easy to feed your baby whether you’re at the beach, in someone’s backyard, or in the kitchen.

We love the little tray on this one because it makes it simple for babies to eat finger foods on their own. And you don’t have to just use it for meals—give your child some toys and she can sit and safely play for a while. It also folds up into a super-compact size.

Melissa & Doug Seaside Baking Set

This Melissa & Doug Seaside Baking Set is a fun twist on the classic shovel and pail combo. It includes a bucket, a turtle-shaped lid to sift sand, three “baking cup” shovels, a ladle, and a whisk. Sometimes, the simplest toys are all it takes for tons of fun.

Take this one to the beach, and your little one will play with it the entire time. They’re all lightweight, bright, and surprisingly durable.

Melissa & Doug Sunny Patch Seaside Sidekicks Sand Baking Play Set

It's all the fun of the classic shovel and pail, with some extras.

Evenflo Versatile Play Space

If your infant has outgrown a small play area, try the Evenflo Versatile Play Space. Just as the name implies, it gives you options so your baby will feel a little less “trapped.” The stakes are reversible, so you can use one side indoors, and stake the other in the ground when you’re outside.

We love how incredibly simple it is to use. There’s no setup required—just take it out of the box and start using it. It’s also surprisingly lightweight, easy to move around, and folds up for easy storage.

It’s perfect for creating a gated area outside so your little one can play. You can even plop a kiddie pool in the middle!

Evenflo Versatile Play Space, 18.5 Sq Ft (Pack of 1)

The Evenflo Versatile Play Space is a set of easy-to-use gates for indoors or out.

Intex Lazy Snail Shade Baby Pool

A little inflatable kiddie pool is a great way to keep a baby entertained, happy, and cool. You want to pick one that’s small enough, though, so it won’t put them at risk and doesn’t require a lot of water.

The Intex Lazy Snail Shade Baby Pool is made especially for little ones, so they can safely splash around on hot summer days. It also has a bonus sunshade to protect baby from the heat. They’ll love the little snail’s face, too!

Intex - Lazy Snail Shade Baby Pool, Yellow

This Intex kiddie pool is adorable and has a convenient sunshade.

SwimWays Baby Spring Float with Canopy

If you have a larger pool, there’s no need to get baby a tiny one—get something he can safely float around in instead (with you by his side, of course). The SwimWays Baby Spring Float is perfect for babies who are at least 9 months old.

They can safely (and comfortably) sit in this float without wearing a bulky life jacket. The canopy shades them from the harmful sun, but it’s also removable. Your child will love playing with the surrounding mesh, and there’s space for a small toy, as well.

It folds into a flat circle for easy storage and portability.

SwimWays Baby Spring Float Sun Canopy

The SwimWays Baby Spring Float is comfortable and allows babies to float around safely.

Joovy Gloo Inflatable Large Travel Bed

Outside and worried about where your little one can nap or relax? Whether you’re at the beach, on a camping trip, or just hanging out in someone’s backyard, the Joovy Gloo Inflatable Large Travel Bed is handy to have.

You just unzip and pop it up whenever baby needs a rest. It’s self-inflating, so it’s easy and fast to set up. It’s safe for babies who are at least 6 months old, and up to 3 or 5 years old, depending on which size you get. It’s terrific for on-the-go naps so you won’t have to stress about finding a safe sleeping space.

Little Unicorn Outdoor Blanket

If you’re going to buy one thing on this list, make it this Little Unicorn Outdoor Blanket. Blankets are essential for babies. They can lay on them, sleep on them, and play on them. This one is lightweight, easy to tote around, and there’s literally no setup required. You can use it at the beach, the park, or anywhere else.

It’s perfect for babies because it’s made of wipeable material, making cleanup a cinch. It also folds into an easy pocket shape, complete with a carrying handle for easy portability.

Little Unicorn 5x5 Outdoor Sport/Beach/Picnic Blanket - (Black & White Stripe)

The Little Unicorn Outdoor Blanket has a handle and is made of wipeable material for easy cleaning.

WeeFarers Polarized Children’s Sunglasses

Babies need sunglasses, too! When it comes to tiny pairs that fit their little faces, WeeFarers has nailed it. They’re both ridiculously adorable and offer 100 percent UV protection.

Because they’re made for babies, they’re also incredibly flexible and durable, since little kids can be pretty rough on sunglasses. Your baby will look so cute in these, and you won’t have to worry about the sun bothering her eyes.

WeeFarers Polarized Children's Sunglasses - (Ages 0-1y, Black)

WeeFarers are the cutest protective sunglasses for your little one.

Jessica Booth Jessica Booth
Jessica Booth is a freelance writer for LifeSavvy. She has been working in the editorial world as a freelance writer for over two years and previously worked as an editor for over eight years.  Jessica writes about travel, beauty, wellness, health, food, home decor, and parenting, and has reviewed and tested out products for all of those verticals over the course of her career. Read Full Bio »
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