What to Pack for a Weekend on Balboa Island

May 10, 2018

We had so much fun on our family staycation in Balboa Island! | M Loves M @marmarThe temperatures are heating up, which means summer is right around the corner! Last weekend we definitely got a little taste of what’s to come. We headed to Balboa Island for a mini staycation and it was just what we needed. Warm breezes, sunsets off the coast, a locals-only feel since it’s not tourist season yet, and the opportunity to try some new places. When thinking about what to bring to Balboa Island, I wanted to wear cute and comfy pieces {two must-have requirements when you’re running after a toddler!}. I love feminine cutwork details right now, and found this super cute off the shoulder top at Old Navy. I love the white with black because I feel like it will go with so much. I wore it casually here with the comfiest pants, but I also wore it with black jeans for our sushi dinner. Items like this one that can be worn multiple ways are key, especially when you’re traveling! Scroll down to read what to pack for a weekend on Balboa Island.

Check out everything we did on our family staycation in Balboa Island! | M Loves M @marmar There were so many kid friendly and fun family activities on Balboa island! | M Loves M @marmar This is everything I pack for a family trip to the beach! | M Loves M @marmar I found the cutest summer outfits for me and baby at Old Navy! | M Loves M @marmar I love Old Navy's little boy clothes for spring and summer! | M Loves M @marmar We had the sweetest mini-vacation at the beach recently! | M Loves M @marmar How to dress for a day by the sea. | M Loves M @marmar How to dress for a weekend beach getaway. | M Loves M @marmar The perfect summer outfit for a weekend beach getaway! | M Loves M @marmar I love this pink pant and denim jacket combo for spring days! | M Loves M @marmar

What to Pack for a Weekend on Balboa Island

One of my favorite things about being on Balboa Island was showing Augustine all the boats in the marina. He’s so into boats right now! He loved looking at them, and pointing to their big sails. Next time, I think we’ll need to get out on one of those boats and go for a little spin. There are duffy boats that you can rent, but I think we’d need some more people to do that with. Augustine wore this cute little shark button-up which felt very appropriate for our beachy vacay, linen-blend shorts that were soft and comfortable, and some little boy sandals. I have been dying to get him a pair like these because I think they’re so classic for little boys. I know he’ll wear them all summer long! I’m thinking he might need this festive pair of sneakers too! 

If you’re planning an OC trip this summer, here’s what to pack for a weekend on Balboa Island: 


  1. A top that can be worn multiple ways {daytime, beach-time, and nighttime}.
  2. Pants that you can lounge in at the beach or in your house.
  3. A large straw tote that can stash everything you need to have fun in the sun {see my must-haves below}.
  4. Sandals that are cute and easy to get on and off.
  5. A denim jacket for breezy mornings and evenings.
  6. A laidback and effortless dress {just got this one & have my eye on this one!}.
  7. You can’t forget your swimsuit! Doesn’t this gingham swimsuit give you all the heart eyes?!


  1. All the sunscreen. I’ll even throw a lip balm with SPF into my bag during the summer for extra protection.
  2. Toys for your little ones. Augustine loves the water, but we spend most of our time on the sand, which is where beach toys come in. It’s so fun building sand castles with him. A bucket and little shovel is all he needs to get to work!
  3. Put your partner on baby duty and squeeze in a little reading time. My next beach read is going to be Sometimes I Lie by Alice Feeney and I can’t wait to dig in! 
  4. Lots and lots of quarters. You have to pay to park at most beaches {at least in California!} and it never hurts to have extra quarters on hand so you never have to leave in the middle of a fun outing because you’re short on change. 

I can’t wait to go back to Balboa Island. It has such a nostalgic feel with the quaint little shops and restaurants, and you can’t beat the sunset views from the pier. The only thing missing from our weekend was a dip bar from Dad’s {or Sugar ‘n Spice}. How did we miss that?! There’s a big rivalry there between the two frozen banana stands. Maybe you should try both and see what you think for yourself. Although, I might need to get a Balboa Bar too. It seems only right!

Also, Old Navy is having a great sale right now in honor of Mother’s Day. Gosh, can you believe Mother’s Day is coming up this Sunday May 13th? So soon! They are offering 50% off select kids and baby items from May 7th-May 13th, so it’s a great time to stock up on some essentials for the little ones! Augustine’s been growing so fast I feel like we’re constantly replacing his pajamas and tees. I also love scoping out their sale section for baby finds since it’s all so cute!



On Mara: denim jacket . blouse . pants {love this chambray version too!} . sandals {such a good price and several color options!} .

On Augustine: shirt . shorts . shoes .


DISCLOSURE: Thank you so much to Old Navy for partnering with me on this post. Old Navy is one of my favorite brands and I love working with them. All thoughts and opinions, as always, are my own. Thanks so much for supporting me and my sponsors!

photos by Priscilla Frey 

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