Packing for Loreto with Babies and Toddlers
Baja (Mexico) screams sun, sand, and surf for many people, but there is so much more to this complex country when it comes to packing. Not only do you need to think about clothes for yourself and the kids, but you need to know what excursions you might be doing while away. Life vests, car seats, and baby formula are just a few of the things you will need to strategize before you get on a tiny plane and arrive in Loreto. Don’t worry, it’s not rocket science. You just might need to think ahead a little more than usual.
- Think layers. In the summer it gets hot, hot, HOT, but in the winter it can be cool if the wind is blowing, and definitely chillier at night. A light sweatshirt is a must, along with t-shirts and tank tops for day adventures.
- Sarong. This long piece of fabric is an essential when visiting the beach, especially when you have kids. It can act as a tent (drape it over a regular umbrella for extra protection for your baby), beach blanket, towel when you forget to pack one (yes, that is me), dress, skirt, extra shirt, handbag, and so much more.
- Swimsuit. This one is kind of a no brainer. Bring your suit so you can hit the pool and beach.
- Cover up. The sun is pretty darn bright as you get closer to the equator. A beach cover up for you and your kids will help protect your delicate skin when you are playing in the sand and reading your book on the beach.
- Hats and UV shirts. Kids need extra protection. My kids are always in hats and long-sleeved UV shirts at the beach. The less sunscreen I have to put on them the less struggling and tears (mine, not theirs) there is as we get ready to hit the beach.
- Sunglasses. As a blue and green-eyed family we all have sunglasses, even the baby, although he doesn’t like them as much as Dek did. This protects our eyes and keeps us from squinting all day long.
- Good walking or hiking shoes. Loreto is in the desert, and yes, there are snakes. If you want to take a hike, which there are more than a few great ones to do, make sure you bring some good shoes to wander in.
- Flip flops. A great option on the beach and wandering around town.
- Life jackets. If you plan on doing any water excursions with small children bring your own life jackets. While some tour operators will have vests small enough for children, they are often too big for babies and smaller toddlers.
- Crib. Depending on where you stay a crib may not be available. To open up your lodging options bring your own crib.
- Car seats. Major car rental companies do have car seats available to rent, but if you are going to be renting a car for your trip bringing your own is a good idea. Mexico is much more lenient with their car seat laws (toddlers in the front seat with no seatbelt were a common sight), which makes me question the quality of car seat you could rent.
- Baby carrier and/or stroller. I brought both items down with me. It was not too hot, so I could easily carry Ty around town and the beach. In the summer I may have relied on my stroller a bit more. Having a sweaty baby strapped to you is not the most comfortable feeling in the heat of summer, plus the stroller acted as a great high chair when one wasn’t available at our hotels.
- Baby formula. I brought enough formula to cover one week. I knew I could probably find something in Loreto, but I didn’t want to have to worry about brands, and reading labels. I was glad I brought my own as the baby food and formula supply was very limited.
- Sunscreen. Do I need to say it again? Pack sunscreen. I don’t care how much you think you and your children can tan; you need to protect yourself and your kids with sunscreen and a cover up.
- After sun lotion. I got a horrible burn my 3rd day into our trip. Let me tell you, burns are NOT fun. Luckily aloe plants are in abundance in Loreto, making it easy to grab a natural sunburn reliever if you forgot to pack your own.
- First Aid kit. A scrape, bumps, falls, and bruises come in spades when you travel with kids. For us it always seems to happen more when we leave the country. Bring a small first aid kit with you for your minor emergencies that can be taken care of with an extra kiss, hug, and Spiderman (or princess) bandage.
What you can buy there
- Diapers. Huggies were available, but the cheaper, local brand was just as good. If you child has very sensitive skin you may want to stick to the major brands though. Ty did get a small rash from the local diapers.
- Wipes. Plenty of wipes in a variety of brands are available at the local stores.
- Gerber Baby food. There is a small selection of baby food at the larger grocery store in town.
As with all trips, the more you know ahead of time the easier your packing will be, but that doesn’t mean you can’t change your mind during your trip. There are plenty of cute stores and second-hand shops selling baby things. The town is used to tourists, and has you covered.