You’ve bought the swimsuit, beach chair, tote bag, sunglasses, sunscreen, beach read and flip-flops. But no trip to water is complete without the perfect beach towel. Whether you need it for drying off after splashing in the waves, plan to use it as a cute cover-up when you head to the snack bar or just need a soft place to rest your vacation-minded bones, there are plenty of great options to complete your sand or poolside arsenal.
To get you started, we rounded up some of the most highly rated beach towels online. Let the lounging begin.
Best overall beach towels
$49 at Rumpl
This towel from Rumpl is a sand-resistant and quick-drying towel that’s a great option for any trip to the beach or lake. It packs down small, so it’ll take up less room in your bag, and it comes in beautiful designs, including some inspired by national parks. We tested this towel ourselves and think it’s a solid option for beachgoers. It isn’t the most absorbent towel out there and it’s very thin, and since it’s made from polyester and spandex it doesn’t feel like your normal towel. However, it did dry quickly, and we love how easy it is to pack down and throw in a bag.
$30 at Target
If you just need some simple beach towels, Target’s Sun Squad line always has colorful and affordable options. This matching set of two is made with Oeko-Tex cotton and is sand-resistant.
$12 $10 at Old Navy
Make your beach trip feel more festive with this flamingo-filled design. Made from 100% cotton loop terry, this towel will help you soak up the rays in style.
$12 at Target
Most beach towels have boring designs with just a few simple stripes. Let your personality shine more with this towel from Target, which has an assortment of cute peaches.
$44.95 at Urban Outfitters
A trip to the beach always puts a smile on our face, so keep that energy going with this happy and joyful towel from Urban Outfitters. Plus, it packs down into one of its corners so you can easily fit it in any beach bag.
$13.90 $11.81 at Amazon
There’s so much to love about the pineapple. It signifies hospitality, warmth and friendship; plus, it’s just delicious. This cute towel pays homage to the tropical fruit with a bold and bright pineapple set against gray cabana-style stripes. Made from microfiber, it’s soft, it’s absorbent and it dries quickly. Just add a piña colada and you’ll be set for hours on end.
$105 $41.99 at Wayfair
Show a little patriotic pride with this red, white and blue striped beach towel set. With a soft, water-repelling velour on one side and an absorbent terry on the other, these towels measure 64 inches by 34 inches and get rave reviews for thickness, durability, softness and aesthetics.
$24.59 at Amazon
Sometimes the simplest option is best. If you just need a couple of basic towels to take to the beach, look no further. These towels come in packs of two and four, and they’re available in 11 different colorways.
Best oversized beach towels
$44 at Amazon
This oversized towel is extra large at 70 inches by 35 inches, plush, soft, durable with reinforced edges and oh-so-pretty in yellow stripes with a sea glass green accent stripe, and we can envision ourselves sunbathing on it all day long.
$55.99 at Target
This 60-inch-by-60-inch square 100% cotton towel takes on a fashionable edge with its bold blue print and fringed hem. Use it on the beach during the day and as a blanket in front of the bonfire at night. Reviewers give it 5 stars for its softness and high quality and how well it holds up in the wash.
$25 at Target
This oversized beach towel measures 72 inches by 60 inches and features a soft, lightweight and fast-drying cotton terry material.
$34.99 at Target
Make a real splash at the beach or pool with this standout 60-inch round towel that does double duty as a cozy blanket. The 100% cotton geometric mandala print style with a fun fringed hem gets high marks for being absorbent and moisture-wicking and for being large enough for families to use while lying in the sand.
$23.96 at Target
Heading to the water with your BFF, child or sweetie? Save on beach tote space with one jumbo-size towel large enough to fit you both. This pink flamingo print on seafoam green stripes screams summer and offers plenty of room at 54 inches by 68 inches. Multiple 5-star reviews say the colors don’t fade after multiple washes, it’s softer than expected and that it provides ample space for two.
$37.99 at Wayfair
You can’t go wrong with classic black and white stripes, as evidenced by this mod oversized beach towel. At 70 inches by 40 inches, it offers plenty of room and coverage, and its velour texture is noted by happy customers for its plushness.
$21.98 at Target
This ridiculous towel is the perfect way to get a few laughs on your next beach trip. The 59-inch towel gives you plenty of room to relax — and if pizza isn’t your favorite food, donut and burger designs are available too.
Best kids’ beach towels
$17.99 at Amazon
Cozy in terry cloth with a hood, it does double duty as a robe and is just the right size for kids ages 3 to 7. Oh, and if you have any doubts as to its quality, check out the 16,500-plus ratings on Amazon that are nearly all 5 stars.
$12 at Target
If your kid loves Minecraft, this will be their new favorite towel. Featuring popular characters from the game, it’ll inspire them to have their own underwater adventures at the beach.
$36.99 at Bed Bath & Beyond
Your little ones will keep track of their towels at the pool when their names are stitched right on them. These terry towels come in blue, pink and green, measure 30 inches by 60 inches and come embroidered with any name and initial in your choice of thread colors.
$38.99 at Bed Bath & Beyond
Looking for a great gift? This bold navy beach towel is emblazoned with your child’s name either in bright alternating colors or softer greens and blues. It gets high marks for its absorption, size, quality and softness.
$14.99 at Amazon
Um, excuse us, Miss Glamazon. If the little one in your life is princess-obsessed, particularly when it comes to Ariel, this hooded mermaid towel will make a huge, well, splash. It fits kids ages 1 to 5 and can also be used as a poncho or bathrobe. Our guess? You’ll have to pry it off them.
From $25 at Etsy
Add the name of your future paleontologist to this dinosaur print beach towel for a perfect summer gift. The style gets 5-star reviews for quality, superfast shipping, softness and bright colors. Measuring 35 inches by 70 inches, it’ll provide your little ones with more than enough coverage (and, bonus, they won’t lose it at camp or swimming lessons!).
Best Turkish beach towels
$16.95 From $15.25 at Etsy
Versatile, quick-drying and with more than 20 color options available, these pretty 100% Turkish cotton towels are one of our favorites. With a 5-star average rating and more than 18,000 sales, the towels are noted for their quality, beautiful colors and full-body length. Looking for a beach-themed party favor? This is it. Read more about Turkish towels here.
$29.99 $23.99 at Amazon
We’re tempted to pick up this chic Turkish beach towel in several colors (it comes in 31 shades). Its thin weight makes it perfect for tossing in a pool tote, and it’s touted for being absorbent yet fast-drying, holding its color and softness after several washes.
$22.99 at Amazon
Imported from Turkey, this 100% Turkish cotton beach towel is just the thing for the sand, pool, spa, gym or shower at home. We love it in this orange, beige and fuchsia pattern, but it also comes in eight other color combos and prints. Reviewers say it gets softer with each washing, it’s thin without seeming too wimpy and it also works great as a blanket or throw.
$29.49 at Target
Fast-drying and eco-friendly, this 100% hand-loomed Turkish cotton towel has a herringbone weave pattern, is lightweight and measures 69 inches by 38 inches, making it perfect for the pool, for a picnic or as a sarong.
$9 From $4.50 at Etsy
At less than $10 a pop, these lovely 100% Turkish cotton towels are worth a closer look. In more than a dozen colors (and the option to personalize), they measure 70 inches by 40 inches and are noted for their quick shipping time, pretty patterns, softness and durability.