Everyone loves going to the beach. The warm sand, sun, and water invite us all to rest, relax, and rejuvenate. It’s a great place to take the family for an inexpensive day of fun. The problem is that all those beach activities require supplies and equipment that you have to lug to and from the beach. This is where a rugged beach cart can be a game-changer. Now you can carry all your equipment to the beach in one go without straining and sweating, trying to lug it all across the sand.
If you’re in the market for a new beach cart, we’ve got you covered with our top-notch product review and buying guide that will teach you the ins and outs of picking the best beach cart to suit your needs so that you can soak in all the fun and sun the beach has to offer anytime you want.
The Best Beach Carts
This collapsible utility wagon works excellent for the shifting sands at the beach. Its rugged 7-inch wheels are four inches wide and can easily roll over almost any type of terrain. With a 300-pound weight capacity, this cart can easily carry all your gear, and it’s even large enough to carry sleepy kids after a full day of playing at the beach. The wagon’s fabric is super durable and washable 600D polyester that will hold up to water, sun, and sand for years. It features several mesh pockets for holding more delicate gear, like cups, goggles, etc. The sturdy steel frame is powder-coated for extra durability.
The only drawback to this versatile beach cart is that while it folds down to a more compact storage size, it is still bulkier than many other options and may not be the best choice for smaller vehicles.
- Heavy-duty collapsible powder-coated steel frame
- Rugged 600D polyester wagon crate
- Telescoping handle
- 300-pound weight capacity
- Brand Beau Jardin
- Model WG123
- Weight 28.4 pounds
Large and versatile, great for multiple uses
Can even carry kids, like a regular wagon
Easy to clean
Heavier than some other models
Bulky, even when collapsed
Solid material doesn’t let water and sand drain out easily
This sturdy yet lightweight beach cart is constructed from durable and rust-resistant steel with large 10-inch pneumatic tires that make rolling over sand and rugged terrain easily. It features a large central mesh storage pouch that can accommodate a 48-quart cooler, a detachable insulated cooler bag, a side umbrella holder, a cup holder and accessories tray, and an extended arm capable of carrying up to six beach chairs. With 100 pounds of maximum weight capacity, this cart should be able to accommodate all your beach gear with ease. When empty, it weighs 17 pounds and can fold down flat to be stored in tight spaces and smaller vehicles.
However, the cart’s pneumatic wheels are difficult to inflate and have a high puncture risk. Also, the cart can become very front heavy and may tip when loaded up with beach chairs.
- Sturdy folding steel frame
- Removable cooler bag
- 100-pound weight capacity
- 10-inch pneumatic tires
- Brand Rio Brands
- Model AWWC9
- Weight 17 pounds
Lightweight and easy to assemble
Folds down very compactly
Mesh fabric allows for sand and water to drain out easily
Not the most user friendly design
Pneumatic wheels are difficult to inflate and risk puncture
Becomes very front heavy and may tip when loaded up with beach chairs
If you’re looking for a heavy-duty beach cart that can easily handle any terrain, the Challenger Mobility Folding Beach Cart is the ideal option. It’s constructed from rugged tubular steel with an epoxy powder-coating for added weather durability, making it super lightweight. The dolly design is more portable than many other options but can still carry a lot of gear. Weighing only 18 pounds, it can fold down to fit in small vehicles, and it’s capable of carrying up to 165 pounds. The cart features an adjustable height telescopic handle that can adjust between 29-49 inches, which makes pulling it through sand quite easy. Couple that with the oversized balloon tires, and you’ll be surprised how easy it is to carry even heavy loads through the sand.
The only thing we don’t love about this model is its price tag: it’s one of the most expensive carts on our list.
- Folding hand cart design
- Heavy duty oversized balloon tires
- Powder-coated tubular steel construction
- Can carry up to 165 pounds of gear
- Brand Challenger Mobility
- Model J2020
- Weight 18 pounds
Can fold up super compactly for smaller vehicles and spaces
Oversized tires move over obstacles easily
Can carry a full size cooler
Tires are at risk for popping
No sides to hold gear securely
When not in use, this cart folds down compactly and features a roomy 15-cubic foot, 100-pound capacity when expanded. It’s constructed from a rugged powder-coated steel frame that is rust- and corrosion-resistant and features a large central mesh bag for carrying a 48-quart cooler and all your beach gear and accessories. This beach cart comes equipped with 10-inch, extra-wide rear wheels and smaller 360-degree swiveling front wheels for easy maneuvering. At 13 pounds, it’s one of the most lightweight carts on our list. It also comes well-equipped with smart accessories, like a removable insulated cargo bag with zippered side pouches, a side umbrella holder, and a front extension that can carry up to four beach chairs.
However, with the beach chairs loaded on, you need to be careful to counterbalance the weight so that the cart doesn’t tip over and cause injury or damage since the cart is front-heavy.
- White powder-coated steel frame
- Wide 10-inch rugged rear wheels and swivelling front wheels
- 100-pound maximum weight capacity
- 15-cubic feet of storage capacity
- Brand Tommy Bahama
- Model 735645
- Weight 13 pounds
Includes a handy removable insulated cooler bag
Folds down very compactly
Super lightweight and easy to assemble
Very front-heavy and can tip when chairs are loaded on
Some concern over the long-term durability of the rear wheels
Not as easy to pull in soft sand as some other models
This cart’s heavy-duty powder-coated steel frame features 150 pounds of maximum weight capacity, which should be more than enough to tote all your beach gear in one trip. The wagon’s carrying basket is constructed from mildew- and water-resistant 600D polyester that is easy to clean and will hold up to harsh beach and weather conditions. This beach cart also features four extra-large, extra-wide wheels that are great for moving through soft sand. One of our favorite features is the handy collapsible drink tray that is perfect for holding snacks, beverages, books, mobile phones, and more.
One thing we don’t love about this folding beach cart is that it doesn’t fold down as compactly as some other models and needs more space to stow and store. Also, its material doesn’t allow for easy drainage of sand and water.
- 600D water- and mildew-resistant polyester cart material
- Rugged powder-coated steel frame
- Large and wide durable wheels
- Telescoping handle
- Brand Mac Sports
- Model N/A
- Weight 22 pounds
Can be used for multiple purposes
Easy to get gear in and out of
Easier to pull in soft sand than some other models
Wagon material doesn’t allow for easy drainage of sand and water
Doesn’t fold down as compactly as some other models
Can’t stack items as high as with some other designs
This beach cart is designed with a telescopic handle for pulling as well as a clever adjustable push handle for added maneuverability. Another excellent feature of this cart is the rear brake system that adds an extra safety element to it. The extra-wide, all-terrain polyurethane wheels feature a deep tread pattern and smooth, 360-degree rotation capability that allows this cart to move through soft sand with ease. This cart is constructed from a scratch-proof painted iron frame, which is not as rust-resistant as steel but can hold up to 265 pounds. The wagon’s basket has a large 90-liter capacity and is made from heavy-duty weather- and water-resistant 600D Oxford fabric that is fully removable and easy to clean.
One of the drawbacks to this cart is that it weighs about 30 pounds, making it one of the heavier and least compact choices on our list.
- Telescoping handle for pulling and adjustable handle for pushing
- Wide and deep PU wheels are super durable
- 265-pound maximum weight capacity
- 90-liter carrying capacity
- Brand TMZ
- Model 2140 WRB
- Weight 30 pounds
Extremely rugged and durable
Easy to steer and maneuver on multiple terrains
Can be used for multiple purposes
Heavier than many other models
Doesn’t fold down as compactly as some other options
Iron frame is not as rust-resistant as steel frame models
Best Beach Carts Buying Guide & FAQ
Now that you’ve seen some of the best options for beach carts on the market let’s talk about what makes these a great buy. What features do you want to look for in a reliable, durable, and highly functional beach cart, and how do you tell the good ones from the bad ones when shopping online?
Our buying guide will have you confidently selecting the beach cart that best suits your needs in minutes.
The Advantages of Owning a Beach Cart
One of the biggest advantages of owning a beach cart is its functionality. It can be such a pain to lug all your beach gear back and forth, especially if you have kids. Trying to carry all the added accessories that children need to go to the beach while trying to corral them and keep them out of harm’s way can be enough stress to make any parent not even want to bother going to the beach. Having a beach cart pull all your gear in gives you extra hands and a less impeded view to keep an eye on the kids when going through a busy parking lot or around seas of sunbathers. It also allows them to feel useful by helping to pull the cart.
A beach cart can also double as a wagon or a dolly to help with other jobs around the house. You can use it to tow gardening and landscaping supplies and debris or carry firewood to a distant fire pit. There are plenty of things your beach cart can do when it’s not going to the beach.
- A beach cart limits physical strain on your back and shoulders and helps you carry heavier items with ease.
- You can have your children hold onto the beach cart when you’re crossing the road or walking through a busy parking lot, so they stay close and safe.
- Your beach cart can also act as a handy place to stow beach gear for quick reloading on subsequent trips to the shore.
The Most Common Types of Beach Carts
There are several different types of beach carts to choose from. The best one for you may depend on how much space you have in your vehicle or home to store it if you need it to do double duty for other tasks, or how much gear you need to carry. Each type of beach cart has its own pros and cons, which we will review here.
Wagon Style Beach Carts
This type of beach cart is aptly named since it is essentially like a child’s wagon designed to carry heavy loads. This type of cart features a rugged metal frame and large, wide wheels with durable treads for getting through sand and uneven ground. The wheels usually rotate 360-degrees and can be made from polyurethane, rubber, or another material that makes them easy to maneuver.
Unlike regular wagons, this type features a removable and foldable basket that’s usually made of tough weather- and water-resistant 600D polyester that’s easy to clean and stores very compactly so that the entire wagon can fold up when not in use.
These beach carts usually have a high weight capacity and are great for doing other jobs around your home or yard. Their drawback is that they’re heavier, less compact, and often more expensive than many other options.
Dolly Style Beach Carts
This type of beach cart is modeled after the highly functional appliance dollies used by delivery people and movers. They’re the least common type of beach cart but are growing in popularity because of their ability to fold down very compactly and they’re multi-purpose uses.
They’re equipped with two large wheels at the back and are constructed from heavy-duty metal, usually steel, so that they can carry heavy loads. You can stack a lot of gear on the base and tilt the dolly toward you to pull or push it through the sand or other terrains.
While they’re great for stacking boxy items like coolers, boogie boards, and bags, they’re not as stable at keeping items attached to the cart as a wagon-style cart. However, they are more lightweight and easier to fold down, making them one of the most space-saving options.
Upright Beach Carts
This type of cart is a cross between a wagon and a dolly-style beach cart. It’s usually equipped with two large and wide rear wheels and two smaller, swiveling wheels for maneuverability on pavement. However, some models do come with four large wheels instead, just like a wagon.
This type of cart, like a dolly, is much taller, slimmer, and deeper than a wagon-style, allowing you to stack things up higher. It will often have extensions and side ties for carrying beach chairs, umbrellas, and boogie boards. This cart’s design allows you to push or pull it, whichever is easier based on the type of terrain you’re traversing. They’re also very lightweight and compact and are usually the most affordable of all the options.
The drawback to this type of cart is that it usually has a smaller maximum weight capacity and is usually only used as a beach cart, not as versatile at performing other tasks as a dolly or wagon-style cart.
What to Look for When Buying a Beach Cart
When you’re purchasing your ideal beach cart, regardless of the type or style, there are a few boxes to check to make sure you’re getting a rugged and reliable cart that will go the distance and not break or malfunction when you need it the most.
Solid Frame Construction
This is one of the most important things to look for. You want to choose a heavy-duty metal frame, like steel or aluminum. Something that is both lightweight, yet super strong and will be able to resist scratches, dents, rust, and corrosion for a long time. A solid frame that can support over 100 pounds is a must in a good beach cart.
Oversized, wide wheels with a good tread are important features that help your beach cart move through shifting, unstable sand or other uneven and tough surfaces with ease. The wheels can be made from polyurethane, rubber, or some other durable compound, but they need to be big. 7-10 inches in diameter is good for getting around without frustration. If you do go with larger pneumatic wheels, keep in mind that they are at a greater risk for puncturing than PU wheels, but their grip might be better, depending on your type of terrain.
Easy Setup and Breakdown
When you’re loading and unloading a bunch of stuff for the beach, you really don’t want to have to struggle with and spend lots of time setting up or breaking down your beach cart. Look for a design that can be made ready to go easily and in seconds with just a couple of steps.
Size and Weight
This can be a major factor depending on the size of your vehicle or storage space at home. If space is a consideration, you may want to avoid the larger, heavier carts. While they can usually carry more stuff, they can be prohibitive in their heavy and bulky nature. On the flip side of that, if you have a lot of gear to schlep back and forth, you may want a bigger cart with a larger carrying capacity so that you can fit everything in one trip.
Best Beach Carts FAQs:
As part of our in-depth examination of the best beach carts, we have scoured the internet to find the most commonly asked questions and have come up with our most informative and useful answers to help provide even further clarity on the subject.
Q: What are the best beach carts?
The best beach carts have a sturdy steel frame that can support a large amount of weight, often up to 300 pounds. They will be equipped with a removable and durable basket that is easy to clean and can fold down for compact storage. Of course, the best beach carts also have wide and large heavy-duty wheels that can rotate 360-degrees and roll through the sand with ease.
Q: What are the best beach carts for soft sand?
To get through soft sand with ease, you want big, super rugged wheels that turn easily. You also want a beach cart with a strong, telescoping handle that makes steering it a breeze.
Q: Can you pull a wagon on the beach?
If the wagon is equipped with large wheels that have deep treads, you should be able to pull a wagon on the beach relatively easily, whether it’s on hard sand or soft. Pulling a wagon is much easier than pushing a wagon or cart in many instances.
Our Top Pick
Now that you’ve learned all you need to know about the best beach carts, you can see why we chose the Beau Jardin Folding Wagon Cart as our top pick. This collapsible utility wagon works great for the shifting sands at the beach or almost any other type of terrain. With a 300-pound weight capacity and super durable and washable 600D polyester basket, it will hold up to water, sun, and sand for years. The sturdy steel frame is powder-coated for extra durability.
If you’re a frequent beachgoer, a well-built beach cart can take your beach experience from difficult to easy in a snap. Whether you choose the Beau Jardin Folding Wagon Cart, the Rio Beach Brands Deluxe Ultra Wonder Wheeler, or one of our other great options, you can’t go wrong using a beach cart to carry all your gear.