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The 16 Best Beach Chairs You Can Buy This Summer

The best beach chairs for summer are all about portability, durability and seaside style.

a beach chair and bag on sand next to the ocean
Cam Oden

A good beach chair is light, stable and worth sitting on. A great beach chair is all of those things, but also fits into your budget, is easy to carry across burning hot sand and looks good waiting for you while you take a dip in the water.

The 16 chairs on this list address the needs of every beachgoer — there are models with integrated sunshades for the sun-conscious, simple two-piece folding designs that prioritize form, cheap and easy-to-set-up camping chairs and more classic designs made for a day in the sun and surf.

Best Overall Beach Chair: Oniva Monaco Reclining Beach Backpack Chair

Best Overall Beach Chair

Oniva Monaco Reclining Beach Backpack Chair


  • Has basically every feature you'd want
  • Sleek, modern looks
  • Very lightweight and portable

  • Only available in one color

This might just be the perfect beach chair, as it's got everything you could possibly want. It sits at the perfect height, it's lightweight and transforms into a backpack for easy transportation, it's made from a rugged beach-ready material, it offers niceties like a pillow, recline and a cupholder, and it's got that perfect vacation-ready look. Even the name — Monaco — invites images of luxe sun-soaked beaches.

Best Upgrade Beach Chair: Yeti Hondo Base Camp Chair

Best Upgrade Beach Chair

Yeti Hondo Base Camp Chair


  • Extremely rugged build quality
  • Nice looking
  • Cool and comfortable seat

  • $300 is objectively expensive
  • Cupholder's placement is a bit low

Yes, Yeti's stuff is pricey, but it's built to last basically forever, and this luxury beach chair is no exception. Technically, this is a camp chair, but its sleek versatile looks, breathable and UV-resistant fabric, carrying handle when folded and included cupholder all combine to make it the perfect fit for the beach, too.

Best Budget Beach Chair: Tommy Bahama Backpack Beach Chair 2 Pack

Best Budget Beach Chair

Tommy Bahama Backpack Beach Chair 2 Pack

Tommy Bahama amazon.com
$116.99 (35% off)

  • A total bargain for a quality beach chair
  • Includes luxes extras like a cupholder, towel rack and pillow
  • Turns into a backpack for easy transport

  • Style is on the tacky side

The epitome of beach vibes, no one can compete with the name Tommy Bahama when it comes to aquatic adventures (or prints, for that matter), and the brand's Backpack Beach Chair is a bit of a cult classic. This two-for-one chair deal brings you the best of both worlds: classic beach style, comfort in the form of an adjustable pillow and padded shoulder straps and at the same price as some of the solo chairs on this list, a little relief for your wallet.

Best Beach Chair with Cupholders: Telescope Casual Original Mini-Sun with Cupholders

BBQ Guys
Best Beach Chair with Cupholders

Telescope Casual Original Mini-Sun with Cupholders

$178.00 (42% off)

  • Two, count 'em, two cupholders
  • Built-in towel rack
  • Ideal low seating angle

  • No carrying straps when folded

The family-owned Telescope Casual brand has been around since 1903, and its outdoor furniture is all made in America. The Mini-Sun Beach Chair is a luxe option for those who spend more time outside than inside. The three-position reclining chair is built with a sturdy and durable metal frame with a generous backrest for ultimate lounging along with a pair of cupholders and a built-in towel-drying rack.

Best Folding Beach Chair: Sunflow Sunrise Beach Chair

Best Folding Beach Chair

Sunflow Chair


  • Unique and innovative design
  • Very stylish — the "it" beach chair
  • Tons of color options

  • Pretty spartan — not much in the way of extra features

Sunflow's Sunrise is portable, intuitive to set up and looks good. Makes sense since the brand's founders linked up with legendary industrial designer Yves Behar's design and innovation firm, Fuseproject, which helped create the Herman Miller Sayl chair, to make the Hamptons' new favorite beach chair. The Sunrise beach chair has a four-way reclining seat made of lightweight rust-resistant aluminum and water-resistant fabric, and its setup is similar to that of a stroller.

Best Aluminum Beach Chair: Sunday Supply Co Mineral Beach Chair

Best Aluminum Beach Chair

Sunday Supply Co Mineral Beach Chair

$139.00 (18% off)

  • Generous padding on the seat
  • Simple, classic design
  • Lightweight construction

  • Not the most breathable chair in the world

Simple, stylish and comfortable to boot, Sunday Supply Co's beach chairs are also durable. The water, tear and fade-resistant fabrics can stand up to summers in the sun, and the powder-coated aluminum alloy frame won't rust or break down. But the real star is the plush cushioned seat, a rarity in the category.

Best Wooden Beach Chair: Business and Pleasure Co Essential Two-Piece Chair

Best Wooden Beach Chair

Business and Pleasure Co Essential Two-Piece Chair


  • Luxe looks and construction
  • Built-in snap pocket for storage when swimming

  • No armrests
  • On the heavier side, so more likely to sink in loose sand

If you're small on space and don't mind spending a few extra bucks for style, B&P's hardwood and canvas Two Piece Chair is an ideal pick. Pack it flat for trips to the beach, or set up a few on the back patio or boat for relaxing in the sun. A convenient snap pocket on the back makes for the ideal spot to stash your small gear while swimming.

Best Backpack Beach Chair: REI Co-op Outward Low Lawn Chair

Best Backpack Beach Chair

REI Co-op Outward Low Lawn Chair


  • DWR coating repels water
  • When folded it can be carried as a backpack or by the carrying handle

  • Looks very much like a camp chair

Like any good REI outdoor gear, this chair is heavy-duty, thanks to a 300-denier ripstop nylon seat with DWR coating and coated aluminum frame. It's convenient, too. When not in use, the chair folds up and users can either carry it on their back like a backpack or by the carrying handle.

Best Inflatable Beach Chair: Chillbo Shwaggins

Best Inflatable Beach Chair

Chillbo Shwaggins


  • Unconventional and fun design — it's a conversation starter
  • Super comfy

  • You have to blow it up, which is sort of difficult
  • Difficult to get out of

If you can get past the name and embrace its unconventional style, this is a great beach chair. It takes two to three minutes to blow up, allowing you to either sit low like you would any beach chair, lay down or take it out into the water. Having used one for a recent beach trip I relate to you rolling your eyes at this, but you won’t get a lighter, more functional seat on the beach.

Best Classic Beach Chair: Lawn Chair USA Sea Island Beach Chair

Best Classic Beach Chair

Lawn Chair USA Sea Island Beach Chair


  • Iconic, retro design
  • Armrests don't get very hot
  • Weather-resistant

  • A bit stiff and uncomfortable for lounging

Lawn Chair USA’s many-colored folding seats harken back to decades past with their flexible, comfortable cross-webbing. A lower-set version of the brand's classic lawn chair, these American-made beach chairs also feature plastic armrests, which absorb less heat than wood or metal, and a lightweight aluminum frame.

Best Beach Chair with Canopy: Quik Chair Folding Camping Chair

Best Beach Chair with Canopy

Quik Chair Folding Camping Chair


  • Canopy provides lots of shade and is easy to operate
  • Mesh cupholder is flexible for different drink sizes

  • Looks decidedly dorky

There's something novel about a chair that has a canopy to block out the sun's harmful, and insanely hot, rays. Quik Chair's version of a canopy beach chair is cheap for what it offers — comfort, protection and convenience — and its low price means you can get one for everyone in the family.

Best Cabana Chair: The Inside Cabana Chair

Best Cabana Chair

The Inside Cabana Chair


  • Laidback, vacation-ready style
  • Countless colors and patterns to choose from

  • The frame is made of pine, which is not a water-resistant wood, and has no protective finish
  • Will fade in the sun

The Cabana Chair is a beach resort-style lounge chair, and it's one of the most classic beach chairs out there. You can machine wash the sling, so don't worry about rolling around in the sand and immediately hopping in the chair. There are three reclining options for your lounging preference, and it's all made by hand in the US. A word of warning, though: the frame is made of untreated pine, which is decidedly not water-friendly, so keep away from the shore.

Best Beach Chair for Camping: Snow Peak Low Beach Chair

Snow Peak
Best Beach Camping Chair

Snow Peak Low Beach Chair


  • Very high-quality build and materials
  • Feels and looks like a luxury product
  • Includes a carrying case

  • The design is just begging for a reclining function, but it doesn't have one
  • No cupholder

Snow Peak makes some of the best-designed and most durable camping gear anywhere, so it's no surprise the Japanese favorite also makes the ideal chair for beach camping. A tough canvas seat, bamboo armrests and a rugged aluminum frame ensure this chair will hold up to the rigors of seaside camping, while its telescoping folding design and included carrying case make it easily portable.

Best Portable Beach Chair: Cliq Chair

Best Portable Beach Chair

Cliq Chair


  • As quick and easy to open as an umbrella
  • Packs up impossibly small
  • Can support 300lbs

  • No armrests or cupholders
  • Tall for a beach chair

There's simply no chair out there that's easier to transport and set up than the Cliq chair. This ingenious little seat opens and closes like an umbrella thanks to the patented "Magic Hub" system of gears at its center, and when folded it's scarcely any bigger than a travel mug. It's also plenty sturdy too, with its aluminum frame holding up to 300 lbs.

Best Reclining Beach Chair: Nemo Stargaze Recliner Luxury

Best Reclining Beach Chair

Nemo Stargaze Recliner Luxury Chair


  • Reclines and swings as you move, making for a unique and relaxing experience
  • Works well on uneven surfaces, like sand
  • Mesh material repels moisture, bacteria and UV damage

  • Really pricy at retail — best to wait for sales

“Luxury” is in its name, and you’re paying a premium for it, too. The Stargaze Recliner features a free-swinging seat that reclines at the behest of your own body movements. The chair was designed to work on uneven ground, so it’s perfect for sandy beaches as much as it works on flat land. The Stargaze is like the perfect combination of a chair and a hammock, no trees necessary.

Best Tall Beach Chair: Coleman Portable Camping Quad Chair

Best Tall Beach Chair

Coleman Camping Chair with 4 Can Cooler


  • Built-in cooler holds four cans of beer or soda
  • Crazy affordable
  • Packs up easily

  • It's a camp chair, so it's not really intended for beach use
  • Somewhat overbuilt for a day at the beach

Amazon's number-one-selling camp chair is as classic as one can get with a beach chair. While it has all the features of a quality beach chair — roomy seat, easy setup, portability — it's the chair's standout feature that makes this a top pick. The chair has a built-in cooler pouch, which is big enough to hold up to four cans, so there's no constant need to run to the cooler. It is super tall, which traditionally isn't ideal for a beach chair, but those who are especially tall or have mobility issues will surely appreciate the added lift.

What to Look for in a Beach Chair

There are a lot of things to consider when shopping for a beach chair, from materials to height to features and more. Combining all of the following criteria in one chair adds up to the perfect beach chair in our mind, but you can also pick and choose the most important features to you and look for a chair that features those.

close up of a pillow on a beach chair at the beach
Cam Oden

Seat Height: You want your toes in the sand, not dangling above it. Opt for a chair with a low-slung seat shorter than a foot tall, which allows you to feel like you’re sitting in the sand while keeping your seat clean.

Fabric: A beach chair’s fabric must be rugged enough to hold up against sun, sand and seawater while still being comfortable enough to lounge in. Something like a polyester canvas weave makes for a chair that’s both soft and durable.

Portability: Most chairs are stationary, but beach chairs are an exception. An aluminum frame provides strength without too much weight, and some chairs have backpack straps in folded mode making for super easy transport.

Cupholders: It’s essential to stay hydrated while you’re sitting in the sun, and a built-in cupholder in the armrest makes doing so extra convenient.

Classic Look: Beach chairs come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, but it’s tough to beat the classic folding armchair look for lowkey style that doesn’t draw too much attention.

Recline: Having the option to recline not only invites more profound relaxation at the beach but also allows for easier suntanning — just be sure to use plenty of sunscreen.

Pillow: An integrated pillow is far from standard on your average beach chair, but on the perfect beach chair? It’s an absolute necessity for catching some seaside z’s.

Parts of this story appear in Gear Patrol Magazine. Subscribe today
Cam Oden
Johnny Brayson is Gear Patrol's associate home editor.
Tyler Chin is Gear Patrol’s Associate Staff Writer.
Hayley Helms is Gear Patrol's outdoors and fitness staff writer.
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