I love a beach trip, and there’s nothing better than having the exact right beach playlist ready to go when you get to the beach (or if you’re on your way). Here’s are the best beach songs and a free Spotify summer songs beach playlist you can use whenever you want!
This list includes the best beach party songs, reggae, summer love songs, classic beach songs, some of the best ever summer songs, and more! So whether you’re looking for a new song or the best old summer songs, you’re covered. I’ve included my own suggestions, plus I’ve asked other travel writers to chime in with their favorite songs about the beach.
Looking for ideas for beach trips? Check out the best beaches in Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Kansas, Arkansas, Missouri, and, of course, Oklahoma! And yes, lake beaches count and require beach songs as well as days in the gulf or if you’re going to an ocean or sea.
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The Top 30 Beach Songs
Here are fifty amazing beach songs. See below for fifty more and a free Spotify beach playlist that you can save and play on Spotify during your own trip to the beach!
Island in the Sun (Weezer)
No beach playlist is complete without the song “Island in the Sun” by Weezer. It was the second single from the band’s self-titled album released in 2001. As soon as you hear the opening electric guitar chords you’ll feel golden sand between your toes and an ocean breeze in your hair – at least metaphorically.
It’s the quintessential, carefree song that makes you shed all of your worries, and that’s all you want to feel on a beach vacation. There’s no surprise why it’s been featured in several commercials, television shows, and movie soundtracks – like Madagascar 3. Even better, it can be your beach vacation soundtrack. -Derek and Mike from Robe Trotting
Toes (Zac Brown Band)
For a feel-good, beach vacation country song you can’t miss “Toes” by Zac Brown Band. It is an easy-listening song with a catchy chorus about relaxing on a beach with your “toes in the water” and enjoying the day with a cold beer in hand.
“Toes” was written by lead singer Zac Brown and the band’s bass guitarist John Driskell Hopkin with help from Shawn Mullins and Wyatt Durrette. It was released in 2009 on Zac Brown Band’s album titled The Foundation. -Bailey from My Queenstown Diary
Some Beach (Blake Shelton)
Written by Rory Feek and Paul Overstreet and performed by Blake Shelton, “Some Beach” will put you in the perfect beach mood. In the song, Shelton is trying to escape a frustrating situation and imagines himself escaping to the beach.
The lyrics say: There’s a big umbrella casting shade over an empty chair / Palm trees are growing and warm breezes blowing / I picture myself right there / On some beach, somewhere.
This song is great because it captures what a perfect day by the beach is — relaxing and sunny. -Disha from Disha Discovers
Three Little Birds (Bob Marley and the Wailers)
The 1977 song “Three Little Birds” by Bob Marley and the Wailers is one of the band’s most popular songs. It was covered by numerous artists including Maroon 5, Imagine Dragons, and Robbie Williams.
The song is very positive and empowering. It tells its listener not to worry about a thing because everything will be alright. Both its message and reggae style make it one of these perfect songs for a beach vacation. -Laure from Laure Wanders
Walking on Sunshine (Katrina and the Waves)
“Walking on Sunshine” was released in 1985 on the band’s US debut album by the same name and is now one of the best classic summer songs. Kimberley Rew, the founder of the band, wrote the song. Many consider the group a one-hit-wonder, but in the UK they had a second hit.
The title makes you think of summer but the song is actually about the excitement of waiting for someone you love to visit you. It was originally considered a ballad but Katrina, the lead singer, decided to belt out the lyrics so instead made it into the irresistible feel-good beach vacation song we know today. -Kristin from Adventures with Ensuite
La Isla Bonita (Madonna)
This song is such a popular beach song (one of my faves) that it was submitted twice! Don’t leave it off your own playlist!
Often hailed as one of the top songs ever recorded by the 1980’s music icon, “La Isla Bonita” was Madonna’s eleventh consecutive song to reach the top five on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
Written and recorded by Madonna in 1986, and released on the True Blue album in 1987, the song is believed by many to be about the island of Ambergris Caye, Belize, home to the popular beach town of San Pedro, which is mentioned by name in the song. Although Madonna has since said she did not visit the Belizean island before she wrote the song, it remains one of the best beach songs of all time. -Melissa from Parenthood and Passports
Madonna La Isla Bonita meaning ‘The Beautiful Island’ is a popular beach song recorded by the popular singer Madonna for her third song album, True Blue. The song was introduced in 1986 and written by Patrick Leonard.
There are pretty good and famous covers of this song like the cover by Sheila G. The song got popular in a short span as Madonna is everybody’s favorite and it reminds you of the best beaches in Southern Spain. It was the first song of Madonna with Latin influences and a combination of artificial and real drumming. -Paulina from Visit Southern Spain
Sittin’ on the Dock of the Bay (Otis Redding)
This quintessential beach song was actually recorded in Memphis and is an ode though he wrote it in California, a much more natural place to write one of the best songs about looking out into the water!
Unfortunately, Redding was in a plane crash just a few days after recording and he did not survive to see the song’s success.
California Gurls (Katy Perry)
One of my favorite summer songs of all time, “California Gurls” is a fun, peppy, and energetic song which became an instant hit. It is listed in the top thirty summer songs of all time by Billboard. The funky lyrics will put you in a good mood for a fun and sunny beach day.
It was sung by Katie Perry ft Snoop Dogg for her Teenage Dream album. She is a hit pop sensation and is famous amongst teens and adults alike.
It has been covered by many famous song makers like James Blunt (Billboard) and Tyler Ward. Interestingly Eskimo Callboy did a metallic version of the song. -Ankita from My Travelling Stilettos
The Girl from Ipanema (Peri Ribeiro)
The Girl from Ipanema is a world-famous Brazilian jazz song originally performed by Peri Ribeiro although the version by Stan Getz gained international fame in the 1960s. This is the original beach soundtrack as the name suggests.
Ipanema is of course one of the most famous beaches in the world located in Rio de Janeiro. Multiple famous artists have covered the Girl from Ipanema such as Frank Sinatra, Amy Winehouse, and Joao Gilberto. -Victoria from Guide Your Travel
Wipe Out (The Surfaris)
You may not have heard of this song, but you’ve definitely heard the song itself! It’s used in countless surf movies and surfing scenes. The haunting instrumental have turned into the signature surf track and is yet to be rivaled. This song was one of the best songs of the summer before we even knew that was its own music category!
Beach in Hawaii (Ziggy Marley)
One of the best beach songs of all time, nothing screams a beach vacation song more than “Beach in Hawaii” by Ziggy Marley. This song makes you want to buy a one-way ticket, put on your best bikini, and get some of the best souvenirs that money can’t buy..tan lines.
Ziggy Marley is singing about his father, the infamous Bob Marley, who suddenly died when Ziggy was 12. Many can relate to the lyrics if you’ve lost someone close and find peace by staring into the ocean.
Book that ticket, grab a mai tai and let your worries slip away on one of the beautiful beaches in Hawaii. -Jess from I’m Jess Traveling
Follow the Sun (Xavier Rudd)
What’s a better beach vacation song than one that inspires you to follow the sun and cherish the moment? That’s right, there is none!
And that is exactly what makes “Follow the Sun”, a song written, sung, and produced by the Australian artist Xavier Rudd, such a great beach song. The original is a chilled guitar and harmonica indie/folk/blues kind of song. Some cool covers include the slightly more upbeat version by Time Square and the slower one by Mason Lloyde. -Lara from The Best Travel Gifts
Jammil, a Brazilian singer, really translates the beach vacation feeling in this upbeat song with simple lyrics.
Praieiro (Portuguese for “from the beach”) is a 2005 hit that is played on the beautiful Brazilian beaches every summer and during carnival because of its cool vibes.
While the song has had multiple covers over the years, Jammil is still the singer worth adding to your Spotify list. -Bruna from I Heart Brazil
Soak up the Sun (Sheryl Crow)
“Soak up the Sun” by Sheryl Crow sounds like the perfect beach vacation song, but it could also be an everyday reminder to focus on the positive in life. Her co-writer, Jeff Trott, actually came up with the idea for the song on a flight from rainy Portland to sunny New York.
The song was the first single from Crow’s C’mon C’mon album in 2002 and reached the top of the Billboard charts. The video was shot on the North Shore of Oahu. -Anisa from Norfolk Local Guide
Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World (Israel Kamakawiwo’ole)
One of the best Hawaiian songs for the beach is “Somewhere Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World” by the one and only Israel Kamakawiwo’ole. He recorded this iconic medley in just one take and it’s been featured in countless movies and TV shows over the past 30 years.
It’s so popular that the official YouTube video for this song just hit 1 billion views. It’s a simple song with just vocals and a ukulele and that’s what makes it so incredible. -Marcie from Hawaii Travel with Kids
Voyage, Voyage (Desireless)
“Voyage, Voyage” by Desireless is one of the favorite songs in France for a beach vacation. Released in the 80s, the lyrics talk about the singer’s need of escaping from her everyday life, and amongst all the destinations she mentions, there’s of course the ocean and exotic islands.
The song encourages choosing a beach or tropical island or a jungle over a city.
“Voyage, Voyage” was a popular song in the 80s, especially when summertime was around the corner! It makes me want to leave my daily life in Paris to any of the beaches on the French Riviera. -Elisa from France Bucket List
Waves (Mr. Probz)
Mr. Probz’s 2013 song is the perfect soundtrack for a laid-back beach vacation where you want to relax and enjoy watching the waves come and go rather than partying and getting acquainted with the local bars.
Despite it being a sad, loving song, the reference to the beach and waves under the slow beat make it perfect for enjoying a relaxing vacation at the coast. -Bruna from Roaming the USA
Calma (Pedro Capó)
“Calma” from Pedro Capó is the ultimate song in Latin American countries when going to the beach. Just look at the lyrics, add a chilled-out rhythm, and you know why. Translated into English it sounds like:
Let’s go to the beach, to heal your soul
Close your computer, open a beer
The entire Caribbean sea …
Even though the song is from a Puerto Rican singer, it got very famous here in the Dominican Republic. It is perfect if you head to one of the amazing beaches in Punta Cana or other parts of the country.
If you see a group of friends with some speakers in the Dominican Republic, you can be sure that this song is played a couple of times during the day … and an ice-cold beer to open is never far away. -Chris from Punta Cana Travel Blog
Take Me Home, Country Roads (Israel Kamakawiwo’ole/Iz)
You’ll be ready to nestle your toes into warm sand and dive under salty waves every time this song comes on! Add Iz’s rendition of John Denver’s classic, “Take Me Home, Country Roads” to your beach vacation playlist.
It is the perfect beach song because it evokes the very best of island living. You can feel his love of the people and the place, Makaha (where he actually lived). The song was released in 1993 on his first solo album after leaving the Makaha Sons.
Twenty-eight years later, Facing Future remains the best-selling album by a Hawaiian artist of all time. -Erica Forrest from Tripscholars
Rainbow (Jack Johnson and G. Love)
This wake-up-by-the-beach-in-bliss musical collaboration comes to us from the soundtrack of Thicker than Water, a 2000 surf documentary directed by Jack Johnson himself. The documentary covers a series of surfing trips to the likes of Australia, Indonesia, Hawaii, India, and Ireland.
With its acoustic strums, harmonized vocals of Johnson & Love, divine references, melodica infusions, and uplifting, nature-inspired lyrics, this is singer-songwriter beach music at its best. Humming along to this one is impossible to resist. -Nick from Spiritual Travels
Margaritaville (Jimmy Buffett)
There’s a beach song that’s so famous there’s a chain of restaurants and resorts named after it? You bet! “Margaritaville” by Jimmy Buffett is the perfect song for a laid-back day at the beach with lyrics and a melody that just makes you want to soak up the sun with a drink in your hand.
Written back in 1977 by Buffett, Margaritaville has been his highest-charting single and the defining song for his music and career. It’s been covered by other artists, like country singer Alan Jackson, and there have been a number of parodies made over time. However, nothing compares to the original which was inducted into the 2016 Grammy Hall of Fame for its cultural and historic significance. -Julia from The Cure for Curiosity
Jamming (Bob Marley)
“Jamming” by reggae superstar Bob Marley was originally released in the Bob Marley and the Wailers’ 1977 album Exodus and reappeared on the album Legend. The song was re-released 10 years later after Bob Marley’s passing as a tribute.
The word “jamming” in Jamacia means getting together or a celebration. The song “Jamming” is still popular 40 years later and can be heard at many beach bars. Jamming is the perfect beach song due to its instantly recognisable notes and laid back beach vibe. It’s one of the best beach songs of all time. -Lori from Fitz5 on the Go
Escape [the Pina Colada Song] (Rupert Holmes)
For vibes of beautiful beaches, sitting on a sunbed sipping on a, well, Pina Colada, “Escape” by Rupert Holmes (also known as the Pina Colada Song), is a great choice of music. The song was both written and recorded by the British-born American singer for his album Partners in Crime and it was released in 1979. It has since become one of the best songs for the summer of all time.
Since its release, it rapidly rose to popularity and has even featured in several modern films including Guardians of the Galaxy, Shrek, and Grown Ups. The seriously catchy and chilled out beat is the perfect beach vacation song to add to your playlist. For many, this is considered one of the best vacation songs ever. -Alice from Adventures of Alice
Summertime (DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince / Will Smith)
“Summertime” is a song by American hip-hop duo DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince (Will Smith). Since its release in 1991, it has remained one of the ultimate summer jams for having the best beach vacation.
The song includes a sample of Kool & the Gang’s “Summer Madness,” and has a catchy chorus and clever wordplay with a funky free-and-easy beat. Thirty years after its release, it’ll still make your head bob as you proudly sing along, no matter your age. This timeless song is still one of hip-hop’s best summer celebrations. –Debbie from WorldAdventurists.com
Cake by the Ocean (DNCE)
If you are a Game of Thrones fan, then you surely know Sophie Turner and if you know her then you surely know her beau Joe Jonas. “Cake by the Ocean” is one of the peppiest songs by his band DNCE. The song reminds one of sand, sea, and beachy summer days. This lyrically funky song is wacky and personifies the singer’s personality.
Interestingly the song has been covered by a 15 year old girl in the acoustic version. Go check it out on First to Eleven. -Jes from Tourist to Travellers
Cool Down (Kolohe Kai)
Cool Down is a reggae pop song from a Hawaiian musical group, Kolohe Kai. This energetic and catchy song is all about cooling off, catching surf, and having fun under the sun.
Many artists have sung about good times at the beach, but no one does it like Kolohe Kai (which translates to “rascals in the water”). Their artistic sensibilities are the result of their surfer identity. They composed songs during high school, hence the energetic and youthful spirit in their melodies.
Their songs are mostly about their love for the ocean, and Cool Down is one of the best that really caught every beach-lovers’ hearts. -Dea Mariano from Jea Wanders
Sound of Sunshine (Michael Franti & Spearhead)
Written by Michael Franti, Jason Bowman, and Carl Young in 2010, “Sound of Sunshine” is the ultimate beach song with lyrics referencing the beach, sunshine, waves, and the smell of sunscreen.
The music video was filmed in Venice Beach in California, which makes a perfect background for this song. Plus, it’s been featured in a few movies that take place at the beach like Soul Surfer! “Sound of Sunshine” is sure to put you in a great mood and set the sunny tone for any beach day or beach getaway. -Alanna from Periodic Adventures
Kokomo (The Beach Boys)
It may be a fictional island off the Florida Keys, but the name “Kokomo” conjures up thoughts of a tropical paradise of sun, sand, and blue ocean waves. The hit song performed by the Beach Boys was released in 1988 and went to the top of the charts grabbing the number one spot in the United States and Australia.
Written by John Phillips, Scott McKenzie, Mike Love and Terry Melcher, “Kokomo” has a relaxing island rhythm and lyrics about “bodies in the sand, tropical drink melting in your hand” often leave listeners longing for a sunny beach getaway. -Deanne from Scenic and Savvy
All Summer Long (Kid Rock)
“All Summer Long” is an awesome summer song performed by Kid Rock. It was released in 2008 and was written by eight people including Robert Ritchie AKA Kid Rock, the songwriters of “Werewolves of London” and “Sweet Home Alabama” as well as Matthew Shafer AKA Uncle Kracker.
The song talks about the summer of 1989 hanging out with friends on the shores of the lake and dancing and singing around a beach bonfire at nighttime. The song also mentions how the days were endless and evokes a sense of longing for hot carefree summers spent at the beach. This is a great song if you’re looking for rock songs about summer -Steph from Book It Let’s Go!
Keep Your Head Up (Ben Howard)
‘Keep your head up, keep your heart strong’, is a beautiful line from a wonderful song. A song about strength, love and being lost.
The ultimate beach song by Ben Howards’ ‘Keep your head up’ from his first album Every Kingdom. A chilled out song, to listen to whilst you’re laying on the beach, soaking up the sun and remembering how good life is.
As Ben beautifully plays the guitar as his raw acoustic style voice takes you to another level of relaxation. This has to be your new go to song on the beach. -Charlotte from Bursting My Bubbles
Pocketful of Sunshine (Natasha Bedingfield)
“Pocketful of Sunshine” is an uplifting and catchy song performed by Natasha Bedingfield, an English singer-songwriter. She actually co-wrote the song with two other songwriters: Danielle Brisebois and John Shanks. There are multiple covers of this song, including ones by Kidz Bop Kids and Vitamin String Quartet. So if you’re looking for kid summer songs, this might be exactly what you need!
This is a great singalong song, and it’s hard to not be in a good mood when you’re listening to it. If you’re not already at the beach basking under the sun, it’ll also make you want to find the nearest beach and do just that. Its iconic lyric — “I got a pocketful of sunshine” — also makes a great beach caption for Instagram! -Jiayi from The Diary of a Nomad
The Rest the Best Beach Songs for Your Summer Songs Beach Playlist
Of course, the top thirty songs won’t get you through an entire beach day! Here’s the rest of the full 101 songs about summer. Scroll to the bottom to listen to these good summer tunes on Spotify!
Under the Boardwalk (The Drifters)
The Boys of Summer (Don Henley)
Good Vibrations (The Beach Boys)
Summertime (Stick Figure, Citizen Cope)
Rockaway Beach (Ramones)
No Shirt, No Shoes, No Problem (Kenny Chesney)
Steal My Sunshine (LEN)
Surf City (Jan & Dean)
I Took a Pill in Ibiza – Seeb Remix (Mike Pozner)
Bongo Bong (Manu Chao)
Sunny Hours (Long Beach Dub Allstarts and will.i.am)
What I Got (Sublime)
Wear Sunscreen (Peach Pyramid)
Itsy Bitshy Teeny Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini (Brian Hyland)
When the Sun Goes Down (Kenny Chesney)
Beachin’ (Jake Owen)
Summer Nights (John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John)
Surfin’ USA (The Beach Boys)
Cruel Summer (Bananarama)
Miami (Will Smith)
I Like It (Cardi B, Bad Bunny, and J Balvin)
In the Summertime
Brown Eyed Girl (Van Morrison)
Doin’ Time (Sublime)
Coconut Tree (Kenny Chesney and Willie Nelson)
Boat Drinks (Jimmy Buffet)
Island Song (Zac Brown Band)
Two Pina Coladas (Brooks Jefferson)
Surfin’ Safari (The Beach Boys)
Tequila (The Sufaris)
One Love (Bob Marley and the Wailers)
Key West Time (Jesse Rice)
Good Day Sunshine (The Beatles)
I Can See Clearly Now (Johnny Nash)
Hot Fun in the Summertime (Sly & the Family Stone)
Put the Lime in the Coconut (Red Tracey)
Heaven (Los Lonely Boys)
Aloha Friday (Kimo Kahoano)
Sangria Wine (Jerry Jeff Walker)
How Bizarre (OMC)
Smooth (Carlos Santana and Rob Thomas)
Summertime, Summertime (The Jamies)
Stir it Up (Bob Marley and the Wailers)
Summer in the City (The Lovin’ Spoonful)
Octopus’s Garden (The Beatles)
The River of Dreams (Billy Joel)
Hook (Blues Traveler)
Lookin’ Out My Back Door (Credence Clearwater Revival)
Wild Night (Van Morrison)
If You Wanna Be Happy (Jimmy Soul)
Take it Easy (Jackson Browne)
Give a Little Love (Ziggy Marley & the Melody Makers)
Tiny Bubbles (Don Ho)
Shambala (Three Dog Night)
Lazy Afternoon (Rebelution)
Island Time (Bumpin’ Uglies)
I Go to Rio (Pablo Cruise)
Oh La La (Faces)
Pineapple Princess (Annette Funicello)
Amarula Sun (Mac McAnally and Tim Montana)
The Tide is High (Blondie)
Our Last Summer (ABBA)
Lahaina (Loggins & Messina)
Me Gusta (Shakira)
Beyond the Sea (Bobby Darin)
Gulf Coast Girl (Caroline Jones)
Black Sea Vacation (Earl Gray)
Tide Turns (Phish)
Beach Baby (First Class)
Summertime Blues (Eddie Cochran)
Brandy [You’re a Fine Girl] (Looking Glass)
Ultimate Summer Songs Beach Playlist on Spotify
Don’t Forget About Travel Insurance!
Heading out on the road?
Before you leave for your trip make sure you have a valid Travel Insurance Policy because accidents happen on the road. I have used World Nomads when I travel since 2016, and I happily recommend them.
Getting coverage is important whenever you’re more than a hundred miles from home in case of an accident, sickness, theft, etc.
Get a travel insurance quote for your trip here.
Pin this Summer Songs Playlist So You Can Play These Beach Songs on Your Travels!
Stephanie is a born-and-bred Oklahoma mom and travel expert who has been to over fifty countries. After living in Eastern Europe for four years, she has moved with her family back to Oklahoma to write about her favorite places growing up: Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, & Route 66!