Is this the summer of the electric bike? If not, I am hereby naming it so. Now more than ever, travelers should want to own one of these convenient, stylish rides, because they not only get you from Point A to Point B (within reasonable distance) but they’ll get you there quicker and with a little wind in your hair. And if you want to add a little personality and pizazz to the trip, the Vanpowers UrbanGlide Electric Bike is the way to do it.
What I really like about this brand and concept, aside from the fun colors, is how the trio of models is based on rider height. There’s a decent risk that comes with ordering an e-bike online, because it might be a little smaller or bigger than what you want, and returning it is a hassle unlike any other. So, you can simply peruse the Standard, Pro, and Ultra bikes by height and then it’s just a matter of fighting the urge to go with the subtle Gunmetal Blue (a fine choice, of course) over the far more fun Remy Green and Lava Red.
Beyond that, it’s just a matter of finding what else you need for this summer of fun.
Virgo Electric Bike Helmet
The first thing I purchased after acquiring several awesome electric bikes was a durable, dependable helmet. What I didn’t expect was how difficult it would be to choose a style somewhere in between standard bicycle and full-on motorcycle. After all, I need something to protect my noggin at slightly higher speeds and on longer rides, but I don’t need a helmet that will be a pain to carry around if I’m taking the e-bike for coffee or a morning session of answering emails at lakeside.
Along comes Virgo. My first impression of this Kickstarter effort that has already blown away its goal is that it reminds me of the old Lego spaceman helmet. But that chin bar is just one of the features that makes this such a safe choice, as I also love the simple visor for keeping bugs out of your eyes and especially the light on the back of the helmet. You can’t ever have too many ways to let people know you’re cruising.
Isle Pioneer Pro Stand-Up Paddleboard
What’s better than an inflatable stand-up paddleboard that packs easily for road trips to the lake? One that also conveniently converts into a kayak for those casual fishing excursions when all a person wants is a little me, myself, and I on the open water. The Isle Pioneer Pro Stand-Up Paddleboard comes in three sizes and two stylish, tropical color patterns so they’re a fantastic combo of flashy and fun.
BOTE Hangout Water Hammock
When it comes to a lake trip, some people want to explore while others want to chillax. Both are exception choices, and few brands deliver for each type of traveler like BOTE, which also offers an exceptional variety of inflatable paddleboards and kayaks. But I’m feeling lazy right now, so I just want to lounge, and there’s nothing I’d rather do that on than the BOTE Hangout Water Hammock.
Available in two sizes, the smaller version is ideal for the lone lounger or the couple that floats together, while the larger version is fantastic for those recreational squad goals. No matter the need, the design is as durable as it is convenient, and it’s sure to be a hit at your preferred water spot.
Little Tykes Cozy Coup
Most parents likely instantly recognize the classic red and yellow design of the Little Tikes car that allows toddlers to use their Flintstones feet up and down the driveway. But that’s a relic compared to the new hotness: the Little Tykes Cozy Coup, a reimagined version that allows children to get used to the pool in ultimate style.
The best part is the little motor that safely moves kiddos around the pool, so they can feel like the world’s youngest boat captains, all while parents continue to relax while knowing nothing could possibly stop this fun.
PoolCandy Jet Runner
Toddlers don’t get to have all the fun. Bigger kids can get in on the motorized action with the PoolCandy Jet Runner, which is basically an inflatable jet ski for beginners. Children up to 100 lbs. will look and feel cool as mom’s cucumber marg as they zip around the pool with the help of the battery-powered motor that is simple to control and safely position beneath the vessel.
Just be warned that this is the gateway toy to a lifetime of zooming around lakes on the real deal.
And let’s not leave the parents out of the fun, ok? The PoolCandy SplashRunner is about as good as it gets when it comes to a floating lounger, but sometimes we need a little boost when going from side of the pool to the other for a scoop of guacamole or to grab a refill on those cucumber margs. The 66-watt motor and controls will help maneuver this bad boy with ease.
For extra fun, buy a foghorn so people know to get out of the way.
Pure Outdoor Portable Refrigerator
If I was ranking my least favorite things about hosting friends and family for pool parties, having to get just the right amount of ice would be near the top of the list, right below sharing my favorite mezcal with other people. Fortunately, I took the ice part out of the equation when I acquired the Pure Outdoor 25L Portable Refrigerator, which not only keeps plenty of beverages and snacks cool, but it does so quickly.
That means when you want to throw together a little soiree on a moment’s notice, it’s as simple as plugging it in and waiting for the White Claws and Trader Joe’s cheese pack to get just right for everyone.
Big Dill Pickleball Co. Superstar Set
Have you heard? Pickleball is pretty much the hottest vacation sport on the planet. Resorts across the U.S., Caribbean, and Mexico are all building their own pickleball arenas, because this game is ideal for anyone who wants to add some fitness to the itinerary while making it fun for the whole family.
As such, there’s no better way to start the quest for domination than with the Big Dill Pickleball Co. Superstar Set, which includes four paddles and balls so the crew can practice in the backyard before taking the newfound skills and intensity to a tropical resort. Massive trophy not included.
Aloha Collection Day Tripper
When you’re not hosting a pool party, you should be finding one to attend, which means you’ll need to pack essential gear in a way that won’t burden you. Start with the stylish choice: Aloha Collection’s creative variety of Day Tripper bags. Founded by native Hawaiian women, this company has developed some truly awesome accessories for a variety of occasions, including hip packs, drink “coldies,” and even miniature Bluetooth speakers for when you need to take DJing into your own hands.
But the versatile Day Tripper is a great first choice, because it can go practically anywhere—the beach, on a plane, to the gym, etc.—and its durable design means it’ll handle the elements, while also being packable in case you need to get everything into one suitcase for the return trip.
MOOV Convertible Catalyst Laptop Bag
Planning to do a little work at poolside this summer? Pro tip: don’t forget to turn your video off on Zoom calls, but also pick the right bag for when you’re moving your office to a resort or rental home. The MOOV Convertible Catalyst Laptop Bag is the bee’s knees when it comes to organization, as the clever design includes clear pockets for all your work supplies, a holder for a water bottle or tumbler, and even a USB charger.
But what I really love about this bag is how all the perks combine to make it the Voltron of portable workspaces. Just unzip the front and it folds down to a desk organizer that your laptop can sit on and remain secure when people splash or drink condensation drips like crazy.
Academy Sports + Outdoors Retro Collection
Okay, maybe I could have started with the basics, because that’s exactly what Academy Sports has rolled out for the 4th of July and your general beach and pool needs. This patriotic collection includes everything from tank tops and a bucket hat to a very affordable portable folding chair and an Igloo cooler for keeping the Capri Suns and White Claws ice-cold for the entire crew.
Costa del Mar Sullivan Sunglasses
If there’s a fact you can set your watch to, it’s that you can never go wrong with Costa del Mar’s sunglasses. From deep sea fishing excursions to lounging by the resort pool, there is truly a style for every kind of traveler, and what makes them so exceptional is that you can also rely on them to take some bumps and survive the elements no matter which destination you choose.
The latest style that found an instant spot in my sunglasses organizer is the Sullivan, which is a classic look with a hint of sophistication. In fact, it’s an all-for-one design that will look as good on the catamaran as it will in a 5-star restaurant. And the rose gradient polarized glass is especially great for those dining options that have the best sunset views.
Duvin Design Co. Kids Collection
One of the most creative brands in clothing has finally developed some fashionable swim gear for our smaller travelers. If you’re familiar with Duvin Design Co.’s funky styles—including the exceptional cabana sets—then you know they’re nothing short of head-turners when you’re strolling around the resort pool, searching for the perfect loungers. Now, kids will have a blast matching parents with the debut of swim trunks ranging from 2T through 9/10 and boasting loud, creative looks.
Hydros Water Filter Bottle and Pitcher
You shouldn’t need a reminder to stay hydrated in the blazing days ahead, but the easiest way to always remain refreshed is by keeping a water bottle handy. And if you’re always out and about, the ideal choice is the Hydros 20 oz Water Filter Bottle, which not only features and easy to open rocker cap, but it also has the filter for when the water source might raise an eyebrow.
Entertaining guests and want to limit your plastic usage? Hydros has the 64 oz. Glass Water Filter Pitcher for convenience and style. Throw a few lemon, orange, or cucumber slices for a little flavor and spend the day listening to your favorite summer hits without having to move too much for refills.
After the party, when there’s no chance for an afterparty, you’re going to want to clean as quickly as possible. Busting out the leaf blower might be a bit too extreme, so if you have a smaller mess but still want to handle it with the quickest of ease, the ZoomBroom Tornado is the blower that will do the trick. I’ve used mine for clean-up duties several times, and it is especially great for when you have kids that tend to drop a lot of tiny pieces of food. Blow it all into the corner, sweep it into a trash bag, and you’re good to get back to lounging.
But I also love the Tornado for its portability, and that makes it a must-have for campers with RVs and tents that are dirty from all the hiking. Heck, golfers can even use it to clear leaves from the green, but then they’ll have to blame something else when they three-putt anyway.