Best Cool Bag Rucksacks

Best Rucksack Cool Bags For 2020

Whether you’re picnicing at the beach or just grabbing lunch at work your food and drinks will be the perfect temp with our best rucksack cool bags!

These versatile bags can also be used for camping trips and bringing home frozen goods from the supermarket. People really love them because you don’t have to lug a bulky coolbox and a backpack on your picnic.

Here’s my shortlist of the best rucksack cool bags on the market in 2020. Scroll down for our in-depth reviews and buyers guides!

When looking for a great cooler rucksack I always look at the following criteria to make sure I buy the Best Cool Bag Rucksack:

  • Cooling Time
  • Size & Weight
  • Durability
  • Portability
  • Storage Capacity
  • Accessories

Go Pro with your Coolbag – 24 hr cooling, floats & keeps everything dry!  

This cool american brand is now available in the UK!  We used these when we visited friends in Utah and my hubby just loved the comfy strapping and aircold back panel (no more back sweat!

This is an IPP66 rated 100% waterproof backpack (when correctly rolled and sealed at the top).  The foam insulating core (plus inflatable outer shell) keep contents cool for up to 24 hours.  We tried in in 35 deg weather and it worked a treat.

This fun cooler has no zips to jam and break, is easy to clean and packs down into a bag when air valve is released.  Its made for very tough PVC tarpaulin so you can take it on camping and outdoor sporting trips too.  

Unlike other cooler backpacks this doesn’t have any extra handy pockets for even a phone. There is also no separate internal compartments and the opening in the 15L & 20L models we found tight to get all our food etc in.   There are 6 d rings and a elasticated net on the back to add attachments but its limited.

That said this backpack doubles as a waterproof bag and a dry bag!  So if you are a picnic goer who, like us is also a camping nut, then this bag could be perfect for multiple activities. Check the latest price here.

Pros

  • Insulated core keeps everything cool for upto 24 hours
  • Can be flattened for storage
  • Cool & dry bag in one
  • Great padded straps & airflow back panel (stops sweaty backs!)
  • Bottle opener with a carabineer/ storage bag

Cons

  • Had to buy 40L pack as 20L opening very narrow
  • No extra pockets for additional items

PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS OF THE 40L DRY ICE INSULATED COOL BAG RUCKSACK:

  • Insulating foam core to keep drinks cold for up to 24 hours.
  • IP66 Rated 100% waterproof backpack. 
  • No zips to jam or break. 
  • Air Valve for flat pack storage and to increase insulation. Elasticated front webbing. 
  • Floats when correctly sealed even when fully packed. 
  • Simple roll-top sealing system. 
  • Easy to clean multilayered tough PVC tarpaulin. 
  • 6 x Front D-rings for multiple attachments. 
  • Padded backpack straps with sternum strap. Padded air-flow back panel

Cool Bag Backpack Dimensions: 30 x 7 x 56 cm

Hard wearing, quality and long lasting cooler backpack from Alpine Trek/ Bergfreunde

The Primus Coolbag Backpack is an insulated backpack for all your favorite camping food. Fill it with ice or use the Ice Pack to keep your food or beverage cold.
 
The roll-top opening makes it easy to close and open, a buckle (with a handy integrated bottle-opener) secures the content in the bag.  I love roll tops because you can cram so much more in them and then when you have eaten and drank everything compact them down again!
 
Outer fabric in nylon makes the backpack rugged and durable. The inside lining is made of waterproof PU-coated polyester, which can be turned inside out for easy cleaning.
 
Insulation in EVA foam keeps the inside of the backpack cold while providing padding for your back and makes it comfortable to wear.  I also use this cool bag backpack with the Primus Campfire Ice Packs for overnight camps and everything is cold 24 hours plus.
 
The backpack is equipped with adjustable 30 mm shoulder straps for comfortable carrying. A smaller pocket will fit your kitchen accessories or hold your old bottle caps.
 
The 22 L pack easily holds enough food for you and your friends (its perfect for an average 4-6 person family!

It has space for 5 x 6 cans (so 30 cans capacity) or 2 bottles or wine and 2 bottles of water!  Honestly this is the perfect companion for your outdoor picnic or beach adventures.  I love this one heaps because as an Alpine Trek Product i know it will last for years!

Want to make it a great cooler picnic backpack then add in a picnic set as well and maybe an insulated wine bottle holder.

Flasks can also be bought here from Alpine Trek or Amazon.

 

Pros

  • Roll Top Closing = More Space
  • WATER PROOF & FLOATS!
  • Bottle opener buckle intergrated!
  • Easy to clean removable inner
  • Adjustable backpack straps
  • Will LAST YEARS!

Cons

  • Only one extra pocket
  • Straps arent padded

PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS OF THE TOURIT LIGHTWEIGHT COOLER BACKPACK:

  • Lightweight yet Durable: Made of leak resistant, durable fabric,
  • Cooling performance: High-Density Insulation material inside of the insulated backpacks to keep food warm or cool for 10 hours (times vary will vary).
  • use primus campfire ice packs to increase cooler bag  potential (ie for overnight campes etc!)
  • Leak Resistant: A thick layer of insulation cotton Eco-Friendly materials inside of the large lunch cooler backpack bag, to ensure the frozen snacks or drink not leak after melting.
  • Extra Handy Pocket on front for phone, Keys & wallet
  • Dimension: 30 cm x 20cm x 45cm , can hold at least 30 cans  despite only being 22L! 
  • The insulated backpack cooler is a perfect gear for lunches, picnics, road/ beach trips, hiking, camping, fishing, cycling, hunting.
  • tough, rugged, easy to carry and fill and packs down to nothing when empty to carry in rucksack or cool box

COOL BAG RUCKSACK DIMENSIONS45CM X 30CM X 20CM (L X W X H)

COOL BAG RUCKSACK WEIGHT: 700g

This ‘cool’ bag rucksack is perfect for  beach picnics and holds 30 cans of drink!

If you are new to picnicking, hiking or camping out then the Tourit 25L Cooler Backpack is one of the best lightweight cool bag rucksacks on the market.  All the extra pockets are perfect for adding in picnic plates, cups etc and phone, keys etc.  Its a really well thought out family cooler bag.

This TOURIT cool bag backpack is truly multifunctional.  It can be a cooling backpack, insulated travel backpack, lunch daypack, sport bag, camping backpack, hiking backpack and school backpack.

Personally I just LOVE how much room there is in this cooler backpack for food, picnic set and spare clothes etc for a beach day or hike.  It’s like a tardis bag.  I thought getting one of these i would still need another bag for picnic plates etc but we dont.  My friends have used it for a four adult picnic and said its very roomy as well – including beer in it!

If you are looking for a fun gift for someone then this could be a perfect idea.  Want to make it an extra special gift the add in a picnic set as well and maybe an insulated wine bottle.

Pros

  • Lightweight - 500G
  • Loads of pockets for storage - phone, camera, clothing, picnicwear plus food
  • Blanket holder on base
  • Leak resistant inner & waterproof outer shell
  • Comfy padded adjutable straps
  • Price is great

Cons

  • Drink holders on side too shallow
  • Only one large insulated compartment, cant split hot and cold
  • Stuff only stays cool about 8 hours unless using ice packs to get a max 16 hours

PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS OF THE TOURIT LIGHTWEIGHT COOLER BACKPACK:

  • Lightweight yet Durable: Made of leak resistant, durable fabric,
  • Cooling performance: High-Density Insulation material inside of the insulated backpacks to keep food warm or cool for 10 hours (numbers will vary).
  • Leak Resistant: A thick layer of insulation cotton Eco-Friendly materials inside of the large lunch cooler backpack bag, to ensure the frozen snacks or drink not leak after melting.
  • Multiple Pockets: 1 main roomy storage compartment, 2 side mesh pockets, 2 large front zipper pocket, one mesh pocket on the strap and the webbing on the front; 
  • Dimension: 17.7″ x 13.0″ x 7.5″ / , can hold at least 28 cans so thats about 28L. 
  • The insulated backpack cooler is a perfect gear for lunches, picnics, road/ beach trips, hiking, camping, fishing, cycling, hunting.
  • For 30 days after the date of purchase, return your undamaged product and receive a full refund for ANY reason. For 24 months after the date of purchase, we take care of all quality-related issues with a REPLACEMENT OR FULL REFUND. Reminder: Be sure to use your product as directed. 

COOL BAG RUCKSACK DIMENSIONS45CM X 33CM X 19CM (L X W X H)

COOL BAG RUCKSACK WEIGHT: 500G

Horizontal closings over traditional vertical openings promise a watertight cooler!

This Pengda 30L Cool Bag Rucksack bag is really well engineered to be cool and waterproof and stand up like a traditional cooler box would.  With its horizontal openings and not having to try and balance it up to keep contents from eating the mud or sand!

There is room for 4 bottles of wine in the side pockets and upto 24 cans of beer, plus 16 juice boxes and 8 cans on mixer.  With its multi functional built in bottle opener I think this is designed very much as a mobile drinks fridge.  Its marketed this way as well however its well padded straps and air-padded back mean it’s perfect for long hikes and dining out too.

The pouch on the top is handy for maps, snacks etc and the is even a mess phone pouch.  The bak is bulky looking and sticks out so you look like a World War Two radio operator lugging it about (not a look hubby is keen on!).

The PENGDA 30L Cool is not really something I would gift because it’s a bit too plain looking! But if you’re looking for a xyz backpack that can do y, this is a great choice for the price.

Pros

  • Larger storage than Tourit 28-30L
  • Fits 4 wine bottels in deep mess side pockets
  • Stays upright alone when open (handy on a beach)
  • Two insulated compartments (top pocket & large mid section)

Cons

  • Looks like cool box rather than rucksack
  • Needs freeze packs to be truly effective
  • No blanket holder

PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS OF THE PENGDA 30L COOLBAG RUCKSACK:

  • Keeping warm or cold and leak-resistant: Insulated with thicken leakproof PEVA liner on all sides, the cooler backpack retains cold or hot for hours. High quality waterproof zippers add its anti-leaking from outside. High-density insulation material and leak-proof PEVA liner to make sure anti-leaking and keep your snacks or drinks cool for 16 hours temperature below 15℃ (with Freeze Packs)
  • Large capacity: 30L; The main storage compartment is large enough to pack 39 Cans beverages.  Roomy enough to pack meals, beer, snacks, tall beverages, towels, cell phone and all your other necessities. Leak resistant picnic backpack black, easy to wipe inside of bag clean, durable cooling bag for beach picnics, family holiday, camping, walks, hiking
  • Multifunctional Pockets: Multiple pockets to prevent all items in one pocket. 1 main roomy insulated storage compartment, 2 side mesh pockets, 2 large front zipper pocket to keep utensils, 1 zipper pocket on the lid, 1 mesh pocket and 1 beer opener on the strap
  • Durable and Comfortable to Wear: Padded and fully adjustable shoulders straps offer the maximum comfort and support. The backpack coolers are made of heavy duty nylon which will not rip, tear or scratch, but lightweight to carry. The cooler rucksack with padded back and breathable material on shoulder straps for more comfortable
  • Suitable for everyone and every family: Fashion outlook, functional compartments, this stylish backpack can not only be a cool bag or insulation bag, but also be a backpack for work, school, travel or weekend day. One year warranty is included. Email us for any questions you may have and they will be answered within 24 hours

 

BACKPACK COOLBAG DIMENSIONS: 33cm x 19cm x 45cm(L x W x H)

Weight: 800g

More a hiking backpack with a cooling capacity – it’s a great choice!

With it adjustable padded backpack straps and thick padded back, breast strap and waist strap, the OUTXE cooler pack is truly the most versatile cooler backpack we have tried.  Hubby says its very comfy for hiking our local mountains with and even when packed still not too heavy.

This cooler is the editors choice on Amazon and having used it for many family outings last year we can see why.  The bag is large enough for a picnic for 3/4 people with several 1L bottles included.  You can also add in a picnic set in the handy front pocket and blanket to have a great picnic backpack.  And carry sun cream, hat, wet wipes etc on the strap attachments (like i do with my best camel packs!).

Made from tear-resistant, durable and lightweight 600D polyester. The food-grade PVEA liner is odor-resistant and easy to wipe clean.  

Finally i love how this just fits behind the drivers seat in our car, upright and leakproof so we can fill the boot with more camping stuff!  Great value for the price.

Pros

  • Perfect to Pack 3 - 4 person picnic
  • Laptop/ Tablet pocket
  • Sternum support & waist strap for stability
  • Waterproof outer cover
  • D ring, Carabeenr Strap, Strap Pockets for storage
  • Blanket strap

Cons

  • No choice of colours

PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS OF OUTXE 28L Insulated Cooler Bag Rucksack :

  • 28L Spacious Picnic Cooler Backpack:Enough space to hold 30 cans, even more room for ice, drinks, fruits or snacks. Perfect for 3-4 people. 
  • Full Insulated: Thickened thermal insulation material keep your snacks or drinks cool for 16 hours temperature below 15℃ (with Freeze Packs). Shaped like a tube bag, easy to get things in or out.
  • Leakproof: Seamless one-piece PEVA liner and top zippered design work together to ensure the frozen things don’t leak at all after unfreezing
  • Comfortable to Carry: Adjustable padded backpack straps and thick padded back keep your shoulders/back comfortable while transporting the bag
  • Multiple Pockets: Two exterior side pockets for water bottle or umbrella, one larger zippered front pocket to keep tableware or 14″ laptop, one small zippered front pocket for your small items

Cool Bag Rucksack Dimensions: 43 x 19 x 31cm

The ‘Daddy’ of ice cooler backpacks – its COOL beyond belief! 

Ultimate portability. Ultimate ice retention. Ultimate ease of use. No wonder the ICEMULE BOSS™ is the ultimate cooler cum backpack. You can finally have frosty cold beverages, hour after hour, day after day, mile after mile.

Premium, multi-day ice retention paired with a best-in-class suspension system lets you go the distance and rest assured knowing you’ve got the best backpack cooler ever made.  The backpack system is just as good as The North Face, Ogio, Osprey, etc. all the high end back packs.

Engineered like a premium technical backpack, this cooler goes places where no other cooler would even think about going. It keeps drinks colder, longer. It moves the way you move. It just plain gets the job done—especially when that job is keeping ice, ice-cold. Starting today, your cooler is officially one less thing to worry about.

Sure it costs more than the others – up to 10 times more but you get for you pay for with this.  Its the ultimate soft sided cooler!  This is where you are buying quality for the price.

Pros

  • Keep contents cool for up to 5 days
  • Air values allow better insulations without heavy icepacks
  • Waterprood, dray bag AND FLOATS when full!
  • Perfect weight distribution
  • 3 large pockets on sides, Drings & webbing to store heaps

Cons

  • Like NONE...this is amazing product

PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS OF THE IceMule ‘The BOSS’ Premium Cooler Backpack 30L:

  • MULTI-DAY ICE RETENTION – the ICEMULE backpack cooler is surrounded by a 3cm closed-cell PolarLayer XT Insulation foam for true multi-day ice retention. Adding air with the IM AirValve allows you to reach a superior level of insulation that is unmatched by any cooler. Serves as a great beach cooler or hiking backpack
  • WATERPROOF AND FAST, EASY ACCESS – the ICEMULE closure system and MuleSkinfabric makes the BOSS completely waterproof. The oversized pockets with PakShield zippers keep water out while the wide-mouth Tri-Fold provides easy access to load and unload the cooler contents
  • ICEMULE BOSS, SAND COLOR – this backpack cooler has an impressive inside capacity of 30 liters and is big enough to hold 24 cans plus ice, perfect for multi-day camping, hiking, hunting, fishing trips/adventures. can carry 27 kg of weight
  • International products have separate terms, are sold from abroad and may differ from local products, including fit, age ratings, and language of product, labeling or instructions.

Cool Bag Rucksack Dimensions: 53.3 x 45.7 x 33 cm

Weight: 3.5KG – you can carry up to 27 kg in it!

Buyers guide to the best cool bag backpack

The beauty of the cool bag rucksack EASE!  These clever bags mean you dont have to wrestle with a cooler and a picnic backpack/ hiking rucksack.  If you read the reviews above you can see there are cooler backpacks on the market that are just as good as any walking pack, and the extreme cooling we often need for our picnics and drinks.

When looking for a great cooler rucksack you should look at the following criteria:

  • Cooling Time
  • Size & Weight
  • Durability 
  • Portability 
  • Storage Capacity
  • Accessories

Top tips from me to get the very most of your backpack cooler are:

  • Do NOT put ice directly into the cooler backpack to avoid cutting the leak proof material inside the bag. Please use freezer ice packs to keep everything cool.
  • Do NOT tilt or place the bag upside down to avoid letting water leaking through the zipper tape.

Cooling Time

Not all cooler bags are equal – far from it in fact! Are you looking for a bag that can keep your lunch cool for a few hours or many days on a camping trip? All of the reviews above are clear on how long I found they truly keep stuff cool for. 

Also look at whether you can increase the time using Ice Packs (and do you want to carry the) or have they got the hand Air Value technology to increase insulation whilst adding no weight to the bag.  The AirValue system is why I love the funky DryIce Cooler Bag Backpack so much.

Size & Weight

When looking for any backpack I look at the weight very carefully, the empty weight and then the size of the bag.  I am looking for maximum size and minimum weight and that normally means buying a more expensive backpack thats made with lighter weight durable fabric.

Another way to get maximum size and minimum weight is to look for a thin pack thats got webbing, d rings, side pockets etc for extra storage rather than large bulky pockets.  For me the Tourit Cool Bag Rucksack is a perfect example of this.

Durability

Again you want to consider where are you planning to use this backpack cooler – Is it simply for a few beach trips or do you plan to hammer it with weekly camping trips?  If you are looking for the most durable backpack and cooler you cant beat the IceMule Boss!

When I test any picnic products I am always testing to destruction.  That means I have filled them as much as I can (my hubby knows from the weight lol) because I want to know the fabric and zips can take pressure.  With cooler bags it’s better to get horizontal zip fastenings because they are more waterproof.

On our picnic walks we can end up getting muddy, wet and more, so I test how easy they are to clean after use.  No point buying a bag that stinks after three uses, only place that goes is the bin!

Portability

Here it’s important to look for comfort; you are going to be putting a fully loaded cooler on your back so you want to look for a cooler rucksack with:

The OUTXE 28L Insulated Backpack Cooler Bag offers this comfort on a budget!

Storage Capacity

Storage capacity is normally shown by how may Litres (L) the Cool Bag Rucksack has.  Also many of the reviews talk about how many cans or bottles they can fit in.  Again before buying the pack consider are you looking for a beer carrier, in which case the Pengda Cool Bag BackPack is perfect.

Top of the range bags will offer two or more insulated pockets or compartments.  This allows you to take hot and cold foods and drinks with you.  Choosing a picnic backpack with a roll top fixing can also help increase storage capacity as you can ram in that extra without worrying about busting zips!

Accessories

I love some little extras and even cool bag rucksacks can have them! read my reviews and find your perfect ice cold picnic pack with:

  • Bottle opener
  • Rainproof cover
  • Mobile phone pocket
  • Mesh and D ring attachments
  • Earphone pocket
  • Zipper pockets on strapping

Best Cool Bag Rucksack Frequently Asked Questions

Most frequent questions and answers

Whats the difference between a cool bag backpack and a picnic backpack?

Cool Bag Backpacks are only mobile coolers, with extra pockets for adding in picnic sets etc.  Picnic Backpacks will have a cooler section and a full picnic set in them.

Whats the best way to store your backpack cooler?

Store it with the pockets open to air them and make sure its full clean before putting away.  I hang urs open upside down in the closet.

How easy are picnic backpacks to clean?

Normally they are very easy, just opening them up and clean and leave to dry.

Whats better on cool bag backpacks - horizontal zip openings or verticle?

Personally I prefer to go with the horizontal openings.  They are more waterproof because you don’t have to tip the bag to look and reach the contents.  Also when it rains the water runs off the zips rather than down them. 

What should I clean my picnic cooler rucksack with?

Always read the instructions that come with your cooler pack so you use the right cleaner.  Personally I use a non bleach spray and wipe out with disinfectant sheets.  I dry with kitchen roll and leave to air for 24 hours.  

Do you always need to add ice packs to a cooler rucksack ?

No its not essential, honestly whether you do more depends on how long you need things to stay cool for.  If we are going on a 4 hour hike i simply take food from fridge and freezer into my Cooler Pack and it’s fine.  

If you want to avoid the weight of icepacks then look for backpacks that have AirValve technology so you can increase insulation without the weight.