Things to do in Myrtle Beach, SC

Get Your Bearings in Myrtle Beach

By Terry Massey
Myrtle Beach Expert

See & Do
Stay
Eat
Party
Shop

Things to See

Many of the Grand Strand's top attractions are concentrated around the entertainment hubs of the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk (the new Myrtle Beach SkyWheel and Second Avenue Pier), Broadway at the Beach (Ripley's Aquarium, WonderWorks, the Palace Theatre) and Barefoot Landing (Alabama Theatre, House of Blues, Alligator Adventure). Some of the top stand-alone facilities include Myrtle Waves Water Park, Brookgreen Gardens, NASCAR SpeedPark and the more than 100 golf courses that grace the Grand Strand.

Hot Tips:

Most major hotels offer discount tickets to top attractions and and packages to most golf courses.

Where to Stay

The vast majority of Myrtle Beach's best hotels are located along the oceanfront on Ocean Boulevard, which is conveniently located a block or two from the main drag of Kings Highway. That allows visitors to take a short stroll to some of the top attractions in town, including the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk. There are several inland options for those who want to save a little money and can live without the ocean view off their balconies.

Caution:

Beaches can be crowded around large clusters of oceanfront hotels during the summer months.

What to Eat

It's hard to swing a dead catfish without hitting a seafood restaurant or buffet on the Grand Strand, but there are areas that feature higher concentrations of dining options. Restaurant Row, a 2-mile stretch of Kings Highway between Myrtle Beach and North Myrtle Beach, offers some of the nicer places for fine dining. Also, popular spots such as Market Common, Broadway at the Beach and Barefoot Landing feature some of the top local and national-chain eateries.

Hot Tips:

Even the nicest restaurants in town have relaxed dress codes for the beach crowds.

Be Sure to Sample:

Fresh local seafood, including SC's own brand of oyster clusters.

Places to Party

Broadway at the Beach also serves as the top place for nightlife on the Strand. Featuring a district known as Celebrity Square, the area includes more than a dozen bars and clubs side by side, including Revolutions dance club, Froggy Bottom's live music venue and Fat Tuesday's frozen drink bar. Similar clubs are scattered throughout the Strand, and the revitalized downtown district has seen a rebirth of its nightlife scene with lots of new bars and a few that have stood the test of time, such as Duffy's and The Bowery.

Hot Tips:

One cover charge permits entry to multiple clubs at Broadway at the Beach.

Where to Shop

Once again, the major hubs of Barefoot Landing, Broadway at the Beach and Market Common have the market cornered on shopping, with each featuring dozens of local and national stores. The close proximity of outlets provide visitors great opportunities to window-shop and people-watch. Other shopping hot spots include the Coastal Grand Mall in Myrtle Beach, two Tanger Outlet Shops (one on Highway 501, the other on Restaurant Row). The Myrtle Beach Mall and Inlet Square Mall also provide guests with name-brand outlets and national chains.

Avoid:

The beachwear shops on every street corner; they sell the same cheesy souvenirs and merchandise.

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Things to do in Myrtle Beach


Myrtle Beach is known for...

Four of Myrtle Beach's most unique features and characteristics.

1. Beaches:

Let's face it, few would visit Myrtle Beach if it were called "Myrtleville." It's the beach that brings millions of visitors to the Grand Strand every year, but there's plenty of room for them to stretch out over the 60-mile stretch of coastline. With white sand beaches and relatively calm ocean waters make for a perfect playground for kids of all ages to swim, surf, sunbath and build sandcastles. One of the great things about Myrtle Beach is its abundance of public beach accesses. Unlike many beach resorts where the oceanfront is privately owned, Myrtle Beach provides beach access on virtually every block that provide wooden walkways, restroom facilities and spray showers so you don't have to take too much beach home with you.

2. Seafood:

No trip to the coast is complete without a taste of the local cash crop, and Myrtle Beach's happens to be under the sea. Surrounded by the fishing villages of Murrells Inlet, Little River and Calabash, N.C., the Grand Strand has an abundance of fresh seafood and restaurants that serve it. Whether it's all-you-can-eat buffets, rustic oyster bars, fine dining or hole-in-the-wall seafood shacks, your taste buds can get their fish fix in Myrtle Beach. Prefer food from dry land? The Grand Strand is home to more than 1,000 eateries, including the famed Restaurant Row, to satisfy everyone's appetite.

3. Golf:

The Grand Strand features more than 100 courses that reflect both the importance of the sport and the scenic beauty of the area. Beginning with Pine Lakes International Golf Club, which opened in 1927, developers found fertile land and growing demand for more courses, constructing championship layouts from the Lowcountry in Pawleys Island, including the prestigious Caledonia Fish & Golf Club and True Blue Plantation, up beyond the North Carolina border, like River Hills Golf Club and Oyster Bay Plantation. In between are more than 2,000 holes where golfers flock year-round to chase the little white ball.

4. Fun and Games:

Everyone can feel like a kid at Myrtle Beach's many attractions, especially for those into water sports. From amusement parks like Family Kingdom and Broadway at the Beach's Pavilion Nostalgia Park, to water-inspired thrills such as Myrtle Waves, there's plenty of fun to be found. Parasailing, boogie-boarding and jet-skiing are other popular activities, and fishing piers and charter boats make fishing more than a pastime. While "real" golf is Myrtle Beach's top sport, putt-putt courses also line the Strand. From April through September visitors can catch a Myrtle Beach Pelicans' baseball game for fun at the ol' ballpark and free fireworks shows can be spotted in the skies up and down the coast.