Beach is one of the most popular tourist areas in the country. Located in Horry County, South Carolina, it’s part of what’s known as The Grand Strand, which is a continuous 60-mile stretch of beach in the northeast part of the state.

  • Along with beautiful beaches, Myrtle Beach offers good weather and plenty to do. Around 14 million visitors flock to the area every year.
  • So, specifically what are some of the must-dos in Myrtle Beach and what are nearby day trips worth taking if you’re planning to be in the area?

Dolphin Tours

Dolphin tours in Myrtle Beach are a great way to see the shoreline and spend the day on the water, and of course, you can catch a glimpse of dolphins in their natural habitat.

Many of the dolphin sightseeing cruises in Myrtle Beach last for several hours, and you can film and video while you’re on the water. They are also appropriate for all ages, so it’s an excellent family-friendly activity to do in Myrtle Beach.

Dolphin cruises will typically leave from the Intracoastal Waterway and make their way to the Atlantic Ocean. There may even be the opportunity to see the local shrimp boats out on the ocean during the cruise.

Myrtle Beach State Park

While Myrtle Beach is known for its bustling tourist attractions, Myrtle Beach State Park offers a quiet reprieve and the opportunity to enjoy the natural beauty coastal South Carolina is known for. Myrtle Beach State Park is in an oceanfront maritime forest. There is surf fishing, beautiful views, and fishing at the Myrtle Beach Pier.

There is also camping available at the State Park, and rental cabins are available onsite as well.

SkyWheel Myrtle Beach

SkyWheel Myrtle Beach is a popular attraction first opened in 2011. It was the first observation wheel of its kind when it was opened.

It’s a Ferris wheel with climate-controlled gondolas so you can get a bird’s eye view of the Grand Strand. The ride takes you 200 feet above the Myrtle Beach boardwalk, and it’s open to people of all ages.

Day Trip to Calabash

There are a lot of excellent day trips that you can take easily from Myrtle Beach, one of which is Calabash. Calabash is a coastal town located close to the North Carolina-South Carolina state line. Calabash is known as the “Seafood Capital of the World.”

You can get shrimp, fish, oysters and clams, all breaded and fried, which is the style of seafood preparation Calabash is known for.

Calabash is also near the Brunswick Islands which include charming beaches like Bald Head Island, Holden Beach, Ocean Isle Beach, and Sunset Beach.

NASCAR Racing Experience

If you love speed and thrills, consider checking out the NASCAR Racing Experience at Myrtle Beach on the Myrtle Beach Speedway. The cars come from real NASCAR racing teams, and the racetrack is NASCAR-sanctioned. Drivers have to be 18, and for the Ride Along and Pace Cars, kids of any age can ride along if they have parental consent.

The most popular driving experience is called the “Rookie Experience.” There’s also something called the Kings Experience” named after driver Richard Petty.

Kayaking the Waccamaw River

For something that’s less touristy and off the beaten path a bit more, consider kayaking the Waccamaw River and Nature Reserve. There are cypress trees that surround the river, and you have the opportunity to do birdwatching for herons and Bald Eagles. You might also catch a glimpse of beavers and occasionally alligators.


Myrtle Beach and much of the South Carolina coastal area is known for beautiful golf courses. There are many different courses available. Some of these include:
  • Willowbrook Plantation is one of the lesser-known courses in the area, but a lot of professionals and golf aficionados consider it among the best. Designed by Dan Maples, this course has mossy oak trees throughout, and it’s relatively inexpensive compared to some of the other area courses. 
  • The Heritage Club is also a mossy oak-lined course along the Waccamaw River. 
  • Pawley’s Plantation is in Pawley’s Island, a short drive from Myrtle Beach. Nicklaus designed it in the 1980s.
As you can see, there is something for everyone to enjoy in Myrtle Beach and in reality, these are only a small sampling of the attractions, things to do and day trips you can take if you visit this lovely area of the country. There are plenty more shopping, dining, and outdoor activities available as well.