This guide shows you the pros and cons of both beach towns.
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This guide shows you the pros and cons of both beach towns.
These themed restaurants will add a little excitement to your meal.
Though not without a few quirks, Myrlte Beach makes its own craft beer and wine.
Take a drive down south and explore the world of Murrells Inlet and Pawley's Island
Check out these unique family-friendly events on your Grand Strand vacation.
You deserve to treat yourself to some gourmet Southern cooking.
There's a darker, haunted side to these quaint southern beach towns.
Satisfy your sweet tooth at these bakeries, candy stores, and ice cream parlors.
Food critic and Myrtle Beach native, Beck Billingsley shares 10 of her favorite local restaurants.
Take a glimpse into the old-school charm that make Myrtle Beach what it is today.
Get a local's take on the best seafood shacks on the Grand Strand.
Fun for kids and grown ups alike, these restaurants are much better than McDonalds and not fussy or too expensive.
You can find just about every type of music at the many venues across the Grand Strand.
With more pancake houses than any other town in America, we'll help you find the best one.
Escape the tourists and explore these historic small towns.
The Grand Strand is home to malls, outlets, cute villages and more!
The weather is idyllic and the summer crowds are gone. See why fall is the best time for couples to visit.
Explore the wild side of Myrtle Beach in the gorgeous trails, rivers, and islands.
Find alligators, snakes, and egrets in the area's largest state park. Explore the old mysterious mansion at Atalaya Castle or just hang out on the calm beach.
It's the safest way to watch 15-foot gators leap from the water to devour their dinner. This reptile sanctuary features gators, snakes, and other animals.
Stroll through the world's largest outdoor sculpture collection amid beautiful gardens.
It's a museum filled with exhibits that promote creative play. Kids can pretend shop at a farmers market or build things with giant foam blocks.
With 14 theaters to choose from and extra-comfy seats, it's a great place to watch a movie on rainy day. Stop by Cold Stone Creamery for a cold treat after the show.
Enjoy the area's seafood while kids climb on the outdoor playground. This is a great family restaurant when you're exploring the peaceful south end of the Grand Strand.
It's quieter than Broadway at the Beach and geared more towards nature with tiger and alligator attractions. It's also home to House of Blues.
With tons of shops, restaurants, activities, and a vibrant nightlife, it's similar to Downtown Disney. Just watch out for those catfish in the lake!
Lined with designer shops, restaurants, and a huge movie theater, it's an outdoor mall with condos above.
Finished in 2010, the boardwalk is filled with beachside restaurants, souvenir shops and the iconic Skywheel. It also hosts concerts and summer events.
If you like irreverent comedy then this is your place. Waiters go out of their way to be sarcastic and crack jokes. Parent advisory suggested.
Dine on fresh fish over an island where one of Blackbeard's crewmates was abandoned with 32 casks of rum. You can probably guess what happened next.
A 70-foot tall Egyptian pyramid towers above. It's a dinner palace home to Elvis' Cape, Paul McCartney's suit, and black boots worn by Johnny Cash.
Built on a boat over the lake at Broadway at the Beach, this fun restaurant is a little patch of island paradise. Keep in mind, it does get crowded.
No forks here! It's a 3-course dinner show out of the middle ages. Guests are greeted as "My Lord, Lady, Prince, and Princess," and knights duel and joust below.
Homemade pasta and tomato bruschetta go nicely with the live accordion in the background. You might just hear the Beatles, if you listen closely.
Great for families with older kids, you'll get to traverse ropes courses and fly down ziplines.
An hour drive from Myrtle Beach, this farmers market sells the freshest produce in the state on fifty-acres of former farmland.
You've probably seen this place somewhere. Gordon Biersch is an international hotspot for hearty German food and crisp lagers.
Vineyard, winery, and campground all in one. Stop by for their tastings, and if you have too much, just pitch your tent for a nap.
They sell juices, jams, and syrups, but are known more for their sweet muscadine wines. Pick up a bottle at Pee Dees Farmers Market.
Come by for tastings of wines made from Carolina's signature muscadine grape. This picturesque vineyard also hosts tons of events in their garden.
It's the longest running brew-pub in town with tons of varieties and daily happy hour from 4-7 pm. Dine indoors among the brewing vats or outside in the beer garden.
It's tucked away, hidden almost in an industrial section of town. But don't let that deter you. Come by for tastings or tours with their laid-back, friendly brewer masters.
It's a nice family-friendly brewpub in the South Strand. Grab a bite to eat, beer, or get a growler (64-ounce jug) for fill-ups of fresh, handcrafted beer.
Built with Roman columns, All Saints Church is a grand example of Classical Revival architecture. These hallowed grounds are also home to a haunted cemetery.
Homemade whipped cream on blueberry pancakes? Say no more! This is a great place to stop for breakfast when exploring the South Strand.
It's an enchanting mansion, once the home of famous philanthropists, Archer and Anna Huntington. Explore the ruins and have a picnic in the surrounding state park.
Finish your tour of the South Strand at this casual seafood shack. Get a taste for the area's signature crab, scallops, flounder, and oysters.
Hungry for lunch in the South Strand? This family pizza joint serves tasty pies with a variety of toppings.
The line is worth it! Stop by for dozens of flavors, toppings, and sauces to fill your cone or waffle bowl.
It's an annual BBQ competition where you can taste BBQ from the best pitmasters in the country. Come hungry and ready for ribs, pork, and live music.
Few kids can resist the allure of giant pumpkins. This annual harvest festival at Brookgreen Gardens is good for the little ones and grandma and grandpa too.
It's the best way to end your summer day at the beach. From Jun-Aug, the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk hosts nightly entertainment from 8-11 pm.
Join other Buffet fans for live music, food, and drink in the garden at La Belle Amie vineyard.
On the grounds of the mysterious Atalaya Castle, hundreds of local artists sell their clothes, jewelry, and crafts. Best of all, the beach is just yards away.
It's a diamond in disguise. An ordinary storefront in a strip mall transforms into a mountain grill in the Rockies. Get the Rack of Lamb with braised brussel sprouts!
They put an interesting spin on Southern classics, with Collard Green Wontons and Fried Green Tomatoes in chipotle dressing. And don't miss Baker Barbara's homemade deserts.
Bonjour, ya'll! It's South of France in South Carolina. Try Espresso Rubbed Flat Iron Steak or Shrimp and Grits. Ask for the dessert menu for favorites from their bakery.
Dine inside at Frank's with classy small plates like Pork Belly, Tuna Nachos, and Fried Goat Cheese. Head outside for woodfired pizzas by an enormous fireplace.
Chic, swanky blue lighting combine with gourmet creations such as Chilli Dusted Duck Breast and Local Oysters with blackberry-basil mignonette.
Enjoy duck confit and souffle in the quaint town of Little River. Their wine list is excellent and they have a tasting menu too. Oh yeah, and the place is haunted (just the kitchen).
It's probably the only library that you're allowed to eat at. This upscale restaurant is known for their tableside preparations, including their famous caesar salad.
In this quiet maritime forest behind the dunes, you'll find picnic benches and a few trails. Admire the wildlife, and come for the kid-friendly nature classes.
Old Joe was told to guard a mysterious fortune of gold coins for the wealthy Huntington's. The next day it vanished, never to be seen again.
If you're in Little River, beware the ghost of Blackbeard who once used this quiet town as a refuge before his beheading at the hands of Lt. Maynard.
This guided walking tour takes you to the darkest sites of ancient ghosts. Odds are you'll see a ghostly orb or two along the way.
Talented actors and storytellers come together to re-create the area's infamous local legends.
Dark corners, scariest noises, and that guy with a chainsaw make this haunted house show fun for the whole family.
The food is great, but the kitchen is haunted. A dark figure is said to loom on the staircase and a human face often appears in an old mirror.
Alice Flagg fell in love with a common lumberman, but her wealthy father shipped her off to boarding school, where she die of malaria. To this day, her ghost searches for her lost lover.
One of the scariest excursions in South Carolina! Tour an old warehouse filled with haunted attractions. Investigators claim to have found paranormal activity lurking in the walls.
If you see a mysterious man dressed in gray rags warn you of an impending storm, get out of town, he's probably right.
Hop aboard the Sea Gypsy with the little ones ones, as they dress in pirate outfits and shoot water cannons off the starboard. This boat cruise is a delight for young kids.
This one stop shop has everything you'll need on vacation. It's a grocery, seafood market, souvenir store, and hardware store that also sells fresh baked donuts.
All you really need to know: they make 40+ flavors of cupcakes. We're talk'n 40 plus fresh, beautifully decorated cupcakes!
They make a killer key lime pie, superb eclairs, and superior tiramisu. This Pawley's Island deli also has some mighty tasty brick oven pizzas and paninis.
This famous family owned ice cream parlor has been around since the 50's. It's where Myrtle Beach native Vanna White goes for a scoop.
Stop by this drive-thru donut shop for great coffee and donuts near Family Kingdom Amusement Park.
Get classic candies, such as fudge, brittles, and caramel popcorn at this local sweets shop.
Get classic candies, such as fudge, brittles, and caramel popcorn at this local sweets shop.
The allure of steak and Italian food all in one place makes this Myrtle Beach restaurant a local favorite. Service is friendly and the vibe is great for families.
It's one of the world's only restaurants specializing in both sushi and burgers. They also serve fancy cocktails finished with liquid nitrogen that take it to the next level.
Rockstar chef, Adam Kirby grows the veggies and catches a lot of the fish himself. His fried green tomatoes and oysters with bacon-cream sauce are soul satisfying.
This local favorite serves hearty Bavarian Bratwurst to soak up those pints of German beer.
Live music plays over views of the Inlet. Come for a breakfast of Lobster Home Fries and dinner with Boo-Boo's Tender (beef) Bites.
Probably the best oatmeal raisin cookies you've ever tasted, plus fresh baked breads, condiments, and luscious cakes. Locals treat this place like an extension of their pantry.
Enjoy a classic Lowcountry meal with homemade hushpuppies, hand-made onion rings, and just-caught seafood.
It's a tiny Japanese restaurant serving up succulent gyoza, tea-smoked BBQ ribs, and savory ramen.
This is where you get Bog Balls – fried morsels made from a chicken/sausage/rice dish called Chicken Bog, the Grand Strand's most traditional specialty.
Starting at a plantation, you ride to the beach for a stroll along the ocean. Come during the day or a romantic sunset.
It's a day on a farm from the early 1900's. Watch blacksmiths hammer out tools and farmers plow the fields. It's a great educational activity for the kids.
Young kids will marvel at the pirates who sing, dance, and launch off in aerial stunts. And then there's the sea lion who steals the show.
One of best things to do in Myrtle Beach on a rainy day is go under the sea. They have a stunning walk-thru reef and shark tunnel, along with a cool hands-on tidepool exhibit.
The Grand Strand's best zoo – you get to see otters, foxes, eagles, and more. Then take a pontoon boat ride to see gators and native animals in their natural habitats.
This 2,200-seat theater hosts a show featuring comedy, dancing, and singing performed by talented stars from TV acts like American Idol.
It's a museum of history featuring a number of exhibits with artifacts from the Revolutionary War, Native American settlements, and the area's wildlife.
Rich and indulgent seafood mixes nicely with sunsets over the inlet.
Blue crab fondue, lobster pot pie, Shrimp & Scallops Carbonara, these are a few of the decadent creations here. On nice days they have live music in the gazebo.
"Mr. Fish" sold fish on the Grand Strand for the last 30 years. He took his love of perfectly fried fish and put it into this fantastic Myrtle Beach Restaurant.
Their crab cakes and shrimp and grits are to die for. This laid back beach house does it right.
Come here on a warm evening for a golden sunset and the scent of sweet, salty air. Try the oysters on the half shell or the classic low-country boil.
A historic restaurant in the heart of downtown Myrtle Beach, they even serve breakfast. Get their Crab Cake Eggs Benedict if you're up for seafood in the morning.
Lightly breaded and deeply fried, that's the "Calabash" way. This buffet is decorated to the teeth with nautical decor. They even have a model ship builder on staff.
It's national chain with a raucous family-friendly atmosphere. The seafood is fresh and the waiters sing and dance. Nobody will hear your screaming baby.
It's a national chain with a raucous family-friendly atmosphere. The seafood is fresh and the waiters sing and dance. Nobody will hear your child mid-meltdown.
This spacious sports bar is a great place to enjoy the game and a meal with the family.
It's a bit wacky with colorful decor and booths with personal TVs. This locally-owned Myrtle Beach restaurant will keep kids entertained.
Think non-corporate Chuck E. Cheese's, but with top-notch pizza. There's an amazing playspace for kids and a sports bar for parents.
This huge 2,000-seat venue rotates its in-house production, "One – The Show" and a guest artist concert series featuring hot names in country music.
For eight summers in the 1970s, Alabama was their house band. Today they carry on the tradition with live country music at this boardwalk venue.
Most of the time it's reggae-influenced rock 'n' roll and Americana, but twice a year it turns into Shag Central – a hub for Carolina Beach Music.
With a large concert hall, restaurant stage, and outdoor stage, there are lots of choices. Come Sunday mornings for the Gospel Brunch at Crossroads.
You can listen to live music from your boat. They host a variety of concerts across genres, and most acts are free! Come for their Sunday Funday summer concert series.
They book a wide variety of acts from big names to local stars. On Mondays they host an Acoustic Jam Night for something light and soulful.
Get a sense for all the great local artists. If you come Tuesdays you can even join in and jam with them.
Hop from bar-to-bar for live music, drinks, and food along the water in Murrells Inlet.
Myrtle Beach boating is unique. You can rip through the ocean on a speedboat, or take it easy on a leisurely pontoon boat cruise.
You just can't get the same experience with wildlife in a motor boat. Paddle close to egrets and seals, as you explore the rivers and inlets of the Grand Strand.
Their fluffy cakes are great, and their Big Dog Special can feed 3 kids at once for $8. It comes with 3 eggs, 3 pancakes, and your choice of bacon or sausage.
You can get all the favorites like golden pancakes covered in glazed strawberries and syrup. Or go for their healthy menu for lighter alternatives and gluten-free pancakes.
Think cinnamon roll waffles, red velvet waffles, and banana-coconut chocolate chip pancakes. Who knows what their waffle savant, Jamie Saunders will whip up next.
They cook the pecans right in the batter. Try their homemade cinnamon butter atop crispy waffles and fluffy pancakes.
They're not fussy about their pancakes, just simple and delicious. Also, the savory Dixie Eggs Benedict with poached eggs on a biscuit is a must.
Wake up to Southern homecooking. Squash casserole, fried okra, catfish, and chicken and dumplings is enough to start your day right.
They actually have waffle cam, where you can watch these puppies come to life. With omelets and many types of Belgian waffles, it's a great breakfast choice.
This quirky little diner serves delicious flapjacks and malted Belgian waffles. Their Golf Platter can feed several kids for $10, or a golfer with a big appetite.
The town will actually pave around historic trees. That's how much they care about preserving its beauty. So stroll on the gorgeous riverwalk and enjoy the local food.
People come here to take wedding photos. This breathtaking boardwalk path weaves past oak trees, historic buildings, and the glass-like reflection on the river.
It's what Myrtle Beach used be like before all the high-rise hotels. This laid-back beach town is a nice place to unwind. Take a stroll on its newly refurbished boardwalk.
This old-fashioned ice cream parlor, on the Carolina Beach Boardwalk, makes their own gelato and Italian ice. Try the Lemon Cookie Gelato!
The battle at Ft. Fisher helped seal the Confederacy's fate, cutting off the last supply line to Robert E. Lee's Army.
You'll still find tobacco warehouses here, but the crown jewel is Webster's Manor. Stop by for an authentic country buffet in an old mansion from the 1800's.
Sit back in an old mansion for an authentic country buffet on Blue Willow China. Their fried chicken and Buttermilk Pie is some of the best around.
Housed in a large warehouse, you'll find tons of antiques, some of them hundreds of years old, set up in themed displays. It's like exploring Ikea.
Some think of it as a 'drive by town' on your way in and out of Myrtle. But stop by the Aynor Inn for something surprisingly delicious.
About an hour from Myrtle, between old colonial buildings you'll find some of the best antiquing in South Carolina
It's filled with tons of items from fine China, silverware, and nick knacks to furniture and leather bound books.
Early colonial settlements here were some of the oldest in the nation. Stop by today for museums, waterfront restaurants, art galleries, and boutiques.
Get a snapshot of old-school Myrtle with beach houses, seafood shacks, and souvenirs. Make sure you eat at Duffy's Seafood Shack for a true beachy meal.
For a taste of authentic beach food this is the place. They've got all the classics from shrimp poppers and Po' Boys to fresh-caught blackened fish.
Long considered a fisherman's hotspot, this quaint town has dozens of great seafood restaurants on the waterfront. It's also a great place for deep sea fishing.
The light and crispy fried fish that you see all over the Grand Strand comes from Calabash. Also, be sure to check out Callahan's, a famous, quirky Christmas store.
Mixing international influences (even sushi) into southern classics, this delicious Conway restaurant has a spacious deck overlooking downtown.
Serving Pad Thai and a variety of curries this is great lunch spot in Conway if you're craving something a little different.
This country buffet in Conway serves crispy fried chicken, fantastic collard greens, and great desserts too.
Shaded by gorgeous oak trees, these elegant Victorian-style shops are a nice relaxing way to cool down on a hot day away from the action.
Find great deals on high-end brands at one of two outlet shopping locations in Myrtle Beach.
Find great deals on high-end brands at one of two outlet shopping locations in Myrtle Beach.
Next to the Intracoastal Waterway, this indoor mall has favorites such as Belk and Dillard's. There's also a great food court in the center and movie theater.
It's a little smaller than other Myrtle Beach malls, but it's home to a great kids club hosting frequent events, as well as a brand new movie theater and bowling alley.
Even if you're not buying a boat, the Bass Pro Shop is still fun with its fish tank and kids activities. This large mall has stores, a movie theater, and seasonal skating rink.
During spring and fall, Hot Jersey Nights features the hit songs of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. Other shows include Carnival of Magical, Christmas Wonderland, and an MMA Fight Night.
Inspired by the great vineyards of Europe, Silver Coast produces a number of local wines. They also host their own art gallery and seasonal events, like the Purple Feet Festival.
They just opened a brand new tasting room at Barefoot Landing where you can sample their signature muscadine wines.
They offer massage treatments, pilates and fitness, and therapeutic rituals. You can also take a soak in their whirlpool Jacuzzi set in an outdoor garden.
Their signature Milk and Honey body wrap uses complex essentials oils and therapeutic mud to rejuvenate the skin.
Treatments include hot stone massages, sugar and salt scrubs, and detoxifying body wraps.
Take a ferry to this uninhabited barrier island to explore 16 miles of trails. The highlight is Boneyard Beach with it's skeletonized trees, jutting out of the sand.
These two 18th century lighthouses stand at an impressive 65-ft and 150-ft tall. A ferry will takes you there where you'll wade through the marsh to reach them.
Set in the 23,000-acre Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge, this relaxing getaway features three miles of walking/biking trails and a scenic boardwalk, perfect for a picnic and family photo.
It's the launching point for fun ocean adventures including dolphin tours, kayaking, paddle boarding, parasailing, and jet skiing.
This vast wildlife refuge is home to forests, wetlands, and old plantation. They offer several tours that show you the history and ecology of the Grand Strand.
Not well-known to visitors, the gardens here line the scenic Intracoastal Waterway. It's a great place to watch the sunrise, stroll along the river or fish, and a must for bird watchers.
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