Myrtle Beach, SC: What You HAVE To Know

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, the 'Sun Fun Capital' and 'Golf Capital of the World', is the showpiece of the Grand Strand, a 60 mile span of white sandy beach that runs from Little River to Pawleys Island, South Carolina. Hosting over 14 million visitors annually, Myrtle Beach offers an extensive list of family friendly attractions, premier restaurants, shopping destinations, and a variety of outdoor entertainments, including over 100 area golf courses. Visitors will revel in the picturesque views, lively atmosphere, and hours of sunshine that make Myrtle Beach a popular travel destination.

Must see in Myrtle Beach
First time visitors can get a feel for the vibrancy that encompasses the city with a stroll along the 1.2 mile oceanfront Myrtle Beach Boardwalk and Promenade, followed by a turn around the SkyWheel, a 187 foot observation wheel that soars above the Myrtle Beach skyline. Families will enjoy the sights and sounds of Broadway at the Beach, an entertainment complex full of specialty shops, restaurants, and attractions including WonderWorks and Ripley's Aquarium. While sport enthusiasts can bask in the warm evening sun and cheer on the Myrtle Beach Pelicans, a popular minor league baseball team, at the Field at Pelicans Ballpark.

Where to stay in Myrtle Beach
If you're seeking to stay oceanfront, a multitude of hotels line Ocean Boulevard in Myrtle Beach. Families should consider South Ocean Boulevard, close to Family Kingdom, an oceanfront amusement and water park. Younger people will enjoy the action and liveliness of North Ocean Boulevard, and should consider accommodations near the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk and Promenade, which runs from 2nd Avenue to 14th Avenue. If you're seeking wallet friendly options, search for hotels inland near attractions like the Market Common and Broadway at the Beach.

Best and worst time go to Myrtle Beach
The best time to visit Myrtle Beach is from April through October, when the sunshine is plentiful, the water is warm, and all the restaurants, shops and attractions are open for business. The worst time to visit Myrtle Beach is from January to March when temperatures are cool and many businesses are closed for the season.

Where to get lost in Myrtle Beach
Market Common, located on Farrow Parkway, is a sprawling outdoor complex filled with shops, restaurants and entertainment options for all ages. Stroll through the picturesque tree lined streets, dine alfresco at one of the many premier restaurants, peruse the numerous shops or catch a movie. Market Common also features an art gallery, yoga studio, theater company, book store and grocery store. If you enjoy the outdoors, walk across Farrow Parkway to Grand Park and enjoy the scenic fitness trail that encompasses a large man-made lake and spacious playground.

The best deal in Myrtle Beach
Travelers looking for the most bang for their buck should head to one of the three outdoor complexes in the Grand Strand: Broadway at the Beach, Market Common or Barefoot Landing. Each hot spot offers a plentitude of shops, reasonable restaurants and attractions, as well as free events and specials throughout the year.

Transportation in Myrtle Beach
The best way to get around Myrtle Beach is by car, with rental services available at the airport and other area locations. Public transportation also abounds including Coast RTA, an affordable bus service that covers most of Myrtle Beach, as well as taxi, shuttle and ride services.

Getting In from Myrtle Beach
Myrtle Beach International Airport offers easy access to every major area of Myrtle Beach, and is conveniently located a few miles from center of the city. Coast RTA provides bus service to the airport, while there are also numerous ride services and car rental businesses available.

Local tip for visitors to Myrtle Beach
Research what's happening at the beach prior to your visit. Each year, Myrtle Beach and the Grand Strand area hosts a calendar full of seasonal celebrations including spring break festivities, Blue Crab Festival, Harley Bike Week, Can-Am Festival, and much more.

Author's bio: Rebecca S. Robertson has called Myrtle Beach home for the past several years. She is a freelance writer and has written for a variety of local and national publications.