5 Amazing & Non-Touristy Things to Do in Myrtle Beach
Myrtle Beach is a beachside city filled with vacation resorts, tacky tourist shops and 60 miles of lawn chairs, beach towels and tourists. But… don’t let that turn you away from having an incredible experience.
Myrtle Beach is also filled with beautiful boardwalks, friendly fisherman and miles of National Parks and Nature Reserves. While you might need to visit the Grand Strand and spend a day on the beach just to get the real touristic feeling of Myrtle Beach, there are a few things you’ll have to add to that bucket list if you’re interested in a unique and natural experience.
I just spent a short week in Myrtle Beach in April and fell in love with the city more than ever before (Myrtle Beach has been a family holiday destination of ours for years).
Here are 5 amazing and non-touristy things to do while you’re visiting the beautiful city of Myrtle Beach.
Kayak through the Waccamaw River & Nature Reserve
Surround yourself by the river water and cypress trees as far as the eye can see on a kayak tour through the Waccamaw River. This is the perfect place for bird watching and animal spotting. The Waccamaw River is home to Herons, Wood Storks, Bald Eagles, Woodpeckers, Owls, Beavers, Deer, Otters and the odd alligator. While we were there exploring, we booked a tour with Great Escapes Kayak Expeditions and had an incredible time (not to mention the owners live on a beautiful chunk of land, raise pigs and goats as pets and have beautiful horses in their stable).
Watch the Fishermen & Have a Cold Beer on the Pier
Depending on what pier you visit, you may or may not be greeted by tourists instead of locals. If you don’t mind the high price and high numbers of travelers visiting the pier, you can check out the piers closer to the Grand Strand in Myrtle Beach. If you’re looking for an escape from the crowd, drive up to North Myrtle Beach and check out some of the quieter piers along the coast. We spent a good hour on the Sunset Beach Fishing Pier where we got free entrance onto the pier with the purchase of a $3.00 ice cold beer (don’t mind if I do).
Find the Kindred Spirit Mailbox
If you’re already at the Sunset Beach Fishing Pier, then you’re about 1.88 miles from the Kindred Spirit Mailbox. This simple little mailbox actually saved Bird Island from extensive resort development and has allowed the island to remain as a nature reserve. The purpose of the mailbox is for people from all over the world to come, sit down, relax and write their personal thoughts, stories and dreams on a piece of paper. It might sound silly at first, but it’s quite an amazing little gem.
Enjoy an Authentic and Local Fish Dinner
If you can curb the temptations to eat out at The Olive Garden, Pizza Hut, Fuddruckers or the all you can eat Calabash Seafood restaurants, there are some fantastic little local fish joints that are worth checking out (but that secret is safe with me). Even bigger restaurants like the Flying Fish Market on Barefoot Landing is quite a beautiful spot to sit down, eat the catch of the day and enjoy a beautiful sunset.
Spot Wildlife in the Nature
While the oceans sea life is quite spectacular too, many tourists decide to take the chartered boats on the water to for the big catches. Instead, try heading for the forests and marshes around Myrtle Beach that are filled with wildlife like turtles, bears, wild boar, alligators and an abundance of beautiful birds. You can explore areas like the Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge, Bird Island Reserve, and Murrells Inlet.
I need to be honest, before heading to Myrtle Beach in April, I found pretty much nothing online about unique wilderness experiences. We decided to make it our mission to find the best non-touristic things to do in Myrtle Beach on a short, but sweet 5 day trip to the coast.
What do you think? Was there anything else I should have added to the list?
Are you planning on exploring more of the USA while you’re visiting? Check out these 50 Roadtrip Songs you can play across all 50 American States!