Best Things To Do in Myrtle Beach
One of the reasons families love Myrtle Beach is because of the range of activities by the shore. Its nutmeg-colored sand is compact enough to bike on, but the waters are also pleasant (and clear enough) for a little snorkeling or scuba diving at certain points. Other popular activities include more than 100 golf courses, as well as putt-putt courses for the smallest golf pros; amusement parks, such as the Family Kingdom Amusement Park, located just a short drive from the beach; and live evening entertainment like traveler favorites Alabama Theatre and the Carolina Opry.
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The main reason families flock to Myrtle Beach is to swim in the mild waves and play along the light brown sand. Some spots along the Carolina shore offer opportunities for water sports like Jet Skiing or deep-sea fishing, while other areas are better for relaxing or playing with your children. You'll also find a few spots perfect for casting a line for a fresh catch.
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Although Myrtle Beach is littered with plenty of miniature golf courses, travelers say the most popular is the Mt. Atlanticus Miniature Golf course. Like a real mountain, you'll find yourself physically ascending as you putt through the holes, which range in difficulty. The entire course features interesting obstacles of various creatures and architectural challenges. The complex offers a total of 36 holes of mini-golf set in two courses, the Conch and the Minotaur. Plus, if you try for a hole-in-one at the last hole, you could win free games for life. Recent visitors say it provides affordable fun for the whole family after a long day on the beach.
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Since the Carolina Opry opened in 1986, it has remained one of the main facilities in Myrtle Beach for live music, with shows ranging from country to show tunes to gospel. If you know you're going to be around during the Christmas season, try to score tickets to the venue's Christmas special. It's One of the Opry's most popular programs and it's been known to sell out by the summer. Recent visitors say they were not disappointed by the performances and many said they were Broadway quality.
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South of the busy Myrtle Beach sands you can explore the maritime forest and rent a campsite for the night at Myrtle Beach State Park. Activities include nature trails, surf fishing and equestrian facilities, as well as access to a clean beach that's usually less crowded than the city's main shoreline.
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Located in the Broadway at the Beach complex, Ripley's Aquarium is one of the most popular aquariums in the country. The most noteworthy exhibit here is Dangerous Reef, a huge 340-foot underwater tunnel where you can walk surrounded by sharks, tarpons and green moray eels. Finish your tour of the aquarium in the interactive Discovery Center exhibit, where touch pools house creatures like puffer fish and horseshoe crabs.
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Before hitting it big, the country music band Alabama performed one of its most famous early shows at a venue in Myrtle Beach. In 1993, the band returned to the city where it got its start and opened the 2,000-seat Alabama Theatre in the Barefoot Landing shopping complex. Alabama has since retired, but the theater attracts other well-known artists, including Three Dog Night and the Glenn Miller Orchestra.
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Formerly known as the NASCAR Speedpark, the Broadway Grand Prix offers seven different go-kart tracks for families looking for a little speed and competition. Tracks range from the Grand Prix Pro Track, where karts go up to 20 mph, to a track specially designed for kids.
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A must for families who make the yearly visit to Myrtle Beach, the Family Kingdom Amusement Park sits beachside, offering panoramic views of the ocean and the Grand Strand from its Ferris wheel. Spanning 13 acres, the park boasts 37 rides, including a roller coaster, go-karts, a carousel and rides specifically designed for small children. Among the park's star attractions are its Ferris wheel — which was the highest in the state until 2011 — and its water park, which includes water slides and a lazy river. Parents say it's suitable for family members of all ages, plus the park is budget-friendly.
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