Ripley's Aquarium Myrtle Beach#5 in Best Things To Do in Myrtle Beach
Located in the Broadway at the Beach complex, Ripley's Aquarium is a popular stop for families who need a break from the beach. 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.
The aquarium also offers unique experiences like behind-the-scenes tours, sleepover parties and a swim with stingrays experience (for an additional fee). Recent visitors to the aquarium said it's an ideal place to spend the day when weather conditions make going to the beach difficult. But travelers do warn that you'll face more crowds on rainy days.
Admission into the aquarium also gets you into the dive shows and special exhibitions if there is one. If you plan to go to other Ripley attractions in the area, such as Ripley's Believe It or Not! Museum or Ripley's Haunted Adventure, consider buying a combination ticket to save on admission. Tickets for adults are $29.99; admission for kids ages 6 to 11 costs $19.99; children ages 2 to 5 get in for $9.99. The aquarium is open daily from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Parking is free. Visit the aquarium's website for more information on special events like the annual Festival of Trees.
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#1 Myrtle Beach
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.
Most who visit the shore of Myrtle Beach do so directly in front of the hotel or rental property where they're staying. So keep in mind that if you're not a beachfront lodger, you might have more trouble finding a public bathroom, but ample metered street parking is available. Some parking lots are also available, most of which are also free and are an easy walk over the dunes at beach access points. Some sandy areas along Ocean Boulevard do have shops and restaurants. During the summer months, lifeguards are on duty along many of the Grand Strand beaches. Access to the beach is free 24/7, though swimming after sunset is not recommended.
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