Charlie & Debbie

I love living in the Carolinas for a number of reasons. The people we’ve met in our time here are so wonderful. Plus, the area offers plenty of activities, restaurants and a family friendly atmosphere. And, it’s a quick easy drive to beautiful beaches. We went to Hilton Head a couple of times and thoroughly enjoyed it. And, recently we took a trip to Kiawah that was a lot of fun. However, our favorite spot to visit with friends is the Myrtle Beach area.  I thought I’d assemble a list of 10 free things you can do in Myrtle Beach.

I like that we can get there from where we live in under three hours. We’ve been going there for years, and our son attends school in nearby Conway, South Carolina. So, if you’re planning a first time visit or even a return trip soon, you may be looking for ideas. After all, money is tight for everyone these days. And, who says a vacation needs to cost a fortune? That’s another reason we enjoy Myrtle Beach. It’s fairly economical if you do some planning.  And, it’s another reason I put together this list of 10 free things to do in Myrtle Beach.

Many items on the list are free to adults and children alike.   Some feature activities children can do for free with paid adults.  And, I think all of them are budget friendly.  This is by no means everything you’ll find at the beach. But, it’s a start to get you going. I hope you can find some things you enjoy in the 10 free things to do at the beach list!

  • The Beach Itself

    Ok, this seems pretty obvious. The beach is always free. We tend to hang out sort of in between Myrtle and North Myrtle. Our favorite spot along the beach is in front of Ocean Annie’s. It’s a good location with nice people who always seem to be gathered. We always see familiar faces. There’s usually a live band playing at Ocean Annie’s to provide the backdrop for a nice beach day. If you have a golf cart, there’s a chance if you get there early of snagging a parking space right by the public access. And, there’s plenty of places in walking distance nearby to grab a bite. Or, just pack some snacks in a cooler!  Sunrise or sunset, it’s a beautiful stretch of sand.  Sometimes at dusk we come back and set up a little table and bring a charcuterie and just enjoy the music and cool breezes with some occasional fireworks.

  • Barefoot Landing

    Barefoot Landing is an assortment of shops and restaurants set along the Intercoastal Waterway. Of course, there’s plenty of places to spend money shopping or eating. Restaurants include Blueberry’s Grill, Crooked Hammock Brewery, Wild Wing Cafe, Greg Norman Australian Grille, Dick’s Last Resort and more. There’s House of Blues and Alabama Theatre for entertainment and music. There’s fireworks throughout the summer. And, you can just browse the shops or stroll along the waterway. There’s games and a park like area outside Crooked Hammock for the kids. Check here for the directory and listing of activities calendar.

  • Alabama Theatre

    I previously mentioned Alabama Theatre in the section about Barefoot Landing.  But, it stands on its own as, well.  Although, it’s not a free activity for everyone.  Certain shows and times do grant kids 16 and under free admission with an adult purchase ticket.  ONE The Show features music from all genres including Country, Gospel, Broadway, Pop and Rock.  There’s costumes and comedy the kids will love.  Check the schedule to plan your visit.

  • LW Paul Living History Farm

    This spot is actually located in Conway about 20 minutes from the beach.  Guided farm tours are available most Saturdays at 10 a.m.  Tours are free and last about an hour.  Larry Paul, a local businessman in Horry County, funded construction of the farm to depict life from 1900-1955.  The Horry Country Council designated 17 acres of land for use by the museum in 2006.  Events and demonstrations are seasonal, so check their website for specific trip planning.

  • Vereen Memorial Gardens

    Vereen Memorial Gardens is located in Little River and open dawn to dusk.  The website refers to it as a “hidden gem” for 30 years.  Programs and activities are always growing and changing with more visitors coming to the enjoy views, trails and wildlife.  The park features hiking trails and wooden boardwalks across salt marshes.  There’s a gazebo overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway perfect for photographs.

  • Murrells Inlet Marshwalk

    Stretching a half mile, the Marshwalk offers scenic views along a saltwater estuary in Murrells Inlet.  Certainly, the stroll alone is quite the rewarding experience.  However, there’s plenty of waterfront restaurants along the Grand Strand.  Legend has it, according to the online brochure, it’s where hushpuppies were perfected and Blackbeard stashed ill-gotten booty.  There’s reports by visitors of “ghost” sightings.  The culture is built by Native American tribes, Spanish explorers and English colonists.  The history is rich, the activities plentiful.  Read all about it at to plan your visit.

  • Myrtle Beach Boardwalk

    The boardwalk runs 1.2 miles along the oceanfront from Pier 14 at 14th Ave. North to the 2nd Ave. Pier at 2nd Ave. North.  National Geographic has ranked the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk number 3 in the U.S.  Tavel and Leisure ranks it at number 2.  There’s live music and attractions for all ages throughout the year.  Of course, the famous Carolina Country Music Festival brings world class entertainment to the area every summer.  The SkyWheel opened in 2011, the first observation wheel of its kind in the U.S.  And, you can’t miss The Bowery, world famous club and bar, once home to country favorite superstar group Alabama.  There’s lots to see and do, just by taking a casual stroll.  That’s always enjoyable and free!

  • Shipwreck Island Adventure Golf

    There’s plenty of miniature golf and regular golf at Myrtle Beach.  I think we’ve played all of them of both types.  And, while adults do pay for this adventure, it’s fairly economical.  Plus, kids 3 and under play free with a paid adult.  Also, there’s deals to be found with all day passes.  This one is good for all skill levels and beginners.  Check out the site for all the info.

  • Myrtle Beach State Park

    The park is a great place to catch a sunrise, stroll on the fishing pier or take part in a scavenger hunt.  Enjoy a walk on the Sculptured Oak Nature Trail.  Plus, enjoy the biking trails.  There’s picnic areas for family reunions or gatherings.  And of course, camping is available.  Adults pay a small fee for park entry.  But, kids 5 and younger are free.  Check out their site for all there is to see and do at Myrtle Beach State Park.

  • La Belle Amie Vineyard

    My friend and I visited this 40 acre vineyard for the first time about a year ago.  It’s a pretty area with porches, cabanas, music and food.  You can bring your own wine glasses if you like rather than purchasing one of theirs.  They ditched plastic cups for environmental reasons.  And, you can purchase wine tastings.  However, adults can enter the grounds for a modest fee without participating in the tasting.  Kids 12 and under are admitted at no cost.  We thoroughly enjoyed our visit and plan to return.  Take a look at their website for more info.

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