All sorts of sightseeing tours are available on the Grand Strand, giving visitors a scenic view of the area by road, or excellent access to the Atlantic Ocean by boat. But none offer the unique views of the Intracoastal Waterway aboard the Barefoot Princess, a paddleboat-style vessel designed for maximum comfort and entertainment.
Located at the Barefoot Landing Marina in North Myrtle Beach, just behind Greg Norman's Australian Grill at the popular Barefoot Landing complex, the Barefoot Princess offers a wide selection of cruises – daytime sightseeing tours, evening dinner cruises and other special voyages that feature live music and entertainment on the main stage.
Climb aboard the 64-foot, triple-decker Barefoot Princess and prepare to see the Myrtle Beach area as you have never seen it before. While highways and ocean routes can take you to places with familiar landscapes and seascapes, the Intracoastal Waterway offers ever-changing and breath-taking views as you sail down the man-made river at a leisurely pace to the rarely seen locations and hidden treasures of the Grad Strand.
See Barefoot Landing from the opposite side of the main entrance and the view everyone gets when they arrive by vehicle. Sail north to the marinas and waterfront bars and cafes of North Myrtle Beach and Little River all the way up to beautiful Bird Island, or head south for unique angles of prestigious golf courses and neighborhoods where you can see luxurious homes and clubhouses' patio decks and boat docks along the banks.
The farther south you sail the more you encounter the Lowcountry wilderness that you can't reach by car. Swampy scenes around the Socastee swing bridge down to the Waccamaw Neck where the Waccamaw and Pee Dee rivers converge with the Waterway, creating a deep and wide section surrounded by former rice plantations, small islands, scenic wetlands and woodlands and zero development. It's a picture-perfect place for a great photo op.
The diversity of the rolling landscape along the Waterway is only part of the fun and experience of a ride on the Barefoot Princess. Featuring an elegantly decorated main dining room on the first floor, this full-service vessel offers excellent meals and a bar with mixed drinks and great views through the windows for those chilly days and nights.
The second floor serves as a ballroom for live music and entertainment, as well as a full bar and an open-air deck off the back. The top floor is a large observation deck where guests can enjoy the weather and the view from high above. See dense woodlands, scenic wetlands and all sorts of wildlife, from alligators to birds of preys.
The sightseeing cruise is a day trip that last about an hour and a half, depending on the course set for the afternoon, while the dinner cruise is a two-hour trip down the Intracoastal Waterway. A traditional Southern feast is served, followed by live music and entertainment and a lot of mixing and mingling on the outdoor decks.
The Barefoot Princess operates seven days a week during the summer months with a more limited offseason schedule. Special cruises include a traditional Southern barbecue excursion and a Fourth of July cruise that allows guests to watch the fireworks light up the sky from over the water. Prices vary depending upon the cruise and the time of year.
The Barefoot Princess accepts reservations and recommends them for busier times of the tourist season. The boat also offers group rates and caters to private functions, such as weddings, reunions, parties and other special events. For more information or to book a cruise, call 843-272-2140 or visit the web site at www.mbriverboat.com.