Top 5 Myrtle Beach Activities

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The trouble with Myrtle Beach is not finding something to do on vacation, it's in narrowing down the tons of events, attractions, activities and destinations to a reasonable amount to fit into a vacation!

We're here to help. We've combed through the hundreds of options and narrowed it down to the top five must-do Grand Strand activities.

1) The Beach

Sounds obvious, right? But really, there are so many other attractions in the area, you may have to remind yourself to spend some quality time on the beach while you're here. And the best news? It's free!  All you may need is a beach chair and umbrella, some sunscreen and maybe some beach toys and you are set for however long you want to enjoy Myrtle Beach's gorgeous seashore. And if you get tired of the sand and the surf, there's always the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk & Promenade, more than a mile of beautiful beachside boardwalk lined with shops, restaurants, benches and attractions. There's no better place to people watch and soak up some oceanfront ambiance.

2) The Carolina Opry

Since its 1992 opening, the Carolina Opry has been one of Myrtle Beach's most popular and celebrated live music venues, putting on dynamic shows ranging from gospel to country to show tunes. Its audience is packed night after night, and it's no wonder. The Opry puts together some of the best performers in the business. Its namesake show, performed at least three nights a week, is an award-winning blend of high-energy music, comedy and dance, polished with state-of-the-art lighting, sound and special effects. But there's a lot more to see at the Opry. In particular, the Christmas Special is not to be missed. Ticket prices range from around $35 to $50 for most shows.

3) Ripley's Aquarium

Don't miss this world-class aquarium right on Myrtle Beach's Boardwalk. At Ripley's Aquarium, you can have an up-close and personal opportunity to see some of the ocean's most amazing creatures.

Ripley's Aquarium is an 85,000-square-foot facility devoted to not just viewing sea life, but also to environmental education, conservation and research. Its most popular exhibit is the Dangerous Reef, where you can  glide along a 340-foot-long moving path through an acrylic tunnel with an unprecedented view of sharks, snappers, tarpons, grunts, squirrelfish, a green sea turtle and giant stingrays. Other exhibits include an Amazon River ecosystem, a living gallery of octopi, jellyfish and other delicate animals, and Friendship Flats, a shallow lagoon environment where you can touch rays as they glide through the water. Admission ranges from $23 to $25.

4) Myrtle Beach State Park

This exceptional state park is your access point for a true nature experience. The clean, gorgeous beach is less crowded than some stretches of beach in the city, and plenty of walking trails, picnic tables and fishing piers are available. Myrtle Beach State Park covers 312 acres of beach and oceanfront maritime forest at the south end of Myrtle Beach. It has a great nature center where you can learn about the birds, turtles and other critters that call the park home. Daily fee is $3 to $5.

5) Miniature golf

No joke, Myrtle Beach is known as the “miniature golf capital of the world.” With more than 30 putt-putt courses located up and down the Grand Strand, you're bound to find a theme that suits your family, whether it's Never Never Land, dinosaurs, pirates or a tropical paradise. Prices run around $10 per person for a round of mini golf, making this a fun and affordable family activity. Companies such as Myrtle Beach Family Golf offer several courses to choose from. So don't be afraid to find your inner child and have some fun on the links!

(posted 8/27/14)
(Photo courtesy: Carolina Opry)