Myrtle Beach

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The South Carolina coast is dotted with cute beach towns, lush sea islands and stately old plantations. The regal city of Charleston, formerly a French port, draws millions of tourists every year. Myrtle Beach is on the north end of the coast, about 45 minutes from the North Carolina border.

Day Trips from Myrtle Beach

Calabash

Straddling the North Carolina-South Carolina border, this tiny town is famous for its "Calabash-style" fried seafood and seems to have nearly as many fish shacks as houses.

25 miles north of Myrtle Beach, SC, www.townofcalabash.net
Tags: family | day trip | culinary

Charleston

This antebellum beauty of a city is loaded with historic buildings, elegant restaurants and postcard-pretty neighborhoods of colorful row houses and leafy magnolias. Fort Sumter, where the Civil War began, is on an island in the harbor.

95 miles south of Myrtle Beach, SC, www.charleston.com
Tags: family | art | culture | architecture | history | day trip | culinary

Georgetown

A sleepy colonial city on a sparkling bay, 18th-century Georgetown is one of the oldest settlements in America. Lunch at one of the waterfront cafes, then stroll the oak-lined streets.

36 miles south of Myrtle Beach, SC, www.seaportgeorgetown.com
Tags: culture | architecture | history | day trip

Pawley's Island

At the south end of the Grand Strand, this barrier island has been slower to develop than much of the coastline, leaving it a quaint, quiet place for fishing and bird-watching.

25 miles south of Myrtle Beach, SC, www.townofpawleysisland.com
Tags: family | outdoors | day trip | wildlife

South of the Border

Kitsch-lovers will revel in this bizarre roadside attraction. This Mexican-themed fake village from the 1950s includes fireworks stands, penny candy stores and souvenir shops topped with a giant sombrero tower and a statue of the grinning "Pedro."

70 miles northwest of Myrtle Beach, SC, www.pedroland.com
Tags: family | day trip | culinary

Sunset Beach

Across the border in North Carolina, this relaxed island beach town has three miles of shoreline connected to the mainland by a bridge. Escape here for a lazy, crowd-free afternoon.

30 miles north of Myrtle Beach, SC, www.sunsetnc.com
Tags: family | outdoors | day trip

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