With its countless family-friendly attractions, recreational offerings and dining and entertainment venues, Myrtle Beach has more to see and do than you could possibly pack into a one-week vacation. But if you're feeling the need to get away from the action and relax and recharge your batteries, take a day trip to historic Georgetown, Little River or Conway.
These nearby coastal communities offer visitors the slower pace and hospitality of a small Southern town with vibrant, walkable village centers where you can shop, dine, or take a sightseeing tour, fishing trip, or guided kayaking adventure.
All three towns are located within an hour's drive of Myrtle Beach. Read more about them below:
Founded in 1729, Georgetown is the third oldest city in South Carolina, with more than 50 historic homes and buildings. A walk along downtown Front Street will take you past some of these beautiful structures, now housing one-of-a-kind boutiques, neat gift shops and quaint cafes, like Tuscany Bistro. Behind the oak-lined street is Harborwalk, where you'll find the 18th-century Kaminsky House Museum and a boardwalk overlooking the Sampit River. Several tour companies offer excursions through the historic district as well as shelling and lighthouse cruises. You also can explore the coastal waterways on a fishing charter or kayak nature trip. While you're in town, be sure to visit Morgan Park at the southern tip of the peninsula for great views of Winyah Bay. Georgetown hosts a number of fun events each year, among them the popular Wooden Boat Show held the third weekend in October.
Once merely a gateway to Myrtle Beach, the historic river town has become a vacation destination in its own right with a picturesque downtown, inviting restaurants and the scenic Riverwalk along the blackwater Waccamaw River. A stroll along the boardwalk takes you under the unique arches of the 1937 Waccamaw River Memorial Bridge, past the Conway City Marina to Riverfront Park. Several events are held annually along the river, including a Christmas boat parade and the summertime Riverfest. The historic downtown features cool shops like Papa's General Store, fine clothiers in the indoor shops of Black Water Market and Ocean Fish Market, where you can purchase fresh seafood to go or eat on site. The Rivertown Bistro alone is worth the drive from Myrtle Beach. Featured among South Carolina's best restaurants in Southern Living magazine, this elegant eatery has become so popular, it's hard to get a table without a reservation.
Known for its fresh seafood, boat charters and annual Blue Crab Festival, this coastal fishing village offers visitors a more laid-back vibe than its famed neighbor to the south. Despite the slower pace, there's plenty to do in Little River. Among its many attractions are two Las Vegas-style gambling boats that set sail twice a day into international waters where gambling is legal. You'll also find a number of fishing boat operators offering party-boat trips near shore or deep water outings in the Gulf Stream. In addition, pontoon boats and jet skis rentals are available at area marinas, along with several popular waterfront restaurants. If you're looking for a quieter activity, take a leisurely stroll through the beautiful Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens overlooking tidal salt marshes along the Intracoastal Waterway.