Welcome To Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Myrtle Beach was incorporated as a town in 1938 and became a city in 1957. Its name comes from the wax myrtle, a shrub that grows abundantly in the area. Our 25,000 permanent residents welcome millions of visitors to this full-service resort community. Guests come to enjoy the wide beaches, the Atlantic Ocean, and an incredible range of activities entertainment including golf, shopping and dining.
History records that the first tourists here were a party of Spaniards from Hispaniola, who landed about 50 miles north of present-day Myrtle Beach in 1526 and eventually established the first European settlement in the U.S., San Miguel de Cauldape, about 30 miles to the south.
In the next three centuries, the region's population grew slowly. In the late 1800s and early 1900s, people began to "vacation" here, although it was quite rustic. At the turn of the century, Houses and camps were sparse, and there were only few permanent residents. But, drawn by the ocean, sand and trees, people began to call Myrtle Beach "home" as the 1900s progressed.
Today, Myrtle Beach is a well known destination for vacationers from around the country, Canada and abroad. According to the 2000 Census, the city is at the heart of the 13th fastest growing metropolitan area in the U.S.
Myrtle Beach is a great place to live, work and play, as our 25,000 full-time residents will confirm. What makes our city so inviting? Here's a short list.... Three recreation centers have been expanded or renovated recently. New roads have been built with attractive landscaping and underground utilities. The cultural arts are being reborn throughout the community. And our local business climate offers a wealth of entertainment, dining and shopping options.
Myrtle Beach also has nine-and-a-half miles of public beach, a municipal golf course, a convention center, the only city-owned public library in the state, and a baseball stadium.
The City of Myrtle Beach is the heart of the Grand Strand, a 60-mile crescent of beach on South Carolina's northern coast. Our 25,000 residents welcome literally millions of visitors to this full-service community each year. As a result, Myrtle Beach is the premier resort destination on the East Coast, hosting vacationers from around the country and abroad.
Of course, the Atlantic Ocean is the number one attraction and the reason so many families visit Myrtle Beach year after year. Our clean, wide beaches are extremely inviting. Myrtle Beach also offers a wealth of recreation, entertainment, dining, shopping and vacation opportunities for visitors and tourists.
Myrtle Beach Area History
Kings Highway, a major thoroughfare through the Myrtle Beach area, began as an Indian trail long before Europeans settled along the Grand Strand. Later, this trail became the route from the northern states to Charleston and Savannah.
The area’s first inhabitants were the Waccamaw and Winyah Indians, who named the region Chicora, meaning “the land.”
Early attempts by European explorers to settle the Grand Strand were disastrous. Spaniard Lucas Vasques de Allyon founded the first colony in North America here in 1526, but the settlement was ravaged by disease, and the inhabitants perished within a year.
English colonists formed Prince George Parish and laid out plans for Georgetown, the state’s third oldest city, in 1730. Surrounded by rivers and marshlands, Georgetown became the center of America’s colonial rice empire.
Before the Civil War, plantation owners turned Pawleys Island into one of the first summer resorts on the Atlantic coast. Historic beach cottages and other landmarks still stand, and while the legendary Pawleys Pavilion is just a memory, an annual reunion keeps the spirit alive. Speaking of spirits, the Gray Man ghost still patrols Pawleys Island when hurricanes loom. A few miles north is Murrells Inlet, a fishing and seafood village where another apparition roams: Alice, Ghost of the Hermitage. According to legend, Alice Belin Flagg (1833-1849) died broken-hearted and now combs the creek side for her lost ring.
Until the 1900s, the beaches of Horry County were virtually uninhabited due to the county’s geographical inaccessibility and poor economy.
Near the turn of the century, the Burroughs & Collins Company, a timber/turpentine firm with extensive beachfront holdings, began developing the Myrtle Beach area as a resort. In 1901, the company built the beach’s first hotel, the Seaside Inn. At that time, oceanfront lots sold for $25, and buyers received an extra lot if they built a house valued at $500 or more. The beach community was called New Town (and, previously, Long Bay, Withers, or Withers Big Swamp) until the Horry Herald sponsored a contest to officially name the area. Mrs. F.E. Burroughs, wife of the founder of Burroughs & Collins, won with the name Myrtle Beach, which she chose for the many wax myrtle trees growing wild along the shore.
In the 1920s, a group of businessmen began building an upscale resort called Arcady at the north end of the community. Arcady featured the present Pine Lakes International Country Club, home of the Strand’s first golf club and birthplace of the magazine Sports Illustrated, as well as the legendary Ocean Forest Hotel.
Several major developments took place along the Strand during the 1930s and 1940s. In 1936, the Intercostals Waterway was opened to pleasure boats and commercial shipping. During the 1940s, the Air Force Base was established and used for training and coastal patrols during World War II. The base was closed in 1993. The Myrtle Beach Pavilion was built in 1949, and the historic band organ and carousel were installed in 1954.
The Myrtle Beach Convention Center, which houses the official South Carolina Hall of Fame, opened in 1970 (the adjoining Radisson Plaza Hotel opened in January 2003). During the 1970s, new construction in the area topped $75 million, and the permanent population tripled.
In the 1970s and 1980s, construction of attractions, homes, retail shops and other amenities increased steadily, paving the way for another boom in the early 1990s. The Grand Strand currently attracts millions of visitors and thousands of new residents to the area each year. The Myrtle Beach Metropolitan Statistical Area was listed as the 13th fastest growing area in the nation, according to U.S. Census Bureau statistics released in April 2001. The area has grown 36.5 percent over the past decade.
Myrtle Beach Real Estate
Just the mere mention of the Myrtle Beach and the Grand Strand area makes you think beach... vacation... and golf! But Myrtle Beach has much more than this to offer a home buyer looking to relocate Let us introduce you to a local real estate professional who can help you to find the home of your dreams, second home, or investment property.
Areas around the Grand Strand include Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, Conway, Surfside Beach, Garden City, Murrells Inlet, Pawley’s Island, even Georgetown. With such a wide variety of homes and locations to choose from, we know you will find the perfect place to call home along the Grand Strand!
Myrtle Beach Weather Information
Sun-soaked beaches mixed with refreshing ocean water and just a touch of warm sea breezes make up the perfect recipes for a Myrtle Beach vacation. Our mild temperatures and unbeatable location along the east coast provides beautiful weather year-round.
Did you know that Myrtle Beach has over 200 days of sunshine each year?
Average climate in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Cost of Living
Every quarter Council for Community and Economic Research compiles and publishes its Cost of Living Index, a comparison of the cost of living in more than 300 cities and areas across the country. Participating agencies such as chambers of commerce collect prices on nearly 60 different products and services. In an effort to control random error in the analysis of the data, agencies are expected to collect the same data at the same time for every quarter during the year.
Listed below are just a few examples of how Myrtle Beach compares with the rest of the nation. A composite index score of 100 is the national average.
|New York, N.Y. (Manhattan)
|West Palm Beach, Fla.
|Hilton Head, S.C.
|Baton Rouge, La.
|Virginia Beach, Va.
|Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Myrtle Beach Area Average Cost of Living Prices
|Average Apartment Rent
||$606 (two bedrooms, two baths, unfurnished, approx. 950 sq. ft., excluding utilities except water and sewer)
|Average New Home Cost
||$219,470 (2,400 sq. ft. living area, conventionally built on site, three bedrooms, two baths, two-car garage)
|Average Electric Bill
||$122.41 (based on 1,800 sq. ft. living area)
|Average Phone Charges
||$24.50 (private residence, not including long distance service)
|Average Gasoline Price per Gallon
||$1.68 (regular unleaded gasoline)
|Average Price of a Movie Ticket
||$7.63 (recent release, indoor theater, evening rates)
Welcome to Family Kingdom: Myrtle Beach’s only Sea Side Amusement Park
With more than 30 thrilling rides in the heart of Myrtle Beach, Family Kingdom is one incredible vacation experience. From its legendary Swamp Fox wooden roller coaster and South Carolina's largest ferris wheel to a wide and colorful array of rides for kids, this is the most dazzling domain of fun, fantasy and excitement at the beach.
Come spend the day exploring acre after acre of the coolest amusements, games and tasty treats imaginable. Or visit a place where the lights, sounds and aromas of non-stop entertainment create once-in-a-lifetime moments every night of the week.
Discover the Fun
For the young and young at heart, Family Kingdom offers some of the most memorable and adrenalin-pumping experiences on the Grand Strand. Families and Groups naturally love it for our excellent variety of spirited and wholesome fun. But, singles and couples as well know us as the hottest spot in town for having the time of your life.
Come discover the fun of Family Kingdom.
Myrtle Beach's Only Oceanfront Water Park
Splash your way through the "coolest" fun at the beach! Feel the thrill of speeding down a water slide or simply relax as you drift down the cool, refreshing water of a lazy river. Family Kingdom Water Park has wet and wild water flumes, (one with a 185 foot drop), exhilarating speed slides, intermediate speed slides and a spacious 400 square foot lazy river with waterfalls.
Children can enjoy splash pools with two refreshing rain trees, a uniquely designed waterfall and eight kiddie slides.
House of Blues
The House of Blues is a chain of music halls and restaurants founded in 1992 by Hard Rock Cafe founder Isaac Tigrett and his friend and investor Dan Aykroyd. It is a home for live music and southern-inspired cuisine, whose clubs celebrate African-American culture, specifically blues music and folk art. The charter HOB in Harvard Square opened its doors on Thanksgiving Day 1992.
Come out for some good le' down home, knee slappin' entertainment the whole family will love. Watch in amazement as 32 horses perform a stampede and many feats that will absolutely astound you. The cast members will fill you with laughter and keep you entertained with this variety filled show. While enjoying all the excitement, you will be able to sit back and soak up all the southern hospitality that will be served up with your four-course dinner that will leave you more than satisfied.
THE PUTTING ADVENTURE THAT TIME FORGOT! Life-sized animatronics dinosaurs still walk the earth at Jurassic Golf! Our T-Rex joins the rest of the cast as they tower over the foliage and chase you around the Rock Mountains and waterfalls of our two 18-hole courses, "Ice Age" and "Predator.
Coastal Scuba is a full-service PADI dive facility, located right in the heart of North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, offering scuba diving and fishing! The Grand Strand is loaded with some of the best dive sites on the East Coast! We have a high concentration of beautiful natural shipwreck sites that range in age from the mid 1800's to the 1960's, with many from the Civil War and WWII era. We also have several reefs that contain intact ships! While you're here, be sure to check out Barracuda Alley,- a project spear-headed by Coastal Scuba and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources.
Our dive sites are usually teaming with marine life, including angel fish, grouper, amberjack, butterfly fish, great Atlantic barracuda, sea turtles, and even the occasional lobster! In recent years even lionfish have been discovered living on our wrecks! On many of the sites you may find "sunken treasures" of brass artifacts that went down with the ship. These may include Civil War belt buckles, trigger guards, gun butt plates, bottles, china, small personal items, and port holes,- just to name a few. Coastal Scuba brings together years of experience from its captains, instructors and dive masters. Our goal is to make your diving experience the best you have had in the Carolinas, with something to offer every diver from the newly certified, to the seasoned veteran. Thank you for making us your first choice in South Carolina scuba diving charters and lessons!
We are proud to present the Safari IV! This 45 foot customized dive boat is sleek enough to get you to dive sites quickly, sturdy enough to offer you stability against the occasionally unpredictable Atlantic, and yet roomy and spacious on board, complete with a full size head (bathroom), 2 ice coolers for your snacks, and a professional crew. She carries all Coast Guard required equipment including first aid kits and oxygen.
We are also proud to announce the addition of the Little River Fishing Fleet to our company!: The Pride of the Carolinas and the Sundancer are outfitted for both fishing and scuba diving, running trips year round based on customer demand.
Standing with quiet dignity and majesty across the river from downtown Wilmington, the Battleship NORTH CAROLINA beckons visitors to walk her decks and envision daily life as well as fierce combat that her crew faced in the Pacific Theatre during World War II.
From all across the Nation they came, young men who had grown up in the crucible of the Depression and now determined to serve their Country in its time of need. These are the young men whose stories you will encounter through their oral histories, uniforms, and mementos as you explore the ship and its exhibits.
For more information on moving to Myrtle Beach South Carolina please visit www.cityofmyrtlebeach.com.
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