Myrtle Beach is a coastal dream you can visit on the cheap!
Located in the lovingly tagged Grand Strand area, Myrtle Beach boasts a 60-mile stretch of beautiful beaches along the Atlantic Ocean. The best part about this tourist haven is there are so many free things to do in Myrtle Beach.
In addition to serving as both the Mini-Golf Capital of the World and Golf Capital of the World, the city is home to an impressive lineup of family-friendly activities from shows to dolphin cruises to The Simpsons 4D experience.
A trip to this seaside delight doesn’t have to break the bank, though! The Myrtle Beach area is brimming with ways to spend your time without spending a dime, too. Read our list of free things to do in Myrtle Beach so you can start planning your vacation on a budget today!
Pro Tip: If you save your dough on trip activities in Myrtle Beach, you’ll have more for delicious food! Dropping some cash on classic Southern food like shrimp and grits is money well spent.
A trip to Myrtle Beach without a visit to the beach just wouldn’t be complete. Grab your sunglasses, flip-flops, and everything else you’ll need (check out our thorough Myrtle Beach packing list!) for a day of fun in the sun.
Pro Tip: Forget your towel? Many beachside hotels in Myrtle Beach provide guests with beach towels free of charge.
Before running off to the shore, there are a few things to consider. Staying in an oceanfront hotel is the easiest way to avoid any parking snafus, but there are many free parking spots up and down the Grand Strand.
Safety first! The beaches of Myrtle Beach are known for being safe, but you can visit the CheckMyBeach website to track tides, weather, and water quality before your beach day.
Next, fill your beach day itinerary with activities like soaking up the sun, searching for seashells, and splashing in the surf! Effortless vacation memories are sure to be had.
Pro Tip: For your convenience, downtown Myrtle Beach offers amenities like public restrooms!
Myrtle Beach Festivals
The Grand Strand area hosts a variety of free festivals throughout the year. A bustling atmosphere filled with entertainment and food is the perfect setting to have a good time.
Check out these annual events and choose one (or a few!) that line up with your travel schedule:
- Carolina Country Music Fest
- Canadian-American Days
- Blue Crab Festival
- Broadway at the Beach KidzTime
- Lighting of the Landing
Related Post: Current Festivals and Events in Myrtle Beach
Broadway at the Beach
This 350-acre outdoor entertainment and shopping complex is the largest in South Carolina and offers a variety of things to do. All the fun surrounds a beautiful 23-acre lake.
Here are just a few of the ways to fill your time when visiting Broadway at the Beach:
- Fireworks! Throughout the summer months, catch sizzling displays every Tuesday and Friday at 10 p.m.
- Entertainment abounds, like holiday festivals, regional festivals, street performers, and shows.
- Window shopping. Ooh and ah at the fantastic selection of stores. Careful, though! Keep that cash put away so you’re not tempted to turn window shopping into actual shopping.
Murrells Inlet MarshWalk
This hidden gem in Myrtle Beach is the perfect opportunity to stroll through the natural beauty of the area when you’re ready to take a break from the beach. The historic village offers stunning salt marsh views dotted with bird and other wildlife sightings.
You’ll also find cafes and restaurants at Murrells Inlet MarshWalk in case all the exploring works up your appetite, but you’ll have to spare some change. However, live music that plays at many of the restaurants is totally free!
Garden City Beach Pier
Nearby the Murrells Inlet MarshWalk is the ever-popular Pier at Garden City Beach. The lively atmosphere at the pier is brought about by live music on Friday nights and karaoke on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.
Enjoy the 668-foot stroll down the pier, which is known for good fishing. If you’re lucky, you might get to witness some exciting catches!
Burroughs and Chapin Art Museum
A charming exterior greets visitors approaching the Franklin G. Burroughs-Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum. This cozy white cottage decorated with awnings covered in green stripes houses 11 galleries. This is one spot you can visit again and again, as exhibitions change throughout the year.
The museum lays claim to pieces by names as notable as Frank Lloyd Wright and Norman Rockwell. There are even portions of the museum that cater to kids, such as an exhibition dedicated to the golden age of animated films.
Admission is free for all, every day! Find the museum doors open from Tuesday to Saturday.
As the name suggests, this is the perfect spot to casually take in the laid-back vibe of Myrtle Beach! Picture an old fishing village surrounding a gorgeous 27-acre lake, then give it a modern twist. The picturesque setting of this buzzing entertainment complex, located on the Intracoastal Waterway, can be enjoyed free of charge.
Dining and shopping at the Barefoot Landing will require giving up some dough, but you’ll also find festivals and free events throughout the year to celebrate holidays, food, and coastal Carolina.
Pro Tip: Rumor has it there are fireworks displays throughout the year too! Keep your eyes on the sky.
South Carolina Hall of Fame
The official South Carolina Hall of Fame honors famous South Carolinians, like Darius Rucker and Darla Moore. Other inductees include Dizzy Gillespie, Andrew Jackson, and Charles Duke.
Both current and past citizens who have made a difference in the state of South Carolina are showcased. Visit the museum in the Myrtle Beach Convention Center. There’s no admission fee to get in!
Myrtle Beach Fishing Piers
Myrtle Beach is home to fishing piers galore. Catch saltwater favorites such as black sea bass, grouper, and snapper at one of the six piers along the Myrtle Beach coast.
If you want to cast a rod and reel, there is typically a small fee to do so. However, if you’re there for the salty, exciting atmosphere, you can walk along the piers at no cost!
Ocean Boulevard’s Hot Summer Nights
Ocean Boulevard hosts Hot Summer Nights June through the beginning of September every night except Sunday. These free events pack in the entertainment with fireworks, street performers, line dancing, karaoke, games, and door prizes.
There’s no shortage of fun for the whole family all summer long.
The Market Common
The Market Common is a beautiful setting featuring state-of-the-art shopping and dining. While you’ll have to shell out some hard-earned money to take advantage of these activities, there are plenty of free things to do, too!
Some of these include:
- Movies under the stars
- Complimentary carriage rides
- Festivals throughout the year
Related Post: 10 Things to Do in Myrtle Beach on a Rainy Day
Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens
Looking for more outdoorsy free things to do in Myrtle Beach? Just north of Myrtle Beach in the town of Little River, Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens is a wonderland of natural beauty. This 114-acre park and wildlife refuge features trails, salt marshes, a cemetery, and views of the Intracoastal Waterway. Explore the enchanting woodlands for free!
Photo Alert: Visit at sunrise or sunset to photograph a stunning nature landscape for the ‘gram. Bonus points if you catch a wildlife sighting on camera!
The Boardwalk & Promenade
The Boardwalk & Promenade is the happening place in downtown Myrtle Beach. Running along the city’s oceanfront business district, it’s the perfect place to meander in the balmy air while taking in gorgeous ocean views. People watch all day, then stay to gaze at the illuminated Myrtle Beach SkyWheel in the starlit evening hours.
Which free things to do in Myrtle Beach are on your bucket list?
Long, lazy days spent on the beach and cool, breezy nights spent on your favorite Myrtle Beach boardwalk definitely have to make your trip. But what else? You have our list of 13 things to choose from!
Explore Myrtle Beach, SC without spending all your savings. Tripster is here to help you vacation on a budget.