Myrtle Beach is a classic getaway spot for people from all over. This area has tons to offer visitors, and it is located on the South Carolina coast of the Atlantic Ocean. This city is teeming with coastal wildlife and stunning scenery. Whether it’s the beach people come for or the entertainment and shopping, there’s something for everyone.
So, when is the best time to visit?
That depends on what activities you choose to participate in while you’re there. Something is going on year-round in Myrtle Beach. That’s why it helps to have some insider information into what to expect during each season and which activities are the most popular and exciting.
About Myrtle Beach
Myrtle Beach is both a tourist destination and a residential community. It’s located across approximately 60 miles of open space with extensive beaches and plenty of restaurants and shops. Historically, this was one of the earliest areas settled south of New England, and the first settlements date back to the early 1500s.
Until the late 1800s, this area was deemed a vacation destination. People from all over the region flocked to Myrtle Beach because of its impressive natural beaches and wide-open spaces. This natural landscape and forests made the ideal setting for many to get away from the industrialized, urban areas they resided within.
Myrtle Beach is both a tourist destination and a residential community. Myrtle Beach spans approximately 60 miles of open space with large beaches and plenty of restaurants and shops. Its name is derived from the population of wax myrtles that grow naturally.
Historically, this was one of the earliest areas settled south of New England, and the first settlements date back to the early 1500s. Until the late 1800s, this area was deemed a vacation destination. People from all over the area flocked to Myrtle Beach because of its impressive natural beaches and wide-open spaces.
This natural landscape and forests made the ideal setting for many to get away from the industrialized, urban areas they resided within. The city was officially incorporated in 1938 and was home to the Myrtle Beach Air Force Base and the U.S. Army Air Corps between the 1940s and 1950s.
These additions helped the area grow into the bustling place it is today. Although many residents are in the city today, it still retains its small-town charm and vacation-worthy views.
Best Time to Visit
If you’re like most people, you’ll want to visit when the weather is warm and the rain isn’t as frequent. This time of year would be June through August. During this time, the air and the water temperature are suitable for lying on the beach, swimming, or roaming through town in your shorts and sandals.
In terms of temperatures, you can expect it to range from the mid to upper 80s and sometimes into the 90s. Although the rain is less frequent during the summer months, there are chances for quick pop-up showers here or there due to the heat. Luckily, there’s usually no heavy thunderstorm activity, but it’s not entirely out of the question.
You’ll want to note and be prepared to handle the threat of tropical weather during the summer months. There’s always the chance of tropical activity through November. Just be sure to keep an eye on the weather before your visit and make sure you have free cancellation on your flight and hotel stay just in case.
If you want to beat the tourist season and still enjoy the sights and events, you could opt to go in the spring. Although the weather towards the end of the spring is similar to that in summer, the early spring provides a bit of chill in the air. It’s ideal for people who want to walk through the city’s streets and see the sites away from the beach.
If you plan to go to the beach, remember that the water in the ocean is still chilly, and the air temperature combined with the cold water makes it challenging if you try to swim or lay on the beach. You’ll also want to keep aware of any storms or rapidly changing weather patterns that tend to happen during that time of the year.
If you don’t mind cooler temperatures, you can get great deals on your hotels and activities if you go to Myrtle Beach in the fall. The air temps are usually anywhere from the 70s during the daytime to the 40s at night. You probably won’t want to get into the water, but you might be able to take a pleasant stroll along the beach if the wind isn’t blowing too much.
The fall is also a great time to go into the downtown area to shop and see all the fun fall activities in the area. It’s perfect for people who don’t want to deal with crowds or expensive flights. However, one thing worth mentioning is that some of the top attractions and activities close at the end of the summer, so make sure you know what is open and when.
Most people wouldn’t want to venture to Myrtle Beach during the winter. This area doesn’t usually get snow, but it isn’t entirely out of the question. The wind from the shoreline can make it unpleasant to be outside, especially around January.
You could, however, get some great hotel deals if you’re in town to visit friends or relatives for the holidays, which makes it ideal. Just remember that most activities and attractions for tourists are closed.
Popular Events in Myrtle Beach
There are plenty of events and festivals to look forward to for your visit to the area. No matter what season you choose to book your trip, there is something fun and exciting to do and see. In the winter, there are annual Christmas parades.
One popular parade is the Loris Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting. This event occurs in early December on the Main St. of the city. Don’t forget to check out the other events planned for winter and these other holidays.
- Spring break
- Bike week
- Valentine’s day
- Fourth of July
- Memorial Day
There’s also a Polar Express Cruise that runs out of Barefoot Marina. During February, there are plenty of Valentine-related events, such as the Romance in the Gardens at Brookgreen Gardens.
Furthermore, Myrtle Beach Bike Week Spring Rally for motorcycle enthusiasts is held in May. Lastly, visitors can enjoy the Carolina Country Music Festival at Burroughs and Chaplin Pavilion Place right on the oceanfront in early June.
What to Bring
Luckily, this area isn’t prone to extreme conditions often. If you go during the warm weather months, you’ll want to make sure you bring your sunscreen because you’ll likely be outside to enjoy the great weather. This is especially true if you plan to go to the beach.
You can burn quickly out in the open, especially with the sun reflecting off of the sand. If you want to stroll through town, be sure to bring a hat and sunglasses to protect your head and eyes throughout the day. If you go to the beach for the day, don’t forget these essentials.
- Beach towel
- Shade or umbrella
- Flotation devices for the water
Even if you come during the warmer months, you’ll still want to bring an umbrella and a rain jacket for those pop-up showers and instances where it can get a little chilly from the ocean breeze at night.
You’ll also want to bring comfortable shoes because you’ll likely do plenty of walking. If you go on a couple’s vacation, don’t forget to bring something nice to wear to dinner because tons of top-notch restaurants in the area showcase local southern fare and seafood. They are a must-do activity when you visit the place.
If you want to know the best time to go to Myrtle Beach, you’ll first need to decide what type of weather you prefer and which activities you want to do. First, if you love the beach and warm, sunny weather, you must go June through August.
Keep in mind that this is the busy season, so you’ll want to make your reservations well in advance to ensure you get a spot. If you choose to go in the later spring, you’ll run into the spring break crowd, so be prepared for that traffic. I also advise you to book well in advance and determine when the spring break activities are in full swing.
For fall and winter, you’re pretty safe waiting for a good deal to make your hotel reservations, but remember that holidays impact your flight experience, so plan accordingly. Not everyone likes to go to Myrtle Beach simultaneously, but be aware of any significant events or popular travel times to reduce your issues on the way there and back.
Plan accordingly and check out all upcoming events scheduled during your vacation. With some preparation, you’ll have a getaway you won’t forget.
More about our TFVG Author
A seasoned traveller, Dad, and avid sports tourist, James foundered The Family Vacation Guide to share his expert vacation experiences- especially when it comes to being a travelling family man.
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