Free Things to do in Myrtle Beach

Free Myrtle Beach: Things to do on A Budget

If the best things in life are free, then the best things in life are in the Grand Strand of Myrtle Beach. From activities to do, galleries to see, and performances to take in, there’s something that everyone will enjoy. Here are a few examples:

The Beach

It kind of goes without saying, but since the Myrtle Beach oceanfront offers so much to do (swimming, building sandcastles, walking along the shoreline, shelling, and relaxing) it definitely deserves recognition. More often than not, you’ll also find free concerts, festivals, and evening fireworks in the summer that can’t be beat!

Myrtle Beach
_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>Myrtle Beach, SC Spring Break ” by Curtis and Eric

If you’re feeling more adventurous, try your hand at building sandcastles or flying a kite. The wide open spaces and soft sands provide the perfect canvas for your creative beach endeavors. Spend quality time with your loved ones, splashing in the waves or simply lounging under the sun.

Myrtle Beach also offers various free activities along the shoreline. Look out for beach yoga classes, organized beach volleyball games, or even impromptu concerts by local musicians. These events not only allow you to enjoy the beach but also provide opportunities to connect with the local community.

Pack a picnic and enjoy a meal with an ocean view. Many beach access points have picnic tables and grills available for public use. Savor the flavors of your favorite snacks while relishing the beauty of the beachfront.

Shelling on Pawleys Island

Pawleys Island is one of the oldest beach resorts in the United States, and it’s become renowned for its rich history and stunning shorelines. Visitors flock to the island year-round to enjoy its pristine coastal views and outdoor activities, but perhaps one of the most delightful attractions is its plentiful shelling opportunities.

North Litchfield Beach (Pawley's Island, South Carolina)
North Litchfield Beach (Pawley’s Island, South Carolina) by @CarShowShooter

The best time to go shelling on Pawleys Island is either at low tide or after a storm. The gentle waves help bring shells closer to shore, allowing visitors to easily find them along the sandy coastline. Popular shell varieties include sand dollars, moon snails, and scallops, as well as various species of oysters, clams, augers, murexes, turritellas, gastropods, and whelks. But no matter what type of shell you find, all of them are beautiful reminders of your visit to this historic beach destination.

In search of a truly special souvenir? Look no further than the sand dollars! This gentle creature can often be found with its distinctive five-pointed design readily visible in the sand. With luck, you may even come upon an intact specimen which is thought to bring good luck (and lots of photo ops) to whoever finds it!

Conway Riverwalk

Located just a short drive from Myrtle Beach, the Conway Riverwalk offers a scenic escape from the bustling tourist attractions. This hidden gem is a perfect destination for budget-conscious travelers looking to immerse themselves in nature’s beauty without spending a dime.

The well-maintained trail winds through lush greenery, providing a serene and peaceful atmosphere. Along the way, you’ll encounter charming wooden bridges, benches, and picnic areas, inviting you to pause and take in the tranquil surroundings.

Dip back for a kiss with streetlights in the background and lit by my studio lights - Conway Riverwalk
Conway Riverwalk by Ryan Smith Photography

The river itself offers a delightful sight, with its calm waters reflecting the vibrant colors of the sky. Keep an eye out for wildlife as well – you might spot graceful herons, turtles basking in the sun, or even playful otters in their natural habitat.

Aside from the natural beauty, the Conway Riverwalk also showcases the town’s rich history. Historical markers and informative signage are scattered throughout, providing insights into the area’s past. Take a moment to learn about Conway’s fascinating heritage as you meander along the trail.

Whether you choose to explore the Riverwalk in the morning, afternoon, or evening, each time of day offers a unique experience. Morning walks provide a tranquil start to your day, with misty river views and the gentle chirping of birds. Afternoons offer a chance to soak up the sun’s warmth and enjoy a leisurely stroll. As the sun sets, the Riverwalk takes on a romantic ambiance, with golden hues painting the sky and the river reflecting the colors like a mirror.

Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens

This breathtaking attraction offers visitors a serene escape from the bustling city and provides a fascinating glimpse into the area’s rich history – all without costing a penny.

Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens
Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens is one of the best free things to do in Myrtle Beach

Vereen Memorial Historical Gardens is more than just a beautiful park – it’s a living testament to the heritage of the region. Along the trails, you’ll encounter informative markers that reveal the historical significance of the area. From the remnants of an old rice plantation to the Native American artifacts, each step unveils a piece of the past.

One of the highlights of the gardens is the breathtaking boardwalk that winds its way through the marshlands. As you stroll along, you’ll witness an incredible array of wildlife, from graceful herons and egrets to playful dolphins that occasionally make an appearance. It’s a nature lover’s paradise, offering a unique opportunity to observe the coastal ecosystem up close.

South Carolina Hall of Fame

The South Carolina Hall of Fame is a state-of-the-art facility that pays tribute to the incredible contributions of South Carolinians throughout history. From political figures such as John Rutledge, who signed the Declaration of Independence, to scientists like Charles Townes, father of the laser, to groundbreaking civil rights activists like Modjeska Monteith Simkins, the hall of fame celebrates individuals from all walks of life and all backgrounds who have made an invaluable impact on our state.

South Carolina Hall of Fame
South Carolina Hall of Fame


Visitors to the Hall of Fame can take part in interactive exhibits highlighting the accomplishments of these distinguished individuals. The museum also has an extensive library containing books, photographs, and articles dedicated to South Carolina’s many illustrious sons and daughters. There are also special programs held throughout the year focused on topics ranging from local history to technology and beyond.

The South Carolina Hall of Fame is a must-see for anyone interested in learning more about South Carolina’s heritage. It is an inspirational reminder of our state’s remarkable legacy and the power of individual achievement. Come explore this amazing facility and discover the incredible stories that lie within!

Hall of Heroes

The South Carolina Hall of Heroes is a solemn reminder of the sacrifices made by brave individuals to protect our freedom and ensure the safety of future generations. As bystanders pass through Market Common on Highway 17 Business, they are immediately greeted by its heroic presence. The Hall of Heroes consists of a scaled-down version of Washington DC’s Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall, an exhibit that pays tribute to those who have been honored with the Medal of Honor, as well as other touching displays honoring those who have served our country.

Hall of Heroes Myrtle Beach, SC
Hall of Heroes, Myrtle Beach, SC

The hall provides visitors with an intimate glimpse into the lives of the people who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country and offers a chance to thank them for their selfless acts. Here, visitors can also learn about different branches of service and gain an appreciation for the courage and dedication of those who fought in battle and put their lives on the line.

Come experience the inspiring stories at the South Carolina Hall of Heroes – a physical monument in remembrance of those who gave so much and lost so much. It is only right to honor these heroes and recognize their bravery in defending our nation’s most precious values. Farewell and thank you.

Franklin G. Burroughs and Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum

Often referred to as hidden treasure in Myrtle Beach, this museum houses amazing artistic displays. Artists, both locally celebrated and nationally acclaimed, have their works on the walls. Often, there are special exhibits and workshops just for children (sometimes for a small fee).

Myrtle Beach Art Museum
Myrtle Beach Art Museum; image via

The museum boasts an impressive collection of artwork that spans various mediums and styles, showcasing the talent of both local and international artists. From contemporary pieces to classical masterpieces, there’s something to captivate every art enthusiast.

Featured artists of national renown include Ansel Adams, Frank Lloyd Wright, Norman Rockwell, John James Audubon, the Gee’s Bend quilters, and Jasper Johns, as well as some of the region’s most celebrated names, including Jonathan Green and Brian Rutenberg.

T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation Station at Barefoot Landing

Its mission is to preserve one of the rarest tiger species in the world, the Golden Tabby tiger, but T.I.G.E.R.S. Preservation Station at Barefoot Landing also showcases the majesty of these beautiful animals close-up. To see them interact, play, or parent their cubs at this location is completely free. However, you can also support the conservation of these rare species by purchasing a photo session with a baby tiger or orangutan sitting in your lap. The experience is priceless and the picture is definitely worth a thousand words. It may also save a few endangered lives.

Murrells Inlet Marsh Walk and Goat Island

There is an island inhabited by goats throughout most of the year just across the water from Drunken Jack’s Restaurant at Murrells Inlet. Aptly called Goat Island, its residents have been the island’s chief landscapers for nearly a quarter of a century—though now, they also receive vegetable trimmings and hushpuppies from the restaurant. Residents and recurring visitors to Myrtle Beach look forward to seeing the small herd of goats each year and now the goats have feathered companions… peacocks.

Murrells Inlet Marsh Walk
Murrells Inlet Marsh Walk by TheDigitel Myrtle Beach


Ooh and aah as bursts of light illuminate the night sky. For much of the summer season (weather permitting) fireworks explode along the Grand Strand. Every Monday, Barefoot Landing in North Myrtle Beach puts on quite a display. On Tuesdays and Fridays, gaze up at the vibrant colors from Broadway at the Beach. Plyler Park on the Boardwalk hosts the fireworks show on Wednesday nights as part of the “Hot Summer Nights” concert series.

Window shopping along the Boardwalk

You don’t have to come away with a new purchase, but you’ll likely find something irresistible that calls out to you. That’s the beauty of window shopping—it’s free to look. And here on the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk, you’ll be in the center of the action. Feel free to stroll the boards, take in the scenery, and maybe even do some “people watching” while relaxing on a side bench. Other great places for window shopping include the Tanger Outlets, Barefoot Landing, and Broadway at the Beach.

Myrtle Beach Boardwalk
Myrtle Beach Boardwalk is one of the best free Myrtle Beach attractions

Free events and festivals in Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach is not only known for its beautiful beaches and stunning scenery but also for its vibrant community and lively events. One of the best ways to experience the city on a budget is by participating in the various free events and festivals that take place throughout the year.

Hot Summer Nights

Every Tuesday through Sunday, beginning in June and ending in August, you can party to the music of local bands as they perform at stages along the boardwalk. This family-friendly event features live music, entertainment, and fireworks, creating a festive atmosphere that delights both locals and tourists alike. As an extra free bonus, buskers (better known as street performers) stroll the boardwalk on Fridays and Sundays, entertaining and delighting visitors with their talents.

Art in the Park Festival

This outdoor art show brings together talented artists from across the region, showcasing their creations in various mediums such as painting, sculpture, and pottery. It’s a great opportunity to appreciate and support local artists while enjoying a leisurely stroll through the park.

Music on Main

Held in downtown North Myrtle Beach, this free event features live bands playing a variety of genres, from rock and country to jazz and blues. Grab a blanket or a chair, sit back, and let the music transport you to a state of pure relaxation.

Night of a Thousand Candles
Night of a Thousand Candles by JustcallmeTom

Nights of a Thousand Candles

If you happen to visit Myrtle Beach during the holiday season, be sure to check out the “Nights of a Thousand Candles” at Brookgreen Gardens. This enchanting event features thousands of twinkling lights, carolers, and hand-lit candles, creating a magical ambiance that truly captures the spirit of Christmas.

Live Shows at Myrtle Beach Boardwalk Plaza

The Myrtle Beach Boardwalk Plaza is not only a hub of activity and excitement but also a hotspot for free live entertainment. From local bands belting out catchy tunes to mesmerizing fire jugglers putting on a thrilling show, there is never a dull moment at this lively venue.

Boardwalk & pavilion at night, Myrtle Beach, S. C.
Boardwalk & pavilion at night, Myrtle Beach, S. C. by Boston Public Library

Grab a seat on one of the benches or find a cozy spot on the sand to enjoy the free live entertainment. Whether you’re into jazz, rock, or even a bit of country music, you’re bound to find a performance that suits your musical taste.

Final Word

We hope you enjoyed our post about exploring Myrtle Beach on a budget and discovering the many free activities available. Myrtle Beach is a popular tourist destination, but that doesn’t mean you have to break the bank to have a great time. By following our suggestions, you can enjoy the beauty and attractions of Myrtle Beach without spending a dime. From strolling along the boardwalk to visiting local parks and enjoying live entertainment, there are plenty of free activities to keep you entertained. So grab your beach towel, sunscreen, and a sense of adventure, and enjoy all that Myrtle Beach has to offer without burning a hole in your wallet.

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