• Photo: StacieStauffSmith Photos / Shutterstock

North Myrtle Beach

North Myrtle Beach, best known as the site where the shag, South Carolina's state dance, originated, is made up of the beach towns Cherry Grove, Crescent Beach, Windy Hill, and Ocean Drive. Entering North Myrtle Beach from the south on U.S. 17, you'll see Barefoot Landing, a huge shopping and entertainment complex that sits on the Intracoastal Waterway. As you make your way east toward the ocean, then north on Ocean Boulevard South, high-rises give way to small motels, then to single beach houses, many of which are available for rent. This end of the Strand marks the tip of a large peninsula, and there are lots of little islands, creeks, and marshes between the ocean and the intracoastal to explore by kayak or canoe. Mosquitoes can be a problem on the marsh, especially in the early evening. Be sure to pack repellent.

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