Best Beaches in South Carolina

South Carolina is the perfect destination for beach lovers.

April 22, 2021
By: Jennifer Plum Auvil

With miles of seashore, sprawling resorts and offshore fun, South Carolina is the perfect destination for beach lovers.

Kiawah Island

Beach on Kiawah Island, South Carolina

Kiawah Island, South Carolina

Kiawah Island is a coastal island off South Carolina, with 10 miles of pristine beaches, approximately 10,000 acres of natural woodlands and every amenity to meet the needs of the entire family. Kiawah offers plenty of sun and sand, and it’s just a short drive to Charleston, a city chock-full of Southern charm.

Photo by: Shutterstock/Jack Siman

Shutterstock/Jack Siman

Kiawah Island is a coastal island off South Carolina, with 10 miles of pristine beaches, approximately 10,000 acres of natural woodlands and every amenity to meet the needs of the entire family. Kiawah offers plenty of sun and sand, and it’s just a short drive to Charleston, a city chock-full of Southern charm.

Myrtle Beach

View of Myrtle Beach Attractions at Dusk

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Photo by: Denis Jr. Tangney / E+ / Getty Images

Denis Jr. Tangney / E+ / Getty Images

As the largest resort along South Carolina's 60-mile Grand Strand, Myrtle Beach is the East Coast's ultimate vacation hub. The town teems with summertime action: beaches dotting the Strand, amusement and water parks, restaurants and live entertainment. Myrtle Beach's actual beach is an extensive stretch of silky white sand, with opportunities for fishing, swimming, sunbathing, sailing and surfing.

Isle of Palms

Man Standing on Isle of Palms Beach at Sunset

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Photo by: Laszio Podor Photography / Moment Open / Getty Images

Laszio Podor Photography / Moment Open / Getty Images

The Isle of Palms is as Lowcountry hideaway outside of the busy city of Charleston. Front Beach is open to the public for swimming and sunbathing, and nesting sea turtles stop here to lay their eggs in the tall dunes. Idyllic private beach access is available at the family-friendly Wild Dunes resort at the island’s northern tip with clean beaches, water activities and plenty of opportunities to play a round of golf or perfect your serve in tennis.

Folly Beach

Beachgoers Playing in Surf at Folly Beach

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Photo by: Dawson Powers / Moment Open / Getty Images

Dawson Powers / Moment Open / Getty Images

Known to locals as the Edge of America, Folly Beach has a charming Southern small-town surf vibe just 15 minutes from downtown Charleston. Bring some bait and a fishing rod for saltwater fishing at the end of the 1,045-foot fishing pier that juts out over the Atlantic Ocean or sign up for surfing lessons back onshore. After riding the waves, join the locals for a hearty bowl of She-crab soup at the Folly Beach Crab Shack.

Hilton Head

View of Secluded Shore in Hilton Head, South Carolina

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Photo by: Rachid Dahnoun / Aurora / Getty Images

Rachid Dahnoun / Aurora / Getty Images

One of the largest islands on the East Coast, Hilton Head is perfect for families and individuals who are looking for a large resort area with an array of activities to enjoy. Hilton Head is divided into large quadrants of developed communities called "plantations," each with an array of hotels, housing developments, restaurants and services. There are 12 miles of beaches, countless bike trails, over 30 golf courses and more than 300 tennis courts for off-beach fun.

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