Expert: Kristen Askey with Susan Hewson & D’Aun Kingsbury
Years living in North Myrtle Beach: Susan has lived in North Myrtle Beach for 26 years. D’Aun has lived in the area for 20 years.
Company: Ocean Resorts
What makes North Myrtle Beach a great destination to visit and stay in a vacation rental?
1. Beautiful, wide sandy beaches.
2. The original home of Beach Music and Shag Dancing. (“The Shag” is the State “Dance”)
3. North Myrtle Beach … A small city incorporating a quaint residential feel with a fun yet peaceful beach experience for all walks of life. Guests are within short driving distance to all the entertainment, attractions, restaurants, shopping, and golf venues in North Myrtle Beachand Myrtle Beach, but can enjoy a quiet and relaxing beach experience without being right in by the hubbub of touristy amusements and traffic. (For example: People go to Myrtle Beach to play and be right in the middle of the summer vacation hoopla. People go to North Myrtle Beach to be close enough to the same hoopla, but away from it enough to relax and enjoy family time together at the beach).
4. Family friendly accommodations are numerous and varied in the form of classic condominiums, high rise resorts, and detached beach houses. North Myrtle Beach has different beach areas in which specific vacation tastes can be accommodated. (Cherry Grove, Tilghman Beach, Ocean Drive Beach, etc).
5. North Myrtle Beach is easily accessible by major new highways and is only 20 miles from the Myrtle Beach International Airport.
What are the top things to do (attractions, activities, events, etc.) in the area? Are there any hidden gems that people may not be aware of?
• Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Festival – one of the largest on the East Coast.
• Taste of the Coast at Barefoot Landing
• Blues & Jazz Festival
• Sounds of Summer Concert Series
• Mayfest on Main
• July 4th Fireworks Display
• SOS Spring Safari and Fall Migration
• Octoberfest on Main Street
• The Little River Blue Crab Festival
• Endless Summer Festival on Main Street
• Intracoastal Christmas Regatta
Barefoot Landing (outdoor shopping, dining, amusements), Tanger Outlet (name brand outlet shopping), Alabama Theatre, Alligator Adventure, House of Blues, La Belle Amie Vineyard & Winery, Vereen Gardens and Nature Walk, quaint Main Street shopping.
General things to do: water sports, deep sea and pier fishing, golf, miniature golf, and tennis.
What are the top 5 ‘must-try’ restaurants in the area?
There are many to choose from and everybody’s taste differs… So… here’s what we’ve come up with … we couldn’t limit to “5.”
Local favorites include: Sea Blue, Villa Tuscana, The Parsons Table, Chestnut Hill, and Cagney’s.
Popular venues for tourists include Greg Norman’s Australian Grille, Damon’s (famous for BBQ ribs), Dick’s Last Resort (good food, not too price, but watch out for the waiters!), Umberto’s, Dockside (in Calabash, NC).
What popular entertainment/nightlife options in the area would you recommend?
Shag Dancing at Fat Harold’s and Ducks, concerts at the House of Blues, Dixie Stampede & Carolina Opry.
You rent homes to hundreds of guests each year….so you must have a funny story or two about people that visit North Myrtle Beach?
It was difficult to come up with just a couple of stories that are generically “North Myrtle Beach”, but one North Myrtle Beach phenomenon is the Shaggers. The shag dancers are drawn to North Myrtle Beach as it is the place in which the state couples dance was founded. The Ocean Drive area is the shag “mecca”, as it were. There are numerous festivals and dance competitions held every year that attract the Shaggers – young and old -- including the April Spring Safari and the September Fall Migration. Shaggers can’t stay close enough to Ocean Drive and the “O.D. Experience”. Ocean Resorts offers condominium rentals 2 blocks from Ocean Drive at Tilghman Beach & Racquet Club, and this has historically been “the place” to stay for Shaggers because it is within short walking distance to O. D. Ocean Resorts also offers condominium rentals 6 blocks from Ocean Drive, but we have found that those extra 4 blocks are just “too far” for those hard-core shaggers who want to be on Ocean Drive 24/7 to dance!