If you are serious about shelling and beachcombing, and if you are staying in one of Myrtle Beach's popular resorts or hotels, you may want to seek out other beaches to find good shells.
For free! Leave the crowded beach areas of Myrtle Beach. We often find shells (including starfish, sand dollars and shark's teeth) at Garden City Beach, Surfside Beach, and especially at the less-crowded Pawleys Island.
Shelling and Beachcombing tips!
Begin your search early in the morning before any vehicles or people are around. Also, keep in mind that one of the best times to look for shells after a big storm.
Apply plenty of sunscreen and don't forget your hat and sunglases.
Don‘t lose track of time! That's easy to do when you're shelling. Check the schedule of high and low tides before you start out. I made this mistake and ended up with very wet, very cold shoes and jeans - and a long hike back to the car with chattering teeth! It only takes once to learn this lesson! Be sure you are prepared!
Myrtle Beach State Park is a good place for your search. Admission : $5 adults; $3.25 SC seniors (age 65 & older); $3 child age 6-15; Free for children 5 and younger. Phone: 843-238-5325. It’s so not heavily populated during the week (it gets crowded on Sat. and Sun.in season) and it’s a beautiful State Park, with or without the shells. Plenty of restrooms and stand-alone covered shelters for picnicing, a walking trail, convenience store, fishing pier (walking the pier is included with admission) - and of course the beach.
Huntington Beach State Park in Murrells Inlet is another good place got beachcombing and see shell hunting. It is also widely recognized as one of thebest birding sites along the East Coast as well as home to the historic “Atalaya” castle. Admission: $5/adult; $3.25/ S.C. Senior; $3/youth age 6-15; Free for children 5 and younger. Atalaya admission: $2 per entry to the house for visitors ages 6 and up. Children 5 and under admitted free. This fee is in addition to the park entry fee which helps to preserve and protect Atalaya. phone: 843-235-8755.
Pawleys Island is often not crowded. (See the photo at the top of this [page.) We have seen sand dollars, shark teeth, and some larger shells. Once we noticed a family of starfish as they moved along the beach. It was awesome to see! (Important: Don't pick up live sea creatures. They have lives to live!) To get from Myrtle Beach to Pawleys Island: Head south on Rt. 17. After you pass the town of Pawleys Island, watch for a sign that says Causeway. Turn left on Causeway to go from the mainland to the Island. Take any right off this residential road to another residential road and start looking for free parking on your right. The earlier you get there, the more shells you'll find.
An email I received from a friend who speant a week in Myrtle Beach told me what she discovered about shelling:
"The other thing that topped off our vacation was we went to Georgetown and did the Carolina Rover Shelling & LightHouse Tour – it was out of this world!!! BEAUTIFUL – I seriously would have done it again if we had more time….well worth the money. "
I have no affiliation with any of the locations above. The goal of FunBeaches.com is to help our visitors find what they're looking for. If you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to Contact Me by e-mail (Patricia Blackstock) or phone 843-215-7338. Or join our message board forum! We're often asked about shelling!
Whose Shell Is This? Identify the shells you find on our area beaches. Thanks to the Myrtle Beach State Park for posting this information!
This Beachcombing Guide (clicking will download .pdf) is from Myrtle Beach State Park, and it will help you identify some common beachcombing treasures!
How about a couple SeaShell jigsaw puzzles as you dream about Myrtle Beach seashells? Can you solve them? Hint 1. You ]can set your own difficulty level near the top of the screen, on the right. Hint 2. And to make it even easier, be sure "Piece Rotation" is NOT clicked.)
Couldn't find the shells you were hoping to take home? Visit Shell World. It's about 1/4 mi. S. of Pirateland Campground (located on your right, heading South.) I have no affiliation with this business, and I can't find a web site for them. But I know they carry a lot of shells. Also check the popular beach stores such as Eagles (there's one in the same strip mall.)
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