For free! Leave the crowded beach area of Myrtle Beach, SC. We often find shells (including starfish, sand dollars and shark's teeth) at Garden City Beach and Surfside Beach, and especially the less-crowded Pawleys Island area.
Begin your search early in the morning before any vehicles or people are around. And keep in mind that one of the best times to look for sea shells is 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 at the beach. Check the schedule of high and low tides before you start out. A couple of times I made this mistake and ended up with very wet, very cold shoes and jeans. It only takes once to learn your lesson!
Myrtle Beach State Park is a good place for your search. The park admission price per person is $5. ages 16+up; $3.00 ages 6-15; free under 5; SC residents 65 and older $3.25. Phone: 843-238-5325. It’s so not heavily populated during the week (it gets crowded on Sat. and Sun.) and it’s a lovely State Park, with or without the seashells. Plenty of restrooms and stand-alone covered shelters for picnicing, a walking trail , convenience store, pier for fishing- and of course the beach.
Huntington Beach State Park in Murrells Inlet is another good place to shell hunt. It is also widely recognized as one of the best birding sites along the East Coast as well as home to the historic “Atalaya” castle. Adults $5 ; Ages 6 - 15 $3; $5.00 ; under 5 free. SC residents 65 and older $3.25. Atalaya Admission: $2. Children 5 and under are admitted free. (This fee is in addition to the Park entry.) phone: 843-235-8755.
Pawleys Island is often uncrowded and we have picked up sand dollars, shark teeth, and some larger shells. Once we noticed a family of starfish and watched as they moived along the beach. Head south of Rt. 17 to Pawleys Island. 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. Turn left and start looking or free parking on your right. .
Bull Island, inside Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge is located 75 miles south of Myrtle Beach. See the Coastal Expeditions Bulls Island Ferry schedule for dates, coast and information.
An email I received from a friend who spent 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 my Myrtle Beach website is to help our tourists find what they're looking for. If you have any questions or suggestions, please feel free to Contact Me! (Patricia Blackstock) 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 informational board at the park!
This Beachcombing Guide is from Myrtle Beach State Park helps you identify some common beachcombing treasures!
Couldn't find the shells you wanted to take home? Visit Shell World. It's about 1/4 mi. S. of Pirateland Campground (on your right, heading south.) I have no affiliation with this business, but I know they carry a lot of shells.
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