Myrtle Beach has always been a favourite amongst Canadian snowbirds.
But the sunny southern destination is also getting tons of attention from a new millennial crowd, who see the value in taking advantage of all of the soft adventure and active travel opportunities that the destination has to offer.
To entice an even more diverse group of travellers down south, Visit Myrtle Beach has launched a new campaign called 'Stretch Your Summer.'
The campaign is broken down into three concepts:
- Stretch your dollar: Myrtle Beach is home to tons of free events and attractions year-round. Plus, accommodation rates and airfares decrease rapidly during the fall and winter months, and the weather stays glorious!
- Stretch your body: From golf, to yoga on the beach, and even kayaking and horseback riding, Myrtle Beach is a prime soft adventure destination year-round.
- Stretch your mind: Get creative with your time in Myrtle Beach and think outside the box - summer doesn't end on Labour Day!
Affectionately called the Grand Stand, Myrtle Beach covers 60 miles of coastline from Little River to Georgetown and includes 14 unique communities. With so many options for an extended summer, there's never been a better time to head to South Carolina this fall.
Visit Myrtle Beach has also put together a series of fun, 60-hour itineraries to get Canadians started on extending their summers south of the border, whether your clients are families with young children, seniors, couples, or even looking to plan a girls' or guys' getaway.
Summer lives here
Myrtle Beach reached its 20 million visitation mark earlier than expected this year. Though the U.S. domestic market makes up the largest number of visitors, Canada is a close second, with almost 1 million tourists enjoying the destination year-round.
Several Canadian airlines offer a direct link to Myrtle Beach, including Porter Airlines, which flies seasonally to Myrtle Beach from February to May; and WestJet, which offers service from April to October. From Toronto, the flight time to Myrtle Beach is just one hour and 50 minutes.
“Myrtle Beach is a very high-quality destination offered at very affordable prices and it truly has something for everyone, whether it’s the 100 kilometres of long, beautiful beach, to our more than 425 condo resorts with more than 20,000 rooms, our more than 100 championship golf courses, or more than 1,800 restaurants,” said Kimberly Hartley, Canadian account manager and representative for the Myrtle Beach CVB. “The coast of South Carolina is an attraction in itself, and then of course when you mix in elements of entertainment, like all of the Southern country music, shows or festivals, and loads of attractions for the young and the young at heart, you see that.”
From a travel advisor standpoint, Hartley said Myrtle Beach is a big FIT destination. Families make up the biggest demographic of travellers to Myrtle Beach, followed by couples, which also makes Myrtle Beach the perfect spot for a destination wedding or honeymoon.
Stay a little longer
Unlike in Canada, when September rolls around, Myrtle Beach doesn't lose its summer temperatures.
“In September and October, the crowds are gone, the prices go down, and the ocean is like a bathtub,” said Hartley. “During the summer, sometimes it’s hard to even find a hotel room in all of Myrtle Beach but after Labour Day hits, it’s so different, but still so beautiful, and it’s when the discounts and savings for visitors arrive.”
Perhaps one of Myrtle Beaches best-kept secrets is its vast supply of luxury beach home and condo resort offerings. For an affordable price, travel agents can book their clients in their very own “home away from home." All beach homes and condo resorts come furnished with a fully-equipped kitchen, living room, and two, three, or four-bedroom suites.
Plus, the rates are significantly lower than a traditional hotel room, and they're a great solution for anybody looking to book an extended summer holiday in order to escape the freezing temperatures that await back home in Canada.
Both styles of accommodations are commissionable for travel agents.
What's new in Myrtle Beach
A destination that's always changing, one thing remains true: there's so much to do and see in Myrtle Beach!
Several new hotels have recently come online, and are accepting bookings year-round:
- Carolina Pines RV Resort: A new luxury RV resort featuring a waterpark, pools, dog park, playgrounds, walking trails, mini golf, bistro dining and more.
- Hampton Inn & Suites North Myrtle Beach: Plans include development of a six-story building that would include 127 one-bedroom units.
- Marriott Hotel at 21st Avenue North Myrtle Beach: One resort tower is currently under construction and then another proposed tower will be built in the second phase with the addition of public space at the end of 21st Avenue North in Myrtle Beach.
- Ocean Enclave by Hilton: A new hotel featuring 330 luxury oceanfront units reaching 27 stories high. All units will be between one to three-bedroom suites and include full kitchens, private balconies and spacious living and dining areas.
- Residence Inn by Marriott Myrtle Beach Oceanfront: The property is comprised of spacious studio, one and two-bedroom suites with separate living and sleeping areas along with a fully equipped kitchen. Complimentary grocery delivery service and hot breakfast included.
- South Bay Inn & Suites: A new oceanfront property, this 242-room family-friendly resort also has an on-site waterpark featuring two slides, a lazy river, a small kids' water play area, a larger pool and two separate hot tubs.
Always lively, several new attractions have also opened up along the boardwalk, including a new 55,000-square-foot complex along the Myrtle Beach Boardwalk at 14th Avenue North called THEBlvd, which is home to several new restaurants, retail stores and a live music venue.
A new Topgolf also opened in early 2019 in Myrtle Beach inside a 38,382-square-foot building at 29th Ave. Topgolf features point-scoring golf games, food, drinks, big-screen TVs and live music for golfers and non-golfers alike. The golf games feature micro-chipped golf balls that produce instant scores, while also showing players their accuracy and distance on a TV screen.
The two-floor venue features 102 climate-controlled hitting bays that can accommodate up to six players at a time, making it a great activity for groups and families alike.
For a full list of things to see, do, and eat in Myrtle Beach, click here!
To view all of the upcoming festivals, click here!
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