Time for just the two of us on the South Carolina coast
By Lynn (& Cele) Seldon
Sometimes, my wife, Cele, and I just need to take a break from our daily commitments and pack our bags to head to a place where we can easily relax and get back to just us. For her and I—and many other couples, for what it’s worth—that place is the ocean. Specifically: the Coastal Carolina shores of North Myrtle Beach.
Counting the ways to reconnect
Along with the wide beach—where solitude is easy to find even on the busiest days—and soothing ocean waves, we really enjoy taking time together for North Myrtle Beach's stunning sunrises and sunsets. Here, handholding is as expected as the watercolor skies turning pink, orange, yellow and blue as the sun dips into the ocean tides. But why should the fun end just because the day has? Two words: moonlit strolls. Trust us.
But the romance doesn’t stop there. We've found that a crisp white wine with fresh local seafood at a table overlooking the water pairs especially well with an evening for two. For seaside dining, I recommend the rooftop patio at Flounders Fish House. I crave the Blackened Flounder and Grits, which includes grilled red pepper, bacon and a crab beurre blanc sauce that I spoon up like soup to enjoy every drop. Add a cocktail, my wife and a picturesque view of the ocean—perfect.
Our trips aren’t just about places where we can stare into each other’s eyes. We also connect through nature by kayaking or paddle boarding through North Myrtle Beach’s waterways and inlets. Calm, gently rippling water and a border of tall grass that dances with the wind have been the surroundings responsible for many genuine and timeless moments. We especially love touring the area's salt marshes at sunset, when the sky is set ablaze with colors and the waters turn black for a deep sleep. Don’t be surprised if you spot a majestic egret or other native wildlife among the tall grass. Recently, we combined the best of both worlds and enjoyed a dinner cruise with the sunset as our backdrop, each other for company and a gentle breeze that carried our cares away.
Horseback riding on the beach is another favorite—there are very few places you can do this along the coast—but here, it seems more special than anywhere else. We head to Inlet Point Plantation—where more than 50 horses roam freely, a majestic scene all on its own—to trot along Waites Island. We ride through a peaceful maritime forest, over a dune until, suddenly, we’re in a classic movie with an expansive view of the ocean. Cicadas hum behind us while the sounds of crashing waves take over our senses. Just when we think it can’t get any better, we dismount from the horses and explore the trails along the waterways, which almost put us into a trance. The world melts away with every step we take. From here, we can see the same area where we kayaked, but from a new perspective, and a beached shrimp boat with its trellises rusting on the banks in the shifting sea grass. It’s beautiful. It’s peaceful. It’s just us and the waves.
Cheers to each other
We've also found that wine is a great way for us to slow down and savor our life together. That's why a visit to either Duplin Winery or La Belle Amie Vineyard is often on our getaway agenda.
We love La Belle Amie Vineyard, in Little River, for its lush flora and fauna—the greenery is abundant and overflowing, and that’s not even mentioning the vineyard. Tastings include six samples for only $3! The Bikini Blush light red wine tastes like summer.
Appropriately enough, Duplin Winery gives a taste of the sweet side of North Myrtle Beach, thanks to their varied muscadine grape-based wines. Plus, if we’re lucky, they’ll have live music on the patio on the evening we visit (they often do). We buy a couple bottles to remember our trip by—ok, and maybe eagerly uncork one to enjoy on the patio of our vacation rental. Somehow, our conversation just flows better after a glass of wine and a toast to each other.
Shall we dance?
Dancing can literally draw us closer together, but there's also something about it that brings our hearts together as well. And, of course, when we're talking dancing on the Grand Strand, we're talking the Carolina Shag dance. Whether first-timers or veterans, doing the Carolina Shag (similar to a swing dance) is easier than ever thanks to Fat Harold’s Beach Club and other options. Situated near North Myrtle Beach's iconic Main Street Ocean Drive, Fat Harold’s is famous for beach music and their dance floor. Couples of all kinds especially enjoy Monday nights there, when dance lessons for all experience levels are just 10 bucks a person. Couples with four left feet, like we once had, should know that Fat Harold’s offers free shag lessons on Tuesday nights as well. I feel like a kid every time I swing my wife around the floor. I never thought I would be able to do that again, but the lessons and Cele’s encouragement proved me wrong. Fat Harold’s also has a great happy hour that we’ve been known to enjoy before lessons (liquid courage on my part). O D Pavilion and the Spanish Galleon provide two other fun options for dancing.
In love with Main Street Ocean Drive
We always seem to find ourselves on Main Street Ocean Drive during our visits to North Myrtle Beach. From shopping for that perfect souvenir from our time together here to simply strolling hand-in-hand, it's a classic place to end our journey together before packing our bags and heading home reconnected and recharged—thanks to the magic of North Myrtle Beach.
Ranging from mild to wild, the area’s quintessential beach and ocean experiences never fail to bring us closer together. North Myrtle Beach simply makes it easy to love and be with each other.
Book your trip to discover the magic of North Myrtle Beach.