15 of the Best Dog-Friendly Beaches in Myrtle Beach SC Your Pup will Love

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Located on the Atlantic coastline in South Carolina, Myrtle Beach is a famous resort town and home to the Grand Strand. The Grand Stand is a row of beaches that stretch for 60+ miles! And since you are a pooch parent, you will want to know which beaches are dog-friendly so you can take your pup to the beach. Another thing about this popular city is the boardwalk with its amusement park, eateries, gift shop, and arcades. This place is just a fantastic place to be, no matter what!

Although your canine cuddly buddy may not be allowed into some places such as the amusement park, you will also find many places that welcome your fur baby with open arms. From beachside bars to the Living Large Party Barge, you will find plenty of fun to get into with your pup. 

To get you started, we found 15 of the best dog-friendly beaches in Myrtle Beach where you and your pooch can play.

Barc Parc South

For those who are just not into the whole saltwater and sandy beach thing, Barc Parc South is perfect! This place is just for dogs, with a huge leash-free area with its own swimming lake. It is completely fenced in, so you do not have to worry about your dog getting too excited and chasing a squirrel off into the woods or into the parking lot to visit new arrivals. For a dog park, this one is huge, with 14 acres to explore. 

Inside the park, you will find both large and small dog sections with picnic tables, shaded benches, and water fountains. The lake is in its own space, which is for all dogs, no matter the size. The park provides poo bags but bring your own just in case and make sure your dog is up-to-date on all vaccinations and rabies shots. No children under eight years old are allowed, and aggressive dogs are not permitted. 

Barc Parc North

We have to mention Barc Parc North because even if it does not have a beach, it is the sister park to the one above and has some fantastic amenities. And there is access to the Intracoastal Waterway. In fact, you can take Colonel Robert Bell Path from the park to the waterfront. This fenced dog park is just over three acres and is right next to the Claire Chapin Epps Family YMCA. It is easy to find, and the local pup parents love it!

Just like the other Barc Parc, this one has both small and large dog sections, each with its own fence and double-gated access. Small dogs have to be under 16 inches to qualify. Larger dogs have their own section. Or if your pup is shy or has mobility issues, you are allowed to use the small dog section. There are benches and water for the humans and a nice obstacle course for the pups. They have poop bags available but bring your own anyway and make sure you have your dog’s vaccination records and rabies tag. 

Myrtle Beach State Park

Right on the Atlantic coastline, Myrtle Beach State Park is one of the most popular parks in the city. It is in the middle of the Grand Strand and features a nice chunk of grassy space that includes a sandy beach, campgrounds, a boardwalk and pier, a nature center, and some trails to explore. If you want to enjoy the beach between 10 AM and 5 PM, you will have to visit between September and April. From May until Labor Day, dogs are not allowed on the beach between those hours. But you are welcome to come before 10 or after 5. 

As long as your fur baby is on a leash, you can both enjoy the sand and waves but be careful of the surf. Even if your pup is a good swimmer, it is a good idea to fit him with a doggie life vest for safety. Besides swimming, the park also features two playgrounds, picnic shelters with tables, restrooms, and water fountains, or you can take a hike on one of the two easy trails. Just keep your dog on a leash and be sure to pick up after him. 

Surfside Beach Bark Park

Surfside Beach is a nice spot to bring your pooch for some exercise between swims. Although it is within walking distance, there is no water feature inside the park. But it is a fantastic fenced yard with grass and sand. There is a ramp and other obstacles for exercise and benches for the pup parents. There is a drinking fountain, but it can get crowded here. For those who do not like crowds, try to visit early on weekdays.

The park has doggie waste bags and trash cans for clean-up, but it is always good to have some on hand, just in case. Extra water is also a good idea, and why not bring some Scooby snacks to treat your dog when he does something good? Also, you need to have a current rabies tag on your pooch while you are there as well as a license, which you can get from the Town Hall for a small fee.  

Huntington Beach State Park

A few miles south of Myrtle Beach State Park, Huntington Beach is a huge space with over 2,500 acres in Murrells Inlet. It is part of a larger area that includes the Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge and is known for having more than 300 birds in residence. There are three miles of beach, but you and your pooch will need to stick to the southern end. Signs are located so you know where you can go. 

Swimming here is great because the Inlet is relatively calm all year, and there is a lifeguard on duty during the summer months. While you are there, be sure to walk the two-mile Sandpiper Pond Trail, where you can typically see some of the native wildlife. Bring your own doggie bags and water, and be sure to keep your pup on a leash because there are alligators that live in the pond. However, they usually keep their distance from humans and dogs. 

Pawley’s Island

With a name like Pawley, you know it has to be friendly for those with paws. And it is! Your pooch can run free on the island as long as he is voice-trained all year except for the summer months when he has to be leashed from 8 AM until 8 PM. However, it is not really named for dogs. It was named after Percival Pawley, a European settler who established the first plantation in the 1500s.

Just a few miles south of Myrtle Beach, this is one of the oldest resort areas on the east coast. Besides the beach, the island also lauds a nature park, a variety of small boutique shops, and several dozen restaurants and grills, such as the Island Bar & Grill with seafood and juicy burgers, live music, and a lovely outdoor seating area for you and your pooch. Other great places to eat are BisQit, Rustic Table, and Bistro 217.

McLean Park

This fun park has 10 acres with its own two-acre lake, picnic areas, and so much grass it looks like the field of dreams for your fur baby. Locals come here on a daily basis to walk, fish, and even stick their toes in the water when it is hot. All the picnic shelters are covered and have drinking fountains with barbecue grills and lots of picnic tables to seat from 30 to 100 people. And pups, of course. 

If you have the kids with you, there are two playgrounds, with one just for preschoolers between two and five years old. The nature trail is stunning, with a paved walking path of about a half mile of easy strolling space and fitness activities. There are also restrooms, water fountains, and a meditation garden in case you need to enjoy a little peace and quiet with your pup. The park also hosts events like Easter Egg Hunts and the Sounds of Summer concerts. 

Barefoot Landing

For a different kind of beach fun, check out the Intracoastal waters at Barefoot Landing. It is not just a beach, though. It is a hub for playing, eating, shopping, and walking around sniffing everything (your dog, not you). And the entire place allows your fur baby as long as you keep him on a leash or in a pet stroller. Yes, a pet stroller is a great idea for bringing your pup into crowded areas or just to give them a break from walking. 

Most of the shops and eateries allow your pooch to join you so you can eat and shop until you drop. There are 16 restaurants, from Bully’s Pub to Wild Wing Cafe, serving everything from avocado toast to zucchini bread. And you can get some ice cream at Sweet Molly’s. They even serve special dog ice cream. Some of the fun gift shops you can enjoy include Tiki Jim’s, Toy Kingdom, and the Ron Jon Surf Shop. Be sure to bring some doggie waste bags. 

Sunset Beach Park

Located in northern Myrtle Beach over North Carolina, Sunset Beach Park boasts a green space filled with oak trees, a fishing pier, picnic sites, and a playground. With five acres of waterfront on the Intracoastal Waterway, there is plenty of room for fishing and swimming here. The pier is a perfect spot to cast a line. If you do not have what you need, don’t worry. There are several shops to get some bait and other fishing items. 

There is also a fantastic nature trail that lets you and your pup meander through the woods to look for some of the local wildlife. But don’t let your fur baby chase the critters because they don’t like that. Some of the most common sightings include waterbirds like pelicans, gulls, and terns, as well as white-tailed deer, raccoons, and maybe even an alligator. Keep your pooch on a short leash at all times. 

North Myrtle Beach

On the northern end of Myrtle Beach, you can also let your pup take a swim or play in the sand at North Myrtle Beach. The large open space is nothing but sand for about three miles and has a 1,000-foot-long pier to walk out on. You will find many touristy places along this popular stretch of beach, including several privately owned beaches at the hotels and resorts. However, there are still about 2.5 miles of sand for you and your pup. 

After you work up an appetite swimming and playing fetch on the beach, you can refuel at one of the dog-friendly eateries, including Buoys on the Boulevard Grill, Snooky’s Oceanfront, or Basil’s Pizza. There are also several dozen shops and diners along Main Street. However, you will have to ask if your pooch can enter before going inside. And as always, bring doggie poo bags to clean up after your canine companion. 

Cherry Grove Oceanfront Park

Just off Ocean Boulevard and Sea Mountain Highway, this small park is charming and clean, with fewer crowds to worry about. Beach access here is excellent, with pristine sand and clear waters. There are restrooms, water fountains, and beach showers to clean off the sand and saltwater. The lawn is huge and open, with about 65 by 50 feet of grass to enjoy. Just keep your pooch on a leash and be sure to clean up after him. 

You will also find picnic tables with barbecue pits, a playground, and a really cool wind turbine. Whether your plan is to swim and play all day or if you just want to come to cool off for a bit, this is a nice quiet place to do it. If you want to do some fishing, walk up the beach to the Cherry Grove Fishing Pier. This historic pier was built in the 1950s and features a two-story observation deck, a restaurant, and a bait & tackle shop. 

Murrells Inlet South Beach

You and your dog can enjoy access to both the ocean and Murrells Inlet at Murrell’s Inlet South Beach. Just to the northwest of Huntington Beach State Park, this beach stretches all the way to Drunken Jack Island at the Oaks Creek access point. There are a plethora of waterways along the way, from small ponds and creeks to the huge Long Bay on the ocean. You will need to keep your fur buddy on a leash here, but it is all wilderness, so you will not run into any crowds. 

For solitude, stay away from the state park and stick closer to Murrells Inlet. Although there are no amenities here like concessions and shops, you can find several restrooms and maybe a water fountain or two. During the summer, Drunken Jack Island can get a bit crowded as it has a few attractions for tourists. Drunken Jack’s is actually a pub and grill that serves some awesome seafood, burgers, and beer. 

Litchfield Beach

Pack up your pup, his leash, water, and Scooby snacks, and head for Litchfield Beach! Although some of the main beaches are privately owned, you can visit the public portion of the beach next to the Litchfield Inn. There are signs letting you know which beach areas are private. You will find Litchfield just to the north of Pawley’s Island Beach and to the south of Huntington Beach State Park. 

Your pup will need to be wearing a leash at all times, and you have to bring your own doggie cleanup bags with you. You are welcome to swim in the water here in Long Bay but remember the leash law. It is also a good idea to have your dog fitted for his own doggie life jacket. When you get hungry, head up to the beach for some food at the Island Bar and Grill, Frank’s Outback, or the Rustic Table. 

Magnolia Beach

Right next to Litchfield Beach, Magnolia beach is a nice and secluded spot to enjoy a day in the sea. You and your fur buddy are welcome to enjoy the surf and sand, swimming, surfing, sunbathing, or playing fetch. You can even build a sandcastle for your canine companion to destroy. Tourists and vacationers generally stick to the main beach up the coast, so you do not have to worry much about crowds. 

This is a wide, flat beach that stays cleaner than most because of the lack of tourists. You can walk about a mile in either direction without seeing anyone sometimes, and you will not have to fight to get the good stretch of sand in front of the warm blue waters of the Atlantic. There are restrooms with running water, but you will not find a bunch of concessions or restaurants. However, you can walk up to Quigley’s Pint & Plate or the Hanser House by Highway 17.

Garden City Beach

Just to the south of Surfside Beach, this small beach community offers a different kind of fun. You still have plenty of sand and surf, but there is also a hot spot for crabbing, watersports, and fishing. You can rent a kayak or take a boat cruise at one of the local boat tour places. Plantation River Tours is one fantastic voyage on a 60-foot pontoon boat that you and your fur baby will love. 

If you are up for a party, join the party barge. The Living Large Party Barge offers a whole day on the water, fishing, swimming, and enjoying some adult beverages. Dogs are welcome, too but let them know when you book your spot. You and your fur baby can also take a walk out on the Pier of Garden City, where you can get a bite to eat, try your hand at fishing, or just watch the sunset after a fun day at the beach. 

The Final Woof

You cannot spend your entire time at the beach. You and your canine compadre can find a variety of things to do. 

Feel like some retail therapy time? You can shop with your pooch at Bass Pro Shops, Orvis Company, Anthropologie, and Champing World. 

You can also enjoy some baked goods at Muddy Puppys Pet Bakery, The Baker’s Dog at Barefoot Landing, or get some ice cream at Bruster’s Real Ice Cream. Vereen Memorial Park and Gardens is packed full of trails and a fun boardwalk to explore with salt marshes, picnic tables, and historical features. 

Feeling more active? Enjoy a scavenger hunt with friends at Myrtle Beach Scavenger Hunt.  

Photo of author
Patty Oelze is a freelance writer who is also in the process of getting her PhD in Psychology. She has been writing about dogs and other critters for about 10 years and has a plethora of animals at her home including several cats, some chipmunks, a dozen raccoons, two foxes, one coyote, and herds of deer. She and her husband have been living in the Missouri Ozarks for years where she enjoys taking care of wildlife, fishing, photography, boating, and of course, writing.

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