How to Celebrate the Holidays in Myrtle Beach

From wonderful holiday entertainment to great shopping, dining and special events for all ages, Myrtle Beach is a festive destination for a holiday day trip or getaway. While the winter ocean temperatures are too cold for swimming, it is not unusual to have crisp sunny days for enjoying walks on the beach and boardwalk. Or, you may experience a rare coastal snowfall. Winter sunrises and sunsets along the coast are often memorably brilliant.

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    Broadway at the Beach, Myrtle Beach
    Courtesy of Broadway at the Beach

    With close to 20 popular Myrtle Beach attractions and theaters, more than 100 specialty shops and boutiques, plus over 20 restaurants and nightclubs, Broadway at the Beach is a festive and lively place to visit throughout the holiday season. Special annual holiday events include the tree lighting ceremony featuring live entertainment, mascot appearances and other surprises and the annual holiday parade including marching bands, classic cars, mascots, Santa Claus and more.

    A Broadway Christmas is being held on December 1, 2018 will include a holiday parade at 11 a.m., musical performances and kids' activities from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., a tree-lighting celebration at 6 p.m., and fireworks at 8 p.m.

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    Courtesy of the Carolina Opry

    Carolina Opry

    Known for great year round live entertainment, several Myrtle Beach theaters present seasonal holiday-themed shows throughout November and December. Musical variety shows, family friendly live entertainment and more offer a fun way for visitors of all ages to get into the spirit of the season. A few popular year round shows are presented during the holidays as well.

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    Lights of the Brookgreen Gardens at the Night of a Thousand Candles

    Robert Loe/Getty Images

    Located about 15 miles south of Myrtle Beach, Brookgreen Gardens is a National Historic Landmark garden museum, featuring several display gardens and a highly esteemed sculpture collection. Each year during the holiday season, "Nights of a Thousand Candles" takes place at Brookgreen Gardens on select evenings. During this lovely event, more than 4,500 hand-lit candles and many twinkling white lights illuminate the garden areas, while cups of warm cider, hand bell choirs, carolers and an array of musicians add to the enchanting holiday ambiance.

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    Ripley's Aquarium Myrtle Beach Festival of Trees

    Myrtle Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau

    Celebrating the great diversity of the United States, the annual Festival of Trees features more than 100 trees displayed throughout the aquarium and a 20 foot tree in the outside plaza. This seasonal display is included with regular aquarium admission.

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    Chirstmas tree and ornaments on display at Dickens Christmas Show & Festivals

    Dickens Christmas Show & Festivals

    This annual Myrtle Beach event held at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center takes place on scheduled days each November. The atmosphere, inspired by Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol," recalls a 19th century holiday marketplace. Hundreds of costumed vendors sell everything from fine arts and locally made crafts to imported gifts and gourmet food items. Puppet shows, strolling musicians, Victorian teas, visits with Santa and offsite holiday tours add to the fun, offering something for family members of all ages.

    The next event will be November 8-11, 2018.

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    Several community events take place throughout the holiday season along the Grand Strand. A few popular highlights include the Annual Intracoastal Christmas Regatta between Little River and North Myrtle Beach, the North Myrtle Beach Christmas Tree Lighting and Christmas Parade and the Surfside Beach Christmas Tree Lighting and Christmas Parade.

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    girl and her mother putting an ornament on a Toys for Tots christmas tree at the Myrtle Beach Christmas Towne

    Myrtle Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau

    This free one-day event takes place at the Myrtle Beach Convention Center. Enjoy a tree lighting ceremony, photos with Santa, amusement, giveaways for kids and many other fun family friendly, free activities. In 2018, this event is December 9.

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    The Market Common Christmas tree lighting ceremony

    The Market Common

    Festive holiday events at this shopping and dining village setting include the annual Tree Lighting Ceremony complete with an appearance by Santa and entertainment, plus several other holiday-themed events throughout the season.