Want to take a Day Trip to South Carolina’s Hammock Coast®? Here’s a plan …

14 Oct

Want to take a Day Trip to South Carolina’s Hammock Coast®? Here’s a plan …

South Carolina’s Hammock Coast® boasts some of the Palmetto State’s best beaches that are perfect for a week of relaxation, but if you’re a short driving distance to Georgetown County, taking a Day Trip for the whole family is also easily done!

Conveniently nestled between Myrtle Beach to the north and Charleston to the south, the Hammock Coast has been welcoming visitors for generations. The area, rich in American history and multitude of outdoor adventures to be enjoyed, is a perfect place to spend a day with friends and family.

With so many exciting adventures close to one another here on the Hammock Coast, it makes planning a breeze.

This plan takes visitors to Huntington Beach State Park, Brookgreen Gardens, the Lowcountry Zoo and the MarshWalk, all in Murrells Inlet, and a short trip down to historic Pawleys Island. Here’s the suggested agenda:

A small gets Huntington Beach State Park guest inside Atalaya Castle. (Photo by Chris Rogers for the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce)

Atayala Castle at Huntington Beach State Park

Every beach trip includes making a sand castle, right? Well, what if you could tour a real-life castle right at the beach? At Huntington Beach State Park in Murrells Inlet, you can do just that! Visit Atalaya Castle, the former Moorish-style home of Archer and Anna Hyatt Huntington. Open daily, 9-4. 843-237-4440. State park admission and a small additional fee to access Atalaya.

Live Oak Allé at Brookgreen Gardens is beautiful anytime of the year. (Photo by Chris Rogers for the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce)

Brookgreen Gardens

Just across Ocean Highway from the state park is world-renowned Brookgreen Gardens, a 9,127-acre botanical and sculpture garden that is the floral jewel of South Carolina. It boasts the largest and most comprehensive collection of American figurative sculpture in the United States, all displayed in a stunning garden setting and three galleries. Open daily, 9:30-5 and later for special events. 843-235-6000. A ticket to Brookgreen is good for seven days, so if you decide to extend your Day Trip, you can take advantage of a return visit to see more of the gardens and galleries.

Save room for dessert at Murrells Inlet’s iconic Drunken Jack’s restaurant. This strawberry sundae features the eatery’s famous hushpuppies. It’s good. Really good. (Photo by Chris Rogers for the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce)


Break for lunch at the nearby MarshWalk, a half-mile, wooden boardwalk along a natural saltwater estuary that proudly boasts the most spectacular waterfront dining on the Hammock Coast. Good food is always on the menu at the seven-member MarshWalk restaurants: Bovine’s, The Claw House, Creek Ratz, Dead Dog Saloon, Drunken Jack’s, Wahoo’s Fish House, and Wicked Tuna. At Drunken Jack’s, be sure to save room for dessert — specifically, the Hushpuppy Sundae, which features crushed hushpuppies with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream and strawberry topping.

You can get and up close look at the animals at Brookgreen Gardens’ Lowcountry Zoo. (Photo courtesy of Brookgreen Gardens)

Lowcountry Zoo

Return to Brookgreen Gardens for more adventure at the Lowcountry Zoo. Included in your admission to the gardens, the Lowcountry Zoo is its own must-see destination. Explore the world of animals native to the southeast and the Lowcountry. Be sure to take in a session with an interpreter who brings along friends like snakes and owls! Open daily, 9:30-5 p.m.

As the oldest seaside resort in America, historic Pawleys Island is a unique place to visit — and, best of all, the beach is as beautiful as ever! (Photo by Chris Rogers for the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce)

Pawleys Island

No trip, long or short, to South Carolina’s Hammock Coast® is complete without a visit to the beach at Pawleys Island, the oldest seaside resorts in America. Pawleys is only a 10-minute drive from Brookgreen to the south. With its four miles of pristine, publicly accessible beaches and scenic marshes and creeks, Pawleys is like a step back in time where swaying rope hammocks are part of the sought-after Lowcountry vibe. Rent a kayak to see the marsh or visit the Pawleys Island Chapel, a one-room historic church, and take in the beautiful scenery. 843-546-8436.


After this special Day Trip, you will surely want to return to Georgetown County and South Carolina’s Hammock®. And when you do, you will find even more to experience in southern Garden City, Murrells Inlet, Litchfield Beach, Pawleys Island and historic Georgetown. See you real soon!

— By Mark A. Stevens, director of tourism development, Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce and South Carolina’s Hammock Coast®

For more information about the Hammock Coast, visit

Want to know more about South Carolina’s Hammock Coast®, check out these stories:

Historical Marker highlights history of Pawleys Island Chapel.

Hammock Coast beaches get high marks from visitors.

Pawleys Island Festival of Music and Art set for October.

Discover 5 paths of Gullah-Geechee Culture on the Hammock Coast.

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter and never miss what's happening on South Carolina's Hammock Coast!