Horry County (pronounced Oh-ree or commonly Or-ree) offers everything from the historic inland charm of riverside living and agricultural land to the internationally-known vacation destination of Myrtle Beach and the Atlantic Ocean coastline. Situated in the northeastern corner of South Carolina, Horry County is about 100 miles north of Charleston, South Carolina and 150 miles east of the state capital of Columbia. It is the largest county in the state in land area with a total of 1,134 square miles and has a population of over 300,000. Our area currently has the fastest growing population in the country. The vast landscape consists of farms, fields, forests, marshes, swamps, rivers, and miles of beautiful sandy beaches known as the Grand Strand.
Horry County boasts a history of human habitation that stretches back thousands of years. These include Chicora Indian sites, a Spanish settlement in 1526, and British settlers in the 1600s. The area was given its present boundaries and named Kingston County in 1785. In 1801, it was renamed Horry District, and, in 1868, Horry County with the primary industries being lumber and naval stores. It wasn’t long before tobacco farming was introduced and became the cash crop for our area. The county’s coastal and inland beauty has driven the growth of development, as well as an economy based on tourism, outdoor recreation, and commercial fishing. Tourism generates nearly a half-billion dollars of tax revenue for South Carolina each year.
The county seat is centrally located in the City of Conway, which offers a unique alternative to the beach lifestyle with its rich heritage and more relaxed pace. Conway is home to a four-year public institution, Coastal Carolina University, as well as two technical colleges – HGTC and Miller Motte, and also boasts Conway Medical Center, museums, live theater, and more. Conway serves as a bridge between coastal Horry County and rural Horry County with history embedded in every corner and in the branches of the live oaks around the town. Nestled along the renowned Riverwalk on the Waccamaw River, it really is an exceptional place to work, play, and live.
The City of Conway is proud of its old oak trees with even some roads built around the trees and a strong tree ordinance. Many of these trees have a circumference of over 9 feet.
Conway Historical Trail – Grab a map from the Conway Chamber of Commerce or Conway Visitor Center and follow a self-guided historic tour of stately old homes, picturesque churches, and more than a dozen buildings and sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places. As you go, look for the protected and landmark oaks. The City of Conway has a strong tree ordinance and is very proud of its old oak trees. Some roads were even built around the trees. Many of these old oaks have a circumference of over 9 feet!
Conway Riverwalk – Conway is a historic river town where you can take a leisurely stroll along the Riverwalk overlooking the black waters of the Waccamaw River. This boardwalk has become a popular spot for weddings and prom photos.
Conway Riverfront Park – Enjoy the 237 acre Waccamaw River Park, a natural habitat for many species of fish, wildlife, plants and trees, and it includes a play area for children. It’s just off the Riverwalk and by the Conway Marina.
Waccamaw River – The black waters of the Waccamaw River flow about 140 miles from its source at Lake Waccamaw in North Carolina to Winyah Bay in South Carolina. The water is black because it contains tannin from the leaf debris that decomposes within it. The river provides drinking water, scenic landscapes, habitat for plant and animal life, and outstanding recreational opportunities like boating, fishing, and kayaking.
Theatre of the Republic – Offering live local community theater year round in downtown Conway.
Wheelwright Auditorium – On the campus of Coastal Carolina University, Wheelwright Auditorium was the first center for the performing arts in northeastern South Carolina. Seating 785, the auditorium boasts a full cultural calendar for students and the surrounding community.
Horry County Museum – In the renovated 1905 Burroughs School which is itself on the National Register of Historic Places, the museum includes exhibits on the history, pre-history, and natural history of Horry County. Don’t miss the freshwater aquarium, a unique custom-made aquarium detailing aquatic life in our local rivers and lakes, which was featured on Animal Planet’s hit show “Tanked.”
LW Paul Living History Farm – The Farm is a recreation of life on a one horse family farm between 1900 and 1955. Visitors will experience what life was like in the first half of the 20th century.
Thompson Farm & Nursery – Established in 1845 by the Thompson family, today the farm is owned and operated by the fourth and fifth generations of Thompsons. Named South Carolina Farm of the Year, Small Farm Competition in 2011, the farm offers a popular fall corn maze, a wedding venue, and is a school trip destination. The general store, the oldest in Horry County, sells preserves, mums, assorted pumpkins, and more.
Broadway at the Beach – A travel destination for millions of visitors a year in Myrtle Beach that features unique specialty shops, dining, award-winning attractions, nightlife, and accomodations.
Market Common – Shopping and dining options are offered in an urban village community with apartments, townhomes, and houses available.
Myrtle Beach Boardwalk – A walkable boardwalk that stretches 1.2 miles lined with shops, restaurants, hotels, rides, attractions, and entertainment in the heart of Myrtle Beach.
Vineyards and Breweries – Plenty of options are available for wine connoisseurs and craft beer lovers with commercial vineyards, wineries, and brew pubs, and local wine and beer festivals are held year round.
Barefoot Landing – Located along the Intracoastal Waterway in North Myrtle Beach, this popular tourist destination offers shopping, dining, and entertainment.
Watersports – From jet skis and kayak rentals to parasailing and scuba diving, there’s something for everyone when it comes to watersports along our beautiful beaches and rivers.
Outlet Shopping – Two Tanger outlet malls attract shoppers every year to the Grand Strand for brand name factory outlet stores.
Sports Tourism – Baseball, lacrosse, softball, basketball, even pickleball and quidditch are just some of the sports tournaments held at our many sports facilities.
Golf – Known as the Golf Capital of the World, the Grand Strand is home to over 80 courses, many of them nationally ranked along our 60 miles of coastline. There’s something for everyone, no matter your style of play.
Myrtle Beach Pelicans – The Class A Advanced Affiliate of the Chicago Cubs, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans franchise has produced some major league stars in its 20 year history. The team provides family fun with themes for the games at the ballpark.
Huntington Beach State Park – A sweeping beach offering surf, fishing and bird watching, this landmark also boasts Atalaya, a picturesque, Moorish-style winter home of Archer and Anna Hyatt Huntington, philanthropist and sculptor who left the park and nearby Brookgreen Gardens.
Brookgreen Gardens – A unique melding of art, nature, and history, award-winning Brookgreen Gardens is a cultural center that offers tours, programs and exhibits of gardens and sculpture for all ages.
Murrells Inlet Marshwalk – A ½ mile wooden boardwalk along a natural saltwater estuary located in the heart of the historic fishing village of Murrells Inlet. It offers waterfront dining with gorgeous views, live music, and events.
Plantations – In the 1850’s Georgetown County was the western world’s top rice producer and even today, Georgetown County and points south towards Charleston, are home to historic rice plantations you can visit.
Francis Marion National Forest – Named for Revolutionary War hero Francis Marion, known to the British as the Swamp Fox, it is a lush landscape of pine stands and wildlife-filled swamps.
Hobcaw Barony – Owned by the Belle Baruch Foundation, Hobcaw Barony is a 16,000 acre research reserve located on the coast near Georgetown, South Carolina that includes a rich diversity of every common ecosystem found along the coast.
The Hammock Shops Village – Located in Pawleys Island, more than 20 one-of-a-kind shops and restaurants are in clapboard-style cottages with a definite Lowcountry feel.
Georgetown Harborwalk – A historic district filled with shops, restaurants, museums, and a marina, the homes on this waterfront neighborhood date back to at least the mid-1700s.
CITIES NEAR CONWAY, SC
• 70 miles to Wilmington, NC
• 88 miles to Charleston, SC
• 118 miles to Columbia, SC
• 145 miles to Raleigh, NC
• 155 miles to Charlotte, NC
• 159 miles to Durham, NC
• 169 miles to Savannah, GA
• 207 miles to Greenville, SC
• 281 miles to Jacksonville, FL
• 316 miles to Atlanta, GA
• 375 miles to Washington, DC
Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR)
More than 50 destinations – the most in South Carolina – are a nonstop flight from Myrtle Beach. Take in the history of Boston, the Rocky Mountains in Denver or the theme parks of Orlando, all reachable via nonstop service on one of nine airline providers. MYR has the lowest average fares in South Carolina. More than 2.5 million total passengers took their next adventure, business trip, or family getaway through MYR in 2018.
For general aviation, Beach Aviation Services, with operations at Myrtle Beach International Airport (MYR), Grand Strand Airport (CRE), Conway Horry County Airport (HYW) and Twin Cities Airport (5J9), is the gateway to the Grand Strand. Dispensing SHELL aviation products and accepting the Shell points card, the staff at Beach Aviation Services strictly adheres to the ATA 103 and offers quantitative pricing for contract fuel customers.
Known as the Golf Capital of the World, Horry County is home to over 80 pristine golf courses. No matter your experience level or handicap, there is an endless variety of golf experiences available.
Two local courses made Golf Advisor’s top 50 courses in the U.S. in 2018:
#33 – Caledonia Golf and Fish Club
#49 – The Founders Group International’s TPC Myrtle Beach
The following are highly recommended private country clubs with great amenities:
• Dunes Golf and Beach Club
• Surf Golf and Beach Club
• Grande Dunes Members Club
• The Reserve Golf Club
• Barefoot Resort, Dye Club
• Wachesaw Plantation
• Debordieu Club
In addition, the Founder’s Group International manages 22 of the top courses in the area, each offering various atmospheres. You are sure to find a home course that suits you perfectly.
• Burning Ridge
• Colonial Charters
• Founders Club
• Grande Dunes
• Indian Wells
• Long Bay
• MBN King’s North
• MBN South Creek
• MBN West Course
• Myrtlewood Pinehills
• Myrtlewood Palmetto
• Pawleys Plantation
• Pine Lakes – “The Grandaddy”
• River Club
• River Hills
• TPC Myrtle Beach
• Wild Wing Plantation
• World Tour