Myrtle Beach is a vacation resort city on the Atlantic coast of South Carolina. It is the center of what is known as the Grand Strand, a 60-mile stretch of spectacular beaches. Visitors can find plenty of activities that help reinvigorate the soul. From yoga to surfing, spa visits to nature walks, it’s the perfect place for a wellness retreat to get away from the hustle of daily life.
Taking a wellness retreat is something I think everyone needs. It’s about getting away from the stress and responsibilities of everyday life. It’s a time to quiet the mind and unlock your inner bliss. A wellness retreat is a time to find a safe place to relax and be yourself.
A Wondrous Wellness Retreat in Myrtle Beach
Yoga on the beach
A great way to kick off a wellness retreat is with a yoga practice on the beach. Yoga helps shift your awareness to your breathing, strength, and posture, helping you be more mindful of the present moment. I had the pleasure of taking a class with Shanti Yoga. It’s the longest running yoga studio on the Grand Strand of Myrtle Beach. Check out the studio website for a schedule of classes. Free beach yoga sessions are held on Saturdays from April to October. You can even take a class at Ripley’s Aquarium. That’s on the to-do list for my next visit.
Step back in time
Leave the beach to experience a bit of local history in the town of Conway. It is one of the oldest towns in South Carolina. Originally a riverside village, Conway was established at Kingston in 1733. Today, the picturesque town is definitely worth a visit as a way to step back in time and remember a simpler life. Join an educational walking tour with the folks at Conway Downtown Alive. I especially fell in love with the moss covered oak trees and charming homes. Visit historic cemeteries and ask your guide to share a few ghost stories. They have plenty to share.
Meditate at a sculpture garden
A blissful stroll through Brookgreen Gardens is a highlight of any trip to the Myrtle Beach area. One of America’s premiere gardens, Brookgreen is home to a wildlife preserve, zoo, river boat tour, and a magnificent sculpture garden. Art lovers like me can wander for hours. There are 550 works currently on display from 300 of famous American sculptors. Brookgreen preserves over 2,000 species of plants and has nine ecosystems that represent coastal South Carolina unlike anywhere else. It’s the ideal place to sit and meditate for a while. Garden admission is good for 7 consecutive days.
TravelingMOM Tip: Visit during the weekends in December for Nights of a Thousand Candles, where the gardens are illuminated by the soft glow of more than 5,500 hand-lit candles and countless sparkling lights.
Try a ride on the ocean
Locals say the best way to see Myrtle Beach is from the ocean. Adventurous travelers can try to balance on the water with surfing lessons or stand up paddle board (also known as SUP) classes. The guys at Jack’s Surf Lessons are “totally stoked” to get you started. Lessons start on the beach until you get the hang of “popping up.” Then it’s time to grab your board and “hang ten!” If you are lucky to catch a wave, this ocean sport may have you hooked in no time.
Check out how Optimism TMOM, Cathy Bennett Kopf experienced a weekend wellness retreat for her own lifestyle reset.
Taste some local wine
I recommend a visit to La Belle Amie Vineyard as part of a healthy travel retreat. After all, many studies have shown the health benefits of drinking wine. Home to “Twisted Sister” wines, the vineyard specializes in sweeter wines made from muscadine grapes. Two of the vines on the estate are over 100 years old. Owner Vicki will graciously tell you about the family vineyard’s history. In fact, the tradition of wine making was passed down from her French ancestors. For those who like drier wines, the vineyard imports grapes from other regions as well.
TravelingMOM Tip: Stop by for Wine Wednesdays for an afternoon of live music and half-priced wine tastings all day.
Take a hike
Become one with nature at Huntington Beach State Park. While there is a 3-mile long pristine beach, I recommend exploring the nature trails and boardwalks instead. It’s a bird watcher’s paradise with over 300 species of animals making their homes here. I spotted crabs, an alligator, storks, spoonbills and more. The park also features Atalaya, the historic former winter home of American sculptor Anna Hyatt Huntington. Nature lovers can camp in the park as well. Stay to watch the gorgeous sunset over the marshlands where many of the birds return for the night.
Spoil yourself at the spa
No wellness retreat is complete without a soothing visit to a spa. Take a break from the every day and relax while enjoying the tranquil surroundings and indulgent treatments offered at Cinzia Spa at North Beach Plantation. Services include massages, body treatments, facials, nail services and more. All within a luxurious 17,000 square foot facility. After a deluxe manicure/pedicure with tropical scented scrubs and lotions, I took a dip in the private Jacuzzi garden. Can they come build one in my backyard?
Considering a wellness retreat of your own? Check out TravelingMOM’s list of favorite spas for an ultimate pampering vacation.
SheBuysTravel Tip: One of our favorite things to do when taking a beach vacation is to hire a photographer for family photos. This is a special gift and souvenir that we cherish. We use Flytographer to book a local photographer located in the area that we're traveling to. Use this link and you will get $25 off your photo session.
Fresh local food makes healthy travel easy
With an extensive variety of fresh seafood and produce, healthy eating has never been so delightful. I had the pleasure of enjoying outstanding meals at these Myrtle Beach eateries.
Aspen Grille – Owner and chef Curry Martin spent time working in Napa Valley and France before returning to his home town of Myrtle Beach to open his own restaurant. Experience true southern fare with fried green tomatoes topped with lump crab meat.
Wicked Tuna – This restaurant is obsessed with fresh fish. Located on beautiful Murrell’s Inlet, fishing boats pull right up to their private dock. The restaurant is especially famous for artistic sushi rolls and an appetizer called the Dragon Egg. Don’t worry, there are choices for land lovers too!
Croissants Bakery and Bistro – Complete with an award-winning bakery, Croissants serves breakfast, lunch and brunch. This is where you want to come for a treat in addition to a meal. Try the seasonal fruit and spinach salad and take home some macaroons or key lime pie for later!
Where to stay
I was hosted at North Beach Plantation Oceanfront Towers. This part of Myrtle Beach, away from the busy main boardwalk area, is a splendid place to get away from it all. The ocean-view accommodations have between 1-4 bedrooms with living and dining areas as well as full kitchens. The resort has a large pool area and direct beach access.
How do you find your bliss? Have you ever been on a wellness retreat?