12 Communities in Murrells Inlet
A quaint village just southwest of the popular tourist destination, Myrtle Beach, Murrells Inlet is an affordable coastal town for retirees. Located along the Grand Strand, one of the longest beaches in the world, the area offers a variety of outdoor and water recreation, local restaurants, and pleasant year round weather, making it a popular destination for active adults seeking a quieter community in South Carolina.
Climate & Geography
Murrells Inlet is part of Coastal South Carolina and experiences a tropical and humid climate, receiving tropical warmth from the Atlantic. Summers tend to be hot and humid, with higher than average rainfall late in the season, and winters tend to be drier and milder. Though it does snow in Murrells Inlet, the snow is light and often melts quickly. Residents receive about 208 sunny days each year, which is in line with the national average.
The area is bordered by the Waccamaw National Wildlife Refuge to the west and south, and water from the inlet creates the eastern border. Once a sleepy fishing village, much of Murrells Inlet’s geographical borders are based on nearby bodies of water.
Recreation, Culture, & Entertainment
Active adults seeking outdoor and water recreation have plenty of opportunities in Murrells Inlet. Its most popular destination is the MarshWalk, a half-mile long boardwalk overlooking a salt marsh that features local eateries with nightly live music. Residents can also fish off the boardwalk.
Other popular outdoor areas include Brookgreen Gardens, which has the country’s largest collection of American figurative sculptures, and Huntington Beach State Park, which features campsites, hiking trails, and a nature center perfect for bird-watching. The Waccamaw Neck Bikeway is a no-vehicle zone for hiking and biking along protected nature preserves.
Residents can also enjoy several local golf courses, as well as the large-scale shopping and dining experiences of Myrtle Beach just 15 miles away.
Cost of Living & Taxes
The overall cost of living is higher than the rest of South Carolina, but it matches the U.S. average. Homes in Murrells Inlet are more expensive, whereas transportation is much lower than average. Other factors like groceries, utilities, and health care are all in line with the national average.
South Carolina is generally tax friendly to retirees. It does not tax Social Security, and although it does tax other forms of retirement income, it also offers substantial deductions. Property taxes in the state are among the lowest in the country, and the Murrells Inlet sales tax rate of 6 percent is average for the U.S. Groceries and prescription drugs are exempt from the sales tax.
As part of the Myrtle Beach metropolitan area, Murrells Inlet generally scores well on Gallup’s Well-Being Index. It most recently ranked in the top 40 communities across the U.S.
Although there are no nationally ranked hospitals in Murrells Inlet, it is home to Tidelands Waccamaw Community Hospital, which is ranked by U.S. News as high performing in knee replacements. There are two other high performing hospitals within 20 miles: Conway Medical Center in Conway, and Grand Strand Regional Medical Center in Myrtle Beach.