Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Southern New England >
Jan 29, 2010 12:39 PM

Roadtrip from MA to SC


My roommate and I are embarking on a roadtrip down to Myrtle Beach, SC during the first week of March, and would love some recommendations of must go to restaurants/stops along the way.(we're going straight down the coast.) We are both foodies and we want to experience as much as we can during our trip so any feedback would be much appreciated!

  1. Get all the good food you can on the way down, cuz once you hit Myrtle beach, the pickin's are mighty slim...

    BIG question, I assume you are going to come down 95, cut over on 40 to Wilmington, NC. Then take rte 17 from Wilmington to Myrtle Beach?

    Wilmington has some nice local places. Oh, and one other thing, the best fish available down here, Grouper, is going to no longer be able to be fished for in the coming season. All types, from NC to Key West FL. Not by commercial fishermen, and not by sport fishermen. Fish and Game say it is overfished.

    And we DON'T have haddock or Cod (not N.E. quality anyways...).

    Seriously, if you are driving THIS far, you should just pass by Myrtle beach on rte.17, drive the extra 95 miles, and be in downtown Charleston. THAT is a great place for food, and scenery and architecture. Seriously, I moved down here due to the wife. If I had done some due dilligence, would have ended up in Wilmington NC or Charleston SC. You will be here in March? The place is still deader than heck. Seriously, it is exactly like those Massachusetts beach resorts that close up tight for the Winter. Me and the wife get ourselves to Charleston at least once a month. They have an actual city. Myrtle beach is more like 35,000 retirees who golf on weekends and eat at the "Calabash" style buffets in the evening.

    Unless your idea of fun is walking on a deserted cold beach, driving past miles of empty storefronts, and eating in empty restaurants, just pass through.

    Hope you didn't rent one of those cheap hotel rooms already... I do computer work at a lot of these places. Seriously, on ANY weekday, you can get cheap vacancies at ANY of the hotels right on the beach. The only folks you are competing with are the Canadians. Who are already renting time shares for the whole Winter, so they don't impact the hotels.

    Now, anyone who reads this and gets mad, well, I am sorry. I apologize. But I will tell you two things. Myrtle beach is NOT a major metro area, even though you might get that idea, since it has been here so long. It is a quiet little town/city with no major industry, colleges, etc.. Lots of Golf Courses. Really nice beaches. Great in the SUMMER. But Winter? NIMHO.

    Second, there is NO WAY that any self respecting foodie would make a FOOD trip to Myrtle Beach. It is blazingly average. Glaringly average. I don't want to hear about "Thoroughbreds" or "Umi" or any other place that, if placed in a major market, would just be considered "good enough". The majority of the food here is breakfast shacks, for all the golfers. And Calabash style all-you-can-stomach fried food fiestas.

    It isn't that folks haven't TRIED to run top quality restaurants. It is just that they are so DEAD down here seven months out of the year, that they cannot afford to stay open.

    There is NO Korean. NO Vietnamese. ONLY take out Chinese (that chain restaurant in Market Common DOES NOT COUNT!), NO Indian (well, one really, but it ain't so hot...) A LOT of pseudo teppan style Japanese, a few BBQ places. I really cannot reccomend one place that rises above all others to the point where I would say "You HAVE to eat HERE!". You are just as well off opening up the AAA guide and looking for the places with the little diamonds.

    Now, if you want reccomendations for Charleston... It is exactly the opposite. Too many to give them a fair shake. And with several colleges right downtown, like "The Citadel" and "University of Charleston", lots of people who work and play and live there year round. Lots of people watching and scenery and Architecture. AND it was named by some major travel magazine this year as one of the places to see in 2010. DO IT!!!

    Oh, and one last thing. The OTHER difference between Charleston and Myrtle Beach? There are very few Southerners left in Myrtle Beach. Lots of folks from OH, CT, MA, NJ, NY, and especially PA, but the majority of the Southerners seem to have sold us their land and split.

    3 Replies
    1. re: YoungstownBoy

      ha, well thank you for your input. I didnt choose the place, the trips original purpose has changed, so we decided to make a road trip out of it. we have not yet booked anything, as i dont think i'll want to stay in myrtle beach the whole time, not knowing what to expect which is why i posted. we are planning to go to Charleston, and from the sound of it it will be well worth it. i'm looking for recommendations for good food along the way, not necessarily just in Myrtle Beach, thats just where she was planning on staying. we love food,as we are both chefs, and this is our first vacation in a while. we are just trying to have a good time, so no need for insult, sorry you dont like Myrtle beach

      1. re: lem393

        lem -- if you like barbecue, try to get to a place called Moree's, which is just outside Andrews, SC (hometown of Chubby Checker). It's an authentic SC pig pickin, so it's opened only on the weekends, but it's worth the drive from MB. You go down 17 to Georgetown, then head east. It's worth the drive.

      2. re: YoungstownBoy

        For a quick lunch stop, I would highly reccomend Super Duper Weenie in Fairfield, CT. It's right off I-95. The dogs are good, but what makes them most special is that every topping is house made and awesome.
        And one of the best cheesesteaks I've ever had. Fries are great too. Here's their site which includes directions:

      3. Post your requests on the local boards, NJ, Mid-Atlantic....That's what we did last April on a food trip from Las Vegas to Cloudcroft, NM to Austin to NOLA to Savannah to New Haven and back to Maine. Yum.
        If you take the Garden State Parkway to Cap May, some very good eats and the ferry to Lewes, Del. and down the DELMAR Penninsula on Rt 13, you'll find a lot of local food, but it is much slower.

        1. Oooh! What a trip!
          I am a true-blue foodie, who loves to plan trips around food, but sadly, sometimes don't have a say in my desitinations. But, we can always make the best of any trip, right!

          So, our family vacation to Myrtle beach, my husband and I made it a challenge to ask all the locals their favorite NON-TOURIST place to eat. The GREAT news is that we had the BEST BBQ I have ever had after asking this question. The coffee shop worker told us to go to a place called "Little Pig" about 10 minutes from Broadway on the Beach. After driving away from the "pretty" section of Myrtle Beach, we ended up at a place that looked like a renovated gas station. We weren't even sure if we should go in. But, boy! are we glad we did! Seriously, the best carolina pulled pork sanwich I have ever had! spicy vinegar sauce, with coleslaw and sweet tea! YUM!

          Sadly, I don't remember how we got there, but that is not the point of my story. The point is - ASK the locals were they LOVE to eat. And, try to avoid all tourist restaurants.

          Good luck on this Loooong trip. Can't wait to check back to hear your stories.

          1. if you go through DC, stop by ben's chilli bowl on U st. they have a pretty good chilli dog. the place is not as good as it used to be, but part of the fun is the history of the place as it survived the 60s riots and is still run by the same family.