There’s no shortage of creepy places in and around Myrtle Beach, and we’re not only talking about the fun, modern attractions like the Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium. Well, we couldn’t leave that out from this compilation, but most of the ones you do see here are weird and haunted spots that date back to the 1940s and even way back to the early 19th century that can give you more than just goosebumps.

    Sure, thrillseekers and those intentionally looking for a good scare can head to the contemporary haunted house attractions in downtown, but if it’s a hit of horror that’s more grounded in local lore and history you're looking for, look out for the Gothic Revival houses and eerie landmarks. Some are supposedly haunts of Revolutionary War-era figures who seemingly don’t realise that the war is over. Enjoy some of the ghost stories and oddities of Myrtle Beach, below.

    1

    Alice Flagg’s Grave

    A broken-hearted girl rests here – but not in peace…

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    All Saints Church Cemetery in Pawleys Island has a grave that’s marked as the final resting place of Alice Flagg. As one of South Carolina’s most famous ghost stories, Alice Flagg’s account dates back to the 1800s. It’s a tragic love tale where the young woman died of heartbreak after her brother disapproved of her relationship with a young man of lower social stature.

    It goes that the lovebirds saw each other in secret, and the ‘Romeo’ gave the ‘Juliet’ a ring, which she hid from her brother, wearing it on a ribbon around her neck. While attending to Alice who fell ill from malaria, her brother found the ring, tore it from her neck, and threw into the marshes. Deep in sorrow, Alice passed away soon after. Since then, many claimed to have seen her apparition searching for the missing ring.

    Location: 3560 Kings River Rd, Pawleys Island, SC 29585, USA

    Phone: +1 843-237-4223

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    2

    The Brentwood Restaurant & Wine Bistro

    Wine and dine… with ghostly encounters

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    Book a table at Brentwood Restaurant & Wine Bistro in Little River for a special occasion, with French cuisine – and probably a good serving of paranormal activity. It’s said to be the most haunted bistro in South Carolina, with plenty of weird happenings and sightings – some even having been captured by its modern owners’ surveillance cameras and others witnessed by its guests.

    Little did the owners know about the centuries-old history of the house when they purchased it back in 2007. Sightings range from swiftly passing shadows and a ‘presence’ in the rooms upstairs, walls that occasionally sigh, ashtrays or wine glasses falling off the edge of tables, as well as strange orbs and unknown figures that have shown up in their digital video footages. Dare to take a selfie?

    Location: 4269 State Rd S-26-852, Little River, SC 29566, USA

    Open: September–May: Tuesday–Saturday from 4 pm to 9 pm. June–August: Monday–Saturday from 4 pm to 9 pm

    Phone: +1 843-249-2601

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    3

    Drunken Jack Island

    Spooky swashbuckling in Murrells Inlet

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    How Drunken Jack’s Island in Murrells Inlet got its name harks back to the 18th century, when the area with its small coves was a magnet for pirates stashing their loot. Among them were Blackbeard and one called Drunken Jack. One occasion, a band of pirates came ashore to bury their treasured rum and merrily drink some. Jack drank a lot, got drunk, and wandered off – eventually getting left behind.

    All the marooned pirate had for sustenance was the liquor booty, so he dug them up and drank them each day. His skeletal remains were found years later… clasping a bottle. The legend further goes that he returns to the island on some nights, still searching for more rum to imbibe.

    Location: Murrells Inlet, South Carolina 29576, USA

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    4

    Hollywood Wax Museum

    Enter through an uncanny valley of celebrities

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    The Hollywood Wax Museum in Myrtle Beach offers you a fun tour through galleries filled with wax figures of celebrities and even zombies. The entertainment centre is a top feature of Broadway at the Beach and is hard to miss with its King Kong-like sculpture scaling the top of the building. Like at any wax museum, there are truly lifelike creations and others that are slightly off and outright creepy if you stare long enough before you decide to take your selfies.

    The stars gallery has a huge collection ranging from Brad Pitt to cult-classic icons like Jason Voorhees. Pop into the Prop Vault to admire movie props and replicas, from Darth Vader’s mask to Willy Wonka’s golden ticket. Then, if you dare, go along the ‘haunted’ walk called Dread the Undead, which is filled with zombie-induced scares and screams.

    Location: 1808 21st Ave N unit a, Myrtle Beach, SC 29577, USA

    Open: Daily from 11 am to 7 pm

    Phone: +1 843-444-0091

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    photo by Momwriter (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified

    5

    Ripley's Myrtle Beach

    Oddities for your curiosities

    • Families
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    The Believe It or Not! Odditorium brings you fascinating exhibits – most of which are shocking and bizarre. Thanks to Robert Ripley for collecting all sorts of great oddities and exotic finds from around the globe, a trip to Myrtle Beach’s odditorium promises an intriguing day out for all ages.

    The bright yellow-and-orange building on Myrtle Beach’s North Ocean Boulevard is hard to miss. It has over 200 exhibits of ‘unbelievable’ artefacts spread over 2 storeys inside, ranging from shrunken heads and authentic vampire hunting kits to other incredible objects. To bring up the fear factor a notch, you can stroll northeast for a minute along the boulevard to Ripley’s Haunted Adventure, where live actors in freaky costumes and makeup inside the creepy ‘mansion’ mercilessly test your wits.

    Location: 901 N Ocean Blvd, Myrtle Beach, SC 29577, USA

    Open: Daily from 10 am to 4 pm

    Phone: +1 843-916-0888

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    6

    Pawleys Island Beach

    Watch out for the Gray Man

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    Pawleys Island Beach is where one of South Carolina’s most well-known local legends appears as a sign of looming severe weather conditions. Known as the Gray Man, sightings began in the early 1800s but there have been accounts where he has appeared right before major hurricanes in recent times.

    This shadowy messenger is said to be the wandering spirit of a man who was on his way on horseback to meet his wife-to-be. Unfortunately, he got stuck and drowned in quicksand in the marshes off Pawleys Island. He continues searching for his bride to this day. It’s said that residents who have seen his faint shadowy figure on the coast would often find their property unharmed following a violent storm.

    Location: Atlantic Avenue, Pawleys Island, SC 29585, USA

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    7

    Prince George Winyah Cemetery

    Hear the eerie cackle of children around dusk

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    Prince George Winyah Church in Georgetown is one of the oldest churches in South Carolina. Residents have been congregating here since its establishment way back in 1721. The old church is surrounded by a brick wall that’s as old as the church itself. Within the yard is a cemetery that’s said to be the final resting place of Confederate Army soldiers and early prominent residents, including a family of 7. Some say you can hear the sounds of giggling children here around dusk.

    The Beth Elohim Cemetery across the street has it's own share of stories. It's where Pauline Moses was buried. She and her friend, Eliza Munnerlyn, died of yellow fever right before their same-day wedding day. Eliza was buried at Prince George Winyah Cemetery. Some have reported hearing girly giggles in the area, so it seems they still like to hang out.

    Location: 300 Broad St, Georgetown, SC 29442, USA

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    photo by Elisa.rolle (CC BY-SA 4.0) modified

    8

    Prince Frederick Church

    Eerie old chapel ruins in the woods

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    Prince Frederick's Chapel Ruins, also known as Old Gunn Church, is a historic landmark in Plantersville that dates back to 1859. At the time, it was as a place of worship for wealthy rice farmers who lived along Pee Dee River. It was built to replace a former church but construction efforts halted during the US Civil War. Continued efforts saw contractors Philip and Edward Gunn oversee the construction.

    The fate of the building was determined following failed crops and a mishap – one of the Gunns went up to the steep roof to inspect the tower, only to fall to his death with a blood-curdling scream and a thud. Most of the church’s structures have deteriorated, leaving only 1 preserved wall that you can see today. Some claim to still hear Gunn’s screams when exploring the area.

    Location: 9796 Plantersville Rd, Georgetown, SC 29440, USA

    Phone: +1 843-646-2222

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    photo by Stephen Matthew Milligan (CC BY-SA 3.0) modified

    9

    Georgetown Lighthouse

    A functioning lighthouse with a story to tell

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    Georgetown Lighthouse on North Island in South Carolina is a historical but fully functioning lighthouse that has its share of legends. Those who have visited the 85-ft-tall lighthouse claim to hear footsteps going up and down its 124 steps while others have seen apparitions of a young girl. Sailors have also seen the apparition on the decks of their ships. It's said to have been warning them of looming severe weather conditions.

    It’s thought to be the ghost of Annie, the lightkeeper’s daughter, who spent a lot of time maintaining the lighthouse. Both once left their post on a weekend to visit Georgetown, but on the way back, severe weather and tide conditions sunk their boat. Her father swam to shore with Annie strapped to his back, only to find she had drowned on the way.

    Location: Georgetown, SC 29440, USA

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    10

    Gilbert Road

    Bear witness to a spooky light phenomenon

    • Unusual

    Gilbert Road in Horry County is home to an urban legend and a phenomenon known as the Lucas Bay Lights. Most of the paranormal sightings occur where part of the road turns to dirt. There are many versions to the tale of the ‘floating’ or ‘wandering’ lights, one calling them ghosts of a US Civil War-era mother who continues her desperate search of a child she lost in a flood.

    Sceptics have tried to debunk the urban legend by attributing the lights to swamp methane gas or those of off-road vehicles or ATVs in the area. Yet ghosthunters investigating the spot claimed to have witnessed and captured weird lights on camera – and even recorded strange voices on tape.

    Location: Gilbert Rd, South Carolina 29527, USA

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    Ari Gunadi | Compulsive Traveller

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