Our week in Myrtle Beach starts with an easy day touring around the town. During the week we saw a beautiful sculpture garden (Brookgreen Gardens), spent a great day in fabulous Charleston where the history is overwhelming, drove up into the interior of the state where we found a lovely old mansion from 1893 and a day trip to Southport, North Carolina.
We tend to keep our feet moving and see as much in an area as we can.
Just a quiet day touring around Myrtle Beach. Completely different from Hilton Head Island. Myrtle Beach is very much a "resort" town with amusement parks, miles of hotels, both old and new, along the beach and beautiful homes. After a few hours we returned to our resort and watched an amazing sunset. No, the tree isn't on fire, just the sky.
Brookgreen Gardens. National Register. Sounds lovely right? Well it is. Except while we thought is was gardens as in flowers, it is actually sculpture gardens. Still lovely, but not what we expected.
Anyway, there are literally hundreds of sculptures (and some flowers too) in the gardens. No, we didn't take pictures of them all and there are not hundreds of pictures here (63 to be precise) and they are not all of sculptures.
We saw a Barred owl and managed a couple shots of a Northern Cardinal. They also have a small but very nice zoo where you can actually get some shots of the animals without wires. This was a dull, grey day, but still pretty.
Myrtle Beach is about a two hour drive from Charleston. After stopping in Charleston for a couple hours on the way here, we decided we need to go back.
First up is a tour of the USS Yorktown. USS Yorktown is a WW II aircraft carrier that saw plenty of action, not only in WW II but Vietnam as well. I, for one am in awe of what the men (and women) did during "the war". USS Yorktown is 30,000 tons. Titanic was 46,000. The Royal Princess that we just cruised on is 130,000. I can't imagine living in the small quarters, being tossed around by the ocean like a cork, and trying to take of and land an aircraft on a pitching deck. Thanks, but no thanks. I have tried to keep the number of pictures down and just give a sense of life aboard one of these ships. The last mission she had was to retrieve Apollo 8 and her crew after they were the first to circle moon. No history here.
The tour was broken in two by a trip to Fort Sumter. Fort Sumter is an island in Charleston harbour. Charleston, founded in 1670 has a spectacular history. In 1718 it was held under siege by Blackbeard the pirate. It played a major role in the Revolutionary War (1776) where the colonists gained their independence from Great Britain. Then Fort Sumter was the first battle of the Civil War. The Union forces in the fort were severely out manned and out gunned and after 34 hours of being bombarded by the Confederate forces they surrendered. The Union spent most of the rest of the war trying to win the fort back. In the end they succeeded but the fort was a pile of rubble.
Rebuilt it then was part of the defenses of Charleston during the Spanish-American war in 1898. Talk about walking on hallowed ground.
Back to the Yorktown to finish my walk around then dinner in the French Quarter of downtown Charleston.
Lastly we capped of the day by taking a few night shots of some of the 250 to 300 year old buildings. Magnificent!
We tend to just drive. Pick a direction and go. We somehow always manage to find something cool. Today was a drive in the country to a couple smaller towns northwest of Myrtle Beach.
First an old gas station at Galivants Ferry, then on to Marion, SC. where we saw lots of lovely older homes. As we were passing by a long driveway, Joy saw a beautiful place so we went around to get a second view. Good thing. We were met by the owner who gave us a wonderful tour. The home was built in 1893 and is now run as a Bed & Breakfast / Museum. The Grove - The Inn on Harlee. Virtually all of the furniture in the home is original or pieces from the same era. The owner also makes some in the workshop using only tools & methods available in the late 1800's. The place is amazing.
On the way home we saw an old railway caboose and a cool sky.
Last day in Myrtle Beach so naturally we drove up the coast to Southport and Oak Island, North Carolina.
On the way we saw a couple guys loading (overloading?) mattresses onto a truck. Just something different. More sand, beach and pier shots. Also, on one pier there were dozens of gulls that seemed not to care that I was there. So, I took too many pictures of them. We also seem to take a lot of pictures of the homes. But they are so darned cute that we can't seem to stop. :) Then just a few sunset shots of some of the hotels along Ocean Avenue as we were on our way home.
Moving Day. How often can you say you are looking forward to "moving day"? Well that is what road trips like this are like. New places, new adventures.
Today we are off to Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. First a couple shots of some unusual plants at our resort in Myrtle Beach, then a few of a wild looking park. We are not sure what it is, but it looks like a really big jungle gym/obstacle course. Then a couple shots of some abandoned buildings and a fire hall.