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South Carolina: Grand Strand (Myrtle Beach & Region)

99 Coastal Destinations Rated: Bottom Rated

Score: 43

Unapologetically paved over by golf courses, strip malls, water parks, and concrete high-rises, Myrtle Beach is "the definition of unsustainable." The state parks in its vicinity are worth a visit, however.

Here is a representative sampling of additional anonymous comments from the panelists. They are not necessarily the views of the National Geographic Society:

"A tourism disaster. After my first visit I vowed never to return. Development is rampant and feels out of control. The quality of attractions is terrible. Uber-consumerism is everywhere. However, the region around Myrtle Beach has lovely state parks, beach areas and some small villages. If I were to ever be coaxed back to the region, that is where I would spend all of my time."

"A wall of high-rises blocks access to the beach. The roads paralleling the beach are home to the world's largest collection of cheap T-shirt shops and mini-golf courses. Access to the generally clean beach is limited and many buildings are too close to the high-water mark to be safe from hurricane damage. Some dune protection is in place."

"Overdevelopment, poor building guidelines, and concrete high-rises too close to the water have brought about a steady decline that seems near impossible to reverse."

"The Grand Strand is overbuilt and just waiting for a big hurricane to wipe the slate clean."

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