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Best Places to Live Near The Beach In South Carolina

South Carolina is a perfect place to settle for anyone that treasures an Oceanside retreat or a peaceful life on the waterfront. Other than being famous for southern hospitality, the state stands out for its affluent history, mesmerizing sporting grounds, and sunny beaches.

Therefore, if you want to put up a home or retire in a coastal town, South Carolina would be ideal. Alongside subtropical beaches with a fresh ocean breeze, most towns in the south boast a humid climate, high living standards, affordability, and low crime rates. The article spotlights six of the best places to live near the beach in South Carolina.

Best Places to Live Near The Beach In South Carolina

1. Isle of Psalms

The Isle of Psalms is a distinctive locale offering the best of both worlds. Located only 30 minutes from downtown Charleston, the place serves you the perquisites of a resort destination alongside the vibes of a beach town. That aside, there are numerous reasons why the Isle of Psalms is an ideal location to call home in South Carolina.

To begin with, the island has been voted the friendliest city in the U.S. This coupled with the fact that it hosts top-rated public schools, makes it a superb spot for folks intending to raise a family. Apart from that, the place is a favorite destination for sun-worshiping adventure lovers courtesy of beautiful parks with over 3.5 miles of hiking trails. It is blessed with magnificent beaches that give magical views of the ocean with welcoming warm water.

With over seven miles of continuous dog-friendly white sand at your disposal, you will be spoilt for choice. Be it lounging, playing tennis, or golfing, the serene beaches on the island have everything you need.  Moving on, the picturesque island comes with the Intracoastal Waterway which is appropriate for a myriad of water sports.

Nothing beats the experience of beachfront restaurants and bars. The island has many of those. For history lovers, the island grants you the opportunity to travel back in time, with monumental churches and other epic landmarks to pique your interest. To crown it all, you do not have to mind harsh weather when on the Isle of Psalms.


  • Historical haven with numerous landmarks
  • Ideal for families
  • Easy to get around
  • Endless fun activities
  • Dog-friendly beaches
  •  Perfect climate all year round


  • Costly housing

2. Kiawah Island

kiawah beach

Are looking for a low-country living experience in a luxurious environment? Kiawah Island is the place to be. Living on the island is a treat as it hosts the finest amenities with a tiny population of 1500 residents. It is home to an impressive 10 miles of gorgeous beachfront with a clear view of the Atlantic together with a couple of award-winning restaurants, and world-class golf courses. Other than that, residents of Kiawah Island have access to a marina and numerous fitness centers that promote an active lifestyle.

If you have a penchant for the outdoors, the place offers expansive scenic parklands together with unmatched biking and hiking trails. The island is characterized by beautiful weather throughout the year. Great weather allows residents to make the most of all seasonal activities like surfing, fishing, boating, or paddleboarding. In terms of real estate, the location has a wide range of classic bungalows, snag-family homes, and other accommodation options that you can rent or buy. Whether you are a thrill seeker or simply after some quiet, Kiawah Island is the go-to destination.


  • Favorable weather conditions
  • World-class restaurants
  • Golfing paradise
  • Endless outdoor activities
  •  Breathtaking beaches


  • The steep cost of living

3. Beaufort

Beaufort is a maritime haven sitting on 5.6 miles of coastal land. Otherwise called the “Queen of the Sea Islands” the place hosts a tight community with a population of only 4314 people. Despite being sparsely populated, Beaufort is a vibrant coastal town with a deep-rooted past that dates back as far as the 16th century. Still, it is one of the safest areas with the lowest crime rates in South Carolina thanks to multiple military establishments in the area. For outdoor fanatics, the place experiences over 216 sunny days annually, implying that the weather conditions are perfect for most of the year.

Moreover, you will have a daily supply of fresh meat, fruits, vegetables, and honey all courtesy of the farmer’s market in the locale. There are numerous beach cafes and restaurants to cater to folks with a taste for seafood and other delicacies. As for fun activities, the town hosts water or land events, festivals, and parades regularly.

Similarly, it is home to several decent public schools for any parents looking for quality education for their kids. Of course, our review of this coastal town will not be over without mentioning its magnificent beaches. Overall, Beaufort is a pretty livable place with a reasonable cost of living, a nonchalant atmosphere, and tons of engaging activities to enrich your life.


  • Reasonable cost of living
  • Low crime rates
  • Family-friendly environment
  • Ideal for retirees
  • High-ranking education institutions


  • The population is too small

4. Sullivan’s Island

Other than being a retiree’s favorite location, Sullivan island guarantees 24/7 serene views of the world’s second shallowest ocean. The authentic paradise in the south is a dream destination for many tourists who are attracted to the consistent warm weather on the island. Not for a moment will you find the island boring as it features notable tennis clubs and high-end golf courses for sports pundits. If you prefer to engage in water activities, there is kiteboarding, kayaking, sailing, and fishing to keep you engaged. Food junkies have a long list of top-class restaurants and a variety of cuisines to enjoy.

In a similar fashion, Sullivan Island is home to primal education, and medical and recreational centers ensuring a wholesome lifestyle for its residents. Moving to the island also means that you have access to many job opportunities thanks to its flourishing economy. With a solid history portfolio defined by epic monuments alongside a good number of natural hiking trails and game parks, the island will quickly become a great home for outdoor heads. To top it off, you do not have to break the bank to afford accommodation in the town. The cost of living in this area is moderate allowing its inhabitants to put bread on their table without a fuss. 


  • Tons of fun activities all around the year
  • Cute natural beaches
  • Low crime rate
  •  Great social amenities


  • High taxation rate pushing up the cost of living
myrtle beach

5. Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach is a unique beach town for so many fabulous reasons. If you do not mind interacting with new people or new faces regularly, Myrtle Beach is the place for you. This is because the locale is so amazing that it is always littered with tourists. It is peppered with shopping complexes, amusement parks, golf courses as well as an aquarium. Perhaps the beach town’s biggest selling point is its lovely mild climate. Favorable weather conditions imply that you get to spend more time on 60 miles of its sandy beaches.

Another prominent attribute that you will find amusing about the town is the cost of living. With lower tax rates, the cost of living in Myrtle Beach is estimated to be 7% lower than that of other places in the U.S. A booming economy in the beach town ensures that there are lots of opportunities for job seekers. For any prospective parent with questions about the education scenario, the place has a good number of remarkable charter, private and public schools.


  • Low cost of living
  • Low crime rate
  • Good population growth rate
  • Favorable climate
  • Great education institutions
  •  Long beautiful beaches


  • Crowded with tourists

6. Hilton Head Island

Hilton head

In case you are still unsure whether you should relocate to Hilton Head Island or not, doubt yourself no more. Hilton Head Island features a friendly neighborhood. It incorporates tree-lined streets, stunning homes, a sprawling marshland, and rich historical landmarks. Accessing the island is easy. It sits approximately 1.5 hours from Charleston. Unlike anywhere else in the south, living in this region exposes you to the calming sounds of crashing waves as well as the enriching salty air. It is all this laid-back atmosphere and nature-provided serenity that makes Hilton Head Island a top choice for settlement among retirees.

In addition to being peaceful, the place has multiple public parks for outdoor fanatics. Moreover, it has countless gold courses for sports enthusiasts. For anyone with a thirst for cultural opportunities, the neighborhood is home to a flourishing community of cultural exhibits, fine art, and music theaters.

On top of that, Hilton Head Island’s pristine beaches and mild humid climate have earned it a top spot among favorite tourist destinations. In addition, you will find the fresh ocean breeze and jaw-dropping scenes from the Atlantic worthwhile. Regardless of whether you are looking for an incredible place to blow off some steam after retirement or a serene location to raise a family close to the beach, Hilton Head Island will live up to your expectations.


  • Mild climate
  • Highly accessible
  • Endless outdoor activities
  •  Ideal for retirees


  • Crowds of tourists during summer


There is a broad array of benefits you stand to gain from moving to South Carolina. Keep in mind, that town beaches in the south are not limited to these six spots alone, there are more interesting coastal towns to consider. As highlighted before, the state features tons of natural beauty in addition to being conveniently located. Nonetheless, it is crucial to consider your own needs before choosing to move into any of the beach towns reviewed in the article.

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