The attention Myrtle Beach area golf courses receive seems to decrease the closer they are located to the North Carolina-South Carolina state line. Whether it’s the distance players have to travel from Myrtle Beach proper or something else, it’s hard to explain the relative lack of love North Strand courses receive.
There are a lot of quality layouts clustered around the state line, and here are five that deserve far more attention than they receive.
— Let’s start with what might be the area’s most underrated course – Long Bay Golf Club. A Jack Nicklaus design, Long Bay has been deservedly ranked among the best layouts in South Carolina. Sprawling waste bunkers and creative mounding help define an inland course that delivers an experience that is equal parts stern and creative.
— Glen Dornoch (pictured above) is one of just six area layouts that reside along the Intracoastal Waterway and none of them play closer to the water than the Clyde Johnston design. The Intracoastal comes into play on five holes at Glen Dornoch, most memorably on the unforgettable 17th and 18th. The 17th is one of the area’ best par 3s, featuring a green that runs to the water’s edge.
— Speaking of views, Oyster Bay (pictured right) delivers stunning visuals of the Calabash River. Throw in two island greens, water on 15 of 18 holes, and some of the area’s biggest alligators, and you have all the ingredients for a memorable layout.
— A Scottish-inspired design, Thistle is a 27-hole facility that complements an outstanding design with the Grand Strand’s premier clubhouse. Home of Cameron, Mackay and Stewart nines, Thistle is always in impeccable condition. The course doesn’t have that signature hole like some of the others on this list, but from start to finish, it’s a place you are always happy to play.
— Based on the strength of its beauty, the Pearl, now home to 27 holes, earned a spot on our list. Nine holes on the East Course recently closed, but six of the Pearl’s 27 holes play along the Calabash River and the property is in better shape than it has been in years.