people walking on the beach

With miles of beautiful beaches to enjoy, North Myrtle Beach is one of South Carolina’s most popular vacation destinations. North Myrtle Beach and the rest of the Grand Strand are often densely packed, especially in the spring and summer months.

Whether you are a resident or a tourist, it’s crucial to know the laws regarding the use of the beach, from putting up umbrellas, to boating and surfing, and more.

North Myrtle Beach Laws to be Aware of

Here, we’ll review some of the most important laws you should be aware of when visiting North Myrtle Beach:


Swimming is permitted only up to 50 yards from the beach or shoulder height, according to the City of North Myrtle Beach. Jumping or diving from a pier into the ocean is also forbidden.

Failure to obey directions from a lifeguard is a misdemeanor offense in North Myrtle Beach.

Tents and Umbrellas

Tents are not allowed on the beach at North Myrtle Beach from May 15 through September 15. You are permitted to put up round umbrellas with a center pole that does not exceed 7 feet 6 inches in height and circular shade not wider than 9 feet in diameter.

Boating and Surfing

All watercraft must remain 100 yards or further from shore at all times in North Myrtle Beach, according to Sec. 5-11 of the Code of Ordinances. From May 15 to September 15, during the hours between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., launching motorized watercraft like jet skis from the beach is prohibited.

In North Myrtle Beach, surfing is prohibited within the hours of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. from May 15 to September 15, except in designated areas that can be found on the city’s official website here. Surfers must wear a surfing leash.

Driving on the Beach

It is illegal to drive on the beach or dunes in North Myrtle Beach.

Animals on the Beach

In North Myrtle Beach, dogs are not permitted on the beach from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. from May 15 to September 15. The leash law is in effect at all times. Dog owners must properly pick up and discard dog waste.

Sleeping on the Beach

Sleeping on the beach is not permitted from 9 p.m. to sunrise, according to Sec. 5-4 of the Code of Ordinances.


It is illegal to possess or consume alcohol on the beach in North Myrtle Beach, except as authorized in a festival zone or city-sponsored event. Glass containers are not allowed on the beach.

Motorcycle Laws

Riders and passengers who are under the age of 21 must wear Department of Transportation-approved helmets at all times when riding a motorcycle. Those under 21 must also wear eye protection unless the motorcycle is equipped with a windscreen. The use of headlights and mirrors on the left and right sides is also required by law.

Swim Advisories

The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control monitors ocean water from May 1 through October 1. The agency will issue swim advisories if bacteria levels exceed state standards. This means that warnings will be issued, but it will not close the beach to walking, swimming, sunbathing, or other activities.

Contact Jebaily Law Firm

For more than 50 years, the trial attorneys of Jebaily Law Firm have been fighting for people who’ve been injured by negligence in our community. We are committed to helping residents and visitors to North Myrtle Beach seek justice if they’ve been hurt. If you need our assistance, call our North Myrtle Beach office or reach out to us online today.

Ron Jebaily

Ron Jebaily focus his work on Personal Injury and Workers’ Compensation cases.  Today, he concentrates almost exclusively on Workers’ Compensation cases.