Is Virginia Beach Nicer Than Myrtle Beach? How To Choose The Best Option

Two of America’s best beach cities, Virginia Beach and Myrtle Beach, are often compared and spark the question of which city is better to visit. Is Virginia Beach nicer than Myrtle Beach?

The following blog will discuss the best aspects of each beach city to help you decide which one you think would be the nicer option.

The reality is that both of these cities sport beautiful beaches, exciting activities, and ambient atmospheres.

Yet, in the end, they have some essential differences that set them apart.

Is Virginia Beach Nicer Than Myrtle Beach?

The decision on whether Virginia Beach is nicer than Myrtle Beach will come down to your personal preferences. Virginia Beach is the nicer option for a more relaxed vibe featuring excellent restaurants and boardwalks. However, Myrtle Beach is the nicer option if you are out for an upbeat atmosphere, with beach parties, pubs, and family entertainment.

Activities: Virginia Beach Vs. Myrtle Beach

These great cities hold so many activity options that it might be hard to decide if Virginia Beach is nicer than Myrtle Beach. We will let you decide which city you think is the nicer option out of the two.

Virginia Beach

First off, Virginia Beach sports an impressive 3-mile-long concrete boardwalk lined with streetlamps to create a picturesque scene and perfectly placed benches that will allow you to soak up the fantastic waterfront views. If you feel like biking or rollerskating, this boardwalk is the perfect place.

With its sparkly lights and music, the boardwalk is the ideal location for anyone looking to enjoy an evening outside. It is also a great place to head if you are looking for an array of shops, cafes, and restaurants. Ensure that you visit after the sun goes down so that you can fully appreciate the scene.

Virginia Beach is full of family-orientated activities, and as it is a historic city, there are some great educational activities as well. 

Whether you are into history, are a nature lover, or are just out to experience the city to its fullest, there is something for you. Some top places to visit in Virginia Beach include:

  • Virginia Aquarium and Science Center
  • Busch Gardens
  • Cape Henry Lighthouse
  • Military Aviation Museum
  • First Landing State Park 
  • Virginia Beach of Contemporary Art
  • Norfolk Botanical Gardens
  • Virginia Beach History Museum

Myrtle Beach

For those of you looking for excellent recreational activities, extensive shopping options, opportunities to be entertained, or countless options for dining out, Myrtle Beach has what you are seeking. 

This remarkable city is known as the mini-golf capital of the world and for a good reason! It sports over 50 themed mini golf courses and countless golf courses.

Another great thing about Myrtle Beach is that it sports its own up-and-coming concrete boardwalk and 60 miles of beautiful shoreline, which hugs the South Carolina coast. 

This fun-filled city is a popular destination choice for families and those looking for a night on the town or who seek jam-packed entertainment.

Some of the more popular activities for you to take part in while staying in Myrtle Beach include:

  • Broadway at the Beach
  • The Market Common
  • Wonderworks
  • Ripley’s Aquarium
  • Myrtle Beach Ferris Wheel 
  • Myrtle Waves Water Park
  • Jet Aircraft at Warbird Park
  • Hollywood House of Wax
  • Brookgreen Gardens

Nightlife: Virginia Beach Vs. Myrtle Beach

A visit to either of these two cities will not disappoint as they both have fantastic nightlife scenes. So, let’s peruse some of the more popular night activities to decide which would be the better option for you.

Virginia Beach

You don’t need to look that hard for a place to let your hair down when visiting Virginia Beach. Most restaurants and hotels feature bars that become the perfect setting for socializing once the sun goes down. 

If you are in the mood for more of a club setting, head over to Peabody’s Nightclub, or you can head down to the Oceanfront district, which will definitely have something fun for you.

Myrtle Beach

If you had to ask around, you would find that Myrtle Beach is considered quite the party town with an extensive selection of evening activities. So whether you feel for a rocking beach party or heading onto the dance floor at one of their many dance clubs or pubs, Myrtle Beach will not disappoint.

They also have various fantastic live entertainment and music options, including the Carolina Opry and the Alabama Theatre.

Beach Vibes: Virginia Beach Vs. Myrtle Beach

One of the main aspects to consider when deciding which beach city is a better option would be what kind of beaches they offer, the crowds, beach activities, etc. Only once you have looked at all that vital information can you ask yourself, is Virginia Beach nicer than Myrtle Beach?

Virginia Beach

The beaches that form part of Virginia Beach offer different experiences and activities. You have the option of enjoying the boardwalk at Virginia Beach Oceanfront and all that it provides. 

You could go surfing at Croatan Beach, relax with fewer crowds, and have a calmer ambiance at Little Island Park Beach or Sandbridge Beach. 

You can also enjoy some of Virginia Beach’s historical aspects by visiting First Landing State Beach Park, enjoying the historic 3000 acres of protected freshwater Cypress Swamps and coastline preserve. 

In Virginia Beach, the private and public beaches offer an array of activities, with the most popular being:

  • Snorkeling
  • Whale watching
  • Surfing
  • Fishing
  • Dolphin tours
  • Exploring maritime history

The waters around Virginia Beach are relatively calm, which provides the perfect setting for a relaxing swim or a snorkeling adventure.

Overall the beachfront vibe in Virginia Beach is one of relaxation and enjoying being close to nature. From March to April, you can escape the crowds and enjoy an ambient time in the quieter months.

One thing to remember is that the beaches at Virginia Beach can get overly crowded during peak season, especially at Virginia Beach Oceanfront. 

Myrtle Beach

The beaches at Myrtle Beach have a reputation for being fun-filled and rife with parties and boisterous action. None of the beaches are more so than Central Myrtle Beach, which is favored for its great nightlife. 

If you seek a more relaxed vibe, you might want to head over to North Myrtle Beach, where the crowds are less, or to Surfside Beach, which boasts an ideal setting for families with children.

You could also head out to Litchfield Beach, and once you have enjoyed all the water offers, you can hop over to one of the many world-class golf courses in the vicinity.

The array of popular activities in and around the beaches in Myrtle Beach include:

Myrtle Beach is more geared towards activity and adventure, and you will find it very hard to get bored at any of these beaches. One thing that is often noted about Myrtle Beach is that most people visit the city more for the nightlife than the beach, although the beaches are excellent, and a visit to any of them will be more than worth it.


When looking at the facts, anyone can see that Virginia Beach and Myrtle Beach are both exceptional cities with an array of beautiful beaches, outdoor activities, and nightlife experiences. So when answering the question, is Virginia Beach nicer than Myrtle Beach? It would come down to personal preference.

If you feel like a party scene and a more activity-driven stay, Myrtle Beach is the place for you. But, if you want a historically rich setting and a more beach-orientated vibe, stay close to the water while still enjoying all the proper city amenities, including shops, restaurants, and cafes. In that case, Virginia Beach is the place for you.

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About the author
Steve Morrow
Steve Morrow owns Paddle About, an outdoor recreation and travel blog. Steve loves to travel, kayak, paddle board, camp, hike, and spend time outdoors with his wife and two kids. When he's not exploring the great outdoors, Steve enjoys writing about his adventures and sharing tips for getting the most out of your outdoor experiences. He has a lot of interesting stories to share, and he's always happy to help others get more out of life.