One of the most magical areas of the Grand Strand can be found south of central Myrtle Beach in the North Inlet-Winyah Bay Reserve. The reserve encompasses over 18,000 acres of tidal marshes and wetlands and around 12,000 acres are part of the greater Hobcaw Barony property, a tract of historic and protected land on the Waccamaw Neck.

Nature enthusiasts and avid kayakers love this unique area for its rich flora, fauna, and history. And on September 5, a naturalist-guided tour will take paddlers through the creeks of the North Inlet. The North Inlet portion of the reserve is an ocean-dominated estuary with extensive salt marshes surrounded by a largely undeveloped forested watershed. In short, there is PLENTY to explore. Guests can expect an educational tour of this special ecosystem and a natural history overview of the area, along with basic kayaking instructions.

While I’ve never taken this specific tour, I have paddled this area around Hobcaw Barony before with my husband. It is a must-see, must-do for anyone that enjoys paddling or spending time outdoors on the water. There is an abundance of nature and history to be found and at $60 per person, I think it’s a steal.

A couple things to note if you’re not a regular kayaker: You’ll want to wear sturdy shoes, pack snacks and water, and bring a camera and binoculars. Sunscreen and a hat is also a must. The North Inlet paddle outings are limited to six participants, so be sure to call and register in advance. Participants will meet at the Hobcaw Barony Discovery Center, and while you’re in the area I also suggest a guided tour of the Hobcaw Barony property if it’s available.

For more information on the North Inlet Paddle, check out their website at www.northinlet.sc.edu or give them a call at (843) 904-9016.