It's impossible for oceanfront beach-goers to miss Myrtle Beaches' literal top attraction, the Myrtle Beach Skywheel. The nearly 190' tall Ferris wheel is a relatively new beachside attraction, but is easily one of the Grand Strand's biggest and brightest sites, with an impressive façade that really dazzles at night, when the circular wheel and spokes are lit up in an array of splashing, flashing colors.

The Skywheel in Myrtle Beach, SC

A must stop for anyone who wants a mile-high view of the Grand Strand, the Myrtle Beach Skywheel will enchant anyone without a fear of heights with the very best views of the South Carolina shoreline that Myrtle Beach has to offer.

The Skywheel in Myrtle Beach, SC

Honored by recent critics and publications as one of the "Best scenic experiences in South Carolina," the Myrtle Beach Skywheel first opened to eager patrons in May of 2011. At 187' feet tall, the Skywheel was effectively the second highest Ferris wheel in the country, and the tallest by far east of the Mississippi River. The Skywheel was designed and built by Ronald Bussink Professional Rides and Chance Morgan, and was modeled after the Niagara Skywheel and the Seattle Great Wheel, but was built to effectively tower over both longstanding structures.

The Skywheel in Myrtle Beach, SC from the boardwalk

The Ferris wheel itself boasts 42 glass-enclosed "gondolas," which are climate controlled, comfortable, and perfectly safe, and which transport brave patrons hundreds of feet into the air, overlooking the oceanfront shoreline. Six passengers can fit in each gondola, and the wheel remains in motion year-round, only pausing to let excited passengers on, and impressed passengers off.

The Skywheel in Myrtle Beach at night

The Myrtle Beach Skywheel can handle an estimated 135 mph winds, making it a relatively hurricane-proof structure in this region which rarely sees Category 4 or 5 storms, and is located along the also relatively new Myrtle Beach Boardwalk, making it an easy destination for virtually anyone taking a stroll along the heart of the Grand Strand. At the base of the Ferris wheel, visitors will find the 5,400' square foot "main station," where potential patrons can purchase tickets, stock up on souvenirs, or enjoy a post ride bite at the on-site restaurant.

The flight along the Skywheel is brief but unforgettable, and each patron will enjoy three full rotations before putting their feet back on the ground, (for a total ride time of about 8-10 minutes.) Yes, it's short, but the views are simply incredible, and the experience is out of this world, especially at night when the giant structure is lit up with more than 1 million LED lights in an incredible, ever-changing display that can be viewed from virtually any vantage point along the boardwalk.

Patrons of all ages are welcome, (and children under 2 fly free), and the Myrtle Beach Skywheel is also handicapped / wheelchair accessible for riders with mobility issues.

While the individual gondolas are certainly clean and comfortable in their own right, guests also have the option to upgrade their experience with a VIP flight. Effectively, on a VIP flight, guests can skip to the front of the line and hop on a posh VIP gondola with glass floors and leather seats, and enjoy a doubly-long ride. VIP riders also receive a free Skywheel T-shirt and VIP lanyard, and visitors can enjoy an upgraded flight for around $50 per person.

As for standard rates, ticket prices vary by age, and run around $13 for adults 12 and over, and $9 for children ages 3-11. Special group rates are available for parties of 15 or more, and discounts are also available for seniors ages 65 and up.

Summertime visitors should be warned that this massive attraction is easily one of the boardwalk's most popular destinations, so on busy days, a line to take a ride is to be expected. Visitors who want to plan ahead can also purchase their tickets beforehand online at https://tickets.skywheelusa.com/, saving a step and a trip to the ticket booth when they arrive on the boardwalk.

The Myrtle Beach Skywheel is an incredible attraction that is hard to miss, and impossible to resist. For an uncompromising view of the shoreline that can't be replicated anywhere else along the Grand Strand, (except, perhaps, from an airplane or helicopter), the Myrtle Beach Skywheel reigns supreme. Sign up for a flight on a sunny day for incredible landscapes of the shoreline, or plan an after-hours trip for a show stopping, fully-lit tour, and see why this Boardwalk newcomer is already one of Myrtle Beaches' top rated oceanfront attractions

 

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