This is the best spot in the Myrtle Beach, South Carolina coast area, except of course for the beach itself. Give yourself at least a half-day to explore this beautiful 300-acre sculpture garden with a wildlife sanctuary, the first of its kind in the U.S.,opened in 1931. Comprised of four former rice plantations, the gardens (plural) are actually several different environments, from formal outdoor sculpture rooms to various formal garden spaces to a preserved rice paddy area, showing you what the region looked like before the Civil War. The rice paddy was my favorite area, but the alligator environment was a close second. There's a small animal zoo, and seasonal exhibits like a butterfly house.
This garden is the legacy of Archer and his wife, the sculptor Anna Hyatt Huntington. Her works and those of other prominent American sculptors, including many women sculptors, form a collection of over 1,200 figurative works are a major feature of Brookgreen, displayed in 10 separate garden "rooms," with accent pools and fountains. Take time for a creek excursions or back road tour, if possible. They also have seasonal special events.
Brookgreen Gardens has something for everyone, from wheelchair-users (very accessible) to artists to families with kids. (OK, maybe not for edgy teenagers.) As for me, I can't wait to go back.
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