A Travel Price Comparison for United States of America Marathon vs. Myrtle Beach for Nightlife, Resorts, Beaches, and Families

Should you visit Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

If you're trying to decide where to visit between Marathon or Myrtle Beach, this travel comparison, which includes costs, can help. The overall cost of travel is usually a consideration when deciding where to go next, and the cost comparison down below can help you decide based on the average prices from other travelers along with your own travel budget.

Marathon

Marathon is a quaint, beautiful, and relaxing island. With stunning beauty, it attracts visitors from all around. Other popular activities here include scuba diving and snorkeling, beaches, and nightlife.

Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach is a jam-packed, high energy, and party-filled beach city. Since it's a large city, you'll find plenty of things to do. Other reasons to visit include nightlife and beaches.

Marathon and Myrtle Beach: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Nice resorts
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for nightlife
Pros
  • Active nightlife
  • Popular beach
  • Fun shopping
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
Things to Consider
  • Not as many resort options
  • Less family-friendly


Is there more to do in Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Visitors will usually find more to do in Myrtle Beach than Marathon, as it offers more sights, attractions, and activities. Myrtle Beach is better known for its nightlife, shopping, and big city activities, while Marathon is more popular for its food, resorts, scuba diving & snorkeling, and impressive beauty. Myrtle Beach is more touristy than Marathon and is popular for its party-hard atmosphere, spring break crowds, and beachfront nightlife scene. Also, Myrtle Beach is famous for the Myrtle Beach boardwalk. Marathon is well known for its Loggerhead sea turtles, the Dolphin Research Center, Sombrero Beach, and its many places to scuba dive and snorkel.

the Myrtle Beach boardwalk
The Myrtle Beach boardwalk

How is Marathon different from Myrtle Beach?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Myrtle Beach and Marathon. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Is the Food Better in Marathon or Myrtle Beach? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Marathon is very good for its restaurant scene. However, Myrtle Beach is a beach city with minimal options for its local flavors and cuisine.

There are many up and coming restaurants in the Marathon area. There are restaurants with waterfront terraces, raw bars, and other seafood eateries where you can enjoy fresh caught fish for a reasonable price.

Myrtle Beach offers some easy restaurants to choose from. Slices of pizza and seafood buffets are the most common options in the area. There are also themed restaurants and dinner shows that make for a fun night, even if the food isn't the highest quality.


Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach Better for Nightlife?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach is a must-visit destination for nightlife. Also, Marathon is not as popular, but is still a nice island for nightlife and partying.

Myrtle Beach is a world class party destination. This beach is famous for its nightlife. From all-night bars and clubs, to music concerts and outdoor venues, there's no shortage of things to do. Bachelor and Bachelorette parties and spring break crowds make this the place to be for a party.

There's a variety of activities in the evening in Marathon. Popular nightlife venues include JJ’s Dog House & Sports Bar, Brass Monkey, and Cabana Club.

Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach Better for Resorts?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Marathon is a great destination for its resorts. However, Myrtle Beach is a beach city with minimal options for its luxury resorts.

Vacationers can choose from a number of terrific resorts in Marathon. Popular resorts include Isla Bella Beach Resort and Tranquility Bay Resort.

Myrtle Beach has a few resort options worth checking out. While there are a handful of resorts in the area, like the popular Marriott Vacation Club, most hotels are crowded and lacking in space.

Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Marathon is very good for snorkeling and scuba diving. However, Myrtle Beach is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

It's worth going snorkeling or scuba diving in Marathon. There are many dive shops around Marathon and the area has dive spots that are great for every level. Some of the best sites are Sombrero Reef, Coffins Patch, and Thunderbolt wreck. There are also many snorkeling trips that head out to Sombrero Reef.

Myrtle Beach is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.


Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach Better for Beaches?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Both Marathon and Myrtle Beach have excellent beaches worth visiting.

You'll have a great beach vacation in Marathon. Sombrero Beach is a popular spot for picnics, swimming and seeing the Loggerhead Turtles from April through October.

The beaches at Myrtle Beach attract visitors from all over. Most people head to the center of town and boardwalk for the nightlife and vibrant activities more than the actual beach. The stretches north and south have nice beaches lined with hotels and resorts, and a much more family-friendly atmosphere. If you want a more relaxed beach setting without the huge crowds, check out Myrtle Beach State Park.

Is the Shopping Better in Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach is adequate for shopping. However, Marathon is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Myrtle Beach is a good destination for shopping. The town is filled with souvenir shops, t-shirt shops, and candy vendors that make shopping entertaining.

Marathon is not a noteworthy shopping destination.

Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach Better for Families?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Marathon is a great destination for its family-friendly activities. However, Myrtle Beach is a beach city with minimal options for its kid-friendly activities.

Marathon is known to be a very family-friendly place to visit. Kids will enjoy getting face-to-face with dolphins at the Dolphin Research Center. Families can also explore Pigeon Key or play in the water at Sombrero Beach. Families will find no shortage of activities on the island.

For families, Myrtle Beach is not always the best place to visit. While this area isn't generally considered a family destination, there are some newer vacation clubs and resorts that cater specifically to families and have become popular. The Marriott Vacation Club is one of the most popular with families in Myrtle Beach.


Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach Better for Couples?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Marathon is a great destination for couples. Also, Myrtle Beach is still popular, but not quite as popular for romance.

Couples visit Marathon frequently as it offers plenty of romantic activities. With beautiful views, 7 Mile Bridge, and plenty of activities, this area makes a romantic destination for couples. There are beaches and waterfront spots that offer a romantic setting for couples.

Myrtle Beach is a nice destination for couples. The beach area isn't exactly a romantic destination but for couples who enjoy going out and having fun together, there is no shortage of night time activities.

Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach Better for Students?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach is great for its student-friendly activities. However, Marathon is not popular with students.

Myrtle Beach is a great beach city to visit as a student. University students flock to the area for spring break and end of year celebrations. If you're a student during those times, this is the place to be, otherwise, the area is best avoided.

Marathon is not popular with students.

Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Neither Marathon or Myrtle Beach offer decent public transit.

Public transit is quite limited in Marathon. There's no real public transportation in town. A car is essential.

Public transit is limited or non-existant in Myrtle Beach. There are no real public transit options so you'll need a car to get around.


Is Marathon or Myrtle Beach a more walkable city?

Marathon
Myrtle Beach

Marathon and Myrtle Beach are respectable when it comes to walkability.

Marathon is generally not a very walkable island. Shops and restaurants and spread out along a central road, making walking difficult to impossible.

Myrtle Beach is generally not very walkable. By the Boardwalk, it's easy to walk around, but traffic can still be congested and once you're out of the main strip, a car is essential.

For even more information, also check out Is Marathon Worth Visiting? and Is Myrtle Beach Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Myrtle Beach or Marathon?

How long in Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Both Marathon and Myrtle Beach have a number of activities to choose from. In our opinion, Marathon has more to see and do, so we recommend that you spend more time in Marathon than Myrtle Beach. In general, 3-7 days is a good amount of time for Marathon, and 2-7 days is enough time in Myrtle Beach.

Families should spend more time in Marathon than Myrtle Beach. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Marathon, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Marathon than Myrtle Beach. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Marathon that are great for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Myrtle Beach than Marathon if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Myrtle Beach.


  • How many days in Marathon or Myrtle Beach? Ideal Length of Stay
    Marathon 3-7 
    Myrtle Beach 2-7

One day in Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

In Marathon, many people enjoy the food and scuba diving and snorkeling that this relaxing island offers. It's a great spot for a beach vacation. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything.

The beach city of Myrtle Beach offers nightlife. Most people come for the beaches. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

A weekend in Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Marathon is a fun place to experience. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. It will give you the chance to have new experiences. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than a weekend exploring.

Myrtle Beach is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have a weekend, this beach city makes for a great vacation. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Myrtle Beach, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.


Five days in Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

In Marathon, many people enjoy the nightlife and food that this relaxing destination offers. Most people come for the beaches. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. Plenty of people spend five days in the area when traveling. So, five days is just the right amount of time to spend here.

Myrtle Beach is a popular choice for travelers. Five days here is typical. It's no surprise that nightlife is why people visit. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Myrtle Beach, five days is sufficent for most. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

A week in Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Marathon is a popular place to visit. Many people spend one week here. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. If you enjoy all that's offered here, then one week is just the right amount of time to spend here. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

Myrtle Beach is a great place to explore. It's no surprise that nightlife is why people visit. It is common to spend one week here. It's also a great beach destination, too. One week is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Myrtle Beach has to offer. This beach city offers something for everyone.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Adventure Tours to United States of America, The Best Train & Rail Tours in United States of America, The Best Sightseeing Tours in United States of America, and The Best Cruise Tours and Packages in United States of America.


Which place is cheaper, Myrtle Beach or Marathon?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Marathon is $158, while the average daily cost in Myrtle Beach is $173. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Marathon and Myrtle Beach in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Marathon $76
    Myrtle Beach $88
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Marathon $152
    Myrtle Beach $176
Compare Hotels in Marathon and Myrtle Beach

Looking for a hotel in Marathon or Myrtle Beach? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Marathon


Hotels in Myrtle Beach


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Marathon Hotel Prices and Myrtle Beach Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Marathon $47
    Myrtle Beach $24

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Myrtle Beach

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Myrtle Beach:

  • Myrtle Beach Intl. Airport (MYR) to Myrtle Beach - Round-Trip Private Transfer: $106
  • Private Departure Transfer to Myrtle Beach Airport (MYR): $36
  • Private Arrival Transfer from Myrtle Beach Airport MYR: $36

Is it cheaper to fly into Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Prices for flights to both Myrtle Beach and Marathon change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Marathon $51
    Myrtle Beach $56

Typical Food Prices in Myrtle Beach

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for food and meal costs in Myrtle Beach:


  • Dinner for Two
    $49
  • Diner Breakfast for Two
    $21

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Myrtle Beach

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Myrtle Beach.

  • Murder Mystery Dinner Show in Myrtle Beach: $50
  • Polynesian Fire Luau and Dinner Show Ticket in Myrtle Beach: $67
  • North Dinner Cruise on a Paddle Wheel Boat: $70
  • Luau with Polynesian Dinner and Live Show: $71

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Marathon $27
    Myrtle Beach $46

Tours and Activities in Marathon

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Marathon.

  • Snorkel Adventure at Sombrero Key Light Reef: $80
  • Florida: Sunset Champagne Cruise on the Marathon Mermaid: $82

Typical Entertainment Prices in Myrtle Beach

Here are a few typical costs in Myrtle Beach for activities, ticket prices, and tours that come from previous visitors:


  • Mini Golf for Two
    $18
  • Beach Chairs
    $15

Tours and Activities in Myrtle Beach

Here are a few actual costs in Myrtle Beach for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • 2-Hour Guided Segway Tour of Huntington Beach State Park in Myrtle Beach: $69
  • Day Trip to Charleston Tour #5: Bus Tour, Boone Plantation, Lunch and More: $120
  • Day Trips to Charleston#7 See Ft Sumter,CarriageTour,Lunch & more: $215
  • Early Myrtle Beach History and The WWII Years Trolley Tour: $40
  • From Charleston tour with Boone Hall & cruise: $210
  • Kayak Salt Marsh Maze Tour: $45
  • Murder Mystery Detective Experience Myrtle Beach, SC: $15
  • Murrells Inlet: Saltwater Marsh Shelling & Eco Tour: $32
  • Murrells Inlet: Scenic Sunset Cruise: $29
  • Myrtle Beach Area Ghosts, Pirates and Historic Families Trolley Tour: $40
  • Myrtle Beach Dolphin Cruise Murrells Inlet: $50
  • Myrtle Beach Ghosts Tour: $30

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Marathon $24
    Myrtle Beach $16


When comparing the travel costs between Marathon and Myrtle Beach, we can see that Myrtle Beach is more expensive. However, the two cities are actually relatively comparable in price, as the difference is somewhat minimal. Generally, this means that you could travel with generally the same travel style and level of luxury in each place. Since both cities are in North America, it's no surprise that their costs are relatively close, as many destinations here have somewhat similar travel prices overall.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Marathon Expensive? and Is Myrtle Beach Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Myrtle Beach has a larger population, and is about 3 times larger than the population of Marathon. When comparing the sizes of Marathon and Myrtle Beach, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.


When is the best time to visit Marathon or Myrtle Beach?

Both places have a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. As both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Marathon or Myrtle Beach in the Summer?

The summer brings many poeple to Marathon as well as Myrtle Beach. Most visitors come to Marathon for the beaches, snorkeling, and the family-friendly experiences during these months. Also, the summer months attract visitors to Myrtle Beach because of the beaches, the city activities, and the family-friendly experiences.

In July, Marathon is generally around the same temperature as Myrtle Beach. Daily temperatures in Marathon average around 84°F (29°C), and Myrtle Beach fluctuates around 81°F (27°C).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Myrtle Beach. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Marathon this time of the year. In the summer, Marathon often gets more sunshine than Myrtle Beach. Marathon gets 328 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Myrtle Beach receives 283 hours of full sun.

It's quite rainy in Myrtle Beach. Marathon usually gets less rain in July than Myrtle Beach. Marathon gets 3.3 inches (83 mm) of rain, while Myrtle Beach receives 8.1 inches (207 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Marathon 84°F (29°C) 
    Myrtle Beach 81°F (27°C)

Should I visit Marathon or Myrtle Beach in the Autumn?

Both Myrtle Beach and Marathon are popular destinations to visit in the autumn with plenty of activities. The autumn months attract visitors to Marathon because of the natural beauty of the area. Also, the city's sights and attractions and the shopping scene are the main draw to Myrtle Beach this time of year.

Marathon is a little warmer than Myrtle Beach in the autumn. The daily temperature in Marathon averages around 80°F (27°C) in October, and Myrtle Beach fluctuates around 65°F (18°C).

It's quite sunny in Myrtle Beach. The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Marathon. Marathon usually receives more sunshine than Myrtle Beach during autumn. Marathon gets 258 hours of sunny skies, while Myrtle Beach receives 227 hours of full sun in the autumn.

It's quite rainy in Marathon. In October, Marathon usually receives more rain than Myrtle Beach. Marathon gets 5.1 inches (129 mm) of rain, while Myrtle Beach receives 2.7 inches (68 mm) of rain each month for the autumn.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Marathon 80°F (27°C) 
    Myrtle Beach 65°F (18°C)

Should I visit Marathon or Myrtle Beach in the Winter?

Both Myrtle Beach and Marathon during the winter are popular places to visit. The cuisine are the main draw to Marathon this time of year. Furthermore, many travelers come to Myrtle Beach for the shopping scene and the cuisine.

In the winter, Marathon is much warmer than Myrtle Beach. Typically, the winter temperatures in Marathon in January average around 70°F (21°C), and Myrtle Beach averages at about 45°F (7°C).

It's quite sunny in Marathon. In the winter, Marathon often gets more sunshine than Myrtle Beach. Marathon gets 252 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Myrtle Beach receives 180 hours of full sun.

Marathon usually gets less rain in January than Myrtle Beach. Marathon gets 1.7 inches (43 mm) of rain, while Myrtle Beach receives 3.9 inches (98 mm) of rain this time of the year.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Marathon 70°F (21°C) 
    Myrtle Beach 45°F (7°C)

Should I visit Marathon or Myrtle Beach in the Spring?

The spring attracts plenty of travelers to both Marathon and Myrtle Beach. Many travelers come to Marathon for the beaches and the natural beauty. Furthermore, many visitors come to Myrtle Beach in the spring for the beaches and the activities around the city.

In April, Marathon is generally much warmer than Myrtle Beach. Daily temperatures in Marathon average around 77°F (25°C), and Myrtle Beach fluctuates around 62°F (17°C).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Myrtle Beach this time of the year. In Marathon, it's very sunny this time of the year. Marathon usually receives more sunshine than Myrtle Beach during spring. Marathon gets 326 hours of sunny skies, while Myrtle Beach receives 278 hours of full sun in the spring.

In April, Marathon usually receives less rain than Myrtle Beach. Marathon gets 0.8 inches (21 mm) of rain, while Myrtle Beach receives 2.9 inches (73 mm) of rain each month for the spring.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Marathon 77°F (25°C) 
    Myrtle Beach 62°F (17°C)

Typical Weather for Myrtle Beach and Marathon

Marathon Myrtle Beach
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 70°F (21°C) 1.7 inches (43 mm) 45°F (7°C) 3.9 inches (98 mm)
Feb 71°F (21°C) 1.4 inches (36 mm) 48°F (9°C) 3.7 inches (94 mm)
Mar 74°F (23°C) 1.7 inches (42 mm) 55°F (13°C) 3.9 inches (99 mm)
Apr 77°F (25°C) 0.8 inches (21 mm) 62°F (17°C) 2.9 inches (73 mm)
May 81°F (27°C) 2.7 inches (68 mm) 70°F (21°C) 4.4 inches (113 mm)
Jun 83°F (28°C) 4.5 inches (114 mm) 77°F (25°C) 6 inches (152 mm)
Jul 84°F (29°C) 3.3 inches (83 mm) 81°F (27°C) 8.1 inches (207 mm)
Aug 84°F (29°C) 3.9 inches (98 mm) 80°F (26°C) 6.9 inches (176 mm)
Sep 83°F (29°C) 5.7 inches (144 mm) 75°F (24°C) 5 inches (128 mm)
Oct 80°F (27°C) 5.1 inches (129 mm) 65°F (18°C) 2.7 inches (68 mm)
Nov 76°F (24°C) 2 inches (50 mm) 57°F (14°C) 3.1 inches (79 mm)
Dec 72°F (22°C) 1.4 inches (35 mm) 49°F (9°C) 3.6 inches (92 mm)