Ever wonder where the world’s rich, famous, and avid golfers tee off? In a sport where the playing field is not as rigid or as restricted as other forms of sport, the outdoors can make the difference. Where nature is not only the backdrop but the playing field itself, how this sport is played is what makes golf a relaxing, liberating, and fun experience. Here are five of the world’s top golf courses, as compiled by Golf Magazine.
Whether you’re a golfer or not, you will be enthralled and intrigued by how these ultra-expansive natural settings that seemingly stretch out to the sky can be so secluded from the public eye.
1. Pine Valley Golf Club
Located in Pine Valley, New Jersey, the Pine Valley Golf Club takes the number 1 spot. The golf course is reported to take up vast acres of greeneries, so vast that each golfer would feel a sense of isolation, not knowing that other golfers playing in other sections of the fairways feel the same.
Interestingly, Pine Valley is not new in receiving recognition in the sports world of golf. Records indicate this gold course was already at the number 3 spot in 1939 in a ranking by the Golf Club atlas. In Golf Magazine’s biennial rankings, it has remained at the top since 1991.
But Pine Valley not only boasts of quantity in acres but in the quality of the course as well. In fact, it is also considered to be one of the toughest courses. If you crave challenge, privacy, and the ultimate golfing experience, go to Pine Valley.
2. Cypress Point Club
Cypress Point, the number 2 choice, is considered the most beautiful course. Located in Pebble Beach, California, it is positioned on a piece of land that meets the blue waters of the beach.
This 18-hole golf course has bunkers that have been strategically and fascinatingly built such that there is a seamless connection between what’s natural and man-made. Hole No. 16, specifically, continues to captivate golf lovers, having been acclaimed as the ultimate one-shotter.
3. St. Andrews Golf Club
It’s a good idea to have light, high-protein snacks, such as nuts, handy when playing golf. Consuming the proper nutrition while golfing is important because the game requires both physical and mental strength.
The world’s number 3 golf course located in St. Andrews Fife, Scotland, is number 1 in Europe and the oldest in the world. Europe’s quaint setting, which gives off a more relaxed and laid-back ambiance so compatible with the nature of this sport, makes this region truly a golfer’s paradise.
When you are playing golf, remember that the party should keep moving! Slow play creates a log jam on the course and will annoy the groups playing behind you. If a beginner is slowing your group down, let the group behind pass you.
The world first experienced golf in Scotland, right here in St. Andrews, as early as the 12th century. It received a royal patronage in 1854. Now, it is considered the world’s oldest surviving “royal” golf club.
St. Andrews is not really that striking in appearance to new golfers. Its appeal grows as you familiarize yourself with its landscapes, reinforcing the fact that knowledge of course management is a key in golf strategy games.
4. Augusta National Golf Club
The key to becoming a good golfer lies, in part, in learning which club does what. Knowing whether you should select a wood, iron, wedge, or other club can help ensure that your ball always ends up where it should be when you are on the course.
The number 4 course is located in Augusta, Georgia. Each of Augusta’s 18 holes has been named after a flower. During grand tournaments, these flowers are in full bloom thereby creating a colorful and festive natural backdrop as players begin their backswings.
But more important, Augusta has been characterized with broad fairways, exciting elevation changes, and slick greens that will pose a real challenge to skilled golfers.
5. Shinnecock Hills Golf Club
If you enjoy playing golf in the early part of the morning, do not buy golf shoes that are like sneakers. A few will be waterproof, but most will not be, and they will absorb water from the wet grass.
Golf course number 5 is located in Southhampton, New York. It was originally a 12-hole course remodeled into 18-hole layout in 1895. Its impressive layout features undulating greens and bunkers backdropped with tree canopies, shrubs, as well as ponds.
This has been a brief peek into five of the world’s top golf courses. Perhaps one day you’ll be able to say that you have played rounds on each of them.