Whether you are a newbie or a seasoned golfer, the type of golf course you are playing on should allow you to enjoy every moment of the sport. There are diverse golf courses complemented by varied terrains, but here we run through the golf courses that will surely astound you and evoke a passion for the sport. So pack your clubs and tee off at some of the best golf courses in the world.
Augusta National Golf Club, Georgia - USA
Golf has come a long way since the Masters Tournament began in 1934, and Georgia’s Augusta National Golf Club has been part of the storied history. As a venue that has long been the home of the Masters Tournament every year, the iconic Augusta National Golf course is one of the most exclusive and famous golf courses in the world. Celebrated Golfers, have all played their part in preserving his golf masterpiece in golfing heritage. Although the beautiful landscape and the perfect greens at the golf course of Augusta National has been attracting golf enthusiasts from the world over since 1932, only about 300 of them have been able to secure membership to this elitist golf club. What is interesting about this historic 18-hole golf course is that its par-72 track, measuring around 7,435-yards, is one of the rare courses that does not have an official course rating by the United States Golf Association.
Yas Links Abu Dhabi - UAE
Renowned as the only location that combines world-class F1 Grand Prix track, one of the best water parks in the world, world’s first Ferrari-themed park, ultra-luxurious hotels, plenty of entertainment and lifestyle options, Yas Island is also home to Yas Links Abu Dhabi – the Middle East’s premier venue for golfing. Being the first Links-style golf course in the region, the 18-hole Yas Links was designed by world-renowned golf course architect, Kyle Phillips. Set along the coastline of the Arabian Gulf with neighbouring lush mangrove forest, Yas Links is an absolute pleasure to play, with great views of the Arabian Sea and variety of golfing challenges on offer. Yas Links is a member’s only golfing facility with sea greens, five tee positions on every hole, plenty of pothole bunkers and uneven fairways that make for a challenging golfing experience. Yas Links’ world-renowned course has received many accolades: it was named one of ‘The World’s Top City Golf Clubs’ by CNN Travel in 2014; voted as one of the Golf World’s Top 100 Golf Courses in the World for 2011; ranked one of the world’s top 25 courses by Golf Digest in 2012; and voted as #1 Golf Course in the Middle East by Golf Digest Middle East in 2015.
Royal County Down – Newcastle, Ireland
Imagine hopping on a top-of-the-line golf cart to a golf course set in one of the most naturally beautiful links in the world, within a well-managed nature reserve nestled by majestic Mourne Mountains that have been testament to many a championship tees from golfing superstars and run parallel to the Irish coastlines. Try hard not to get distracted by the mesmerizing beauty of the 18-hole Royal County Down golf course in Newcastle while teeing off in its flat greens that have patches of purple heather, gorse shrubs and tufts of marram grass along the fairways that snake around the blind shots and bunkers, making the game even more challenging. Any golfer worth his salt will find this 7,200-yard championship course a difficult but interesting one to play on. It has been the venue for the Walker Cup (2007), the Curtis Cup (1968), the Amateur Championship (twice), and many other leading events. Arnold Daniel Palmer, Jack William Nicklaus and Thomas Sturges Watson are some of the golfing heavyweights that have played on this award-winning golf course – ranked as the fourth best course in the world outside the United States in 2015 and the best Golf Course in the world this year, by Golf Digest magazine.
Leopard Creek Golf Course, Malelane - South Africa
If your African vacation includes the words ‘tee’, ‘par’ and ‘putt’, then this golf course is a must-visit for you. South Africa is home to many diverse types of golf facilities, both public and private, and is one of the most exotic golfing destinations in the world. Leopard Creek Golf Course, located alongside the Crocodile River on the edge of the famed Kruger National Park, welcomes golfers with alluring views of the lush African landscape and wildlife around. Although golfing in Leopard Creek is strictly reserved exclusively for members, guests at Leopard Creek’s selected hotels are allowed a tee off time on request. Golfing here can be a bit challenging, owing to the elevated greens and wild animals lurking around as moving water hazards on the golf course. Spotting a crocodile, elephant, hippo and buffalo on the elevated green overlooking the Crocodile River is quite common, but you cannot miss the 18 distinct life-size bronze sculptures of a male leopard as there is one designated for each golf hole on the course. The sculptures represents different parts of a day in the life of a leopard and aesthetically compel your animal instincts. The par 5, 13th is Leopard Creek’s signature hole. The 13th, 15th, and the 18th hole offer golfers a chance to snap some fantastic photos.
Pebble Beach Golf Links, California - USA
Carrying a rich history, Pebble beach golf link is regarded as America’s finest golf courses and one of the best golf courses in the world. The perfect blend of dramatic Pacific coastline, cliff-side fairways and lush greenery make for some awe-inspiring views for golfers and spectators alike. The world-class links course was established in 1919 and has played host to some top-class tournaments, including PGA Championship in 1977, five U.S. Open Championships and the annual AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. Pebble Beach Golf Links will host the sixth U.S. Open Championship in 2019 and U.S. Amateur in 2018. The signature hole in Pebble may vary for many but the most picturesque and the most photographed hole is par-3 seventh, which lays on a cove on water. The Iconic 18th hole is renowned as one of the greatest golf holes in the world as this finishing hole has been a scene of so much golf history – most notably, Jack Nicklaus (1972) and Tom Watson (1982) who made key shots here to win U.S. Opens.