America boasts some of the greatest and most challenging courses in the world that leaves most golfers drooling at the prospect of picking up the sticks to test how their handicaps match up.
Golf Digest released its course rankings in May including America’s Greatest 100 Courses, some of which you can play, with Your Golf Travel.
Augusta National (2)
The home to The Masters since 1934, Augusta has managed to keep the stunning course in immaculate condition with continuous tampering to make sure it offers a fresh challenge to the world’s best golfers every single year. The beauty of the par three 12th hole epitomises the unique difficulty of the course. Unfortunately, Augusta is unavailable to play but you can experience it with your own eyes by attending The Masters in April, a once in a lifetime experience.
Pebble Beach (12)
Every golfer deserves to play Pebble Beach in their lifetime. Possibly one of the most intimidating public courses worldwide, Pebble Beach is where land meets with sea. Experience the crashing waves as you walk down the cliffside fairways and test your putting on the sloping greens. The home to six U.S Open Championships & a PGA Championship, “Pebble” is one for the bucket list.
Pacific Dunes (21)
Opened in 2001, Pacific Dunes is a hidden gem with holes that emerge from the rumpled fairways and surrounded by imposing dunes. A course that will test the wits, the secret is to play a conservative game but when the wind blows off the coast, precise shots are a necessity.
The Ocean Course (24)
Situated at Kiawah Island and host to the 1991 Ryder Cup and PGA Championship in 2012 & 2019, The Ocean Course could be one of the windiest in America. With more seaside holes than any other course in the Northern Hemisphere, the perched fairways provide a magnificent view of the Atlantic coastline. The course itself has tricky slopes and bunkers that merge into sand dunes but don’t be put off, you won’t regret a round here.
Whistling Straits (26)
Formerly an abandoned army air base, Whistling Straits alongside a large stretch of Lake Michigan is rugged and windswept. Its influence is from Irish Links courses and has hosted the PGA Championship as well as a Ryder Cup. The tranquil course is guaranteed to realise why you took up golf in the first place but beware of the bunkers. There are over 960!
Shadow Creek (27)
Whether you like it or not, Las Vegas is a spectacle and so are its golf courses it seems. With huge investment, Shadow Creek has been transformed with massive creeks and towering waterfalls with mountains in the background. Crystal blue waters surround the fairways which are kept in top condition. It is one of the most picturesque courses around with more than 20,000 trees planted during the construction of the course which now measures more than 7,500 yards! Previously the course was only open to invitees of Steve Wynn but in recent years the course has opened up to those staying at MGM resorts in Las Vegas.
Pinehurst astonishingly will soon have ten different courses but No.2 outshines them all. It has hosted the U.S Open and U.S. Women’s Open Championship and there is a valid reason why. Opened in 1907, its undulating greens are one of the best in the world. In 2010, 35 acres of turf was ripped up and hardpan, natural bunker edges and native wire grasses were all included. It has made the course even better.
Bandon Dunes (40)
A links-golf course situated along the coastline of Oregon, Bandon Dunes was the first of Mike Keiser courses. With the help of architect David McLay Kidd, Bandon Dunes was so good that Keiser now has a multi-course resort at Bandon Dunes. It’s one of those courses where you really appreciate how good the sport is.
TPC Sawgrass (41)
This one is worth playing for the 17th hole alone. The famous island hole offers no forgiveness and is sure to get the heart rate pumping. A course designed for golfers with precision, it’s all about hitting the targets otherwise expect to find trouble.
Bandon Trails (65)
Opened in 2005, Bandon Trails sets the scene on the opening hole which begins high upon a sand dune before opening up into a meadow. You’ll also play into the coastal forest before ending back at the sand dunes. If the bump-and-run game is for you then you’ll do very nicely around here.
Spyglass Hill (67)
Spyglass Hill just 17 miles drive from Pebble Beach is a course that has it all. Sand dunes dominate the first five holes before hiking through the Monterey pines. Robert Trent Jones designed the course and he was the inspiration behind the stunning 16th at Augusta. Water hazards are also involved and it is said that this is the best course never to hold a major.
Old Macdonald (72)
Course No. 4 at Bandon Dunes along the coast of Oregon is an idyllic masterpiece inspired by architect Charles Blair Macdonald. Vast greens, sweeping winds, precise angles of play and fierce bunkers are the ingredients to a course well worth playing.