While many of the Pros face long golf courses week-in-week-out, rarely will us amateurs face a golf course of significant length. There are however a number that you can play in the UK that are very much of championship length and feature some of the longest golf holes anywhere in the world. Whether that’s heading to The Duke’s in St Andrews which is one of the longer courses in Scottish golf or down to England’s South West where The Players Club near Bristol awaits anyone seeking a test that is sure to challenge any handicap golfer.
So, if you fancy yourself as a long driver, find out more about these great golf courses that are welcome to all and not just John Daly, Tiger Woods or Bryson DeChambeau.
With that in mind, we bring you five modern monsters that you can play on a golf break in the UK. How will you do on a golf course that measures much more than 7,000 yards?
The golf course at Rockliffe Hall has been designed with tournament play so it was always going to be long. However “long” sells this beast of a course a bit short as it’s actually the longest golf course in Europe; measuring an astonishing 7,879 yards! The course architect, Marc Westenborg, must have been in a punishing mood when he laid down the plans for Rockliffe Hall but don’t think that this course is all about length. Westenborg’s other projects include the stunning Dom Pedro Old Course in Vilamoura and the world renowned Royal Birkdale. Once you embrace the challenge of this mighty track you will begin to fall in love with its subtleties and although you may struggle to hit your target score a round at Rockliffe will no doubt be a great experience.
Players Club Championship Course
Built to test the mettle of the finest players in the land, the Championship Course at The Players Club is one of the longest courses in England and for any brave souls embarking on a Bristol golf tour, this is the ultimate challenge. The Championship Course weighs in at a leg busting 7,716 yards so solid ball striking is paramount but don’t be fooled into thinking that the challenge ends once you have got a mighty drive away. Giant bunkers and menacing water hazards await the golf balls of those who don’t plot their way away this monstrous layout carefully. Those who do though are rewarded for their efforts as the brilliant condition of the greens means birdies are not an impossible feat.
Ryder Cup player Clive Clark is responsible for the latest course in the magical area of Fife and it has quickly become one of the most talked-about courses in Scottish golf. The layout is situated between the Scottish gems of Lundin Links and Elie Golf Club, serving up beautiful panoramic views of the Forth Estuary and on to Muirfield. The clubhouse is perched 100 feet above sea level and the 345-acre site also includes a mile and a half of beach and coast. Stand out holes at Dumbarnie are the 4th and 9th as well as the 13th and 14th with breathtaking coastal views just moments from the beach.
Designed by five-time Open Championship winner Peter Thompson, The Dukes Course was always destined to be an exacting test of golf. Played from the tips, this is the longest golf course in Scotland and will out even the most talented players to the test. The Dukes is essentially a parkland course but it does have a more rugged fell to it and has often been compared with the world famous Whistling Straits in the USA; testament to the quality of the original design and the value of the recent investment by Herb Kohler. Enjoying magnificent views of St Andrews, the Dukes Course is a special place to play golf but don’t let the views and the grand tradition of the location distract you from the task in hand. At 7,512 yards the Dukes is an exacting test and with little roll on the fairways this course often plays even longer than the yardage suggests!
The Vale Wales National Course
The Wales National Course at the Vale Resort is one of the newest and best championship golf courses in the UK and despite its youth has hosted several Europro, Challenge and Senior Tour events; a testament to the quality of the remarkable layout. Measuring 7,433 yards from the back tees the Wales National Course will provide as stern challenge to any golfer. Highlights include the longest hole in Wales which comes early in the round. The par 5 2nd hole stretches to 607 yards so even the masters of the big dog will struggle to get home in two. The course provides a consistent test of ball striking from start to finish and for the big boys out there this course should be next on the list for a Welsh golf break.
Dalmahoy East Course
The East Course has long been the more challenging of the two golf courses at Dalmahoy. Built in 1927 this can hardly be described as a modern monster but it has been the subject of a recent £1,000,000 redevelopment and is now a formidable test from the back tees from where even the longest of hitters will find the yardages testing. The East course isn’t just about reaching for the driver and pounding away as the lush fairways are bordered by mature trees that place an emphasis on accuracy as well. With tournament play in mind the intriguing layout provides and enjoyable round of golf and the putting surfaces are of the highest quality. If you fancy yourself as a big hitter then why not try and tame one of Scotland’s longest golf courses; the East Course at Dalmahoy.