Of the countless prestigious golfing venues scattered throughout the United Kingdom, the exclusive band of Open Championship venues are the most famous and sought after.
Soaked in the history of golf's most illustrious tournament, the Open rotation is filled with names to make any golfer weak at the knees - choose from a list including Turnberry, Carnoustie, Royal Birkdale, Royal St. George's and more, all headed by St Andrews, the most revered of any golfing destination. To experience the greatest links courses and the true heritage of the game, work your way through the list of Open Championship greats.
Whether it is recreating Seve celebrating on the 18th green on the Old Course or enjoying your own Duel in the Sun at Turnberry, we're pleased to bring you unique opportunities to experience these classic links courses.
Alongside these Open heavyweights are the likes of Princes (host venue in 1932) and Royal Cinque Ports (two-time venue, which would've held more but the sea encroached on the course) located on the Kent Coast, or even the original host of the Open Championship, Prestwick, on Ayrshire's Western coast, there are many fantastic courses to explore and enjoy.
Having hosted The Open Championship for 34 consecutive years before the Claret Jug eventually travelled South to Royal St George's, it is safe to say that Scotland is very much the home of Open Championship golf with 7 courses, and will have hosted a total of 96 times by 2018, and countless others which lay claim to the best course never to have held an Open. For those wanting to experience multiple venues as part of their tour, a trip to the West Coast can see you tick off the likes of Prestwick, Royal Troon and Turnberry easily with all 3 courses within 45 minutes of each other, while those seeking the East Coast should consider a trip to include the likes of Carnoustie, Muirfield and St Andrews.
Open venues in England are split into two geographical areas, Kent and the Merseyside / Lancashire coastline. While Kent only has one active course on the Open Rota, Princes and Royal Cinque Ports are former hosts and provide what many consider to be one of the finest golf tours in the UK with all 3 courses just 15 minutes from each other (so close in places an out of bounds drive from Royal St George's can find itself at Princes). Those travelling to the North West of England can enjoy the very different layouts found at Royal Liverpool (Hoylake), Royal Birkdale and Royal Lytham & St Anne's which will create an excellent golfing tour.
Royal Portrush, located around an hour North of Belfast is the only course outside of England and Scotland to have hosted an Open Championship. With a rich tournament pedigree which has not only hosted the top events in amateur and professional golf but also produced Major Champions as the home course of Darren Clarke, Graeme McDowell and Fred Daly.
|Course||Year Opened||Designer||No. of Open's||Par||Yardage||Course Record|
|Old Course, St Andrews||1552||Many including Old Tom Morris||28||72||7,305||62, Dubuisson, Oosthuizen, Casey, Coetzee & Fleetwood|
|Muirfield||1891||Old Tom Morris, Colt, Simpson & Hawtree||16||71||7,245||66, Mickelson & Johnson|
|Carnoustie||1850||Old Tom Morris, Braid & Robertson||8||71||7,421||64, Montgomerie, Stricker, Lowry & Green|
|Royal Troon||1878||Hunter, Strath & Fernie||8||71||7,208||64, Woods & Norman|
|Trump Turnberry (Ailsa)||1901||Fernie||4||70||7,211||63, Hayes, Norman & Romero|
|Royal St Georges||1887||Purves||14||70||7,204||64, Norman & O'Connor Jnr|
|Royal Liverpool||1869||Chambers & Morris||12||72||7,312||65, Woods|
|Royal Birkdale||1889||Taylor & Hawtree||9||72||6,817||64, Baker-Finch|
|Royal Lytham & St Anne's||1886||Lowe & Colt||10||70||7,118||64, Lehman|
|Royal Cinque Ports||1886||Hynter, Braid & Campbell||2||72||7,006||67, Tiley|
|Princes Golf Club||1906||Hutchings & Lucas||1||72||7,228 (Shore & Dunes)||65, Dunne|
|Royal Portrush||1888||Colt||2||72||7,143||61, McIlroy|