A good round of golf is one of life’s pleasures. And whether you’re a casual golfer or you actively seek out the best courses, there are plenty of opportunities to play golf around the world.
If you’re looking for the best golf holiday destinations, we’ve taken a look at some of the best countries to play golf around the world. Some of these you’ll already know, but we’ve also put some surprises in there too.
OK, so you’re ready to plan your golf holiday. Where should you be heading to find the best golf courses?
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North America is home to some of the most prestigious and renowned golf courses in the world. With a diverse range of landscapes and climates, golfers can experience a variety of different courses and challenges throughout the continent.
The United States boasts more than 16,000 golf courses, making it the country with the most golf courses in the world, and arguably the best.
From the sun-kissed courses of California to the scenic greens of New England, golfers can find a course to suit their taste and ability.
The USA is also home to some of the most prestigious golf competitions, including the Masters and the U.S. Open. The average cost to play a round of golf in the U.S. varies widely depending on the course, but can range from around $30 to over $500.
Top golf destinations in the United States include:
- Pebble Beach Golf Links in California: One of the most iconic golf courses in the world, Pebble Beach is situated on the picturesque Monterey Peninsula and offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean.
- Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia: Home of the Masters tournament, Augusta National is one of the most exclusive and prestigious golf courses in the world, with a beautifully manicured course and challenging greens.
- Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina: With nine different courses to choose from, Pinehurst offers a variety of different golfing experiences, from challenging championship courses to more laid-back, family-friendly options.
Canada is home to over 2,300 golf courses, many of which offer stunning views of the country’s natural beauty. The country has hosted several international golf tournaments, including the Canadian Open and the CP Women’s Open.
The average cost to play a round of golf in Canada ranges from around $40 to $200.
Top golf destinations in Canada include:
- Banff Springs Golf Course in Alberta: This course is set in the stunning Banff National Park, with spectacular mountain views and a challenging layout that has hosted several Canadian Opens.
- Cabot Links in Nova Scotia: This links-style course is situated on the coast of Cape Breton Island, with sweeping ocean views and challenging winds.
- Jasper Park Lodge Golf Course in Alberta: Set in the beautiful Jasper National Park, this course offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains and wildlife, as well as a challenging layout.
Mexico has a growing golf scene, with over 200 golf courses located throughout the country. The country has hosted several international golf tournaments, including the OHL Classic at Mayakoba.
The average cost to play a round of golf in Mexico ranges from around $50 to $200.
Top golf destinations in Mexico include:
- Cabo del Sol in Cabo San Lucas: This course offers stunning views of the Sea of Cortez and challenging terrain, including the famous 5th hole, known as “The Dunes”.
- El Camaleon in Playa del Carmen: This course is set in a beautiful natural environment, with a unique layout that incorporates jungle, mangroves, and ocean views.
- Vista Vallarta in Puerto Vallarta: This course offers two 18-hole courses designed by Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf, respectively, with spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean and surrounding mountains.
Europe is known for its historic and picturesque golf courses, with a wide range of options available to golfers of all skill levels. Some might even argue that some of the best golf courses in the world are found right here, and they are also relatively cheap.
From links courses on the coast of Scotland to mountain courses in the Alps, Europe offers a diverse range of golfing experiences.
Scotland is known as the birthplace of golf and has some of the world’s most famous and challenging courses. With over 550 golf courses, Scotland is a golfing paradise for enthusiasts. The country has hosted several major golfing events, including the Open Championship.
The average cost to play a round of golf in Scotland ranges from around £20 to over £300 making it a relatively cheap golf holiday destination.
Top golf resorts in Scotland include:
- St. Andrews Links: This is one of the oldest and most prestigious golf courses in the world, with a rich history dating back to the 15th century. It is comprised of seven courses, including the famous Old Course, which has hosted the Open Championship 29 times.
- Royal Dornoch Golf Club: Situated in the Scottish Highlands, this course is known for its stunning natural beauty and challenging layout.
- Gleneagles: This luxury resort offers three championship courses, including the famous PGA Centenary Course, which hosted the Ryder Cup in 2014.
Ireland is home to some of the most scenic and challenging golf courses in the world, with over 400 courses to choose from. Ireland has also hosted the Ryder Cup numerous times, as well as other prestigious golfing events.
The average cost to play a round of golf in Ireland ranges from around €50 to over €300.
Top golf destinations in Ireland include:
- Royal County Down Golf Club: This links course is situated on the coast of Northern Ireland and offers stunning views of the Mountains of Mourne and the Irish Sea.
- Old Head Golf Links: This course is located on a narrow peninsula in County Cork, with stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and challenging terrain.
- Ballybunion Golf Club: Situated on the southwest coast of Ireland, this course offers stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and challenging links terrain.
Spain is a popular tourism and golfing destination, with over 500 golf courses located throughout the country.
The warm climate and stunning landscapes make it an ideal destination for golfers year-round. In fact if you’re looking for a winter golf holiday, you’ll find plenty of choice on the Iberian peninsula. Spain regularly hosts international golf tournaments, including the Ryder Cup.
The average cost to play a round of golf in Spain ranges from around €30 to €150. However, you’ll also find plenty of resorts offering cheap holiday deals in golf resorts across Spain.
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Top golf destinations in Spain include:
- Valderrama Golf Club: This course is located in the Costa del Sol region and is considered one of the best courses in Europe, with a challenging layout and beautiful natural surroundings.
- PGA Catalunya Resort: This luxury resort offers two championship courses, including the Stadium Course, which has hosted several European Tour events.
- La Manga Club: This resort offers three championship courses, including the famous South Course, which has hosted several Spanish Opens.
Alongside Spain, Portugal is also a very popular destination for a golfing holiday , known for its sunny weather, scenic courses, and affordable prices. The country has around 90 golf courses, with most located in the Algarve region in the south.
In addition to this, you will also often find very affordable package deals in golf resorts, making it an excellent destination for business meetings or stag dos.
Some of the top courses in Portugal include:
- Vale do Lobo Royal Course: a challenging course with stunning sea views, designed by Sir Henry Cotton
- Oitavos Dunes: a challenging course with ocean views, designed by Arthur Hills
- San Lorenzo Golf Course: a championship course with a stunning location along the Ria Formosa nature reserve
Average cost to play a round of golf in Portugal is around €70-€150.
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Other Regions in Europe
There are plenty of other countries in Europe that also offer great golfing experiences. From France, to Romania or Latvia, you’ll find plenty of amazing golf courses and many of them at relatively affordable prices.
However if you’re looking for some of the best golf courses for a cheap golf holiday, you may also consider…
Italy has some beautiful courses, including the picturesque Golf Club Ugolino in Tuscany.
Turkey has become a popular golf destination in recent years, with the Belek region on the Mediterranean coast offering a variety of courses.
In England, the historic courses at Royal Birkdale and Royal Lytham & St Annes are well worth a visit.
Overall, Europe offers a wide range of golfing experiences, with courses to suit all levels of golfers and budgets. Whether you’re looking to play on the world’s most famous courses or explore hidden gems, Europe has something to offer.
Asia is home to some of the most breathtaking golf courses in the world, with many world-renowned destinations that draw in golf enthusiasts from all over the globe. Here are some of the best golf destinations in Asia.
Japan is one of the top golf destinations in Asia, with over 2,400 golf courses throughout the country. Many of these courses are world-renowned and offer a unique golfing experience, with challenging layouts and beautiful natural surroundings.
One interesting fact about golf in Japan is that many courses are 27-hole layouts, which is unusual compared to other countries.
Some of the top golf courses in Japan include:
- Kawana Hotel Golf Course
- Hirono Golf Club
- Naruo Golf Club
- Tokyo Golf Club
South Korea is another popular golfing destination in Asia, with over 200 golf courses in the country. Many of these courses are designed by world-famous architects, and the country has produced many top-level golfers. The Korean peninsula is known for its beautiful scenery, and many courses take advantage of the natural landscape.
Expect to pay between $40 to $200 for a round of golf in South Korea.
Some of the top golf courses in South Korea include:
- Nine Bridges Golf Club
- Whistling Rock Country Club
- Blackstone Golf Club
- Haesley Nine Bridges Golf Club
Thailand has over 250 golf courses throughout the country, with many designed by famous golf course architects. The country is known for its high-quality golf courses, with many located in stunning natural environments. Thailand also offers some of the most affordable golf courses in Asia, making it an attractive destination for golfers on a budget.
Some of the top golf courses in Thailand include:
- Siam Country Club
- Chiang Mai Highlands Golf Resort
- Black Mountain Golf Club
- Thai Country Club
The United Arab Emirates has become one of the fastest-growing golf destinations in the world, with a number of high-profile tournaments and events held throughout the year.
The UAE has several world-class golf courses, many of which are designed by top golf course architects. The courses are known for their stunning views and unique design features.
Playing golf in the UAE is a unique experience, but doesn’t come cheap. Prices go between $75 to $300 for a round.
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Some of the top golf courses in the UAE include:
- Yas Links Golf Club
- Emirates Golf Club
- Saadiyat Beach Golf Club
- The Els Club Dubai
China has become a popular destination for golfers in recent years. With a rapidly growing middle class, the demand for high-end golf courses has increased significantly. As of 2021, there are more than 600 golf courses in China, many of which are of an international standard.
One of the most prestigious golf tournaments in China is the WGC-HSBC Champions, which is part of the World Golf Championships. The event is held annually in Shanghai and has attracted some of the biggest names in the sport.
The cost to play golf in China can vary greatly depending on the course and location. Some of the more exclusive courses can be quite expensive, with green fees often exceeding $200 USD per round.
Some of the top golf destinations in China include:
- Sheshan International Golf Club, Shanghai: Host of the WGC-HSBC Champions and one of the most prestigious courses in China.
- Mission Hills Golf Club, Shenzhen: The largest golf resort in the world with 22 courses spread over two locations.
- Spring City Golf & Lake Resort, Kunming: Two championship courses set in the scenic hills of Yunnan province.
Malaysia is a popular destination for golfers looking for a tropical getaway. The country has over 200 fantastic golf courses, many of which are of a high standard and set in beautiful locations.
One of the most significant golf tournaments in Malaysia is the CIMB Classic, which is a PGA Tour event held at TPC Kuala Lumpur. The event attracts some of the biggest names in golf and offers a substantial prize fund.
The cost to play golf in Malaysia is relatively affordable compared to many other destinations, with green fees for international-standard courses ranging from $50-100 USD per round.
Some of the top golf destinations in Malaysia include:
- TPC Kuala Lumpur: Home of the CIMB Classic and one of the top courses in the country.
- Saujana Golf & Country Club, Selangor: Host of multiple professional tournaments and a challenging course with a beautiful natural setting.
- The Els Club Teluk Datai, Langkawi: Designed by former world number one golfer Ernie Els and set in a stunning rainforest location.
Australia and Oceania
Home to some of the world’s most famous golfers, there is also plenty to attract keen golfers south of the equator.
Australia is home to some of the world’s top golf courses and is a popular destination for golf enthusiasts. The country boasts around 1,500 golf courses, many of which are world-renowned for their stunning landscapes and challenging layouts. Golf is a popular sport in Australia, and the country has produced some of the world’s top players, including Adam Scott and Greg Norman.
Green fees in Australia vary depending on the course and location, but expect to pay between $60 and $150 for a round of golf at a public course. Australia also hosts several prestigious golf events, including the Australian Open, the Australian PGA Championship, and the Women’s Australian Open.
Some of the top golf destinations in Australia include:
- Royal Melbourne Golf Club: One of the world’s top-ranked courses, Royal Melbourne is a challenging course with stunning scenery.
- Barnbougle Dunes: This Tasmanian course is a must-visit for any golf enthusiast, with its breathtaking coastal views and challenging layout.
- New South Wales Golf Club: This Sydney course offers some of the best views of the city’s skyline and is renowned for its challenging holes.
New Zealand is known for its spectacular natural scenery, and its golf courses are no exception. The country has around 400 golf courses, many of which offer stunning views of mountains, lakes, and the coastline. Golf is a popular sport in New Zealand, and the country has produced several top players, including Michael Campbell.
Green fees in New Zealand vary depending on the course and location, but expect to pay between $50 and $150 for a round of golf at a public course. New Zealand also hosts several prestigious golf events, including the New Zealand Open and the Women’s New Zealand Open.
Some of the top golf destinations in New Zealand include:
- Kauri Cliffs: This course is ranked among the world’s top 50, with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and challenging holes.
- Cape Kidnappers: Another course with breathtaking coastal views, Cape Kidnappers is located on New Zealand’s North Island and is known for its challenging layout.
- Jack’s Point: Located in Queenstown, this course offers stunning views of Lake Wakatipu and the surrounding mountains.
Fiji may not be the first place that comes to mind for a golf vacation, but the country has several excellent courses that are worth a visit. The courses in Fiji offer stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and the tropical landscape, and are known for their challenging layouts.
Green fees in Fiji vary depending on the course and location, but expect to pay between $50 and $150 for a round of golf at a public course.
Some of the top golf destinations in Fiji include:
- Natadola Bay Golf Course: This course is located on Fiji’s Coral Coast and is known for its challenging layout and stunning ocean views.
- Denarau Golf and Racquet Club: Located on Denarau Island, this course offers stunning views of the nearby islands and is a great option for golfers of all skill levels.
- Pacific Harbour Golf and Country Club: This course is located on Fiji’s main island and is known for its challenging layout, with several water hazards and bunkers to navigate.
While the previously mentioned countries are among the top golf destinations in the world, there are other regions with notable golf courses and resorts as well.
South Africa is a premier golf destination with over 500 golf courses, many of which are designed by world-class golf architects. The country has hosted major international golf tournaments, including the 2003 Presidents Cup, 2005 Women’s World Cup of Golf, and the 2010 South African Open. The golf courses in South Africa offer diverse landscapes, from coastal views to rugged mountains and wildlife reserves. Some of the top golf destinations in South Africa include Sun City, Fancourt, and the Garden Route.
- Gary Player Country Club, Sun City
- Fancourt Montagu and Outeniqua Golf Courses, George
- Leopard Creek Country Club, Kruger National Park
South Africa’s golf courses range from affordable to luxurious, with green fees starting at around ZAR 100 ($7) and going up to ZAR 3000 ($210) for top-end courses. Many of the country’s golf resorts offer on-site accommodations, making them an ideal choice for a golfing vacation.
The Dominican Republic is home to over 30 golf courses, many of which are championship courses designed by renowned golf architects. The country is known for its picturesque golf courses that offer stunning views of the Caribbean Sea and tropical landscapes. Some of the top golf destinations in the Dominican Republic include Punta Cana, La Romana, and Casa de Campo. The average cost of playing a round of golf in the Dominican Republic is around $100 to $200.
- Punta Espada Golf Club
- Teeth of the Dog
- Casa de Campo – The Links
North Africa is an emerging golf destination, with many world-class golf courses popping up in recent years. Morocco and Tunisia are the main golf destinations in the region. Morocco has over 35 golf courses, many of which are designed by renowned golf architects. Tunisia has around 15 golf courses, with the majority located in the coastal area. Both countries have hosted prestigious golf tournaments, such as the Hassan II Trophy in Morocco and the Tunisian Open in Tunisia.
- Royal Golf Dar Es Salam, Morocco
- Palmeraie Golf Palace, Morocco
- Golf Citrus Hammamet, Tunisia
Eastern Europe is another region that is rapidly gaining popularity among golf enthusiasts. The region offers an interesting blend of history, culture, and golf. The main golf destinations in Eastern Europe are Poland, Czech Republic, and Hungary. Poland has over 130 golf courses, many of which are located near historic sites and offer a unique golfing experience. The Czech Republic has around 100 golf courses, with many located in the picturesque countryside. Hungary has over 20 golf courses, with many located near Budapest, the country’s capital.
- Krakow Valley Golf & Country Club, Poland
- Albatross Golf Resort, Czech Republic
- Zala Springs Golf Resort, Hungary
There are plenty of great destinations around the world for a golfing holiday. So if you’re looking for some of the best golf resorts, or just looking for a golf trip with buddies, one of these will be sure to be a winner.
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