Best Golf Courses You May Not Have Played…Yet
If you’re an avid golfer, you’ve probably played many well-known courses worldwide. But if you haven’t played the ones highlighted below, you can’t say that you’ve played some of the best in the U.S.
There are so many great courses throughout the country that it’s hard to choose where to play next. To help in that decision, we’ve profiled 6 of the best in south Florida, with 4 of America’s other favorites included for good measure. Grab your clubs and enjoy!
Blue Monster at Doral
Part of the Trump National Doral Golf Club, the Blue Monster has been hosting prestigious PGA tour events for over 50 years. Nicklaus, Norman, Mickelson, and Woods have all won here. Gil Hanse has updated the course into a palm-shaded expanse of contoured greens, lush Bermuda rough, and more lakes than you can count. GOLF magazine recognizes the Blue Monster’s infamous 473-yard, part-4 18th hole as one of the Top 100 Holes in the World.
Fort Lauderdale/Plantation, FL
Semi-private Jacaranda is considered among the top three South Florida golf courses, even when private clubs are included in the comparison. With two 18-hole championship courses rated four stars by Golf Digest, Jacaranda’s paspalum tee boxes and fairways provide some of the most playable surfaces you’ll find anywhere. The East Course has hosted many PGA and USGA tournaments. The shorter West Course, called the “shotmaker’s” course, offers a mix of holes to physically and mentally challenge golfers of all skill levels.
Kiawah Island, SC
You can hear the Atlantic Ocean from every hole. Tidal marshes, scrub-filled dunes, and live oaks abound. Despite existing for barely three decades, the Kiawah Island course is among the most memorable playing experiences in the U.S. Phil Mickelson won the 2021 PGA Championship here. Make sure to head in this direction soon to win some competitions of your own.
Port St. Lucie, FL
With 54 holes of championship golf over three different courses by legendary architects Tom Fazio and Pete Dye, PGA Village is one of those places you go for a weekend and wind up spending a week. Relax in the Taplow Pub, named after the New York City location where the PGA began. If visiting in March, plan to spend some time in nearby Clover Park to take in a Mets game during Spring Training.
Pebble Beach, CA
Known as the first great oceanside course open to the public, Pebble Beach takes players to the edge of the Pacific Ocean, then onto higher ground, then back to the cliffs for two dramatic final holes. Holes 4 through 10 are considered among the most thrilling you’ll find on any course, anywhere.
Pine Valley, NJ
Perennial holder of the pole position in GOLF’s Top 100 Courses rankings, Pine Valley excels in formidable hazards and sophisticated greens. Its demand for precision play and punishments for making a poor shot have been a source of golfer delight and frustration for more than a century. The driving range and practice facility are also among the nation’s best.
This treasure is a super-private course that’s on just about every serious golfer’s bucket list. Chances to play are hard to come by, so if you get an opportunity, grab it.
With its legendary inverted-saucer greens and tall longleaf pines, Pinehurst is one of a handful of courses that’s fun for casual golfers while still being challenging enough to host a U.S. Open. Designed by Donald Ross and restored by Coore-Crenshaw, Pinehurst is another of GOLF’s Top 100 courses and well deserving of your time.
Juno Beach, FL
Quite possibly the finest course Donald Ross ever designed, each hole at Seminole encounters a new wind direction. One of the country’s most exclusive clubs, Seminole has several standout holes – the 4th, 6th, and 13th in particular – and a finishing three-hole stretch that you’ll be thinking about for years afterward. You may have gotten a chance to check out this fantastic course on television when it hosted the Walker Cup in 2021.
Bowling Green, FL
Streamsong is the highest-rated golf collection in Florida and one of only a handful of resorts in the country that offers three nationally-ranked courses in one spot. Coore-Crenshaw designed the Red Course; Gil Hanse and Jim Wagner, the Black Course; and Tom Doak, the Blue Course. Plan to take in all three on your next golfing adventure. You’ll find Streamsong just an hour east of Tampa.
Greg Norman designed the two 18-hole courses at Tiburon, which hosts the PGA Tour’s QBE Shootout and the LPGA’s CME Group Tour Championship each year. Consistently rated among Florida’s top golf facilities, Tiburon is a semi-private club that is also a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary.
Ten to Start, Many More to Come
Play a round or two on these 10 memorable courses and you can rightfully name yourself an authority on some of the best golf locales in the country. Let them serve as your inspiration to choose 10 more, and then the next 10, and keep going until you’ve played them all.