Golf Courses in Scotland

Golf Course - flckr - macieklew

Affectionately dubbed the 'Home of Golf' by natives, Scotland outranks even the USA for above par golf courses of championship standard. With its undulating hills, rolling marshlands and year-round rainy season, Scotland's sporting landscape has largely been shaped by nature, lending to lush fairways, challenging back-links layouts and disarming views across some of the most beautiful lochs in the country. It's little wonder that overturning the 1457 Act of Parliament that banned the game in Scotland was top of King James IV's priority list in 1502. He marked the occasion by commissioning the first ever set of golf clubs from a bow-maker in Perth, thus beginning a Scottish love affair that shows little sign of waning.


Muirfield Golf Course, Gullane, East Lothian
Playground of the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers for over 260 years, fair Muirfield lays claim to hosting the oldest organised golf club in the world, as well as the birthplace of the '13 Rules of Golf'. It was here at Muirfield the Gentlemen Golfers of Leith devised the rule-set in 1744, primarily for the Silver Club Championship and members-only games. By 1850, Muirfield had been transformed from a mere 5-hole 'Leith links' to the 18-hole, 6,673 yard Open Championship Course so loved today - with a little help from landscape designers Harry Colt and Tom Simpson. In contrast to many traditional Scottish courses, Muirfield does not follow the straightforward 'nine out and nine back', instead planned around two inter-linking circles, with the inner nine running anti-clockwise and punctured by endless bunkers. Whipped by tempestuous sea breezes and mild precipitation, the par 70 course dishes up a challenge that will test the mettle of any traditional links player.  Lovely cottages in East Lothian.


Turnberry (Ailsa Course), Ayrshire
Located just 18 miles South of Ayr beside the Firth of Clyde, the par-70 Turnberry Golf Resort impresses with both stunning panoramic views and decidedly eccentric layout. Established in 1902, Turnberry began life as a championship length layout designed exclusively for the Culzean Estate. In time, Willie Fernie's 6,976 yard links layout would undergo several statement changes, to include a segue of challenging holes along the coastal edge. From the 4th to 11th holes, there are no wind-breaking dunes to cut the testing Firth breezes, making for a challenging opener for any Ailsa newbie. An out and back layout packed with surprises, be sure to have the wind at your back throughout the thrilling first nine! Holiday cottages near Ayrshire.


Royal Dornoch Golf Club, Sutherland, Inverness
In the far North East of Scotland, 45 miles beyond Inverness, lies an elevated  links layout considered a prime host for the Open Championship, were it not so remotely situated. Favourited by Nick Faldo and Tom Watson to name but a few, this Old Tom Morris layout boasts 6,515 yards of straight driving tests, with a few unsuspecting tweaks offset by precipitous dunes. Fast plateaus of turf call for forethought prior to every shot, particularly at the esteemed 'Foxy' 14th, where a tantalizing two dogleg par-4 awaits, guaranteed to throw you off kilter. In theory, Royal Dornoch is a straight out-and-back links course, however Donald Ross' trademark domed greens make this scenic beauty a rougher confrontation than first meets the eye. Holiday rentals in Inverness.


Royal Montrose (Medal), Angus
Founded in 1562, the Medal Course at Angus is an iconic patch in golfing history - fifth oldest in the world and second oldest granted Royal patronage. Revised by Old Tom Morris in 1901, the old 25-hole layout underwent further alteration at the hands of Willie Park Junior just two years later; a state in which it continues to charm and outwit in equal measure. With springy turf and trench-like bunkers, the traditional Scottish links course offers a heady par-71 across 18-holes. Measuring 6,906 yards from the back tees, Royal Montrose Medal layout is about the right length given its many meandering shots, particularly from holes 2 to 7 alongside the dunes. Organic, beautiful and authentically aged, Royal Montrose promises memorable play whatever the weather! Angus holiday homes.


AT 16:24

Blog Comments

28th November 2012 Jimyjames wrote:

Great post, good work. It Couldn’t be wrote any better.


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