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Gleneagles King's Course

Top 5 Courses in Scotland

When it comes to choosing a golf course in Scotland, you are spoilt for choice. There are plenty of great options, so it can be hard to know where to start. So, to get you started here are our picks for the top five courses in the country.

1. St Andrews (Old Course)

You couldn’t have a list of the top golf courses in Scotland and not include the Old Course at St Andrew. Most consider The Old Course as the oldest and most iconic course in the world. It is, after all, the birthplace of this most gracious of sports. As such, any true golf enthusiast should take their chance to play on these majestic greens.

The Old Course is such a special place, so it does mean you need to plan ahead to play these greens. There are several ways to secure a tee time, including taking a gamble and turning up on the day. However, using an authorised provider is the best way to guarantee you get your chance to cross the Swilcan Bridge and dodge the Hell Bunker.

2. Muirfield

Muirfield is the home of the honourable company of Edinburgh golfers. The club and the course have a long history holding a place as one of the oldest courses in the world. They lay claim to writing the original thirteen rules of golf. 

The course is a favourite of international competitions. The Open Championship has been hosted here a total of 15 times. The Ryder Cup, The Curtis Cup and The Walker cup are also among the many championships that have played these greens.

The two circuits that make up the course take you in opposite directions. This means that the course is challenging for even the most experienced player. You need to make adjustments for the changing wind conditions continually. Muirfield represents a truly classic challenge.

3. Royal Dornoch

The course at Royal Dornoch is one a truly majestic place. The whole course is in the most exquisite landscape. The views of the purple mountains and the frothing sea all add to the incredible experience – and that’s before the golf is involved!

The turfs are immaculately kept. Every bump, trap and ridge is there for a reason. The care and attention mean that every hole requires you to bring you best game and strategy if you wish to raise to the challenge of this classic Open Championship standard links course.

Royal Dornoch is not a course for the faint of heart. The challenges come from the very first hole. This is a very technically demanding course, so the challenge is not merely based on length.

The draw of Royal Dornoch is such that there are more American members than local. Greens fees are reasonable given the long history of the club and the high demand to play here.

4. Turnberry (Ailsa)

The Ailsa course at Turnberry has a long history. Over the years it has played host to the Open Championship four times. However, it is not the course it used to be. It has recently undergone significant redevelopment with practically no corner remaining untouched. The new course includes five new holes. For anyone who has already played the course, it is well worth revisiting. The place has a whole fresh feel to it, and it is truly one of the best courses around.

You will find The Ailsia in amongst the Ayrshire coastline. The backdrop for the course is the Arran and Ailsa Craig. These volcanic islands have stood watch over the shoreline for around half a billion years, and even though they are utterly uninhabited, they feel the area with a feeling of majesty and mystery. This is the feeling that permeates the course and will have you coming back again and again.

5. Carnoustie (Championship)

The Championship Course at Carnoustie is another course that has played host to many great tournaments. The Open has graced these links eight times. Once wasn’t enough for The Seniors Open. It’s been here twice. The Women’s Open has also been played on these hallowed greens. Once you give this course a go, you will understand why it one of the few courses in the world to have seen so many championships.

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