Top Golf Tours & Vacations 2024/2025 [reviews & photos]

Golf Tours & Travel Packages 2024/2025

3 Golf trips. Compare tour itineraries from 2 tour companies. 3 reviews.

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Top Golf Attractions & Experiences

Top Golf Experiences

  • Strolling the historic ground of St. Andrews in Scotland and learning about the beginnings of the game
  • Meeting professional and semi-professional players and trainers
  • The camaraderie that comes from meeting fellow skilled golfers eager to learn and hone their craft, and love talking about the game
  • Enjoying a beer or specialty cocktail with new friends after the game
  • Playing famous golf courses around the globe

Golf Tours & Travel Guide

Golf Attractions & Landmarks Guide

If your ideal vacation includes several days dedicated to being out on the links, then a Golf trip could be for you! These trips make golf the focal point, with some sightseeing included for good measure. The majority of your time will be spent walking historic courses, working with expert trainers to improve your game, and meeting fellow golf enthusiasts.

A Brief History of Golf

While golf saw its earliest renditions dating back to Roman days, its modern version was developed in Scotland during the Middle Ages. Golf was originally banned by King James II in Scotland in 1457 as it was seen as distracting men from learning how to fight. However, it was later reinstated and welcomed by the royalty in the 1500s. 

Golf spread throughout the United Kingdom over the next few hundred years and was brought to the United States and Canada during colonial times. It was during the 1800s that golf really started to grow throughout North America and courses were beginning to be built in the U.S and Canada during this time. In fact, the largest percentage of golfers in the world are now actually from the U.S. 

Golf has now grown into a very popular sport and is played across the world. It’s not only become a top sport industry, but is now playing a huge role in the tourism industry as part of destination packages. 

Why Take an Organized Golf Tour?

When else will you be able to play at so many well-respected and popular courses in such a short time frame. Organized golf tours allow golf lovers to play at some of the most storied and beautiful courses in the world all within 8-10 days. 

Golf vacation packages are also planned out for you. You don’t have to worry about booking tee times or a hotel, as the tour operator takes care of those for you. If an offered tour isn’t exactly what you want, most tour operators will work with you to create the best itinerary that includes the courses you want to play at. 

Also on these tours, you will have access to courses that if you were to book by yourself would be extremely difficult or you may be forced to be on a long waiting list. 

Top Public Golf Courses Around the World

Golf courses are typically categorized as links, parkland, and desert. Links courses are built into the land and don’t have trees and are often on the coastline, parkland courses resemble parks with trees and romantic holes, and desert courses are built in a desert landscape with very little grass. Most of the top courses in the world are either links or a parkland course as those are the most common. 

1. St. Andrews Links, Scotland 

“The Home of Golf.” Accredited with being the birthplace of modern golf, St. Andrews is the original course that would influence the design and game of golf for generations. All seven of St. Andrews’s links courses offer stunning views of the bay and surrounding city, but it’s playing on the Old Course that is the dream for most golfers. 

2. Pebble Beach, California

Continuously ranked as the best public course in the U.S., Pebble Beach in central California is a must for any golf enthusiast. The course is ranked on top yearly not only because of its amazing combination of seaside views, but of how many holes are played on the edge of the cliffs. However you should be forewarned, Pebble Beach isn’t for the faint of heart and is a tricky course even for professionals. 

3. Pacific Dunes, Oregon

The allure of Pacific Dunes is that the course doesn’t look like it was built on top of the land, but was morphed into and from the land. Hugging the Oregon coastline, this stunning course has an interesting back 9 and some epic bunkers which will test your golfing nerves. Relatively new compared to other top courses, Pacific Dunes has been ranked in the top 10 of courses in the U.S. for many years. 

4. Royal County Down Club, Northern Ireland

Opened in 1889, Royal Country Down is one of the oldest golf courses in Ireland. Like many other golf courses, this course was constructed near the sea, but what makes Royal County Downs special are its views of the Mourne Mountain Range in the distance. The course is a favorite amongst top professionals and considered to be one of the best golf courses in the world. 

Unique Golf Courses Around the World

The game of golf has seen a huge growth in popularity over the last thirty years, and with that, the world has begun to see some very interesting golf courses in some very interesting places. 

1. Nullarbor Links, Australia

Known as one of the longest courses and most interesting in the world, Nullarbor Links is located in southern Australia. Covering 850 miles of barren landscape, the course’s fairways and greens are made up of shrubs, sand, and astroturf. Plan for a full day outing as some holes are at least a 25 mile drive from each other. 

2. Merapi Golf Course, Indonesia

Nothing like an active volcano next to your tee box to make your play interesting. Merapi Golf Course is built on the edge of the active volcano Mount Merapi in central Indonesia. While the views on this course are unlike any other, you may have to deal with some tremors from the volcano during your backswing. 

3. Brickyard Crossing, Indiana

Combining Indycar racing and golf in one, the Brickyard Crossing is one of the most unique in the U.S. Four of the holes, including water and sand traps, are actually inside the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and golfers can get to the holes by driving on a passageway that goes underneath the track. 

4. Uummannaq, Greenland

Golf isn’t only played during warm weather, but can also apparently be played in subzero temperatures. Home to the World Ice Golf Championships, this special course in Greenland is built over icebergs and frozen ground. The makers of the course did decide to take it easy on the golfers as the course is shorter, orange balls are used for easier detection, and the holes are cut larger. 

Tips for Golfing in Bad Weather

Golf in some countries of the world, like Scotland, is played year round. No matter if it is raining or snowing, there will be golfers out there on the courses. 

If you are faced with rainy weather on your golf vacation, make sure to bring water-resistant shoes, rain gloves, and covers for your golf clubs. If you didn’t pack an umbrella, check with the golf course to see if you can rent one for your round. Keeping as many things dry as you can will be the key for your day. 

For those really chilly days in Northern Ireland, make sure to pack extra layers. Wind-breakers, compression shirts and pants, and mittens will come in handy when playing on those breezy seaside courses. 

Since many courses in the world don’t allow golf carts, walking your round in 100 degree weather can be more difficult than you realize. Make sure to hydrate the day before and the day of your round, while also packing lightweight clothing for your play will help. 

The Best Public Golf Courses in the U.K.

As the birthplace of the modern version of golf, it’s not surprising to say that the U.K. has some of the most storied and charming courses in the world. 

1. Muirfield, Scotland

Like other Scottish courses, Muirfield is a links course. While not known for its most stunning vista views, Muirfield is a sure test of your golfing merits. Having hosted countless professional and amateur championships, Muirfield is one of the top courses in Scotland, the U.K., and the rest of the world. 

2. Royal Portrush, Northern Ireland 

Built near a castle at the tip of Northern Ireland, Royal Portrush has been a top golfing destination since it was opened in 1888. This course is the epitome of what a links course should look like: rolling fairways, tricky bunkers, seaside views, and a natural and organic feel. 

3. Royal St. George’s, England 

One of the few courses in Southern England to host the Open Championship, Royal St. George is highly considered to be the best in all of England. Known for its tricky blind shots and extremely deep sand traps, this course has seen some of the best golfers of all time. Just make sure to watch out for that wind. 

4. Old Course, St. Andrews, Scotland

No list of best golf courses in the U.K. would be complete without mentioning the Old Course at St. Andrews. This course on the edge of the village of St. Andrews, Scotland, has been home to some of the greatest moments in golf. Golfers come to this course to walk in the footsteps of some of the best and capture their moments at Swilcan Bridge and Hell Bunker. 

Golf Etiquette - Top Tips

While on your golf vacation, it’s important to remember some basic golf etiquette.

While there are golf courses all across the world, there are some universal golf rules you should follow when playing: 

  • Arrive early so you can get checked in, warmed up, and start your round on time. This helps keep the flow of the course going and doesn’t delay other players. 
  • If you do come across a slower group, try to take your time in between shots and check where the group ahead of you is so you don’t hit them with your shot. On the other hand, if you are a slower group you can allow the faster groups to play through. 
  • Try to maintain the course as much as you can while playing. This means replacing your divots, or the whole that is created when hitting your ball, raking the sandtraps after you hit, and repair any marks on the greens left by shoes or putts. 
  • On the green, do not walk through another player’s line, or the line in between their ball and the hole. This is seen as a distraction and disrespectful. Also, remember to mark your ball and stand at a distance as not to influence other players. 
  • Golfing can be one of the most frustrating sports and hitting a bad shot will likely happen. Remember that displays of excessive yelling and throwing of clubs are extremely frowned upon as they can be a distraction to other players.

Golf Reviews

M

Michael

Dec 2023

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Not a good bicycle trip

Our family of four, including two adult children, took the Bicycling: Day Trips to Paradise in Canada. This trip is entirely outsourced to the owners of the inn, th...

C

CV

Feb 2023

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Did not get to go to New Zealand

Cyclone Gabrielle came to the north island of NZ which included Aukland our starting point of the program. NZ air cancelled all flights out of the US to Aukland. Thi...

d

dro

Apr 2023

Written on

Think twice before you book your travel through Road Scholar

Think twice about booking your travel through Road Scholar: Recently I booked a trip with Road Scholar and used their travel department to book my trip. As luck woul...

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