The game of golf is in many ways unusual among sports, partly because most the most famous venues of all can be visited and played on by the general public. While some courses are open only to private members, many others allow players to walk in the footsteps of Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Luke Donald. Here are four of the most famous of them all, and if you have the time and the money, you can visit them and experience the ultimate golfing experience of all.
St Andrews Old Course
Located on the western coast of Scotland, St Andrews is commonly regarded as the home of golf. this historic course regularly plays host to the Open Championship – please note that it’s NEVER officially referred to as the British Open – and the links have witnessed some of the most famous moments in the sport’s history. The Swilken Bridge, the Road Hole and several huge double greens await the visitor.
Among those who choose to play the finest courses in the world, Augusta National is commonly regarded as the most difficult to get into. However, there are plenty of people who have succeeded in their attempts, although for some of them it has taken several years. One of the most beautiful sporting arenas in the whole world, it’s a golfer’s paradise that provides the ultimate thrill from the moment they pull into Magnolia Drive before starting their round.
A true masterpiece of golf design, Pebble Beach hugs the coastline of California’s Monterrey Peninsula, and offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean from many of its fairways. In 2010, Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell won the US Open here, emulating great names such as Tiger Woods, Tom Watson and Jack Nicklaus. If you are fortunate (and wealthy) enough to play here, be sure to bring a camera with you, because the vistas are simply breathtaking.
Ranked among the top twenty courses in the world, Royal Melbourne is perhaps the finest in the whole Southern Hemisphere. While enjoying the honor of playing what is regarded as the cream of the crop, it’s important to concentrate on the game, of course, and that’s never going to be easy when you see the sand dunes and huge bunkers that lie in wait for errant shots. Many of the greens are relatively small, especially when compared with St Andrews, so accurate shot-making is vital from the fairways. This is a golfer’s golf course if ever there was one.
David Showell is a UK resident and a keen golfer. When he’s not trying to get his handicap down, he helps tourist to find the best deals on car rental on the Internet.