Scotland, the home of golf and the nation that invented the best sport in the world, is the place to go for a golfing holiday. Having just had the Men’s and Ladies Scottish Open and The Open Championship played out on their shores it’s time to look at some of the amazing courses that call Scotland home.
There is a glut of ‘hidden gems’ in Scotland that are some of the prettiest courses out there but you may not have heard of them. Let’s take a whistle-stop tour around some of these wonderful courses so that on your next trip to Scotland you can add some to your All Square world map.
Cruden Bay, Aberdeenshire
Near the oil capital of Scotland, Aberdeen, is one of the most spectacular links courses around. Links courses are all about the sheer natural beauty on offer and Cruden Bay is a great example of how the rugged seaside landscape can provide a stunning canvas for golf. The original course was designed by Old Tom Morris and very quickly became regarded as a great track. This is a classic links course and one of the nicest courses you will ever play.
Cruden Bay may not be the longest course in the world but don’t be fooled by the yardage, it’s a testy one and just great fun to play! Tactical mastery rather than brawn is required to navigate a course that will definitely put a smile on your face!
Crail Golfing Society, Fife
Near St. Andrews and up on the East Neuk of Fife there is a complete masterpiece. Home to two courses, The Balcomie Links and The Craighead Links, there is a real treat with some cool little historical features built-in to make things even more interesting. Built beside a dis-used air base the Balcomie course is a fun and challenging course that all golfers will thoroughly enjoy. This is a compact course with many tees and greens being literally side-by-side. It is another great example of how old links courses can stand the test of time and be as enjoyable now as they were the day they opened. With spectacular views out to the North Sea and some fun quirky holes, this is a wee gem.
Archerfield Resort, East Lothian
The facility at Archerfield, near Edinburgh, is an incredible playground for golf fans and hosted The Paul Lawrie Matchplay on the European Tour this year. With two fantastic course, The Fidra and Direlton Links courses were both designed by D.J. Russell and are great examples of modern links courses. One of the unique features of the courses at Archerfield is the abundance of pine trees around the course making it feel almost like a parkland affair but you are very aware of the fast links turf at your feet! The luxurious resort also features a Nike Performance centre, comprehensive practice facilities and wonderful lodges should you wish to make a weekend of it and try both courses, which is highly recommended!
Royal Dornoch, Invernesshire
This is a secluded one and the most northern course on our list today. Situated north of Inverness is a very special place, and this year marks the 400th year that golf has been played in Dornoch. This is a beautiful traditional links and one that a certain Mr Phil Mickelson loves to play when he’s in the region for the Scottish Open. It has held some of the most prestigious events in the national golf calendar and is probably the ultimate ‘hidden gem’ in every sense of the word. There are two courses to choose from, The Championship and The Struie, with the former being highly decorated with awards. We implore you to make the trip to this very special place.
Dundonald Links, Ayrshire
Close to where The Open Championship was held this year, at Royal Troon, there is a wealth of brilliant links courses. Dundonald Links is the newest of them but it’s a cracking addition to the line-up. Designed by Kyle Phillips, the architect behind Kingsbarns and Castle Stuart, he has created a modern links course that feels like it’s been around for many decades. This is a challenging course but one that is a lot of fun to play all year round. Dundonald hosted the Ladies’ Scottish Open this year and in 2017 will host The Scottish Open. This course is truly worthy of a place on the European Tour circuit so get yourself out on it before Europe’s best have played it and it gets too busy!
Start reviewing the Scottish courses you’ve played on All Square – the Facebook and Trip Advisor of Golf: https://www.allsquaregolf.com/golf-courses/scotland