Golf Courses in the USA
For those considering a golf vacation in the United States, it might be wise to narrow the choices a bit, by state or at least by region. Most golf information and golf travel planners list from 20,000 to 24,000 golf courses in the USA, ranging from small public courses that are hidden gems to the most recognizable names in golf course history. Some of the most attractive golf packages are in Arizona, California, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina and Hawaii. However, limiting the golf travel choices to these few states means overlooking such fine destinations as Texas, New England and the Northwest states of Washington and Oregon. For example, Alabama has excellent golf travel opportunities, including the popular Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail (18 manicured courses that challenge golfers at every level). Illinois is one of the best places to find great golf courses, especially in the Chicago area and in deep Southern Illinois.
The Western Open at Cog Hill near Chicago has long been a desired title among professional golfers. A regular LPGA event is played at The Rail in the capital of Springfield. Among golf courses in the USA, championship courses used for USGA events are often public courses, such as Bethpage State Park (New York), Pebble Beach Golf Links (California) and Pumpkin Ridge (Oregon). Those wishing to play these great courses may have to pay a slightly higher daily fee, but the experience and scenery can make it worthwhile. For many golfers, the ultimate golf vacation is not a matter of money, but for others the daily greens fees have to be figured in. Some of the most challenging and well-kept public courses in the United States also have very reasonable fees. For example, The River Golf Club in North Augusta, South Carolina is among the top public courses in that region of the country.
Players can try their skills there for $37 - $45. Golfers in the Midwest find Cobblestone in Kendallville, Indiana to be a great venue for $34 - $38. Don't overlook Red Hawk Ridge in Castle Rock, Colorado for $40 - $50. Private courses and clubs are not quite as accessible, though non-members may have the opportunity to play with the invitation of a member. Firestone Country Club, for example, a regular venue for professional tournaments such as the World Series of Golf, is private. Castle Pines, scene of The International pro tournament, is private as well. But other courses that make many "top 100" lists and are used for professional tournaments, allow amateur golfers to have the unique experience of being challenged by a top golf course. This is true in the Myrtle Beach, South Carolina region as well as in Arizona. For golfers who have a desire to play in the golf mecca of the Florida, there are golf packages that include three nights in Orlando and four rounds of golf for about $400. Similar all inclusive packages are available in Arizona and California. Among the best public courses in America that can be part of a golf vacation package: The Homestead in Hot Springs, Virginia; Wolf Creek in Mesquite, Nevada; The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Consider as well some of the top golf resorts, such as Pinehurst in North Carolina, Sea Island Resorts in Georgia or The American Club in Wisconsin. Whether the golf vacation includes a trip to one of the famous-name courses and luxury resorts or to a lesser-known course with excellent bed and breakfast lodgings, golf courses in the USA are an excellent choice for that getaway trip.