The Best Golf Courses In Scotland

Photo of Tori Chalmers
2 August 2017

Riddled with tradition and inundated with endless charm, playing a round in this bonnie land is a must for any golfer’s bucket list. From ancient to redesigned, exhilarating and technical, discover the best golf courses in Scotland.

The Old Course

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Old Course At St. Andrews
Old Course At St. Andrews | © WikiCommons
Legendary to a tee, The Old Course in St Andrews is widely regarded as the ‘home of golf’ and is perhaps the most iconic golf course in the world. Adored by all and open to the public, this course played a leading role in deciding that the game would have 18 holes instead of 22. Whether stepping foot on the Swilcan Bridge like the golfing greats (an old stone bridge and one of the most widely known golfing attractions) or losing your wits over the inevitable outcome when encountering the Hell Bunker or Road Bunker, playing this course — which has hosted The Open Championship 29 times more than any other course — will ironically, never get old.

Royal Troon

Founded in 1878, Royal Troon is as charming as it is exhilarating. Before hosting its very first Open Championship, the course was redesigned, made longer and overall better by five-time open champion, leading architect and World Golf Hall of Fame member James Braid. Needless to say it went down a treat. Today, Royal Troon has hosted nine Opens, with the most recent occurring in 2016. From the longest holes to the shortest, ever-changing terrain, stellar sea views, and the priceless 11th hole, or ‘The Railway’ (one of the most tricky holes in major championship golf), this one is always a winner.

Royal Troon Golf Club, Craigend Rd, Troon, Scotland, +44 1292 311555

Royal Dornoch

Situated in Sutherland and surrounded by the Dornoch Firth, the Royal Dornoch Golf Club hosts two 18 hole courses, both equally as impressive as the next. Unsurprisingly, Golf Digest 2016 deemed The Championship Course the No.1 best course in Scotland and No.5 in the world. Not to go unnoticed, The Struie Course was considered No.50 in the best links courses of UK & Ireland in 2011. From enchanting scenery and perfect holes to endearing Highland hospitality, every golfer who graces this club, which was formed in 1877, falls head over heels.

Royal Dornoch Club Golf, Golf Rd, Dornoch, Scotland, +44 1862 810219

Gullane No.1

Wonderfully wild and perfectly challenging, if Gullane No.1 Course isn’t appealing to you, then nothing will be. Silky sleek running greens, rolling terrain, exciting surprises and a myriad of bunkers add to the ineffable charm exuding from this course. Outstanding views stretching out towards Edinburgh and the Firth of Forth are an added bonus. A playground for pros and amateurs alike, Gullane No.1 Course, which dates back to 1884, just also happens to have one of the greatest holes in the world in the form of the par five 3rd.

Gullane Golf Club, W Links Rd, Gullane, Scotland, +44 1620 842255

Carnoustie Golf Links

Situated in Carnoustie in Angus, Carnoustie Golf Links is steeped in history and praised by many. This stunner is one of the ‘chosen ones’ when it comes to the Open Championship Rotation for venues. With three smashing courses to choose from, The Championship Course, Burnside Course, and Buddon Links, golfers will be as happy as Henrik Stenson with his 20 under par. Once more, each and every hole is unique.

Carnoustie Golf Centre, Links Parade, Carnoustie, Scotland, +44 1241 802270

Loch Lomond

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You can’t go to Scotland without witnessing Loch Lomond, just as you can’t surpass its course. Loch Lomond Golf Club in Luss, Argyll and Bute is painted upon the bonnie shore of Loch Lomond. Interestingly, this charmer is bang smack on land, which was once owned by Clan Colquhoun, with the clubhouse occupying Rossdhu Mansion. Graced with unmatched beauty, one round here will ignite a sudden passion for the sport amongst even the most unenthusiastic golfers. Meticulously crafted fairways, sensational views and spellbinding layouts make the Lomond a mandatory golfing pilgrimage and rite of passage.

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