The 9 Best Golf Courses in Canada

Big Sky's surrounds | © Bill Wilson / Flickr
Big Sky's surrounds | © Bill Wilson / Flickr
Photo of Hayley Simpson
Writer29 March 2017

Nearly 20% of Canadians play golf, which is quite significant when there are only 35 million people living in Canada. But the country is home to a lot of golf courses, which must try and outdo each other for the most impressive surroundings. Here are some of the best golf courses in the country.

Banff Springs Golf Course

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Banff Springs Golf Course
Banff Springs Golf Course | © Dave Bloggs007 / Flickr
Built in 1928 by famous Canadian golf course architect Stanley Thompson, the golf course at Fairmont Banff Springs has to have one of the best backdrops in the world. It’s surrounded by the Rocky Mountains and runs parallel to Bow River. The Banff Springs Golf Course is a 27-hole course, and “amateurs and professionals alike are constantly amazed by its challenging layout.” It’s open from May to October.

Cabot Links Golf Course

“Where every hole offers an ocean view and where five holes play directly adjacent to the beach”—this is Cabot Links. The 18-hole golf course is designed to be walked alongside a local caddie, whose job it is to know all about the course’s intricacies and history. Cabot Links itself is a prestigious resort with rooms, residences, and villas looking out to the lush green golf course and the ocean beyond.

Cabot Links Golf Course, 15933 Central Avenue, Inverness, NS, Canada, +1 902 258 4653

Dakota Dunes Golf Links

An award-winning golf course near Saskatoon in Saskatchewan, Dakota Dunes Golf Links is located on historic Whitecap Dakota First Nation lands. It’s a relatively new 18-hole course, as it only opened in 2004. Architect Graham Cooke, an inductee in Canada’s Golf Hall of Fame, designed the golf course alongside his partner, Wayne Carleton. They said, “There could not be a more natural site for a golf course than this one.”

Dakota Dunes Golf Links, 202 Dakota Dunes Way, Whitecap, SK, Canada, +1 306 664 4653

Big Sky Golf Club

Known as the top-rated golf course in Canada’s top-rated golfing destination of Whistler, Big Sky opened in 1994 to high acclaim. It’s one of four golf courses in Whistler, which also includes Nicklaus North Course, Whistler Golf Course, and Fairmont Chateau Course. Big Sky’s mountain surrounds and lush greens make it one of Canada’s most photogenic golf courses as well.

Big Sky Golf Club, 1690 Airport Road, Pemberton, BC, Canada, +1 604 894 6106

Taboo Muskoka Golf Course

Taboo’s Ron Garl-designed golf course is the gateway to Muskoka, “one of Canada’s truly outstanding golf destinations.” It does 15-minute tee-time intervals to make each guest feel like they’re golfing on a private course. Taboo Muskoka is also home to the nine-hole Sands golf course, which was designed by Stanley Thompson. As it’s less challenging, the course is considered to be a good warm-up before tackling the Taboo course.

Taboo Muskoka, 1209 Muskoka Beach Road, Gravenhurst, ON, Canada, +1 705 687 2233

Bear Mountain Resort

Bear Mountain Resort offers “36 holes of Nicklaus Design Golf.” It’s the premier golfing destination in Canada, as golfers can choose between the challenging Mountain Course or the more serene Valley Course. The resort is located just outside of Victoria on Vancouver Island. All rates at either golf course include a cart with GPS, club valet, club cleaning services, and warm-up balls at the practice facility.

Bear Mountain Resort, 1999 Country Club Way, Victoria, BC, Canada, +1 250 391 7160

St. George’s Golf and Country Club

This prestigious golf course was constructed in 1929 and has hosted the Canadian Open five times since 1933. In 2015, Golf Digest named it the best golf course in Canada. St. George’s course has received praise for its “classic design; particularly its undulating greens, winding fairways and outstanding four finishing holes.” The stately clubhouse combines impressive architecture with modern amenities.

St. George’s Golf and Country Club, 1668 Islington Avenue, Etobicoke, ON, Canada, +1 416 231 3393

Highland Links Golf Course

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Located on the coastline within Cape Breton Highlands National Park, this golf course has the most dramatically diverse topography of any golf course in the world, according to Robert Thompson. The landscape he describes includes mountains, the forest, and the beach. Highland Links is a challenging 18-hole course at Keltic Lodge Resort and Spa.