These days, everyone has something they’re daydreaming about to pass the time while stuck at home. For me, it’s golf.
I play locally here in New England, but there are so many beautiful, dramatic golf courses across the globe. When traveling, I love being able to combine exploring a new place with playing some of the most stunning links in the world.
So here it is: my list of courses I’m itching to play when we’re back to globetrotting again!
Old Head, Ireland
If the Emerald Isle is on your bucket list for golf destinations, be sure to check out Old Head Golf Links, the Pebble Beach of Ireland. Built on 260 acres of land, this par 72 golf course juts out two miles into the Atlantic Ocean. So be sure not to hit it OB, as there’s a 300 foot drop to sea level to contend with. At the turn, grab yourself a Guinness or two, you may need it. Then wind down in your suite overlooking the gorgeous grounds. No better way to spend a day in Ireland!
Punta Espada, Dominican Republic
I actually played Punta Espada on a trip to the Dominican Republic in 2018 and it was an absolutely unforgettable experience. Located in Punta Cana, this magnificent Jack Nickalaus-designed course is challenging, especially if the wind picks up. Play the back tees, ask for Danny to be your caddy, tell them Dr. Diablo sent you, and make sure you carry the water on multiple drives.
Coeur D’Alene, United States
Located in the northern part of Idaho in the United States, and along the Coeur d’Alene Lake, this course will provide a truly unique experience. The immaculate design by Scott Miller, is a par 71 with many distinctive hole layouts, but none is greater than Hole 14. Resembling the 17th at TPC Sawgrass, this hole is truly an island green. You’ll board a small ferry called, “The Putter” to get from the tee box to the green. Once the hole is completed, hop back on the ferry, retrieve your certificate for completing one of the most iconic holes in golf, and head on to the final stretch.
Ile Aux Cerfs Golf Club, Mauritius
Heading to Mauritius? Check out the Ile Aux Cerfs Golf Club at the incredible Shangri-La Le Touessrok Resort. Located on its own exclusive island, separated from the mainland resort by a glistening lagoon, this course has amazing views of the ocean, volcanic outcrops, mountains, and palm trees. One of the more picturesque courses around, for sure, and one I can’t wait to play.
Royal Cape, South Africa
We take a turn to the southern tip of the African continent to visit South Africa’s oldest and most prestigious course. Located just 15 minutes away from the center of Cape Town, Royal Cape Golf Club has exquisite views of Table Mountain Range one of the official 7 wonders of the world. This parklands style course was built on relatively flat terrain, allowing for players of all levels and ages the ability to walk the course. With its smooth running greens, pristine fairways and well placed bunkers and water hazards, Royal Cape provides an excellent playing experience that is open year-round. So no matter when travel bans are lifted, Royal Cape will be ready for us!
Royal Porthcawl, Wales
We can't have a wishlist of golf courses without including the United Kingdom. Royal Porthcawl is located in Wales and has been described by the late Tom Scott, a leading writer on the sport and former editor of Golf Illustrated, as one of the twelve finest courses in the world. Check out the webcam on the first hole for a live look at the course throughout the day. My favorite non-golf aspect of the course has to be the picturesque club house, with incredible views and accommodations, sleeping 12, right on the course. Perfect for an epic golf trip with friends!