The Greatest Moments in Pebble Beach History!

This week is the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.  A tournament we all look forward to, as this week all the golfing celebrities come out and mingle with the pros and the crowd.  A fun time is had by all in the midst of a 72 hole stroke play event that has been won by every great golfer that has ever set foot on a golf course.  Here are some great golfing moments presented by Swing by Swing
Pebble Beach Golf Links has seen its fair share of great golf over the years. From unbelievable performances to incredible hole-outs, to of course the celebrity pro-am, there’s been no shortage of excitement on the Monterey Peninsula. Here is a look at 10 of the best moments in Pebble Beach history. Tiger Woods – 2000 U.S. Open
Tiger Woods at the 2000 U.S. Open put on one of the greatest golfing displays of all time. Shattering multiple records en route to lapping the field by 15 shots, he went on to claim his second major title. In fact, he was the only player under par the entire week. Jack Nicklaus – 1972 U.S. Open
Jack Nicklaus hit one of the most famous shots of all time on the 71st hole of the 1972 U.S. Open. His one-iron hit the flag stick nearly dropping for an ace on the famed par-3 17th. He had to settle for a tap-in but it gave the Golden Bear the spark he needed to go on and win his third U.S. Open title. Tom Watson – 1982 U.S. Open
Who can forget Tom Watson’s chip-in on the 17th hole during the 1982 U.S. Open? After leaving himself with an impossible shot in the deep rough, Watson managed to knock it in for the unlikeliest of twos. He went on to win his only U.S. Open title. iger Woods – 2000 AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
Tiger Woods was seven shots off the lead with seven holes to play during the 2000 AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, when lightning struck on the par-4 15th hole. Tiger jarred his approach from 97-yards for eagle fueling a comeback win for the ages. Johnny Miller – 1994 AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am
Johnny Miller’s win at the 1994 AT&T was remarkable considering he took a break from his broadcasting post on the 18th tower to compete in an event he won 7 years prior. “I play young at Pebble,” the 46-year-old said and did he ever.
To see the rest of the Top 10 Greatest Moments in Pebble Beach History, go here! Source: Swing by Swing Pictures: Getty Images    John Mabanglo    Phil Sheldon/Popperfoto    Andy Lyons    Gary Newkirk   Ted Durian Collection, courtesy Pebble Beach Company

10 Par 3 Courses worth Playing!

Here are 10 Par 3 courses worth playing!  They are fun and not as time-consuming as a regular course, particularly if you don’t have a lot of time on your hands.  You can get in 18 holes in about 2.5 hours on most Par 3 courses.  I teach at Tupelo Bay Golf Center and their par 3 is another gem in this category.  Come and visit sometime!
Golf courses don’t necessarily need to be long to be difficult. While some par-3 courses pride themselves on toughness, all of them offer a chance for people to have fun. Whether they are scaled-down versions of famous par-3s around the world, or a totally original design, some of these tracks are the real deal. Here are 10 awesome par-3 courses around the U.S. Par-3 Course – Augusta National Golf Club


The “Par-3 Course” at Augusta National doesn’t need a fancy name. Every year the pros gather here for another traditional unlike any other on the Wednesday before the competition. It’s beautiful and pristene just like its much longer counterpart. In fact, Paul Azinger once called it “the best golf course in the world.”   Check it out. Threetops – TreeTops Sylvan Resort


Threetops, located in Gaylord, Michigan, is one of the best known par-3 courses in the world because of it’s dramatic elevation changes and beautiful mountain views. In fact, the 7th hole plays three (!) clubs less due to elevation. Back in the day, it was the home to the ESPN Par 3 Shootout.  See it here. Palm Beach Par 3 Golf Course


The Palm Beach Par 3 Golf Course gorgeous little gem located right between the ocean and the Intracostal Waterway on some of the most expensive real estate on the southeast coast of Florida. It was redesigned by Raymond Floyd and is always in great shape. Check it out. Challenge Course – Monarch Dunes 


This “links-style” 12-hole course located at Monarch Dunes in Nipomo, California is designed Damian Pascuzzo and Steve Pate. Multiple tees provide an opportunity to play a different course each time you go out. Some of the unique links features include dunes and fescue that line the holes. See it here. Cloud Nine Short Course – Angel Park Golf Club 


Located at the Angel Park Golf Club in Las Vegas, the Cloud Nine Short Course is a tidy little 12-hole track inspired by some of the most iconic par-3s in the world, including TPC Sawgrass’ 17th island green. The best part is 9 of the 12 holes are lighted so you can play well into the evening. Don’t worry, whatever you shoot in Vegas, stays in Vegas. Check it out.
To see the rest of the Top 10 Par 3 Courses, go here! Source: Swing by Swing Pictures:

Who has played any of these top 10 longest golf courses in the world?

The longest golf course I have personally played was just north of Myrtle Beach, at Eagles Nest Golf Club in Little River, SC.  At 7900 from the back tees, it is a monster even for local hero Dustin Johnson.  A close second is the Grande Dunes Resort Course, in Myrtle Beach, at 7617 from the tips.  But these pale in comparison to the top 10 longest golf courses in the world presented by Swing by Swing. Comment below if you have had the privilege of playing any of these monsters! 10. The Prairie Club, Dunes Course – Valentine, Nebraska dunes_gallery_dunes_aerial_15               Length: 8,058 yards The par-72 Dunes Course at The Prairie Club designed by Tom Lehman and Chris Brands is laid out along the Sand Hills of Nebraska. With elevated tees, undulating fairways, and rolling landscape of prairies grasses, it makes for a most picturesque setting. It’s also the shortest course of this list. Strap in. 9. The Shoals Golf Club, Fighting Joe Course – Shoals, Alabama ts-fj172x             Length: 8,092 yards The first of two Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail courses to the make the list is the Fighting Joe at The Shoals. This par-72 super-long links-style course looks out over the Tennessee River and Lake Jackson, and makes for some pretty spectacular scenery. It offers generous fairways and holes that follow natural topography along the river making a pleasurable experience the whole way through 8. Promontory Club, Painted Valley – Park City, Utah 65339           Length: 8,098 yards The Jack Nicklaus-designed par 72 is arguably one of the toughest in the state of Utah. Located smack dab in the middle of 3 major ski resorts, this lengthy course offers spectacular views while demanding your full attention. The front nine plays down and up a valley and starts with an eye-popping 718-yard par five, the longest hole on the course. The back is laid out more along meadows and features plenty more long holes, including the par-5 12th which clock in at 673 yards. To see the rest of this prestigious list, go here! Source: Swing by Swing Pictures :  

10 Golf Courses that have attained architectural absoluteness!

There are literally hundreds of immaculate golf courses throughout the world that would make your heart race when you stood on the first tee.  But  of Golf Digest has come up with the creme de la creme of golf courses that have attained architectural absoluteness!  I have had the esteemed privilege to have played four of these top 10, but I can always hope that there is a round on one of the others sometime in my future!  My heart will once again beat in anticipation of an exquisite round!

Given golfers and their propensity to disagree on the merits of even the most revered masterpieces, proclaiming design perfection can be dangerous. However, these ten golf courses in their current form come as close to achieving architectural absoluteness thanks to a melding of strategic complexity, walk-in-the-park beauty, experiential purity and an overall sense of design permanence.

Pine Valley, George Crump & H.S. Colt (1918) 7,057 yards, Par 70


Cypress Point Club, Alister Mackenzie and Robert Hunter (1928) 6,524 yards, Par 72


Oakmont CC, Henry & William Fownes (1903) 7,255 yards, Par 71


Shinnecock Hills GC, William Flynn (1931) 7,041 yards, Par 70

                      To see the other 6 golf courses on this prestigious list, go here! Source:    Golf Digest Pictures: Getty Images   Golf Digest  

The 10 Toughest Holes played on the PGA Tour!

When Swing by Swing put out this list of the Top 10 Toughest Holes played on the PGA Tour, I immediately went through them to see how many I had played and how I did when I played them. I have played half of these 10 and the scariest for me was the  8th at Pebble Beach.  My drive landed about 3 feet short of the cliff, (see pictures below) and standing over that shot was one of the only shots I hit that day where I did not let my weight move forward onto my front foot.  I hit that sucker off my back foot and pulled it slightly left of the green.  I did manage to get it up and down from there to save par!  I am planning to revisit that hole in February 2017!  Thanks to Swing by Swing for this fun article! 8-part-28-part-3
                        At some point or another, we’ve all been standing on some tee, peering out at the green, and thinking to ourselves “I have no chance.” There’s also a strong possibility you’re not a professional golfer. PGA Tour players have a knack blocking out the trouble on any given hole, but there are a few holes out there that make even the best in the world cringe with fear. Here is our list of the top 10 most terrifying holes on the PGA Tour. #10 – 17th at TPC Sawgrass
This 137-yard par-3 tee shot is one of the most visually daunting shots on Tour today. It gets it’s fame from The Players Championship. The green on this par-3 is completely surrounded by water and suspended by railroad ties. A lone pot-bunker protects the surface of the front of the green, but wind and shot trajectory are what you really need to worry about. A high shot is preferred so it doesn’t bounce and roll off when it lands, but higher winds can push you completely off target as well.  
#9 – 18th at Trump National Doral
This hole is as beautiful as it is scary. Water lines the entire left side of the hole and comes to a crescent moon shape in two places. This 473 yard par-4 has been giving pros trouble since it’s inception. You need to keep your tee shot to the right of the fairway to avoid the water, then also keep your approach to the right to avoid rolling off into the drink. “It’s an impossible hole,” said Bubba Watson when he played there in 2012. The 18th is pictured above with the five palm trees jutting out and the four bunkers leading up the right side of the hole to the green and gallery.  
#8 – 12 at Augusta National
They call this hole the “Golden Bell” and it is the meat of Amen Corner. Rae’s Creek guards the green as the bank slopes steeply downward, carrying short shots to a watery demise. The small green leaves no room for error when aiming for the pin. While the azaleas to the back of the green may look stunning, hitting long into those will cause equally enough trouble as you have to hit back towards the creek with no barrier in between.  
#7 – 18th at Quail Hollow
This whole, aptly nicknamed, “The Green Mile,” ranked as the fifth hardest hole on Tour back during the 2013-14 season, with an average score of 4.452. The fairway is shrouded by a long, jagged creek on one side and dense trees on the other. The truly scary shot on this hole is the uphill second shot. Smart players must avoid the water to the left while also taking note of the bunkers to right. This hole always makes the Wells Fargo Championship very interesting on Sundays.   #6 – #4 on the South Course at Torrey Pines
This long, 488-yard par-4 is a staple of the Farmer’s Insurance Open each year. The two-tiered green is perched on the very edge of the course, with cliffs hanging over the back edge. Wind is usually a factor as it gusts in off the open coast, causing the tee shot to be a cause for much anxiety. The views, however, are phenomenal. Not to mention numerous gliders flying by trying to catch a bird’s eye view of the action.
To see the rest of the Top 10 Toughest Holes on the PGA Tour, go here! Source : Swing by Swing Pictures : Getty Images

The 17 Golf Courses owned by the President-Elect!

Before Donald Trump decided the make a run for the Presidency of the United States, he was a successful businessman, and because of his love for golf, decided to make golf courses part of his enormous portfolio.   of Golf Monthly UK has listed all 16 current courses owned by the President-Elect, plus one that is about to open in Dubai designed by Tiger Woods and called Trump World Golf Club.  He will certainly become the first President that can play golf on his own courses whenever he wants!


Trump Turnberry image:×420.png Golf Courses Donald Trump Owns Home to the famous Ailsa Course, Turnberry has hosted four Open Championships and received a stunning makeover this year – See all of Turnberry’s course changes. Trump International Golf Links – Aberdeen, Scotland image:×473.jpg Golf Courses Donald Trump Owns Trump’s Aberdeen property really is of high quality – as a new entry, it went straight into  Golf Monthly’s 2015/16 Top 100 courses UK&I at number 14. Trump International Golf Links – Doonbeg, Ireland image:×420.jpg Golf Courses Donald Trump Owns The International Golf Links in Doonbeg ranks 32nd in our top 100 rankings and features one of golf’s best opening holes. Designed by Greg Norman, he described it as the best piece of golfing property he had ever seen.


Trump National – Los Angeles, California image:×421.jpg Golf Courses Donald Trump Owns The Pete Dye designed course opened in 2005 and is open to the public. It’s one of the most expensive courses ever built at $250m and is ranked as one of the best courses in California. Trump National – Jupiter, Florida Trump’s Jupiter course was designed by Jack Nicklaus and is famous for its water hazards and an island green. Trump Doral – Miami, Florida
image:×420.jpg Golf Courses Donald Trump Owns

The closing par-4 18th during the WGC-Cadillac Championship

Home to four courses, Doral has hosted the WGC-Cadillac Championship on the Blue Monster since 2007 (which will now be moving to Mexico) and was the venue for the Doral Open on the PGA Tour from 1962-2006. To see the rest of Donald Trump’s golf course empire, go here! Source :  of Golf Monthly UK

These top golf course communities are simply amazing!

Looking through this list of the top golf course communities made me realize one thing – I will never live there! To be a member or to own property at these communities requires serious bucks!   But we can dream, and these pictures don’t do these properties justice.  I have been fortunate to play several of the courses, and it is truly an amazing experience!  The featured picture is of the Martis Camp course in Truckee CA which is not only beautiful but a really tough challenge!   Thanks must go to Travelling Joe Passov of Golf Digest for this mouth-watering article!
The good life is about more than spectacular courses. You also want luxury, amenities, natural beauty — and your own private jeweler wouldn’t hurt. Living well starts with good choices. Here are ours for the 25 Best Golf Communities in North America.

The Bear’s Club in Jupiter, Fla.

Photo: Jim Mandeville / Nicklaus Designs
NUMBER OF RESIDENCES: 88 HOME PRICES: $5,000,000–$20,000,000 FAMOUS NEIGHBORS: Jack Nicklaus, Rory McIlroy, Michael Jordan Located a mile from the Atlantic Ocean, this enclave offers all the culinary, cultural and aesthetic advantages of coastal Florida, combined with the privacy that lets celebrities be themselves. GOLF: The 7,164-yard Nicklaus signature design zigzags through lush vegetation, lakes and wetlands. A par-3 course and a Jack Nicklaus Performance Solutions Academy round out the roster. AMENITIES: A 40,000-square-foot, Tuscan-themed clubhouse stylishly appointed by Barbara Nicklaus.

Bighorn in Palm Desert, Calif.

Photo: John and Jeannine Henebry
NUMBER OF RESIDENCES: 500 HOME PRICES: $1,295,000–$24,500,000 FAMOUS NEIGHBORS: Michelle Wie, Jim Colbert, Kurt Russell, Goldie Hawn Bighorn provides a handsome haven for those who demand an unparalleled desert lifestyle, just minutes from the upscale shopping and dining of El Paseo in suburban Palm Springs. GOLF: Arthur Hills’s Mountains hosted the Skins Game from 1992 to 1995; Tom Fazio’s Canyons welcomed the LPGA Tour’s Samsung World Championship. Both are rollicking rides through the desert. AMENITIES: Three private jets are at your beck and call, along with a Medjet Assist program and a private jeweler.

Casa de Campo in La Romana, Dominican Republic

Photo: Courtesy of Casa de Campo
NUMBER OF RESIDENCES: 2,000+ HOME PRICES: $300,000–$45,000,000 FAMOUS NEIGHBORS: Pete Dye, Alonzo Mourning, George Hamilton The crown jewel of the Caribbean is located on 7,000 gorgeous coastal acres. Its holdings include condos, townhomes and massive villas. GOLF: Casa de Campo rolls out 81 Pete Dye-designed holes, most notably Teeth of the Dog, which boasts seven holes practically sunk into the Caribbean Sea. Dye Fore features holes draped eight stories above the Chavón River. AMENITIES: Unique attractions include Altos de Chavón, a reconstructed 16th-century village complete with cobblestone streets, shops, restaurants and courtyards.

Desert Mountain in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Photo: Jim Mandeville / Nicklaus Designs
NUMBER OF RESIDENCES: 1,707 HOME PRICES: $600,000–$9,000,000 Perched in the high desert, where it’s five to ten degrees cooler than nearby Phoenix, this massive development is comprised of 35 neighborhoods scattered across 8,000 acres. GOLF: Among the six Jack Nicklaus-designed desert courses are Cochise, home to the Champions Tour’s Charles Schwab Cup, and the versatile Renegade, where each hole has two flags. AMENITIES: Five superb clubhouses, a fitness center with personal trainers, and 15 miles of private hiking trails in the mountains.

The Cliffs Communities in Travelers Rest, S.C.

Photo: Steven McBride
NUMBER OF RESIDENCES: 2,800 HOME PRICES: $500,000–$4,000,000 Membership in one Cliffs community means playing privileges at all seven mountain and lake properties under the Cliffs umbrella, in a region that stretches all the way from Asheville, N.C. to Greenville, S.C. GOLF: Seven diverse, surprisingly undulating courses were designed by Jack Nicklaus and Tom Fazio (two each), Gary Player, Tom Jackson and Ben Wright. AMENITIES: Boating and fishing on 26-mile-long Lake Keowee is a highlight for the three Cliffs communities situated nearby.
To see the other 20 great golf course communities in the USA, go here! Source :   Joe Passov   Golf Digest

Here are some great courses at affordable prices!

The best thing about articles highlighting great courses is the pictures.  Just looking at them makes your mouth drool at the thought of putting a tee in the ground on the first hole, getting ready to play an enjoyable round.  Sometimes these golf courses are outside our budget, so Travelling Joe Passov of  has given you the Top 10 most affordable of the Top 100 courses you can play.  Take a late fall trip or start planning for a spring buddies trip so you have something to look forward to over the dreary winter!
Our latest ranking of America’s Top 100 Courses You Can Play has something for everybody. We’re well aware, however, that while every course is accessible, not all are affordable. To shine the spotlight on the top value courses, here are our picks for the 10 best bargains among the Top 100, based on where they rank overall and the price they charge for the market they’re in. 10. TPC Deere Run [No. 96], Silvis, Ill.; $79-$119,
A little pricier, perhaps, than some on this list, it justifies its value status by being a fairly-priced layout that dishes out TPC-quality service, amenities and conditioning, together with a distinctive layout that was lavishly praised by 2003 John Deere winner Vijay Singh. No doubt past champions Jordan Spieth, Steve Stricker and Zach Johnson feel the same. Twilight play starts at $69.
Photo: Courtesy of TPC Deere Run
9. Paa-Ko Ridge Golf Club [No. 34], Sandia Park, N.M.; $62-$117, Situated between 6,500 and 7,000 breathtaking feet on the eastern side of the Sandia Mountains, 25 minutes from Albuquerque, Paa-ko dishes out a series of option-laden desert jewels that tumble through junipers, cedars and pines, forming a surprisingly green backdrop to many holes. In prime time of April to October, rates will save you some green — $92 weekdays, $62 after 2 pm.
Photo: Robert Beck
8. The Golf Courses of Lawsonia (Links) [No. 87], Green Lake, Wis.; $35-$95, It seems as if Wisconsin is vying for national supremacy as the state with the greatest public golf, but while many of the state’s top tracks are expense-account only, along comes sleepy old-timer Lawsonia Links, which blends prairie-style aesthetics with a Golden Age design that harkens back to Donald Ross and Seth Raynor, all at a Golden Age price. Find a nice day after October 3 and it’s $35 to walk.
Photo: Paul Hundley
7. The Virtues Golf Club [No. 70], Nashport, Ohio; $59-$99, Situated 45 minutes east of Columbus, the course formerly known as Longaberger is a 1999 Arthur Hills design that mixes open and wooded holes, all flawlessly groomed. The downhill plunge at the par-5 5th and the long par-4 8th that’s backdropped by a lake are two of the Midwest’s best. For $129 during the week, you can play all day long.
Photo: Courtesy of The Virtues Golf Club
6. The Quarry at Giants Ridge [No. 54], Biwabik, Minn; $62-$89, Some question whether the Quarry is even the best value on property, given the popularity of its younger sibling, the Legend, but slight edge to the elder statesman, a Jeff Brauer creation hewn from the remnants of a rock and sand quarry in an old iron ore mine. Highlights include giant boulders, massive sand waste areas and a price tag that’s been chopped to bits by a sharp pickaxe. Through late spring (May 26 in 2016), 36 holes would set you back $100. Giants-Ridge_Courtesy
To see the other 5 of the Top 10 bargains in the top 100 courses you can play by, go here! Source : Joe Passov Pictures : TPC Deere Run   Robert Beck   Paul Hundley   The Virtues Golf Club  The Quarry at Giants Ridge

Courses you have not heard of, but are fun to play in Scotland or Ireland!

A trip “over the pond” to the fantastic courses of Scotland or Ireland is an absolute must if you really love golf.  The experiences create a lifetime of memories for you.  I have been fortunate enough to play both country’s golf courses on several hosted trips.  If you ever want to join me on a fabulous golfing vacation just visit my golf trips page here.  In the not too distant future, I would like to put a trip together that includes these intriguing golf courses listed here by  Graham Hesketh of GolfWrx to really whet your appetite!  I’m sure we’ll have a blast!
Everyone wants to play golf in Scotland and Ireland. Fact. Maybe this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, or perhaps an annual pilgrimage. The bucket lists will be overflowing with your old courses, whether that’s at Portmarnock or St. Andrews! The Open Championship courses will roll off your tongue, including Portrush, back on the rota, and rightly so. There will even be the must-plays that very few can play, unless well connected, financially sound, or both. I can understand why the usual suspects are always on the golf itinerary. And, by writing this, I don’t want to question their appeal, or their quality. But my argument lies in that in this day and age of travel and tourism, it is all about going off the beaten track, exploring, living a little, and not conforming. Some may argue my selections aren’t off the beaten track enough, but they’re there to debate! It is with a great deal of smugness that I present to you 10 golf courses (11 if you include two at Moray) I have experienced — five in each country — where you can be assured of as Scottish and Irish golf experience as you richly deserve.
Carne Golf Links
Carne Golf Links was the last links course designed by architect Eddie Hackett.
Protruding deep into the Atlantic on the west of Ireland is Carne Golf Links. The village of Belmullet lies almost exactly 3,000 miles from New York City, and Carne idly inhabits an area that is low on population, but highly populated with dunes. Sand dunes of the highest order! Now offering 27 holes, you will think you are driving to New York, but just before tipping off the edge of Europe, the dunes come into view. They are something to behold.
There is the possibility that Castlegregory will be expanded one day, but for now it remains a 9-hole gem.
Traveling farther down the West Coast and driving beyond the practice greens of Ballybunion, Lahinch and Tralee is Castlegregory on the Dingle Peninsula. Surely I am not recommending a 9-holer? I will grant you access to one of the usual suspects in the morning, but following a couple pints of Guinness while watching the boats bob up and down off the Inch Peninsula, it seems appealing to play nine more, doesn’t it? Castlegregory gifts dramatic views across to Tralee, the steep-sided Mount Brandon as a backdrop and a challenge that simply not enough people know about. But, that’s its charm. The Wild Atlantic Way, the world’s longest defined coastal route, should send you in the direction of the Ring of Kerry. A beautiful stretch of road and home to Waterville and Dooks, but perhaps controversially we will head cross-country to County Wicklow on the Irish Sea.
European Club
The European Club is one of the longest links at 7,377-yards from the tips.
Pat Ruddy designed The European Club. In fact, he is still designing the European Club. Heading out with his spray can, he will mark where bunkers need to be tweaked and changed before heading in again to talk to his golfers about Tiger’s course-record 67, how Padraig Harrington has his three majors thanks to the European and how Rory thinks it’s the best links he’s ever played. Oh yes, I forgot, you get 20 holes for your money and the world’s longest green.
Druids Glen
Druids Glen hosted the Irish Open from 1996 to 1999.
Not too far away and inland is Druids Glen. Sometimes referred to by the over-used phrase of the “Augusta of Europe,” they may be right. This is as close as I have come to what I imagine Augusta to be like. Spectacularly manicured, fascinatingly interesting, wonderfully unexpected and a lot of fun. Monty has won twice at Druids, while Sergio won his first tour event here. It goes to show it’s not just about how pretty the golf course looks; it’s tricky, too. At the end of the 19th century, golf was steadily becoming more popular with the elite of the day. The Island Golf Club north of Dublin was originally a spur of land opposite Malahide. One fine day, a Syndicate of gents jumped in a boat and acquired the slice of land for their golf course. You could still get a boat to the course until 1973, with the clubhouse putting up colored disks to draw the attention of the boatman. Once on dry land, the dunes loom. It’s hard to tell just how big they are when you’re in Malahide, but after 18 holes and a couple pints of Guinness, trust me, they’re massive. Hidden gems is a phrase too often used. Because a lot of the time, how you feel about a course is dependent on how you play and what type of courses you prefer to play. My challenge in Scotland is to demonstrate that no matter how low or high your handicap, or how close to it you play, you will still walk away appreciating what has just happened. This must be the reason we play? Personally, if I play poorly then I appreciate the view. If I play well I appreciate the scorecard, not forgetting the view. In Scotland, we will start by sauntering down the Edinburgh coast.
To see the rest of these underrated Scottish and Irish golf courses to play on your next trip over the pond, go here! Source : Graham Hesketh  GolfWrx Pictures : Carne Golf Links  Castlegregory  The European Club  Druids Glen

And now for something completely different! Golf Courses that surprise!

I have always loved Scottish and Irish golf.  Why? Because it is completely different from anything I have experienced before.  The look, feel, and ambiance make you feel like you truly are on vacation.  Far way from “normality.”  Tim Gavrich of brings us 4 golf courses in the USA that will give you that unique feeling.  Not the “same old, same old.”  Pack your bags and head off for a different kind of golf vacation!
It’s human nature to travel somewhere, experience a place, and come away with certain generalizations in mind. Oftentimes, those generalizations have at least a good amount of truth underpinning them. But in the end, generalizations are there to be broken. So it is with golf courses. The world’s major golf destinations tend to have certain stereotypes that their respective golf courses tend to adhere to. But sometimes, the most exciting courses are the ones that break the mold. And when you encounter these courses, they can turn your latest golf vacation from merely enjoyable to utterly memorable. Florida (Streamsong Resort) The golf stereotype: Modern, flat courses, lots of water hazards and ever-present out-of-bounds stakes with houses and condos everywhere Stereotype-breaking courses: It’s well-documented by now, but the most un-Florida spot for golf in Florida is Streamsong, with its Red and Blue (and Black coming next year) layouts. No housing as far as the eye can see (just the distinctive clubhouse and hotel), and wide hole corridors that bob and weave between massive sand dunes left by parent company Mosaic’s past mining activities. Another un-Florida Florida golf spot is Lake Jovita, about 45 minutes northeast of Tampa. It is home to a hole – the par-5 11th on the South Course – that drops 90 feet from tee to green, more than any other hole in the Sunshine State. There are houses on the property, but they do not crowd play on Lake Jovita’s two lovely courses (stay tuned for more on this lesser-known spot in the coming weeks). Water comes into play a little bit, but it’s not everywhere. Along similar lines as Lake Jovita is Mission Inn, whose two courses traverse the hills northwest of Orlando. Mission Inn’s first course was built almost a century ago, and provides a nice classic look for golfers who note that the vast majority of Florida’s public and resort golf is on the newer side. Washington (Gamble Sands) The golf stereotype: Tight, soft courses whose holes are walled in by massive trees. Stereotype-breaking courses: Chambers Bay, the first course in Washington State to host the U.S. Open, is the ultimate stereotype-buster, especially relative to claustrophobic, tree-lined Sahalee, the former most famous course in the state before Chambers, by Robert Trent Jones II and Jay Blasi, came along. About 4 1/2 hours south and east for Chambers Bay is another course that most golfers would never guess is in Washington: Wine Valley, in Walla Walla. This Dan Hixson design resembles something one would expect to see in the Great Plains, rather than the Pacific Northwest, but this part of the state is much drier and more open than the Seattle area. Another un-Washington layout is David McLay Kidd’s Gamble Sands, in the town of Brewster, overlooking the Columbia River. Kidd designed Bandon Dunes’ original course, and Gamble Sands is very much in that mode: wide open, firm and fast and a whole lot of fun.
To see the other two courses that completely break the mold, go here! Source : GolfVacationInsider Pictures : Streamsong Resort   Gamble Sands  Talking Stick Resort