Highland golf courses: 6 of the best
With the British Open taking place at Muirfield this summer, interest in playing golf in Scotland is likely to be higher than ever.
When people think of the Scottish Highlands, they imagine spectacular scenery, fantastic fresh air and welcoming hospitality. You’ll get all these things and more when you come to the area to play golf.
Mark Twain reportedly said “golf is a good walk spoiled”, but he obviously never played in the Highlands. Even if your game is failing to hit the heights, you will enjoy every moment of your picturesque surroundings.
There are many 9 and 18 hole courses within easy reach of the hotel, but we’ve picked six of our favourites below so you know what to expect.
Ballater Golf Club - 6,052 Yards Par 70
Dating back to 1892, Ballater Golf Club boasts some great holes running alongside the majestic River Dee. You’ll need to bring your ‘A’ game with you from the get-go as the first six holes in particular are a stern test, even for low handicappers.
Once you’ve taken in the scenery around you, the frustration of hitting a few wayward shots will soon melt away.
Boat of Garten Golf and Tennis Club – 5.876 Yards Par 70
Also established in the late 19th Century, the Boat of Garten Golf Course has been described by many as the “Gleneagles of the North”. This relatively short 18 hole course was designed by James Braid and features four Par 3’s and two Par 5’s.
In 2012, the clubhouse was renovated and a new Pro Shop opened. The beautiful backdrop of the Cairngorm Mountains alone is worth paying the green fees for.
Braemar Golf Club – 4,935 Yards Par 65
This is by no means the longest golf course in the Aviemore area, but it is Scotland’s highest 18 hole course at 1,200 feet above sea level. The hole names at Braemar are great and include The Coohill (4th) and Tom a’Chait (7th).
Playing a round at Braemar Golf Club will give you a great story to tell your friends when you get back home from your holiday. The course is popular with locals and tourists and the 2013 green fees are £25 for a round.
Carrbridge Golf Club – 2,720 Yards Par 36
Set within the Cairngorms National Park, this is the only 9 hole course in our selection. There’s plenty of local wildlife to spot while you walk to take your next shot and the course is open all year round.
There’s no need to book a round, but it may be advisable during peak months. The course is great for beginners and experienced golfers alike and like all the other clubs on our list, the views are simply incredible.
Kingussie Golf Club – 5,501 Yards Par 67
Kingussie Golf Club started out life as a 9 hole course way back in 1891 but was later transformed into the full 18 holes. Your round will start with a long par 3 and there are also two par 3’s in the last four holes. The 15th is slightly unusual in that it only measures a mere 96 yards.
The club dress code is smart/casual and there are clubs available to hire if from the Pro Shop if you haven’t brought your own.
Newtonmore Golf Club – 5,201 yards Par 73
Newtonmore Golf Club has to be one of the most scenic in the world. Just south of Aviemore it’s set on the banks of the River Spey – amazing to look at but not so great when it punishes your wayward shots. The club was formed in 1893 and a steady stream of recent improvements has made it a must-visit for any golfer staying in the Aviemore area.
Green fees start at £21 per round and there are lessons and club hire available.
After all that golf, you’ll need a comfortable place to spend the night. Take a look at our guest accommodation.
Many of the courses mentioned above are included in the Aviemore and the Cairngorms Golf Pass which currently costs £15 and enables you to get 30% off green fees at seven courses in the area.