Golf courses in Florida come in all shapes and sizes, but none are bigger, better or more famous than the iconic TPC Sawgrass. However, there’s more to golf in the Sunshine State than the course with the famous 17th hole—it really is a destination to add to the bucket list.
Aside from Sawgrass, the likes of PGA National, Doral Resort, Innisbrook Resort and Bay Hill add high quality venues to Florida’s armoury. Lesser known gems such as Seminole are must-play courses also.
Read on for our pick of the five best golf courses in Florida.
Sawgrass needs little introduction to golf fans. It is home to THE PLAYERS Championship in Ponte Vedra Beach, and is the course with the world-famous island green. The short par-3 is one of the sport’s most iconic holes and has caught out the very best golfers. The Stadium Course is complimented by the Dye’s Course at Sawgrass, with stay-and-play vacation packages available. Golf in Florida doesn’t come much better.
The headline act at Trump National Doral Golf Resort is The Blue Monster, not only the best Miami has to offer but also one of the best golf courses in Florida too. It was a PGA TOUR regular from 1962 to 2016 before the WGC event was switched to Mexico. That doesn’t lessen the test that The Blue Monster offers. There’s water on every hole, bunkers galore and plenty of length to protect par—it is a true test of any golfer. Doral has five courses and 90 holes of golf in total, including the Golden Palm, Red Tiger and Silver Fox courses.
The home course of Arnold Palmer, Bay Hill is steeped in history and a dream venue for golfers vacationing in Florida to play. Not only do you follow in the footsteps of the professionals and try to repeat their exploits in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, you also get to play courses crafted by the King himself close to Orlando. There are three nine-hole loops at Bay Hill, the Champion, Challenger and Charger—the former two used for the PGA TOUR event. Whichever you play you are in for a treat.
Stunning is one word to describe Seminole. Breathtaking another. So many other superlatives could equally apply to this gem situated on the Atlantic coast close to Juno Beach. The course may not have hosted PGA TOUR events like some of its better known cousins, but Seminole is a venue for the purists. It has been carved across sand dunes, rolls across undulating terrain and has some of the trickiest greens imaginable.
Five courses are available for play at the PGA National Golf Club—home to the PGA—in Palm Beach. The pick of them is The Champion, host track to the Honda Classic on the PGA TOUR as well as a past venue for the Ryder Cup and PGA Championship. The closing stretch between Holes 15 and 17 are among the toughest in golf and are known as the Bear Trap after Jack Nicklaus, who redesigned them. The Fazio, The Squire, The Palmer and The Estate are other 18-hole courses at PGA National.
If you enjoyed reading this feature on the five best golf courses in Florida, click here to discover what California has to offer lovers of the great game.
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