Australia boasts a rich tapestry of golf courses, promising an unforgettable adventure for every golfer. Golf courses in Australia stand as paragons of excellence, excelling in their architectural brilliance, breathtaking landscapes, impeccable maintenance, and unparalleled hospitality. Among their ranks, you’ll discover nine that have earned coveted positions in the world’s top 100.
Whether your heart yearns for cityscape greens or seaside fairways, tropical challenges, or temperate delights, Australia golf courses will put your golfing prowess to the test while simultaneously sweeping you off your feet with their awe-inspiring panoramas. Swing your club amidst the renowned Melbourne Sandbelt or tackle links courses that meander through the untamed, dramatic dunes of northeast Tasmania. Take your stance beside the sandstone sea cliffs of southern Sydney or on a tropical oasis nestled within the Great Barrier Reef. The best golf courses in Australia, offering exceptional golf, splendid weather, and a delectable array of culinary delights, should unquestionably grace the bucket list of any devoted golfer.
Top 15 Most Worth-Playing Golf Courses in Australia:
1. The Royal Melbourne Golf Club
The Royal Melbourne Golf Club stands as the most renowned golfing institution in Australia. This prestigious club encompasses two remarkable courses: The East and The West, which have garnered immense acclaim for their breathtaking landscapes and impeccable upkeep.
In the year 1926, Dr. Alister MacKenzie, a highly esteemed Scottish architect, sculpted The Royal Melbourne West Course from the sandy loam subsoil of the Melbourne Sandbelt. With a strategic vision that considered the average ages and handicaps of its members, MacKenzie masterfully crafted a course that promised enjoyment and challenge for golfers of all skill levels. Following the creation of the West Course, MacKenzie entrusted the task of completing the East Course to the skilled hands of Alex Russell, a former Australian Open champion.
2. Kingston Health Golf Club
Strategically situated within Melbourne’s famed Sandbelt region, Kingston Heath Golf Club boasts meticulously groomed fairways that have consistently garnered a prestigious reputation for their impeccable condition, enduring year after year. This 18-hole masterpiece presents a captivating challenge suitable for golfers of every caliber. It skillfully utilizes undulating terrain, dips, and hollows, complemented by strategically placed bunkers and unforgiving natural elements like tea trees and sandy scrapes.
Kingston Heath’s greens have served as the esteemed venues for numerous prominent national and international golfing events. This illustrious roster includes the Australian Open, Australian Masters, and the Women’s Australian Open, underscoring its standing as a coveted destination within the golfing world.
3. The National Golf Club
Perched majestically at Cape Schanck on the breathtaking Mornington Peninsula, a brief drive from Melbourne, The National Golf Club and its trio of Signature 18-hole courses are widely celebrated as some of the most coveted golf courses in Australia. This exceptional enclave comprises The Old Course, the Moonah Course, and the Gunnamatta Course, recently having undergone noteworthy architectural enhancements helmed by the esteemed American golf architect, Tom Doak. Collectively, these courses offer a tantalizing 54 holes of golfing nirvana, each boasting its own distinctive design elements and exhilarating challenges.
With the club’s convenient proximity to the nearby vineyards and pristine beaches of this picturesque locale, dedicating more than a single day becomes a necessity to fully savor the splendor of these extraordinary courses, alongside the myriad experiences awaiting discovery on the enchanting Mornington Peninsula.
4. The Victoria Golf Club
Nestled within Melbourne’s prestigious Sandbelt region, the Victoria Golf Club has long been a distinguished host to a multitude of esteemed golfing competitions, including the Australian Open and the Women’s Australian Open. Originally conceived by the collaborative efforts of Oscar Damman and Bill Meader, with the discerning guidance of Dr. Alister MacKenzie, this course has recently enlisted the expertise of the Australian design firm Ogilvy, Clayton, Cocking, and Mead to implement some architectural refinements.
This esteemed club proudly serves as the home base for the legendary Australian golfer, Peter Thomson, a five-time champion of the British Open. The course itself presents an invigorating challenge, thanks to its strategic bunkering, intricate green complexes, and the dynamic influence of ever-changing weather conditions, promising golfers a truly fulfilling experience.
Additionally, the Clubhouse offers 15 cozy rooms, providing a comfortable retreat for respite in between your rounds on the vibrant greens.
5. Metropolitan Golf Club
Earning widespread acclaim as one of the best Australia golf courses, the Metropolitan Golf Club stands adorned with an impressive array of 96 bunkers. In the year 1908, the visionary engineer J. B. MacKenzie undertook the transformation of the original sandy terrain into a lush, verdant expanse boasting magnificent plantations of native Australian trees and shrubs. Remarkably, it’s home to the oldest surviving specimen of the red flowering gum.
Today, the Metropolitan is renowned not only for its impeccable conditioning but also for the formidable challenges it presents to golfers. Among the championship courses gracing the Melbourne Sandbelt, it holds a reputation as one of the most demanding. Over the years, it has hosted numerous prestigious events, including the Australian Open, PGA championships, and the esteemed international match-play competition, The World Cup of Golf, in 2018.
6. Woodlands Golf Club
Established in 1919, Woodlands Golf Club has remained remarkably unaltered since its inception. This timeless course boasts pristine greens enveloped by native trees, including the majestic red gums. Woodlands Golf Club presents golfers with relatively narrow fairways artfully punctuated by superbly placed bunkers. Spanning over 150 acres (60 hectares) and stretching more than 6,000 meters (3.7 miles) from tee to green, the course features compact, unyielding greens that demand precision and control, putting any golfer’s shot-making prowess to the test.
Notably, Woodlands’ fourth hole is widely acknowledged as one of Australia’s finest short par fours. The tee placement assumes a pivotal role, as steep banks on either side serve as formidable sentinels guarding the green. This course offers a challenging, yet equitable, experience, catering to both high handicappers and seasoned golf professionals with equal measure.
7. Commonwealth Golf Club
Featured among Tom Doak’s esteemed selection of “31 courses I would take a good friend to see,” Commonwealth Golf Club, nestled within Melbourne’s revered Sandbelt, is celebrated for its array of formidable challenges. These challenges encompass lengthy driving holes and nuanced slopes that demand pinpoint accuracy from golfers. Gracing the fairways are majestic trees, forming some of the most splendid woodland stretches in Australian golf.
The final quartet of holes, spanning from the 15th to the 18th, ranks among the finest concluding stretches on any Australian course. Notably, the 16th hole, a mid-length par four artfully bending around a serene lake, holds a special distinction. It is renowned for its undulating green, provocatively guarded by a substantial, deep bunker, making it a signature feature of Commonwealth Golf Club.
8. Peninsular Kingswood Country Golf Club
Following an extensive four-year period of development, the rejuvenated Peninsula Kingswood now stands proudly amidst the prestigious landscape of the Melbourne Sandbelt. This transformation emerged from the merger of two distinguished establishments in 2013, namely Peninsula Golf Club and Kingswood Golf Club. Subsequently, the club divested the Kingswood site and directed substantial resources towards a comprehensive overhaul. This ambitious project encompassed the refurbishment of both existing courses, the construction of a state-of-the-art clubhouse, a pro shop, a pool, a gym, and the addition of onsite accommodation facilities.
The redevelopment efforts were spearheaded by Ogilvy, Clayton, Cocking, and Mead, resulting in nothing short of a spectacular transformation. The North and South course layouts now epitomize the essence of Sandbelt golf, boasting impeccably conditioned and artistically contoured greens, as well as creatively designed ‘flash’ bunkering and well-maintained short grass surrounds. Adding to their allure, the courses and newly introduced onsite amenities are harmoniously complemented by the natural, distinctive sandy heathland areas for which the Sandbelt region is renowned.
9. Yarra Yarra Golf Club
Crafted by golf course architect Alex Russell, with recent enhancements overseen by the renowned American architect Tom Doak, the Yarra Yarra Golf Club stands as a testament to its distinctive features – swift and undulating greens seamlessly interwoven with strategically concealed bunkers. This captivating, rolling course nestled alongside Melbourne’s scenic Yarra River has played host to an array of golfing legends, including the likes of Babe Didrikson, Greg Norman, and Karrie Webb. Notably, it served as the launching pad for the professional careers of both Robert Allenby and Stuart Appleby.
Within the realm of golf, Yarra Yarra’s quartet of par threes has earned distinguished acclaim, ranking among the finest on a global scale, as recognized in Tom Doak’s esteemed publication, “The Confidential Guide to Golf Courses.” Remarkably, the par three eleventh hole has garnered praise from Peter Thomson, who hails it as a “national treasure” within the golfing world.
10. Huntingdale Golf Club
Situated as the youngest gem within Melbourne’s esteemed Sandbelt golfing landscape, Huntingdale Golf Club boasts a rich legacy as the esteemed host of the Australian Masters, a distinction it has held an impressive 31 times. Throughout its storied history, the fairways of Huntingdale have welcomed a veritable who’s who of golfing royalty, with luminaries such as Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, and Greg Norman gracing its hallowed grounds.
Distinguished by being the sole representation of English golf architect C. H. Alison’s work in Australia, the course stands as a testament to meticulous craftsmanship. It is characterized by flawlessly manicured fairways, strategically placed bunkers, and greens that maintain their lightning-fast and true nature year-round. The design of the greens subtly encourages plays to the left, while the bunkers are artfully crafted to virtually ensure a bogey for any golfer erring in their shot selection.
11. Barnbougle Dunes Golf Links
Nestled along the rugged and untamed coastline of Northeast Tasmania, The Dunes Course at Barnbougle Golf Resort has garnered worldwide acclaim as one of the most remarkable links courses since its establishment in 2004. This extraordinary masterpiece, crafted by the collaboration of American golf architect Tom Doak and former Australian professional golfer Michael Clayton, represents a harmonious blend of nature’s grandeur and human ingenuity.
The seventh hole, affectionately known as “Tom’s Little Devil,” epitomizes the course’s unique character. It presents an exacting challenge, demanding a precise shot from an elevated tee onto a diminutive, undulating green – a feat made all the more daunting by the ever-present Tasmanian winds. Meanwhile, the fourth hole proudly boasts the title of the Southern Hemisphere’s most expansive bunker.
To complete your immersive experience, choose from the resort’s classic beachfront cottages and four-bedroom villas, each offering a haven of comfort. Additionally, savor delectable dining options at the clubhouse, where you’ll be treated to breathtaking vistas that perfectly complement the exceptional golfing adventure.
12. Barnbougle Lost Farm Golf Links
Barnbougle Lost Farm stands as one of Australia’s most visually stunning golfing destinations. Established in 2010 to complement its sister course, The Dunes, Lost Farm shares certain characteristics while distinctly carving out its own identity. Set upon the rugged, dramatic sand dunes along Tasmania’s coastline, golf architect Bill Coore fashioned a unique 20-hole course that defies convention. Here, greens are artfully dispersed among the undulating dunes and along the picturesque shoreline.
Teeing off from coastal heathland and navigating inland alongside the meandering Forester River, the fifth hole emerges as a particular standout, tantalizing golfers with the prospect of a birdie or even an eagle. Complementing this golfing paradise is the Lost Farm Lodge, offering elegant accommodations with views overlooking the golf course or the mesmerizing ocean. The resort’s restaurant takes pride in sourcing the finest Tasmanian produce and wines, ensuring that every meal becomes a truly memorable culinary experience.
13. New South Wales Golf Club
Upon stepping into the clubhouse of the New South Wales Golf Club, perched dramatically on the rugged cliffs of La Perouse, your senses are immediately captivated by the breathtaking panorama that unfolds. From this vantage point, a 360-degree vista unfolds, offering sweeping views of the surrounding Botany Bay and the iconic city skyline of Sydney.
The New South Wales Golf Club, meticulously designed by the visionary Dr. Alister MacKenzie, is a golfing masterpiece set against the backdrop of the Pacific Ocean, encompassing its fairways from all sides. It seamlessly weaves undulating fairways, picturesque landscapes, and a grand traditional clubhouse that exudes five-star comfort.
Notably, the fifth and sixth holes have earned global acclaim for their dynamic interplay. The latter, in particular, stands as a crowning jewel, where players navigate from a rocky outcrop, gazing out over the ocean – an endeavor that demands unwavering precision and supreme focus.
Recent enhancements, including a multi-million-dollar practice and training facility, reaffirm the New South Wales Golf Club’s position as a preeminent institution in the realm of Australia golf courses.
14. The Royal Adelaide Golf Club
Boasting a collection of exceptional holes and an unmistakable sense of adventure, the Royal Adelaide Golf Club, conceived by the visionary Dr. Alister MacKenzie, serves as a canvas for golfers to unleash their creativity and revel in an immensely gratifying golfing journey. This sprawling links course is intricately woven into the sandy craters and dunes of Seaton, nestled beside the beach, safeguarding its native flora and fauna. Remarkably, the historic Grange Railway still traverses the course, providing a charming backdrop to the golfing experience.
Over the years, the Royal Adelaide Golf Club has been the honored host of numerous Australian Open competitions. Among its standout features, the third hole stands as a par four of international renown, often lauded as one of the world’s finest.
15. Kooyonga Golf Club
Revered as a perennial fixture among the best golf courses in Australia, Kooyonga Golf Club has earned an enduring reputation for its impeccable condition and year-round playability. The course’s design offers a challenging yet equitable playing experience. The late Peter Thomson, following his triumphant victory at the 1972 Australian Open Championship held at Kooyonga, aptly captured the essence of the course from a player’s perspective, remarking, “It demands a strategic approach as much as a skilled touch.”
There are over 1,800 golf courses in Australia and it is estimated that 10% of Australian adults play golf. That is the reason why the country’s golfing scene is highly developed. The above list is just our suggestion. If you know other striking Australia golf courses, don’t hesitate to share with us by commenting on the box below.