Which Country Has the Most Golf Courses in the World?

Last updated on April 3, 2023 in Best of Golf 0 comment.
golf courses in the world

Golf is a sport that is gaining popularity worldwide, with more people taking an interest in the game since the emergence of COVID-19 than in the years prior. As the sport continues to expand in popularity, one may wonder about the number of golf courses worldwide. In this article, let’s discover the distribution of golf courses around the world and which country has the most golf courses.

How Many Golf Courses in the World?

According to the R&A’s “Golf Around The World” report published in 2021, there are 38,081 golf courses across 206 countries and dependent territories. However, the majority of golf courses, 80%, are located in the top 10 golfing nations, including the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Canada, France, Sweden, Germany, Australia, South Korea, and China.

A golf course in the USA

Which Country Has the Most Courses?

Most golf courses worldwide are located in the western hemisphere, with the United States leading the global count with over 16,000 courses. Despite this, the U.S. has a low course density of just 0.004 courses per square mile, indicating that courses are spread out throughout the country.

On the other hand, the UK is the most golf-centric nation in the top 10, boasting a course density of 0.033 per square mile. England has 2,213 courses spread across 50,346 square miles, equating to one course every 22.8 square miles.

An interesting exception in the global ranking is Japan, which has the second-highest number of golf courses globally and is the only non-English-speaking country in the top 5.

Below is the list of 20 countries that have the most golf courses in the world:

Rank Country Number of golf courses
1 USA 16,156
2 Japan 3,140
3 Uk 3,101
4 Canada 2,564
5 Australia 1,584
6 Germany 1,054
7 France 811
8 The Republic of Korea 810
9 Sweden 650
10 China 617
11 Spain 493
12 South Africa 477
13 New Zealand 416
14 Ireland 365
15 Netherlands 350
16 Argentina 348
17 Denmark 347
18 Thailand 317
19 Italy 312
20 India 298

Which Country is the Most Golf-Centric?

The density of golf courses in a country relative to its total land area is a significant measure, and in this regard, the United Kingdom emerges as the clear winner.

UK golf course

England boasts a golf course every 22.8 square miles, Wales has one every 43.5 square miles, Northern Ireland has one every 48.3 square miles, and Scotland has one every 50.6 square miles. Surprisingly, the United States, despite its vast landmass, has a much lower density with one golf course located every 235 square miles, similar to Australia’s landmass, which has a course every 1,875 square miles.

Among the most golf-centric countries is Japan, owing to its relatively small landmass, with a course density of one every 46.5 square miles, which is second only to England in terms of density.

How Many Golf Players Worldwide?

According to the latest stats by the R&A and the Sports Marketing Survey in 2021, there are 66.6 million golf players worldwide, witnessing an increase of 5.5 million players in 5 years (from 2016 to 2021). In Asia, the number of golf players also rose by 11,4% in this duration, from 20.9 million in 2016 to 23.3 million in 2021, creating a significant development for this sport in the region.

How Many Golf Courses in Vietnam?

Currently, there are about 80 18-hole golf courses in Vietnam open to the public. This number is expected to increase by 200 courses in 2025.

Ba Na Hills Golf Club

The first golf course to be constructed in Vietnam is the Dalat Palace Golf Club, built in 1920 and exists through many historical changes in the country. The largest golf course at the moment is the Royal Golf Club in Tam Diep district, Ninh Binh province. It spreads over an area of 670 hectares and includes 3 18-hole layouts.

Other beautiful Vietnam golf courses can be named the BRG King’s Island Golf Club, Chi Linh Star Golf & Country Club, Sky Lake Golf Resort, Montgomerie Links Vietnam, Hoiana Shores, Ba Na Hills Golf Club, Vietnam Golf & Country Club, etc.

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By the end of 2023/2024 and in the years to follow, more and more golf courses worldwide will be built to serve the growing golf population. It is not only good for the sport itself but also adds to the tourism development of a country. As golf traveling is becoming more popular, countries with numerous and breathtaking golf courses in the world will gain a great advantage.

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Linh Chi

I am an avid traveler who loves to play golf and have experience in tourism golf in Vietnam and Asia countries. I'm here to provide you with useful information and help to plan a perfect golf holiday in Southeast Asia.

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