Best Golf Courses in California

With California’s perfect year-round weather, the state serves as the ideal destination to spend any season outdoors, near the water or even on the golf course. While California’s oceans might get all the hype, the West Coast hub is also abundant in lush, sea-side courses that are fit for amateurs and pros alike. These are the best golf courses to tee off at in California.

Torrey Pines Golf Course

San Diego

Golfers from around the world flock to Torrey Pines Golf Course for a taste of one of the West Coast’s most charming and peaceful athletic spots. The California golf course is situated atop San Diego’s towering bluffs, and comes complete with a competitive terrain set against the backdrop of the roaring Pacific Ocean. For more information, visit www.torreypinesgolfcourse.com.

Pelican Hill Golf Club

Newport Beach

Practice your best shot with panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean at every turn—that’s the reality at Pelican Hill Golf Club, an 18-hole golf course that’s settled within the heart of Newport Beach. For more information, visit www.pelicanhill.com/golf/.

Cypress Point Club

Monterey

Monterey is celebrated as one of California’s lushest and most abundantly green cities, perched alongside the coast in the northern portion of the state. And at Cypress Point Club, visitors can squeeze in a solid game of golf all while appreciating the area’s radiant beauty. For more information, visit www.montereypeninsulagolf.com/Cypress-Point-Club.

Pebble Beach Golf Links

Pebble Beach

Pebble Beach has played host to some of the finest golf tournaments and competitions in the country. And the golfing destination has garnered such an indisputable reputation, it was even named as the No. 1 public golf course in the country. For more information, visit www.pebblebeach.com/golf/pebble-beach-golf-links/.

Indian Wells Golf Resort

Palm Springs

There’s so much to already love about Palm Springs, and the area’s expansive golf offerings are arguably one of the best parts. Indian Wells Golf Resort is also located nearby to Palm Springs International Airport, so visitors can easily fly into town for a quick jaunt around the 36-hole golf course. Two holes to check out: No. 10 on The Celebrity, with the San Jacinto Mountains as a stunning backdrop, and the super-unique No. 17 on The Players. For more information, visit www.indianwellsgolfresort.com.

Poppy Hills Golf Course

Pebble Beach

Rather unsurprisingly, Poppy Hills Golf Course looks just as whimsical as it sounds—with a course that’s surrounded by towering Monterey Pines, lush wildlife and the championship charm of Pebble Beach. For more information, visit www.poppyhillsgolf.com.

The California Golf Club of San Francisco

San Francisco

Teeing off at The California Golf Club of San Francisco doesn’t come easily, but amateurs and professionals alike agree that it’s worth the exclusivity. The athletic club boasts a challenging course and is hailed as one of the most exclusive private membership courses in the entire United States. For more information, visit www.calclub.org.

The Links at Spanish Bay

Pebble Beach

Seemingly endless miles of rolling fairways are set against the backdrop of of sand dunes and pristine ocean views at The Links at Spanish Bay—a 17-mile drive that’s elevated by a competitive course and glimpses of the region’s lush Monterey Pines. For more information, visit www.pebblebeach.com/golf/the-links-at-spanish-bay/.

Rustic Canyon Golf Course

Moorpark

Rustic Canyon Golf Course might not have the same seaside views as some of its other California counterparts, but the secluded lot does offer a level of serenity rarely achieved anywhere on the West Coast these days. The 18-hole golf course features a variety of competitive terrains, all encompassed in sweeping views of the surrounding California Oaks. For more information, visit www.rusticcanyongolfcourse.com.

Dana Point

Who wouldn’t want an ocean view to cap off their golf outing? The natural beauty of the oceanfront Monarch Beach Golf Links at Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach Resort & Club rests along the bluffs of the California Riviera, with two consecutive holes (No. 3 and No. 4) running right along the Pacific. Golfers can also feast their eyes on undulating greens, beautiful flower beds and flash-faced white sand bunkers. For more information, visit www.monarchbeachgolf.com.

Credit: Stephanie Russo Photography

Carmel Valley Ranch Golf Course

Carmel

While at the family-friendly Carmel Valley Ranch, explore the property’s Carmel Valley Ranch Golf Course, which happens to be the only Pete Dye-designed, bentgrass golf course in Northern California. In June 2019, the Ranch introduced the refreshed golf clubhouse, with sweeping vistas, an expansive bar and a large outdoor patio with fire pits. (Non-resort guests may book tee times only after 1 p.m.) For more information, visit carmelvalleyranch.com.

westdrift Manhattan Beach

Manhattan Beach

Located in the heart of Los Angeles’s South Bay neighborhood, the 26-acre hotel offers its guests and locals a nine-hole, par-3 executive golf course at westdrift Golf. Perfect for any level of player, this California golf course is situated on over 24 rolling acres, and ocean breezes can be felt on at least six holes most afternoons. For more information, visit westdrift.com.

Edgewood Tahoe

Lake Tahoe

Edgewood Tahoe’s award-winning, 18-hole championship green is among the most majestic of California golf courses. Challenging yet fair, the public course offers a choice of four sets of tees, ranging in length from 5,343 yards to a demanding 7,529. The spectacular course was designed by George Fazio in 1968 and later reimagined by his nephew, golf architect Tom Fazio. For more information, visit edgewoodtahoe.com.

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