The Open Championship 2018 is to be held at Carnoustie, Scotland between 19th – 22nd July.
As is the way with all Open Championship’s, it will be held on one of the top links courses in Britain & Ireland. Carnoustie is famously regarded as the toughest course on the links rota.
The South West of England may not have a course on the Open rota, however, does have a wealth of links riches which are well worth a visit of steeped in golfing history.
We thought we would pass on some of our knowledge and passion for South West golf and bring you the Golf South West guide to the top 10 links golf courses across Devon, Cornwall and Somerset.
What makes a top links course?
The dry sand-based fairways and greens mean you get the best condition golf all year round. The greenkeepers can easily maintain the course through the winter months. Is there anything more satisfying than striking a sweet iron shot from links turf? It’ll be tough to convince me otherwise.
Now, the condition doesn’t just cover the mown areas, links courses typically have lots of bunkers all with riveted faces, these take time and effort to build and maintain. The top courses do this brilliantly.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a sucker for good greens and closely mown fairways, but when you’re stood on the tee you only see the ‘features’ of the golf hole. Which bring us on to the course designer…
James Braid, Harry Colt, Tom & Alistair Mackenzie…These were top course designers, each with a unique style and vision. Producing some of the finest links around today.
A top course has strategically placed bunkers, dips & tees. I find a lot of these courses will have 2 or 3 different tees on each hole, this means the greenkeepers can mix the course up or play with the difficulty depending on the occasion or weather.
Nothing better than playing golf with the ocean as the backdrop. If you’re a golfer that hasn’t experienced this, it’ll take your breath away when you do for the first time.
Staring out into the ocean can have a calming influence on your golf game and if doesn’t, at least you’ll have the view to enjoy.
Hosting Big Events
Be it Amateur or Professional, the top courses play host to a range of big events. From your average County Match/Championship to The Open Championship, the best will host the best.
Hosting these events helps raise the profile of the course as you’ll usually want to come back for more!
As the West Countries golf travel specialists, we have assembled a list of the top 10 links courses in the South West. Using the points above to determine the best.
Each course has deserved its place in the top 10 and we will explain why…