Golfers in England will soon be back on the tee after lockdown number 3 and being a golf travel company, naturally the conversation at YGT shifted towards a debate over which is the best golf course in England.
There are more golf courses in England than in Ireland, Scotland and Wales put together and that everyone is entitled to their opinion about what constitutes ‘the best’. But we’ve decided that, rather than be so bold as to take it upon ourselves to rank ‘the best’ courses in England, we’d put forward some of the courses we think all golfers in England should aim to tick off their bucketlists.
Royal St George’s Golf Club
Royal St George’s – England’s #1 ranked course according to Top 100 Golf Courses – is the southernmost Open host and the last time the Claret Jug, visited this charming corner of Kent, Darren Clarke secured his maiden major victory in the roughest of conditions. The Major tournament returns here in July 2021 after the 2020 event was cancelled.
The first course to stage in the Open Championship in England, Royal St Georges is as natural a links as they come. There’s a natural look and feel to the course, which blends seamlessly into its surroundings. Wild flowers, sweeping banks of natural dune grasses and panoramic views over Pegwell Bay and the White Cliffs of Dover make a round here an intoxicating experience but don’t be fooled by the course’s rugged beauty because, in golfing terms, it’s a real beast.
The humps and hollows that crease the fairways can send a ball seemingly destined for the middle of the fairway into a troublesome spot, perhaps in one of the devilish pot bunkers or, slightly more mercifully, into the first cut of rough. An unrelenting exposure to the elements can make things tricky on a rough day and unique features such as the bunker on the fourth – known locally as “the coffin” – can bring a golfer to their knees.
However with an endless procession of world class holes, all of which are memorable in their own unique way, Royal St George’s offers a delightful experience that is a must for any discerning golfer looking to explore Old Blighty.
Next door to Royal St George’s lies Princes Golf Club which hosted the Open in 1932 and while this is certainly worth playing if you’re in this neck of the woods, you have to head to the other end of the country to find the other courses that are still on the Open Rota.