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6 Top-Ranked Golf Courses in the UK

By    |   Tuesday, 24 Oct 2017 10:51 AM

What better place to play a round of golf than in the U.K., the home of the sport.

According to History UK, the game was first played in Scotland, close to Edinburgh, and was so popular, it had to be banned in the 15th century for distracting men from their military duties.

By 1502 royals started playing as the sport grew steadily until the first competition was held in 1744.

A trip to the U.K. is a perfect opportunity to experience golf as it was first played.

Here are six top-ranked golf courses you should definitely visit:

1. St. Andrews Old Course, FifeAccording to Country Life, St. Andrews has been the home of golf for 600 years.

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History UK confirms the first-ever 18-hole course was constructed there in 1764, although it’s officially recognized as the “historic home” of the sport with references to the game dating back to 1552.

St. Andrews is also home to the Royal and Ancient Golf Club, which developed and continues to preside over the rules of golf.

The Culture Trip describes the experience of playing on the course as a "spiritual" one, especially for avid golfers.

2. Sunningdale Old Course, BerkshireGolf magazine calls Sunningdale Old Course the best parkland course in England.

Designed by Willie Park and opened in 1901, The Culture Trip explains that the course makes full use of the natural beauty surrounding it. The five par, 492-yard first hole is full of bumps which are actually burial sites dating back to the Iron Age.

Country Life adds that golfers playing at Sunningdale Old Course will be greeted by enthusiastic and knowledgeable caddies and friendly staff.

3. Muirfield Golf Course, East Lothian, Scotland — In an article about his favorite golf courses for The Telegraph, former PGA golfer Darren Clarke said Muirfield is popular among professional golfers for its mix of challenges.

Clarke says the course includes a couple of blind spots and points where you can play the ball on the ground, but whatever you do, don’t get stuck in the bunkers.

If a challenging game isn’t enough, the course is also beautiful. According to The Culture Trip, Muirfield is surrounded by old stone walls and rolling green hills.

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4. Royal County Down, Co Down, Northern Ireland— Situated in the middle of a nature reserve, Darren Clarke calls this one "a beautiful course in a beautiful setting."

Country Life points out that Royal County Down is where many pro golfers visit to practice their link skills before the British Open.

According to The Culture Trip, this championship course can be punishing at times, but players are rewarded with different views of the mountain and shoreline at each hole.

5. Royal St. George's, KentAccording to Golf magazine, Royal St. George’s celebrates its 140th birthday this year.

The course is a firm favorite among professionals, particularly Darren Clarke who won the British Open there in 2011.

Country Life adds that it’s best known for its huge bunkers, which were even mentioned by 007 author Ian Flemming in "Goldfinger."

Clarke says it’s a “tough course," especially towards the closing holes.

6. Royal Portrush, Dunluce Links Co Antrim— Quoting George O’Grady, chief executive of the European Tour, Country Life says Royal Portrush has it all: It’s a challenging course with some of the world’s best views and Irish hospitality.

According to The Culture Trip, the 14th hole is particularly challenging. It’s here that golfers will need to play uphill, across a ravine. For the fifth hole, you play from an elevated tee, hitting towards the ocean.

Despite its challenges, this course is esteemed for its simplicity.

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What better place to play a round of golf than in the U.K., the home of the sport.
top ranked, golf, courses, uk
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2017-51-24
Tuesday, 24 Oct 2017 10:51 AM
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