Sample Tours Scotland
Scotland Golf Trips
Sample Scotland Golf Trips
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10 tips for planning the best Scotland golf trip
It’s tempting to travel cross-country trying to play all the best golf courses in Scotland, but this isn’t for everyone. You might also miss something spectacular trying to cram as many courses in as you can. Work with Halcyon to design an itinerary that’s right for you.
In the unfortunate event you have to cancel your Scotland golf trip last minute or your airline loses your clubs, having cancellation insurance ensures you get a full refund.
The best Scotland golf trips always include at least one round in the rain. The weather here can be erratic, make sure you’re prepared!
Walking 18 or 36 every day can get tiring. Take a day to see some of Scotlands beautiful countryside, a historical castle or working whisky distillery.
It’s the smaller clubs that sometimes best capture the essence of Scottish golf. And don’t discount courses with lower green fees, there’s amazing courses for under £100 in Scotland.
Local knowledge goes a long way on old school links courses, especially in the summer. Taking a caddy is a sure way of getting more enjoyment from your round and hearing a story or two.
App’s like “Revolut” are great for splitting bills and getting favourable exchange rates when spending abroad. You’ll only need cash (GBP£) for caddies. Avoid using airport currency exchanges.
Riding carts isn’t allowed at some courses in Scotland. Besides, you’ll get a much better experience of the golf course from walking it.
The drink driving threshold in Scotland is lower than the USA. If you’re driving yourself then don’t risk drink driving, especially the morning after a heavy session.
Some traditional clubs have specific dress codes. Smart shoes in the clubhouse, blazer & tie, long socks with shorts etc. Halcyon will make you aware of dress codes before your Scotland golf trip.
Scotland golf course map
For your convenience we’ve created an interactive google map and pinpointed all of our favourite Scottish golf courses, hotels, experiences and the airports (Scotland in blue). As you can see, some of the most famous Scottish golf courses are spread very far apart. There are however some clear regional clusters of courses. St Andrews, East Lothian, Ayrshire & The Highlands. Picking one or two of these clusters make for a more leisurely Scotland golf trip with less travelling and hotel changes. However if you’re feeling more adventurous, we’d be happy to help you plan every step of the way to ticking off all the courses on your bucket list.
Planning your Scotland golf trip: itinerary inspiration
Most famous for The Old Course, but spending a few days in the “Auld Grey Toon” adds so much to a Scotland golf trip. For a golfer the atmosphere is just magic, with pieces of golfing history hidden in almost every building and street you walk. Just 15 minutes away is Kingsbarns which always comes out a favourite and Open course Carnoustie is just 45 mins north of St Andrews. Recent additions to the area include Dumbarnie and the radical design of St Andrews Castle. St Andrews New and Jubilee are fantastic courses played on the same plot of land as The Old Course and are conveniently located within walking distance if most St Andrews hotels. Lundin Links, Leven, Elie and Crail are classic examples of traditional Scottish golf clubs and offer great value green fees. St Andrews has a vast selection of hotels, but with it being the most popular golf destination in Scotland, make sure to plan and book well in advance.
This convenient local cluster of golf courses lie just 40 minutes from Scotland’s capital Edinburgh. The best Scotland golf trips must include a full day at Muirfield. It’s open to visitors on Tuesdays and Thursdays (but make sure to book early), regularly ranks in the top 10 courses in the world and lies right in the epicentre of the golf courses on the East Lothian coastline. Next door lies the modern links designs of Archerfield and Scottish Open venue Renaissance Club which is one of the few courses in Scotland with highly restricted access to visitors. Drive east and find the historic West links of North Berwick, one of the most fun golf courses in the world to play. Travel west and find another spiritual home of the game- Gullane. Gullane golf club has 3 courses itself (1, 2 & 3) and is bordered by the charming Luffness New. Farther west lies the charming little links of Kilspindie, a wonderfully short 5500 yarder played right on the sea. Only a 20minute drive separates all the golf courses mentioned above. Special mention to Dunbar, extend your drive by 20 minutes East to find this charming links course, a modest but truly authentic Scottish members club.
Over on the West coast, Ayrshire hosts a cluster of 3 Open Championship courses, perfect for attacking a bucket list. They are Royal Troon, Trump Turnberry and Prestwick. Old Tom Morris laid out a beautifully quirky course at Prestwick which held the very first Open Championship in 1860. The Ailsa course at Trump Turnberry is one of the great links courses of the world and boasts an iconic luxury hotel. Western Gailes is a links course that often goes under a tourists radar, its the ultimate hidden gem. Dundonald is a newer addition to the area and a very enjoyable round; it also has purpose built on site lodges that are perfect for guys golf trips to Scotland. For the more adventurous, a ferry boat trip from Ardrossan takes you to The Isle of Arran or Campbelltown. On Arran you’ll find Shiskine, an untouched beauty of a 12 holer, filled to the brim with dramatic blind shots and sea views. Further afield is Campbelltown, where a short drive away lies Machrihanish and Machrihanish Dunes. Another legendary Old Tom Morris course, Machrihanish is pulled straight from your imagination of a Scottish Golf Course of the late 19th Century.
Playing golf in The Highlands is a truly quintessential Scottish golf experience. To access its northerly location drive the A82 Via Glencoe valley for some of the most breathtaking views in Scotland. Or, drive via the east coast and make a stop at either Royal Aberdeen, Cruden Bay or Trump International (or all 3). Royal Dornoch is the crown of The Highlands, it might be the best course in Europe to never host a major, a must play if this is a once in a lifetime Scotland golf trip. Also up north is the wild links of Tain, Golspie and Brora where Highland cattle still roam the fairways, talk about traditional greenkeeping! Closer to Inverness, the capital of the highlands, is the magnificent Castle Stuart, a masterful modern design with plentiful sea views. Close by is the rugged links of Nairn, which hosted the 2021 Amateur Championship. The best inland course in The Highlands is Boat of Garden, a wonderful James braid design set in the heart of the Cairngorms national park.
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