Making a pilgrimage to play golf in Scotland, where this venerable sport was born, is a rite of passage for plenty of people.
Of course it can also be a bit of a mammoth task to plan each aspect of your trip, which is why it pays to take time to do your research so that every detail is ideal.
To that end, we’ve put together some advice on how to have the best possible golfing experience in Scotland, covering everything from the courses to visit, the accommodation to reserve a room at, the food to enjoy and the other experiences to add to your itinerary.
If the thought of planning your golf getaway to Scotland is not one you relish, then you are better off having a private tour arranged to your exact requirements by a professional team that knows the ins and outs of all that’s involved.
Various operators offer tailored golf tours in Scotland so you can visit the home of golf without having to organize everything yourself, or settle for a more generic package deal.
An experienced provider of private tours will leverage local knowledge that can’t be found in any book or website, ensuring an authentic and unique experience tweaked just for you.
Whether it's navigating the charming towns, uncovering hidden gems along winding roads, or discovering ancient castles - there is something special about knowing that each element of the trip is based on your specifications. Plus, they also know where all the best courses are located, and how to make the most of them. So don't miss out on this incredible opportunity – if it’s within your budget, it’s well worth booking your own personalized trip today.
Golfers of all levels can experience some of the world’s best links courses in Scotland. From championship-level layouts to hidden gems, there is something for everyone.
Pairing up with a local caddy will help you make the most out of your trip by providing insight on how to tackle each hole and sharing insider tips about green complexes and other course nuances that only an experienced pro would know.
And of course, they have stories from their own golf experiences to share while playing around these historic courses - it's like getting two vacations in one.
In terms of the actual courses which should be on your wish list, in Scotland you’re spoilt for choice. From the storied Old Course at St Andrews to Carnoustie and Royal Troon, these are places and names that many will be familiar with already. And that's just scratching the surface!
There are plenty more incredible links courses across the country worth exploring, like Kingsbarns Golf Links near St Andrews, Machrihanish in Kintyre or Royal Dornoch up north.
For a truly unique experience, try out lesser-known gems such as Craigielaw Golf Club overlooking Gullane Bay, or North Berwick West Links with its stunning views of Bass Rock Island.
No matter which course you choose, be sure to make time to enjoy it to the fullest, rather than being in a rush to move on to your next stopping point.
A golf trip to Scotland is an adventure like no other, and that includes your overnight accommodation. Whether you want to stay close to a course or enjoy the stunning views of the coast, there are plenty of luxury resorts and hotels offering something for everyone.
Some of the most luxurious hotels in Scotland include The Gleneagles Hotel, with its world-class spa and championship golf courses, or Turnberry Resort which boasts stunning views of Ailsa Craig.
For an even more historically grounded stay, try out one of the country’s ancient structures that now serve as hotels and resorts, such as Skibo Castle near Dornoch Firth or Royal Marine Hotel in North Berwick – both offer breathtaking landscapes along with classic hospitality that will make you feel right at home.
Be aware that these high-end venues tend to be booked up well in advance of arrival dates, so if you’re trying to organize a spontaneous trip, you might struggle to get a room. This is once again where starting your planning as early as possible, or working with a tour company, comes into play.
Golfers can indulge in a variety of delicious Scottish cuisine while playing at some of the best courses in the UK. From hearty pub meals and traditional fish & chips to more refined dishes like smoked salmon or freshly caught seafood, there is something for everyone.
All of the hotels and resorts we’ve mentioned have exceptional restaurants, bars and cafes on-site, so you’ll be able to have a table ready and waiting for you after you’ve finished your round of golf if you wish.
And don't forget about the famous Scotch whisky – you'll be able to sample some of Scotland's best at pubs near each course before or after your round.
For an extra special experience head over to Edinburgh where fine dining restaurants, such as The Witchery by the Castle, offer gourmet menus showcasing fresh local ingredients with modern twists on classic recipes. So make sure you take advantage of this culinary journey - it will leave your taste buds begging for more.
A golf trip to Scotland isn't complete without experiencing the traditional culture of this vibrant and historic country. While most people know about tartans, bagpipes, whisky and kilts - there is so much more.
Take some time off from your rounds to witness one of the many Highland games held throughout the year, featuring incredible activities such as tossing the caber and hammer throwing.
Don’t forget that you can also take part in authentic ceilidh dances after each game - these are great fun for all ages and provide a chance for visitors to get up close with locals while learning their customs.
A well-rounded golf trip to Scotland will be one you remember and cherish forever. If this has convinced you to take one, begin planning now and you’ll thank us!
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