The Top Ten Cornish Golf Courses
by Peter Godsiff (March 2012)
Cornwall, England’s favourite holiday county, offers some glorious golf as a counter-attraction to the beaches, surfing, rugged cliffs, quaint fishing villages, ancient monuments, hamlets, angling, theme parks and gardens. Classic championship links, lush parkland and cliff-top courses, multi-sports complexes with courses on site, par three challenges and driving ranges – Cornwall has them all. And visitors flock to the Duchy to enjoy the unique ambiance, welcoming pubs, hotels and restaurants, clotted cream and Cornish pasties where hotspots and off-course activities are available to suit all the family. The moderate climate makes golfing in Cornwall a pleasant all-the-year round activity, enjoyed by so many.
Showing below are all 10 records in "The Top Ten Cornish Golf Courses"
The Carlyon Bay Hotel, Sea Road, St Austell
The course adjacent to Carlyon Bay hotel offers stunning views across St Austell Bay. The first nine holes of the spectacular 6,500 yard course stretch along the cliff top, then the course turns inland through beautiful countryside scenery with many natural hazards. The view down the first hole is amazing and the downhill par-five tenth tempts a big drive.
China Fleet, situated in Saltash within view of the Tamar Bridge, was designed by Martin Hawtree and opened in 1991. Set in 180 acres, the multi-sports facility with a 6551-yard, par 72 course features severe slopes and elevation changes. The interesting back nine includes the longest hole on the course, a 539-yard double dog-leg 13th followed by the nerve-testing 14th and 16th across water.
Lostwithiel Road, Bodmin
Lanhydrock is situated in a sheltered wooded valley in tranquil countryside and provides a complete golfing experience, with accommodation on site. The 6,110 yard par 70 parkland course with generous tees and green, offers easy walking with many natural water features. The par three 175-yard sixth is the feature hole, but the slightly uphill 495-yard 18th with water in play and a wicked sloping green can ruin a round.
Mullion on the Lizard Peninsula is the most southerly course on mainland Britain where golf has been played since 1895. The cliff-top course with breath-taking views boasts eleven holes on the top and the remainder close to the sea. Invariably windy with many elevation changes. Some quirky holes include a par four is played down the cliff and the next that finishes by an abandoned chapel by the beach.
Tower Road, Newquay
A 6,000-yard Harry Colt layout on top of the cliffs overlooking the Atlantic at Cornwall's most popular seaside resort. Constructed in 1890, the exposed course is relatively easy without wind, but brutal when it blows. A links sitting above Fistral Beach with views of the sea on every hole is built on a compact area, but offers a well-draining sandy surface with quick greens.
The Clubhouse, Budnic Hill, Perranporth
A rugged, classic James Braid design links with spectacular views over Perranporth beach. A profusion of blind shots can make life difficult for first-timers. Beautiful fairways, superb, big, slick greens, deep bunkers and often wind to add to the difficulty. A major challenge with a succession of fine holes over the 6,286-yards, par 72, with driveable par fours through narrow dunes, sand hills and different elevations.
Constantine Bay, Padstow
Trevose is a majestic links designed by Harry Colt in 1925. The championship course holds major regional and county and South West tournaments and the Brabazon Trophy was held in 2008. Two additional courses, one a testing par-three and a nine-hole full length lay-out, complement the main course. Watching the sunset over the bay from the bar and restaurant's panoramic windows is one of the greatest views in golf.
The James Braid championship links overlooking the Camel Estuary has hosted numerous British and English championships since 1907. When the wind blows even the best fail to match the tough par of 69 for the 6,243-yard course. The super-fast greens test the most accomplished putter. Sir John Betjeman is buried in the tiny church alongside the tenth hole. There is also a second 18-hole Holywell course.
St Mellion, Saltash
Jack Nicklaus built his first British course at St Mellion in 1988 and it remains one of the premier golf hotel resorts in the country. The second course, the Kernow, was redeveloped on the 450-acre complex for £2 million in 2010. The Nicklaus remains a jewel in West Country golf and the closing hole with water next to the green remains one of the most dramatic.
Church Lane, Lelant, St Ives
West Cornwall dates from 1889 as the oldest in Cornwall overlooking the Atlantic and St Ives Bay. The present site was developed in 1921. A true seaside course with fine turf and numerous natural qualities only 5,884 yards, par 69, wind and storms provide a severe challenge. High above the sea, it wends gently round a church and along a railway line along the shoreline.
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