Troon, Scotland, United Kingdom
Royal Troon has hoisted eight Open Championships since its first in 1923 and is consistently rated in the top 50 courses in the world. With club history dating back to its founding in 1878, Troon is one of Scotland’s oldest clubs. For those lucky enough to gain a booking, green fees of around £200 will gain you access to both the famous championship Old Course and a round at the Alastair MacKenzie designed Portland course. Both are traditional Scottish links courses, with undulating tight fairways ambling through gorse and heather and pocked by menacing pot bunkers.
The Old Course opens with some fairly gentle holes along the beach to start with, building to a run of 4 consecutive holes which require blind tee shots or approaches and playing into the prevailing wind on the back nine.. The “Famous Postage Stamp” is its best known hole. The shortest hole in Championship golf at 112m, the green is tiny and guarded by five difficult bunkers. Drop a shot here and you’ll be in good company – Tiger took a six at this hole in his first Open. Be advised that as the course is private, visitors are allowed on specific times and days and that women are not allowed in the clubhouse. Jacket and tie is a must for gentlemen in the clubhouse of course. Be sure to book well in advance.
(Image from Flickr user BeardyRob)