Golfing in the Gulf Coast: Our Favorite Greens

The Gulf Coast boasts pristine sugar-white sandy beaches, amazing beachfront vacation rentals, and fantastic cuisine. What could make this even better? A great variety of excellent golf courses.

The great weather and suitable typography have caused a plethora of top-notch golf courses to appear in this region, making the Gulf Coast one of the best golfing destinations in the USA. Both in Alabama and Florida, you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to golfing.

Trying to find a spot to tee off?

This blog will bring you a list of our favorite golf courses along the Gulf Coast, spanning Fort Morgan, Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, Perdido Key, and Pensacola.

Let’s delve into some pristine greens!

Man golfing.

Best golf courses in Fort Morgan

Kiva Dunes Golf Course

Formerly ranked among the top 100 public golf courses in the US, Kiva Dunes golf course sits directly on the coast, adjacent to pristine beaches, in one of the most untouched areas along the Gulf Coast. There aren’t many residential developments, and the undisturbed views of the natural scenery make this place truly special.

Regarding the layout itself, the course offers great enjoyment for golfers of any level; it’s varied and challenging, yet not overly difficult. The driving range provides ample space with many target pins for practice. Many of these pins are surrounded by bunkers to create on-course challenges. Adjacent to the range, there’s a small chipping green with multiple pins and a sand bunker for practicing bunker shots.

Near the starting tees, there’s a 50-yard practice putting green with various contours to prepare golfers for the diverse situations they might encounter during their game.

The resort boasts a private beach, pool access, and excellent amenities. Its secluded location means you might encounter some wildlife as you navigate the greens — just be cautious of alligators!

Best golf courses in Gulf Shores

Craft Farms Golf Resort

Situated just a short distance from stunning beaches, Craft Farms Golf Resort offers a blend of natural beauty and challenging play across its two 18-hole courses, Cypress Bend and Cotton Creek, both designed by the Arnold Palmer company.

Cotton Creek showcases vast undulating greens and winding natural water hazards that traverse the layout. While it challenges even the most experienced golfers, it remains accessible and enjoyable for those with average skills. On the other hand, Cypress Bend features well-positioned tee boxes, generous fairways, substantial bunkers, and pristine greens. Water plays a significant role in almost every hole, but only a few require forced carries.

Both courses are impeccably maintained, leaving you eager for a return visit!

Golf ball near tee.

Best golf courses in Orange Beach

Peninsula Golf and Racquet Club

Near the Bon Secour Wildlife Preserve and benefiting from its scenic backdrop, Peninsula Golf and Racquet Club offers 27 holes of championship golf in a picturesque setting. Designed by Earl Stone and celebrated as one of his finest creations, the course boasts a 4.5-star rating from Golf Digest and is suitable for players of all skill levels.

Beyond soaking in the beautiful landscape, you might also catch glimpses of local wildlife, including alligators and eagles, which enhance any golfing experience. This golf course is a local hidden gem, and it’s not just about the course here. The exceptionally friendly staff ensures you’ll feel right at home, and the Clubhouse offers more entertainment along with their restaurant.

Best golf courses in Perdido Key

Lost Key Golf Club

In Perdido Key, Florida, this Arnold Palmer-designed course boasts immaculate greens and was the first in Florida to be certified as an Audubon International Silver Signature Sanctuary, an environmental recognition program specifically tailored for golf courses.

With a fantastic layout and impeccable condition, this beautiful beachside course offers a unique golfing experience. It presents a challenge even for the most skilled players, featuring expansive, undulating greens and flat fairways bordered by trees.

While it’s true that you might lose a few balls because of native flora, the stunning surroundings make it a minor inconvenience you won’t mind!

Perdido Bay Golf Club

Known for its picturesque yet challenging layout and stunning scenery, this course stands out as a favorite among golf enthusiasts who select Florida as their destination for a swing.

Perdido Bay Golf Club has been the championship venue for the Pensacola Open for over a decade. Layers of rough flank the fairways, and the greens feature significant undulations.

Furthermore, both the greens and tees boast elevated positions. Besides the course itself, the club provides excellent practice amenities, including a spacious driving range, putting green, chipping area, and strategically placed bunkers around the greens and fairways.

In summary, this is a top-tier golf course that is consistently maintained in pristine condition, offering both a challenging layout and exceptional service.

Golf cart with family in background.

Best golf courses in Pensacola

Tiger Point Golf Club

On the serene banks of the Santa Rosa Sound and showcasing stunning coastal vistas, Tiger Point Golf Club warmly welcomes both visitors and members.

Drawing inspiration from traditional Scottish links golf designs, the course is a delightful blend of fun and challenge. It seamlessly incorporates water features, with a par of 72 that intricately weaves the classic Scottish links style with water elements across 14 holes.

The club further enhances the golfing experience with amenities such as a driving range, two putting greens, a chipping area, and a specialized practice bunker. Tiger Point stands as an exceptional venue to refine your golfing skills. 

The club also provides private and group lessons, making it a prime choice for beginners or those looking to explore golf for the first time.

A. C. Read Golf Course

Within the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, A. C. Read Golf Course is open to the public. With its evergreen old live oaks and many water holes, this outstanding course is one of the most beautiful golf courses in the Florida panhandle.

The tree-lined fairways enhance the course’s beauty and the training jets flying overhead are an extra experience, reminding you that you are in Pensacola after all. 

Marcus Pointe Golf Club

Spanning 600 acres of undulating greens, Marcus Pointe Golf Club stands out in the predominantly flat landscape of the Panhandle.

Designed by Earl Stone, this layout showcases his signature style of crafting playable courses. While water hazards are minimal, golfers will encounter challenges such as many sand bunkers, dense tree lines, and intricate angles and elevations.

Yet, the course offers a balanced experience suitable for players of all levels.

The greens are meticulously maintained; the views are stunning, and the service is excellent. Overall, it’s a relaxed and fun experience at a reasonable price.

Extra tips to enhance your golfing experience on the Gulf Coast

Because of the climate, topography, and amazing coastal environment, the Gulf Coast of the US offers a one-of-a-kind experience. To make it even better, consider the following factors:

  • The weather is mostly great on the Gulf Coast, but it can also be hot and humid, especially during the summer months. Always check the weather forecasts, dress appropriately, and don’t forget the sunscreen. 
  • The Gulf Coast also experiences frequent rain showers, especially during certain seasons. So, besides checking the weather forecast before heading out, it’s a good idea to consider the drainage quality of the golf course you’re visiting.
  • Pay attention to tee times and ensure you book them in advance, especially during peak seasons, to secure your preferred slot.
  • Wherever you play, it’s always a great idea to read about any local rules specific to the Gulf Coast courses you’ll be playing. Besides this, always adhere to golf etiquette, such as repairing ball marks, raking bunkers, and maintaining the pace of play.
  • The Gulf Coast is rich in wildlife, and this usually enhances the golfing experience. Still, nature can be dangerous, so be aware of local wildlife species, such as alligators in water hazards or birds on the course. Also, respect their habitats and observe them but from a safe distance.
  • The Gulf Coast often hosts golfing events and tournaments. So, if you’re an enthusiast, it’s always a good idea to check the calendar for exciting happenings in the area.

With these tips in mind, it’s all about enjoying breathtaking views, with the natural beauty surrounding you seamlessly blending into the courses.

The Gulf Coast region also offers many activities beyond golf, including beautiful beaches, water sports, nature trails, and cultural attractions. So leave some room in your schedule for some additional exploring.

Wondering where to stay during your golf trip?

Booking your stay at one of our Luxury Coastal Vacations‘ short-term rentals is an experience that will definitely add to your golfing.

We offer the finest selection of luxury vacation homes on the Gulf Coast, close to all the greens mentioned above, spanning Fort Morgan, Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, Perdido Key, and Pensacola.

When you opt for one of our homes or condos, you’ll enjoy a 5-star experience that will leave a lasting impression for years to come. Explore our range of rentals on our website and discover the allure of the beautiful Gulf Coast!

Experience the Luxury Coastal Vacation Experience

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