Old Course, St Andrews

Watson v Sevy; Faldo v Norman; Daly v Rocca; and Tiger Woods at his absolute pomp, just standing at the first tee overlooking that famously vast opening fairway takes your breath away. As the starter signals for you to begin your journey, so many moments from golf history rush through the mind and, with six centuries of golfing history, there’s plenty to choose from.

Once you do hit that, thankfully wide, first fairway, you then have the course to sharpen the focus. Aside from the whistling winds from the North Sea, and even the rain that’s compulsory to have a truly authentic experience, there’s also the double-greens; the ball-hungry bunkers, including the infamous 300 sq ft of Hell on the 14th; and the 17th ‘road hole’, one of the toughest in golf. But at least, once you’re done, you get to pose on Swilcan Bridge Nicklaus-style as you begin the home strait on the 18th.

It’s fair to say, even if you finish with a scorecard to forget, the golfing memory of playing the Old Course at St Andrews is one that will last forever.

Where You Stay 

The Old Course Hotel

With a room overlooking the course, within three yards of the fairway of the 17th, you need never take your eyes off the ‘Old Lady’, but when you do, at least you have the full works of a luxury hotel, including fine dining, a spa and fitness centre and the legendary Jigger Inn. What’s more, the hotel has a total of eleven courses around it.


Where You Play 

Beyond the Old Course and the ten courses within St Andrews, there’s also:

Kingsbarns Golf Links

Just a few miles along the North Sea coastline, you’ll find this top 100 course, co-host of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship and designed by Kyle Phillips, it’s considered one of the greatest modern courses in the world.


Another bucket-list golf course, Carnoustie is renowned the world over, considered one of the sport’s greatest challenges, and home to The Open on eight occasions, from 1931 to 2018.


Recently voted the World’s Best New Golf Course, Dumbarnie lies less than ten miles from St Andrews set along 1.5 miles of the Firth of Forth’s north shore. A true links course with a classic feel, despite being a relative newcomer.

The Must Do 

When you’re at the home of golf, the sense of history is forever around you, but never quite as literally as at the R&A World Golf Museum, which tells the story of our sport, while also being home to golf artefacts up to 400 years old.

When To Visit

April to October is the ideal time to go, with weather outside of this time frame – even by Scottish standards – not the most hospitable to travelling golfers.

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