Fancy a few rounds at some of the best golf courses in England? For a small nation that’s no stranger to gloomy weather, England is bursting with world-class golf courses that have hosted prestigious tournaments and some of the sport’s best-known legends.
Head to the most famous golf courses in England, and you can attempt to take on the same obstacles as golfing greats ranging from Harry Vardon to Tiger woods.
Throughout the nation, you’ll find a diverse array of courses designed by revered golf architects and champions. We’re well known for having some of the world’s finest classic links courses, but you’ll also find a plethora of stunning parkland and heathland golf courses in the UK.
Whether you want to play a few rounds by the coast with ocean views or a little further inland surrounded by the British countryside, one of England’s best golf courses has the perfect conditions for you.
Best Golf Courses in England
From the Royal Birkdale Golf Club in Merseyside to the Royal Saint George’s Golf Club by the coast in Kent, here’s our selection of the greatest golf courses in England.
1. Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Merseyside
Considered one of the great links golf courses of England, the Royal Liverpool Golf Club has a long and illustrious history, dating all the way back to 1869. You can learn about the club’s past at the clubhouse, where you’ll see an impressive collection of heritage artefacts.
On top of a multitude of prestigious golf tournaments – including 13 Open Championships – the Royal Liverpool Golf Club has hosted some of the most memorable moments in golf history, including Tiger Woods’ victory at the 2006 Open Championship. The Open Championships will be held here this year and in 2024.
You’ll find the Royal Liverpool Golf Club in the picturesque seaside town of Hoylake, which is a fantastic place to visit on a day out from Liverpool.
2. Royal Birkdale Golf Club, Merseyside
The Royal Birkdale Golf Club is considered to be one of the most prestigious golf courses in England – not to mention one of the most challenging.
During its history, the club has hosted nine Open Championships plus tournaments including the Ryder Cup, Walker Cup and Women’s British Open. While making your way around the course, you’ll be faced with obstacles such as towering sand dunes, thick rough and deep pot bunkers.
Be prepared for the 6th hole – it’s famous for being one of the world’s most difficult par-4s. You’ll need pinpoint accuracy to nail the long and narrow fairway.
After a few rounds, you can sip drinks and order food at the luxurious clubhouse. From here, you can take in amazing views of the grounds, surrounding landscapes and the Irish Sea. Golfer or not, you might want to squeeze the Royal Birkdale Golf Club into one of your days out in Merseyside.
3. Saint George’s Hill Golf Club, Surrey
Founded in 1912 and designed by legendary golf course architect Harry Colt, Saint George’s Hill Golf Club in Weybridge is widely regarded as one of the finest golf courses in England. While perfecting your swing here, you’ll be following in the footsteps of renowned golfing pros like Bob Charles and Tommy Armour.
Saint George’s Hill Golf Club is known for its challenging layout. Expect obstacles such as narrow fairways, deep bunkers and undulating greens, plus several holes that require blind shots.
Located on the northeast tip of Surrey, Saint George’s Hill Golf Club is one of the most famous golf courses near London. It’s just 20 minutes from Heathrow Airport by car.
4. Sunningdale Golf Club, Berkshire
Another famous golf club in the UK is Sunningdale, where you’ll find two 18-hole championship courses – the Old Course and the New Course.
Sunningdale Golf Club has a long history of hosting top-tier golf tournaments, including the Women’s British Open, the Senior British Open Championship and the Walker Cup.
Both of Sunningdale’s courses are frequently ranked among the world’s top 100. The Old Course dates back to 1901, while the more rugged New Course opened in 1923.
On top of everything, Sunningdale’s golf courses are set on picturesque heathland with mature trees and shrubs, making them one of the prettiest outdoor places to visit in Berkshire.
5. Royal Saint George’s Golf Club, Kent
Fancy playing a few rounds at one of the most famous golf clubs in England with views of the English Channel? The Royal Saint George’s Golf Club has hosted the prestigious Open Championships a staggering 15 times.
Players love Royal Saint George’s Golf Club for its classic links course that features fast greens, deep bunkers and undulating fairways. It’s also surrounded by picturesque scenery, such as duneland, the Kent coastline and several holes that run along the beach.
You’ll probably need almost a full day to get round Royal Saint George’s Golf Club, but it’s one of the best ways to make the most of a day out in Kent.
6. Wentworth Club, Surrey
The Wentworth Club in Surrey is home to three 18-hole golf courses, including the world-renowned West Course that was designed by Harry Colt.
Over the years, this famous golf course in England has held a variety of tournaments, including the Curtis Cup and the World Match Play Championship. It has also hosted the BMW PGA Championship annually since 1984.
While the West Course is the most famous course at Wentworth Club, beginners might prefer the shorter and less challenging Edinburgh Course or the wide fairways of the East Course. You’ll find the clubhouse near the 18th hole of the West Course, which is an ideal place for post-round drinks and bites.
7. Woodhall Spa Golf Club, Lincolnshire
Home to a revered golf academy, two world-class courses, a country house hotel and a 19th-century clubhouse, the Woodhall Spa Golf Club is one of the most popular golf resorts in England.
Both golf courses were designed by Harry Vardon in the late 19th century. While the Bracken Course is a hit with the locals, the more challenging Hotchkin Course frequently ranks among the best 25 golf courses in the world. It’s also considered one of the finest heathland golf courses in England.
If you want to spend a night or two at the Woodhall Spa Golf Club, you can spend your days out in Lincolnshire at attractions such as the historic city of Lincoln and the Lincolnshire Wolds. You might also want to unwind with a session or two at a couple of Lincolnshire’s best spas.
8. Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club, Lancashire
Opened in 1886, the Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club is one of the oldest golf clubs in Lancashire. So far, it’s hosted 11 Open Championships. You can browse the club’s historical memorabilia at the beautiful clubhouse.
While making your way around this classic links course near the coast, you’ll be following in the footsteps of golfing greats such as Bobby Jones, Seve Ballesteros and Tiger Woods. Just like them, you’ll be faced with over 200 bunkers, undulating fairways and several signature holes. You might also need to adjust your shots to compensate for the wind coming in from the Irish Sea.
After a morning of golf, head into the town of Lytham St Annes for an amazing day out in Lancashire. The town has many charming cafés, restaurants and shops, plus a rich maritime heritage.
9. Walton Heath Golf Club, Surrey
The Walton Heath Golf Club has been a premier golf course in Surrey since 1903. Its two 18-hole courses are famous for having vast areas of rough covered in heather.
The golf club’s championship courses have hosted tournaments that including the 1981 Ryder Cup, the 2000 British Ladies Amateur, the 2011 Senior Open and the 2018 British Masters. Big names to have played here include golfing greats like Jack Nicklaus and James Braid as well as politicians that include Winston Churchill.
10. Hillside Golf Club, Merseyside
Frequently ranked among the top 100 golf courses in the world, the Hillside Golf Club in Southport is known for its deep bunkers, undulating fairways and tricky greens. Since opening in 1911, the Hillside Golf Club has hosted tournaments ranging from the Amateur Championship to the British Masters.
Southport is a fantastic town to spend the night on the coast. Wake up early to embark on a day out in Liverpool – it’s only 40 minutes away.
11. Ganton Golf Club, North Yorkshire
Fancy playing a few rounds at a pristine golf course in God’s Own Country? The Ganton Golf Club is one of the top inland golf courses in England, surrounded by the heathland and woodland of the North Yorkshire countryside.
The Ganton Golf Club has hosted tournaments including the Ryder Cup and the Walker Cup. It was initially designed by Tom Chilsholm with the assistance of Robert Bird, and legends such as Harry Colt, Harry Vardon and James Braid have made modifications over the years.
On top of being an amazing golf course, the Ganton Golf Club is just ten minutes from the southern edge of the North York Moors National Park, one of England’s best national parks that makes for a fantastic day out in North Yorkshire.
12. The Berkshire Golf Club
The Berkshire Golf Club was first established in 1928 and is home to two prestigious golf courses that were designed by Herbert Fowler.
While wildly entertaining, the heather-lined courses are known for being challenging, with strategically placed bunkers, water hazards and mature trees adding to the difficulty. Over the years, many pros have attempted to defeat this stunning course at tournaments such as the British Senior Amateur Championship and the English Amateur Championship.
Where are your favourite golf courses in England?
When the weather allows, there’s nothing more satisfying than perfecting your swing at one of the world-renowned golf courses in England, which range from the Royal Saint George’s Golf Club down in Kent to places such as the Royal Birkdale Golf Club ‘up north’ in Merseyside.
As you can see from our run down of England’s most prestigious golf courses, many clubs are home to multiple courses and a variety of practice facilities, making them ideal for both novices and aspiring professionals alike.
Have we missed any of your favourite golf courses in England that our readers should know about? Let us know by leaving a comment below.
Quick list of the best golf courses in England
- Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Merseyside
- Royal Birkdale Golf Club, Merseyside
- Saint George’s Hill Golf Club, Surrey
- Sunningdale Golf Club, Berkshire
- Royal Saint George’s Golf Club, Kent
- Wentworth Club, Surrey
- Woodhall Spa Golf Club, Lincolnshire
- Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club, Lancashire
- Walton Heath Golf Club, Surrey
- Hillside Golf Club, Merseyside
- Ganton Golf Club, North Yorkshire
- The Berkshire Golf Club