On a windy Wednesday morning in 1860, eight sportsmen stepped out onto the greens at Prestwick in what was the start of professional golf as we know it today. Did you know though that not only was Prestwick the host of the first Open Championship, but it was also the location of the first known hole-in-one by ‘Young’ Tom Morris in 1868?
Start your golfing adventure by discovering the current Open Championship courses at Trump Turnberry, host to the 2015 RICOH Women's British Open, and Royal Troon, located within a few miles of each other. The Open Championship returned to Ayrshire & Arran in 2009, cementing its reputation for stunning, world-class golf courses and its importance in golfing heritage, and will be back again in 2016 at Royal Troon.
While the remaining courses in Ayrshire & Arran may not share the same international limelight as the ‘Big Three’, they are an absolute joy for those who seek them out. Whether you’re looking for links, heathland, parkland or moorland, there are courses to suit every ability and budget, including hidden gems like the two Gailes courses, Glasgow and Western, the 27-hole Kilmarnock Barassie or Dundonald.
Experience some high quality island golf, such as Millport, a course founded in 1888 on the picturesque Isle of Cumbrae. Designed by James Braid, the architect of some of Scotland’s greatest courses, the panoramic views over the links of Ailsa Craig, the Isles of Bute and Arran and the Cowal peninsula are unparalleled. The nearby Isle of Arran boasts seven courses across the island, including the 12-hole Shiskine course, ranked among the top 100 courses in the UK.
Take a look at the Ayrshire & Arran golf guide and browse some golfing itineraries to find out more about the courses. For excellent value for money, get an Arran Golf Pass which is valid for a whole year for all seven of the island courses. Check out the Ayrshire Open Qualifier Card for access to three of the Open Championship qualifying venues or the South Ayrshire Golf Pass which permits six rounds on eight courses over seven consecutive days.
When booking your accommodation remember to look out for the Golfers Welcome
scheme. They accredit accommodation providers that offer dedicated golf facilities like secure club storage, weather updates and details of local golf suppliers.
Browse the list below for more golf courses in Ayrshire & Arran.