Golf Courses & Resorts

Taking A Summer Golf Road Trip? Check Out These Courses (North-South Edition)

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Does the approaching summer make you think of the ol’ family road trip?

It sure does for me.

My family would make regular trips from our home in Connecticut down to the Myrtle Beach area in South Carolina.

We sat in bumper-to-bumper traffic on Interstate 95 in every state in between, and I’ve strained my eyes looking out the window for interesting sights as a way to pass the time.

I’ve even bugged my parents to pull over so I could collect a scorecard from a golf course or two along the way.

Which brings me to today’s tip….

If you’re heading out on a golf road trip this summer — with family, friends, or on your own — here are some courses to be aware of along the way.

They’re all 10 miles or less from an exit on some of America’s busiest North-South interstates:

I-95

Runs from: Houlton, Maine to Miami, Florida

(Meadow Brook Golf Club)

(Meadow Brook Golf Club)

Notable courses (north to south):

Maine
Town: Old Orchard Beach
Course: Dunegrass Golf Club
Miles from I-95: 5
Note: Dan Maples design with march views throughout

Rhode Island
Town: Richmond
Course: Meadow Brook Golf Course
Miles from I-95: 2
Note: Three-year-old Roger Rulewich course that measures 7,400 yards from the tips

Connecticut
Town: Groton
Course: Shennecossett Golf Course
Miles from I-95: 4
Note: Donald Ross-designed muni with great water views on the back nine

Delaware
Town: Wilmington
Course: White Clay Creek Country Club
Miles from I-95: 2
Note: Course ranked #4 in Delaware by Golfweek

Maryland
Town: Havre de Grace
Course: Bulle Rock Golf Club
Miles from I-95: 3
Note: Pete Dye gem has hosted multiple LPGA majors and happens to be for sale

Virginia
Town: Fredericksburg
Course: Cannon Ridge Golf Club
Miles from I-95: 6
Note: Deane Beman design was closed for a time but has been reopened to enthusiastic reviews

Town: Ruther Glen
Course: Mattaponi Springs Golf Club
Miles from I-95: 9
Note: Like Bulle Rock, a highly-regarded Mid-Atlantic course that is for sale

North Carolina

Town: Belmont Lake
Course: Belmont Lake Golf Club
Miles from I-95: 4
Note: 80-acre lake serves as final water hazard along the par-4 18th hole

Town: Lumberton
Course: Pine Crest Country Club
Miles from I-95:
Note: Website is golfcourseoni95.com, for goodness’ sakes!

South Carolina
Town: Florence
Course: Country Club of South Carolina
Miles from I-95: 4
Note: Well-regarded layout tends to be overshadowed by coastal courses

Town: Santee
Course: Santee Cooper Country Club
Miles from I-95: 2
Note: One of about a dozen solid, affordable courses in the area

Town: Hardeeville
Course: Golf Club at Hilton Head Lakes
Miles from I-95: 4
Note: Tommy Fazio design has a 36-acre practice facility, in case you just want to stop off and hit a few balls

Georgia
Town: Shellman Bluff
Course: Sapelo Hammock Golf Club
Miles from I-95: 9
Note: Absolute hidden gem that we visited last year

Town: Waverly
Course: Golf Club at Sanctuary Cove
Miles from I-95: 1
Note: Davis Love III layout with old-school Seth Raynor-like features and shaping

Florida
Town: Fernandina Beach
Course: Golf Club at North Hampton
Miles from I-95: 8
Note: Arnold Palmer design known for big, undulating greens

Town: St. Augustine
Course: St John’s Golf & Country Club
Miles from I-95: 1
Note: Clyde Johnston course that regularly hosts Web.com Tour early-stage qualifying

Town: Port St. Lucie
Facility: PGA Golf Club
Miles from I-95: 2
Note: Four-course complex highlighted by a Pete Dye and two Tom Fazio courses

Town: Key Biscayne
Course: Crandon Golf at Key Biscayne
Miles from I-95: 7
Note: Scenic muni known for mangrove views

With new grass, refined bunkering and expanded greens, PGA Golf Club's Dye Course is better than ever.

If you’re heading south through Florida on I-95, PGA Golf Club and its splendid Dye Course make a super-convenient stopping point.

I-85

Runs from: Petersburg, Va. to Montgomery, Ala.

Duke University Golf Club

(Duke University Golf Club)

Notable courses (north to south):

North Carolina
Town: Durham
Course: Duke University Golf Club
Miles from I-85: 5
Note: One of the best college courses in the country

Town: Greensboro
Course: Grandover Resort & Conference Center
Miles from I-85: 2
Note: Two-course resort with a large hotel

Town: Lexington
Course: Lexington Golf Club
Miles from I-85: 3
Note: 2004 renovation was dubbed one of the best in the U.S.

Town: China Grove
Course: Warrior Golf Club
Miles from I-85: 8
Note: Semi-private course meanders around a 52-acre lake

Town: Crowder Mountain
Course: Crowders Mountain Golf Course
Miles from I-85: 2
Note: Claims 14th hole is “The Hardest Par 5 in the World”

South Carolina
Town: Duncan
Course: River Falls Plantation
Miles from I-85: 3
Note: Gary Player design located halfway between Spartanburg and Greenville

Town: Greenville
Course: The Preserve at Verdae Golf Club
Miles from I-85: 2
Note: Web.com Tour co-host course also has an on-site Embassy Suites

Georgia
Town: Royston
Course: Highland Walk Golf Course at Victoria Bryant State Park
Miles from I-85: 9
Note: Part of the underrated Georgia State Parks system of golf courses

Town: Braselton
Course: Château Élan Resort
Miles from I-85: 3
Note: Resort and winery in French style with two resort courses and one private course

Town: Fairburn
Course: Durham Lakes Golf and Country Club
Miles from I-85: 5
Note: Green fees at this course, built in 2005, max out at just $25

Alabama
Town: Lanett
Course: Point University Golf Club
Miles from I-85: 5
Note: Course was gifted to nearby NAIA university golf program and recently underwent a thorough upgrade

Town: Opelika
Course: Grand National Golf Club
Miles from I-85: 9
Note: 54-hole Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail outpost hosts PGA Tour’s Barbasol Championship every July

(Château Élan)

(Château Élan)

I-55

Runs from: Junction of US-41 in Chicago, Ill.; to junction of I-10 in LaPlace, La.

Cog Hill's famed "Dubsdread" course (BreakingEighty.com)

Cog Hill’s famed “Dubsdread” course (BreakingEighty.com)

Notable courses (north to south):

Illinois
Town: Lemont
Course: Cog Hill Golf & Country Club
Miles from I-55: 6
Note: Rees Jones-redesigned No. 4 “Dubsdread” Course was a long-time PGA Tour event host

Town: Romeoville
Course: Mistwood Golf Club
Miles from I-55: 3
Note: Ray Hearn-designed and redesigned course affects a links feel, with pot bunkers and open vistas

Town: Normal
Course: Weibring Golf Club
Miles from I-55: 2
Note: D.A. Weibring-renovated course is the home track for the Illinois State golf teams

Town: Springfield
Course: The Rail Golf Course
Miles from I-55: 3
Note: Robert Trent Jones, Sr.-designed course typifies RTJ’s style, with large greens and extensive bunkering

Arkansas
Town: Blytheville
Course: Thunder Bayou Golf Links
Miles from I-55: 5
Note: Municipal course has been considered among the top public layouts in the state in recent years

Mississippi
Town: Flowood
Course: The Refuge Golf Course
Miles from I-55: 6
Note: Course was carved and build from wetlands, and is dotted with ponds and lakes

Town: McComb
Course: Quail Hollow Golf Course
Miles from I-55: 1
Note: Arthur Hills-designed course is part of the Percy Quin State Park

Louisiana
Town: LaPlace
Course: Riverlands Country Club
Miles from I-55: 4
Note: Semi-private club whose course plays over and around 10 tidal ponds

(Stonewolf Golf Club)

(Stonewolf Golf Club)

I-15

Runs from: Sweet Grass, Mont.; to junction of I-8 in San Diego, Calif.

Coral Canyon Golf Club (Visit Mesquite Nevada)

Coral Canyon Golf Club (Visit Mesquite Nevada)

Notable courses (north to south):

Montana
Town: Helena
Course: Bill Roberts Golf Course
Miles from I-15: 2
Note: Course dates back to 1925, and in 1927 Charles Lindbergh landed his Spirit of St. Louis on a fairway

Idaho
Town: Idaho Falls
Course: Sage Lakes Golf Course
Miles from I-15: 5
Note: Par-70 course features six par threes

Utah
Town: Brigham City
Course: Eagle Mountain Golf Course
Miles from I-15: 3
Note: Pleasant parkland course with scenic views of the surrounding mountains

Town: Bountiful
Course: Bountiful Ridge Golf Course
Miles from I-15: 3
Note: Course offers scenic views of the city of Bountiful from on high

Town: Riverton
Course: Riverbend Golf Course
Miles from I-15: 3
Note: Muni that plays along the banks fo the Jordan River and is known as one of the best public layouts in Utah

Town: Provo
Course: East Bay Golf Course
Miles from I-15: 1
Note: Public facility also sports a par-3 course and will host the 2020 Utah Amateur

Town: Washington
Course: Coral Canyon Golf Course
Miles from I-15: 1
Note: Desert-style course offers splendid views of nearby Bryce Canyon and Zion National Park

Nevada
Town: Mesquite
Course: Wolf Creek Golf Club
Miles from I-15: 2
Note: This course put Mesquite on the golf map and even inspires to make a special trip out from Las Vegas

California
Town: Nipton
Course: Primm Valley Golf Club
Miles from I-15: 1
Note: Two Fazio courses that compare favorably to anything nearer the Las Vegas Strip

Town: Rancho Cucamonga
Course: Sierra Lakes Golf Club
Miles from I-15: 2
Note: Ted Robinson-designed course opened in 2000 with a tough par-4 fifth hole known as “The Monster”

Town: Mira Loma
Course: Goose Creek Golf Club
Miles from I-15: 2
Note: Brian Curley-designed course has three holes with centerline bunkers that split their respective fairways

Town: Temecula
Course: Journey at Pechanga
Miles from I-15: 3
Note: Arthur Hills/Steve Forrest course and adjacent casino resort appear on our inaugural list of “The Best Golf and Casino Resorts

(Primm Valley Golf Club)

(Primm Valley Golf Club)

I-5

Runs from: Canada/U.S. border in Blaine, Wash.; to US/Mexico border at San Ysidro, Calif.

Chambers Bay Golf Club (Jay Blasi)

Chambers Bay Golf Club (Aidan Bradley)

Notable courses (north to south):

Washington
Town: Blaine
Course: Loomis Trail Golf Club
Miles from I-5: 2
Note: This course which has a companion, Semiahmoo, is ranked #5 in Washington by Golfweek

Town: Tukwila
Course: Foster Golf Links
Miles from I-5: 1
Note: Course owned by the City of Tukwila was revitalized in 2004 and plays alongside and over the Duwamish River

Town: University Place
Course: Chambers Bay Golf Club
Miles from I-5: 6
Note: 2015 U.S. Open host is one of the most striking and controversial courses in the Pacific Northwest

Oregon
Town: Portland
Course: Heron Lakes Golf Club
Miles from I-5: 2
Note: Facility is home to two Robert Trent Jones II courses

Town: Creswell
Course: Emerald Valley Golf Club
Miles from I-5: 2
Note: Layout along the Willamette River was named “Golf Course of the Year” by the Oregon Golf Association for 2004

Town: Myrtle Creek
Course: Cougar Canyon Golf Course
Miles from I-5: 2
Note: Course is especially beloved of passers-through who praise the value and condition of the greens in particular

Town: Medford
Course: Centennial Golf Club
Miles from I-5: 1
Note: Course opened in 2006 and was designed by John Fought with a particular focus on emulating Golden Age architects like Ross and Tillinghast

California
Town: Mt. Shasta
Course: Mt. Shasta Resort
Miles from I-5: 3
Note: Jim Summers/Sandy Tatum design measures just over 6,000 yards but can play sneaky-tough with three par fours over 400 yards

Town: Corning
Course: Rolling Hills Casino
Miles from I-5: 1
Note: Open, fun course formerly known as Sevillano is part of a casino resort featured on our recent “The Best Golf and Casino Resorts” list

Town: Sacramento
Course: Teal Bend Golf Club
Miles from I-5: 8
Note: Brad Bell design enjoys a secluded setting just west of the Sacramento Airport

Town: Burbank
Course: DeBell Golf Club
Miles from I-5: 3
Note: William F. Bell course that is only 5,600 yards from the tips, but plays to a surprisingly high rating of 68.9

Town: Irvine
Course: Oak Creek Golf Club
Miles from I-5: 2
Note: Well-maintained Tom Fazio design where regular green fees top out at $180, but twilight rates are half of that

Town: Oceanside
Course: Goat Hill Park
Miles from I-5: 1
Note: Short, quirky and fun par-65 was recently bought by fashion designer John Ashworth and remade into a community-oriented facility

Town: La Jolla
Course: Torrey Pines Golf Course
Miles from I-5: 2
Note: U.S. Open and Farmers Insurance Open host venue is home to two courses that overlook the Pacific Ocean

(Goat Hill Park Golf Course)

(Goat Hill Park Golf Course)

And be sure to check out our follow-up on courses along America’s main east-west Interstates: I-90, I-80, I-40 and I-10.

In the meantime, do you have any golf road trip course nominations that you’ve played on your travels? Please share them with us and your fellow readers below!

7 Comments

  1. Bob

    May 23, 2017 at 10:39 am

    LPGA course in Daytona Beach needs mention, and from what I have been told, Turningstone (central NY I 90) is great.

  2. Alan

    May 23, 2017 at 11:22 am

    When heading south through Boston many people take a more direct route (Rte 93) to reconnect to 95. Less than a mile off 93 in Quincy is Granite Links, a 27 hole track with views of the Boston skyline and hazards that are old granite quarries.

  3. Steve Hendley

    May 23, 2017 at 5:05 pm

    Don’t forget I-25

  4. Dave

    May 23, 2017 at 8:40 pm

    I hope Golf Insider will cover more interstates. For example, The Legends near Franklin IN is only a few miles from I-65. Also, you can see Kenny Perry’s course further down the same interstate

  5. Tom

    May 30, 2017 at 10:57 am

    I35?

  6. Tim Gavrich

    May 31, 2017 at 9:02 am

    Coming soon! Based on the response, we’ll add a few Interstates every so often until we have a grand Golf Road Trip Guide.
    –Tim

  7. Allan

    June 1, 2017 at 12:20 am

    Just played Lexington Golf Club in NC. Short from the tips (6100) but a great set of holes. makes you use every club, greens are terrific.

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