9 of the Best Golf Courses on the Gold Coast
Image via Gainsborough Greens
If you love golfing, there’s no better place to be than on the Gold Coast, an area famed for its long sandy beaches, its surfing – and it’s golf. Well known as a golfers paradise, there’s more golf clubs and courses per square kilometre than just about anywhere else on the planet. In fact, there’s more golf courses here per head of population than anywhere else in the world.
Whether you’re planning to play 18 holes on a world class championship course, or you just want to practice your swing on a driving range, you won’t be short of places to test your skill.
Some courses are members only, but you’ll find plenty open to the public – nine of which are ranked in the top 100 golf courses in Australia. Since there are so many golf courses, it can be difficult to choose the best one for you, so here’s our guide to some of the best golfing on the Gold Coast.
Surrounded by 230 hectares of bushland and incorporating a sanctuary for flora, fauna and dozens of native Eastern Grey Kangaroos, Gainsborough Greens has an exacting layout that’s perfect for experienced golfers. Open since 1990, it’s played host to the Queensland PGA between 1991 and 1993, and is one of the most elite courses in the area.
Links Hope Island Resort
Image via Link Hope Island
The 15th best golf club in Australia, Links Hope Island has a course consisting of two loops of nine holes. Based on Hope Island, it’s more than just a golf course; it’s a place to eat, drink, and practice your techniques on a par-72 course interspersed by 128 challenging pot-style bunkers, situated in a spectacular paradise of rolling green hills.
Lakelands Golf Club
Image via Lakelands Golf Club
Located on Lakelands Drive in Merrimac, this 18 hole, par-72 golf course was the first Jack Nicklaus signature course in the country. Once ranked 20th in Australia, Lakelands Golf Club boasts a cascading waterfall, an extensive practice facility with 5 target greens, and undercover hitting bays for those times when the weather doesn’t want to play ball.
Palm Meadows Golf Course
Image via Palm Meadows
Just a fifteen minute drive from the Islander, you’ll find the 18 hole, par-72 Palm Meadows Golf Course. Designed by Australian golfer Graham Marsh, there’s water features at 14 of the holes, 82 sand bunkers, and it measures in at 6,319 metres long.
Sanctuary Cove – The Palms
Image via Sanctuary Cove
Probably one of the best all-weather courses in the state, this par-71, 5833 metre course is designed around groves of cabbage palms. Sanctuary Cove is known for its luxury, its kangaroos, and the fact it recently played host to world famous band ‘One Direction’. Having just undergone an $8.8 million dollar reconstruction, it’s got everything, including a golf cart complete with GPS – just incase you get lost.
Royal Pines Resort
Image via RACV
Based on the banks of the Nerang River, Royal Pines boasts three superb courses and continues to set the benchmark for the golf industry in Australia. Host to some of the country’s most prestigious tournaments, you’ll get a stunning view of the Gold Coast skyline while working your way around the immaculate 27 hole golf course and driving range.
Palmer Gold Coast
Image via Palmer Golf
Consistently ranked in the top 30 resort golf courses in Australia, Palmer Golf Course is set among lakes, ponds, creeks, and native wildlife, and covers 65 hectares. A par-71 championship course, it has a reputation as one of the state’s best loved resort courses.
Brookwater Golf and Country Club
Gaining a ranking of 32 in Australia’s top golf courses courtesy of Golf Digest, this par-72 course was designed by Greg Norman. If you’ve only got time to play on one course while on holiday on the Gold Coast, the course at Brookwater is a great option. It offers reasonable fees and great golf opportunities.
Southport Golf Club
Image via Southport Golf Club
If you’re looking for a haven away from the hustle and bustle of city life, head for the Southport Golf Club. Since 1924 it’s been attracting both members and non-members alike to tackle its 18 holes. While the first 9 can be completed with relative ease, the remaining holes are more than a little tricky. As the leading private members’ golf club in the area, access for non-members is restricted, although it is possible for golfers with current handicaps to play both social and competitive games.