Best 15 Golf Courses In California (Updated)

The best golf courses in California are a great way to enjoy the beautiful weather and scenery. There are many things to do in California, but few can compete with playing a round of golf on one of these fantastic courses. The best thing about them is that there is something for everyone – from the beginner to the pro golfer. And even if you don’t live in California, it’s worth making a trip just for the opportunity to play one or more rounds at these incredible places!

let’s look at these 15, shall we,

1. Pebble Beach Golf Links

Pebble Beach Golf Links

This is one of the most beautiful and challenging courses in Southern California. It’s a must-play for any serious golfer, and it was recently named the 2nd best place to play by “Golf Digest.” With five different nines to choose from, you’ll never get tired of playing this course! And if you’re worried about the price, keep in mind that they offer discounts for residents who live in certain areas.

So even though it’s expensive, there are ways to help bring down the cost. The only catch is that tee times can be challenging to reserve, especially during peak seasons or holidays – but it’s worth it.

Pebble Beach Golf Links has a variety of amenities to make your day as enjoyable as possible. For starters, they offer a driving range in addition to their golf course. The driving range is perfect for beginners because it allows them to work on their swing, but skilled players can also warm-up before their round.

They offer carts for anyone who wants to ride around, but you’ll need to bring your clubs or rent some there if you don’t have any with you.

2. Spyglass Hill Golf Course

Spyglass Hill Golf Course

Spyglass Hill is one of the most scenic courses in California, but more than that, it’s designed to be some of the most enjoyable too. The layout makes use of some beautiful ocean views so you can see them while you play. If you’re looking for a hole-in-one challenge (and who isn’t?), Spyglass Hill delivers because it has an elevated green on every hole!

Spyglass Hill is big enough to accommodate tournament play – even though they don’t host any major tournaments at this location, which means that the course won’t get overly crowded. This also allows for time between shots if you do decide to tee off. And with numerous tees to choose from, Spyglass Hill caters to golfers at all skill levels.

3. TPC Stadium Golf Course

This is another must-play course in California that is recommended by “Golf Digest.” It’s also known for being the home of the AT&T National PGA Tour event every year. But even if you can’t catch a tournament here, it’s worth making the trip because you’ll enjoy some spectacular scenery along with challenging holes designed to test your skills.

It takes about two hours or so to play this course if you’re playing alone, but they do offer cart rentals, too, in case you need them. The carts are excellent because they have seat warmers and GPS systems which makes driving around easier. If you don’t want to bring your clubs, TPC Stadium has everything you need for rental – including golf carts!

4. Del Paso Country Club

Located in Sacramento, this is another one of the best courses in California because it’s designed well – even though it only opened up about 25 years ago. The course is well maintained and makes use of lovely lakes that come into play often during play. It also accommodates both novice and expert players with three different nines that are available for play. In addition, the professional staff here really knows their stuff – so if you’re ever unsure about how to make a shot, they will be more than happy to offer advice on how to do it properly. They’ll even monitor your swing if you want them to.

5. Indian Canyon Golf Course

This is a course designed by Tom Fazio, one of the most well-respected designers in all of golf. Indian Canyon has long been recognized as one of the best places to play, and it’s even been voted as the top course at least two times! It features a classic design with links-style fairways, which means you’ll have plenty of room to make significant cuts without having to worry about running into a tree or bush along the way.

The greens are also fast and accurate – which is excellent for those who aren’t good at chipping on a slow surface because they can hit harder knowing their ball will roll faster than if played on more lifeless grass.

There’s lots of wildlife on this course such as snakes, polecats and wild turkeys. So be sure to keep an eye out for them while you play!

6. Green Hills Country Club

Green Hills is a challenging course that provides the ultimate challenge for even skilled players. Unfortunately, it’s one of the more challenging courses in California, thanks to features like narrow fairways and fast greens – which make chipping more difficult than usual. But just because the design is rugged doesn’t mean Green Hill isn’t fun – it makes for some great memories if you’re able to score well despite these challenges.

You’ll find rolling fairways, flatter greens, and some great views of the surrounding mountains. All in all, it’s a very well-rounded course that leaves you feeling satisfied no matter how well or how poorly your score here.

7. Olympic Club San Francisco

This is another top-ranked golf course in California – one that offers challenges for players at all levels. It uses flat terrain, so the holes are pretty standard as far as design goes, but they’re fun to play regardless! One thing that sets this course apart from others is that it’s open to non-members (which means that if you’re traveling on vacation, this is an opportunity to try out the grounds without committing to joining).

One frustrating part of the course is that you can’t wear white shorts during your play – which some people aren’t aware of until they’re already on their way to the system. Thankfully, it’s not too difficult to find clothes in other colors but be sure not to show up wearing something that might get you disqualified. But, of course, you don’t want that to happen!

8. Pasatiempo Golf Club

Pasatiempo is one of San Jose’s best-kept secrets for golf courses because it’s so well integrated into its natural surroundings. This makes for a fun and relaxing atmosphere and challenging conditions due to high winds creating unpredictable ball flight paths. So if you’ve never seen trees swaying back and forth in solid gusts before, this is your chance to see it in person!

The tree-lined fairways and well-designed greens make for a fun experience at any level. There’s plenty of wildlife here to keep you company as well, including deer and bobcats! Enjoy an unforgettable round on one of the Bay Areas’ finest golf courses.

9. Shoreline Golf Links

Shoreline recently underwent a renovation in 2015 and now includes new tee boxes and bunkers that were redesigned to offer better protection from the wind when playing. Unfortunately, it also has some high-end features like water hazards, which add to the difficulty of play – but that only makes it more rewarding if you’re able to overcome such challenges while scoring well. The staff here does an excellent job year-round, which is fantastic for those traveling during the off-season when it’s not always possible to play at your regular course.

The layout here makes use of lakeside holes, so you’ll have plenty of scenic views while you enjoy your round. The design also features beautiful bunkers and elevated greens so that you can take in the view with every shot played! Overall, this is a great California golf course that many players consider one of their favorites.

10. River Oaks Golf Course

River Oaks is a fun and challenging course thanks to its rustic design that uses native grasses, flora, and fauna. Unfortunately, fairways tend to be tight (most don’t exceed 100 yards), so you’ll have to pick the right shot every time you play. But there are also water hazards in many holes, so it’s essential to pay attention!

This is one of the Bay Area’s best-kept secrets because, despite all of this, it’s incredibly affordable – even if you’re paying for walking access. So don’t miss out on this opportunity to try something new!

11 . Brookside Golf Club

Brookside has been around since 1929 and was recently renovated in 2010-2012 to improve the drainage system and bunkering. It’s a bit of a mix between links-style and parkland-style courses, so it’s right in the middle overall. But this means that there are impressive views to take in while you play, thanks to its location along Permanente Creek – where ducks and other wildlife can be seen from time to time.

Brookside is another very affordable course, making it one of the Bay Areas’ best bargain golf courses for walking access. Those who prefer cart access will have to pay more but not by much, considering how inexpensive membership can be here! With low green fees and excellent service, this place is sure to impress without breaking the bank.

12 . Shady Oaks Golf Club

Shady Oaks is located in San Jose and is another one of the best value courses in the area. At just $44 for walking access throughout the week, you’ll get to play this fun course that’s also challenging, thanks to its tree-lined fairways and small greens. But if you plan on playing during peak times, be prepared to pay more – which isn’t all that much considering how affordable things are here overall!

Just like Pasatiempo, Shady Oaks features plenty of wildlife, so keep your eyes open for deer or even bald eagles soaring around overhead depending on where you’re located at any given time. Of course, the staff will make sure your stay is enjoyable every step of the way as well! All in all, this place is worth checking out if you want to have a great experience without being surprised by your average Bay Area golf course.

13 . Coyote Creek Golf Club

Coyote Creek is one of the most popular courses in the area, partially because it’s affordable but also because its design is balanced (link style meets parkland-style). This means that you’ll get plenty of challenge, but there are enough forgiving elements thrown into the mix to make things more enjoyable for players at any level. So if you’re looking to improve your game while still having fun, this place should be on your list to consider!

Golf Digest ranked Coyote Creek as one of the best public access courses in the state, so it’s certainly what you would expect from places like these. In addition, the course is located just 22 miles from downtown San Francisco, so it’s pretty convenient to get to as well, especially if you’re staying in the area for an extended period!

14 . Del Monte Golf Course

Del Monte is a fun yet challenging course that has been around since 1927. The Del Monte Fruit company previously owned it, but now it’s run by First Tee – which provides free youth golf instruction on Wednesdays here.

This is another excellent value course with walking access at just $16 during peak hours and slightly more during off-peak times. This makes it one of the Bay Area’s best-kept secrets for many players looking to save money without sacrificing playability or service. Don’t miss out on this great opportunity – it’s fun for all ages too!

15 . The Course at Wente Vineyards

The Course at Wente Vineyards is one of the best courses in the area, complete with incredible views over the vineyard and many other beautiful landmarks that surround it. This course was renovated recently to ensure that it would play well into the future even as California weather becomes more unpredictable overall.

You can choose which version will work best for your skill level with three separate sets of tees available. It’s worth mentioning that The Course at Wente Vineyards currently has an 80% satisfaction score, so there’s no reason not to give it a try if you’re looking for a nice change of pace compared to other courses around the area. This place is located about an hour away from San Francisco, so it might be a bit of a drive depending on where you’re based, but your overall experience will be well worth it!


So there you have it – the 15 best Bay Area golf courses. Have fun, and make sure to try out as many of these spots as possible if you get a chance while down here! The experience is always better when you play on different courses, especially when they’re close together and easy to access. Enjoy!

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