Golf is no doubt one of the best sports in the World but it can certainly be frustrating especially when you are just starting out. We are forever seeing lists of the “Top 100 Golf Courses” but very rarely do these lists ever take beginners or higher handicappers or even the cost of a round into account when they are making these claims, this is something that we felt needed addressing, as after all we all had to start somewhere.
Golf is an expensive sport in Australia with the average cost of a round of golf being in the region of $45 many golfers look to book cheap tee times in Asia including Thailand or Vietnam and take a holiday at the same time.
However, there are so many wonderful courses in Australia for beginners and although this is by no means a definitive list, it may give you something of a starting point.
- Barnbougle Dunes, Tasmania
Although Barnbougle Dunes is certainly a difficult course as it is perhaps as close as you come to a links course in Australia it is generally seen as a fair course. Beginners shouldn’t expect to see fantastic scores but it is the whole experience that we are looking for and that is why this course has made it on to the list. The course is described as designed by “enthusiasts for enthusiasts” and that is probably a very accurate reflection.
- Newcastle, New South Wales
The course is located at the coastal outlet of the Hunter River, 2 hours to the north of Sydney. This is a very mature and well laid out course that has managed to maintain the original layout. This is an excellent course that is well worth the drive to experience.
- The Lakes Golf Club, New South Wales
The course has a certain openness feel to it but that certainly does mean that it is easy by any stretch of the imagination. Most of the holes include water and sand which add to the experience. Accuracy and shot selection is one of the key features on this course. Regardless of your handicap, most players struggle to play to it and find the course extremely challenging.
- Joondalup Resort, Western Australia
The resort is split into 3 different 9-hole courses. These are the Lake, Dune and Quarry courses. The courses are all carefully crafted through the challenging landscape that includes quarries, gum trees and bush and it is a challenge for all golfers. Again this is course that a beginner would play for the experience as opposed to be looking to get a ‘great’ score so should not be too disheartened if their scorecard reads over 100.
- Portsea Golf Club, Victoria
This is charming and historic golf club that is certainly set out in a rather unusual manner with it occasionally being described affectionately as “haphazard”! It is a relatively short course with the most obvious challenge coming from the sea breeze. Overall the course is testing but nothing more than that. The course is lined with dense vegetation that adds to the character and you will also get some views of the houses that are owned by Portsea’s wealthy residents.
- Hyatt Regency Coolum, Queensland
Well this is one of the famous course that has made it onto the list! The course has held the Australian PGA since 2002 so that in fairness tells you the quality of the course. Another that certainly falls into the hard but fair category but certainly one that any golfer should experience regardless of their ability.
- Amstel Golf Club, Victoria
This is probably one of the easier courses on the list and has open fairways with par-5 and par-3 holes that are relatively easy to make par on even for a beginner or higher handicapper. The 16th, 299 yard hole is regarded as one of the best short holes in Australia and the landing area gets narrower and narrower the closer you get to the green. The hole is certainly a challenge but an enjoyable one.
- Kooindah Waters Golf Club, New South Wales
This is one of the newer courses on the list. It is fairly wide although it does have plenty of water – something that can frighten many beginners. The course uses a number of old railway sleepers to support walls around greens and bunkers and these can divide opinion but the majority seem to feel that they add to the character of the course.
- Paradise Palms Resort and Country Club, Cairns
The course lies between the Great Barrier Reef and a World Heritage rainforest so is certainly an idyllic setting. Every hole is different and they are all challenging but once again and the whole experience will be one that you will enjoy. Green fees include a cart as well as access to many of the other facilities that the country club has on offer.
- Alice Springs Golf Club, Northern Territory
The course is certainly quite baron although lined with eucalyptus trees. The course is often described as one of the best, if not the best desert courses in the Southern Hemisphere. The fairways are pretty wide although as with many of the other courses there is a need for accuracy. A thoroughly enjoyable course and well worth playing if you are in the Northern Territory.
It should be noted that these courses are not necessarily some of the easiest courses but they make the top 10 for the overall experience. All of the courses are challenging but this is the same for golfers of all abilities.