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Visit these top golf courses in Southern California to improve your skills, enjoy enviable amenities, and admire the scenery.
6 min read
October 21, 2020
Southern California has always been a top vacation destination. With its lush landscapes, breathtaking oceanside views, and perfect weather year-round, what’s not to like about SoCal?
When visiting the region, a common question arises: to tee or not to tee? Since this part of the state is home to some of the best golf courses in the country, the answer is a no brainer. Whether you’re an amateur or an experienced golfer, spend your day on the green and follow in the footsteps of the pros.
Many cities are famed for their luxurious golf courses, including Palm Springs, Ojai, and Long Beach—the list goes on. Perfect for hosting desert weddings, playing a game or two, or driving around in a golf cart, the top golf courses in Southern California make it impossible not to have fun. Check out our favorite golf courses in Southern California where you can admire the beau-tee of the greenery.
Learn more about our selection criteria and vetting process.
Location: 1133 Rosemont Avenue, Pasadena
Brookside Golf Club is located in the shadows of the San Gabriel Mountains, adjacent to Pasadena's famous Rose Bowl stadium. Designed by world-renowned golf-course architect William P. Bell, the 36-hole complex is one of the oldest in Los Angeles County and is un-fore-gettable in every way.
As one of the best golf courses in Southern California, Brookside Golf Club has all the amenities you need for a transcendental golfing experience. The impressive golf club features two 18-hole tracks: the C.W. Koiner Course, a par 72 measuring 7,104 yards, and the E.O. Nay Course, a par 70 measuring 6,025 yards.
Ideal for hosting all types of special events, Brookside also manages flawlessly executed golf tournaments accompanied by attentive service and superb on-site catering.
Location: 1818 Charlie Sifford Drive, Los Angeles
Embark on an exciting golfing adventure at Chester Washington Golf Course. Offering players of all ages and skill levels a stimulating challenge, this 6,300-yard golf course boasts a par 70 layout with rolling, tree-lined fairways and a beautiful driving range. The mastermind behind the design of this impressive SoCal golf course is Billy Bell. With brand-new cart paths, two practice greens, and a chipping green, Chester Washington's 18-hole course ensures all visitors have a tee-riffic time.
Location: 15501 East Alicante Road, La Mirada
Another Bell-designed golfing destination is one of the best public golf courses in Los Angeles: La Mirada Golf Course. Measuring 6,083 yards, this course has been named “Los Angeles County Course of the Year” on six different occasions. The 18-hole, par-70 course offers rolling layouts with multiple blind target shots into well-bunkered greens. The practice facility has two putting greens, a chipping green, and a two-tiered driving range with 50 stations available, including 13 natural grass hitting areas.
Hosting three different clubs—the Ladies’ Club, Men’s Club, and the Senior Men’s Club—La Mirada allows guests of all skill levels to mingle with other passionate golf players and make new connections.
Location: 27601 Casta Del Sol, Mission Viejo
If you like big putts and you cannot lie, Oso Creek Golf Course is where you have to be—it is one of Orange County’s best-kept secrets. Nestled below Lake Mission Viejo, the 3,760-yard course was designed by Ted Robinson in 1970.
The SoCal golf course features holes that range from 122 to 235 yards for the par three, to a maximum of 317 yards for the par four. There are also underground springs and mountain runoff that feeds two streams, making for scenic surroundings. The well-maintained golf course provides excellent service; the courteous and friendly staff is always ready to go the extra mile to make your outing the best par-tee possible.
Location: 2400 North Studebaker Road, Long Beach
Long Beach’s top golf course is none other than El Dorado Park Golf Course. Offering extensive practice facilities, numerous water hazards, and an expansive layout, the excellent par-72, 18-hole course was also designed by Robinson. The 6,921-yard expanse is famed for its 1,500 trees, which were planted in the early 70s.
As one of the best golf courses in Southern California, it annually hosts the Long Beach Open—one of the most-respected, non-PGA Tour–affiliated professional mini-tour events in the country. El Dorado Park Golf Course also accommodates special events throughout the year; par-tee-ing has never been better.
Location: 1440 East Bastanchury Road, Fullerton
Featuring five distinct tees and 18 holes, Coyote Hills Golf Course is a par-70 championship golf course that measures 6,610 yards. This top golf course in Southern California was designed by Cal Olson and PGA Tour legend Payne Stewart.
With a set of unique holes found amongst canyons and hills—not to mention panoramic views of Los Angeles and Orange County—the landscape results in a series of memorable snapshots. A challenging test for players of different skill levels, both the elevation and the greens are tricky and demanding, which makes the game even more exciting and enjoyable.
Location: 23308 Cherry Avenue, Lake Forest
Lake Forest Golf and Practice Center is a 9-hole par-29 course designed by Michael Orren. Featuring several sand bunkers, two on-course lakes, and a beautiful driving range, the course is a true haven for golf enthusiasts. Located among orange groves, west of Saddleback Mountain, the charming course offers a fun and entertaining setting for players of different levels; it provides the ideal introduction to the game for amateurs and golfers who are interested in perfecting their skills. The helpful and friendly staff make your experience here even more special.
Location: 50200 Avenida Vista Bonita, La Quinta
Ball out and make your way to the luxurious La Quinta Resort and Club for the ultimate golfing getaway. The course is nestled at the base of the Santa Rosa Mountains; the stunning scenery may distract you from the difficult course featuring pot bunkers, rock formations, elevations of tee boxes, and well-bunkered greens.
La Quinta Golf Resort offers five different courses. Standouts include the 18-hole, par-72 Mountain Course—which measures 6,666 yards and was designed by famed architect Pete Dye—and the Stadium Course, which ranks among the best golf courses worldwide. This par-72 course is the ultimate challenge for those wanting to golf on par with the legends. After a day spent golfing, head to the resort's spa to unwind or pick up a pair of tennis balls for a match with your S.O.
Location: 1100 Clubhouse View Drive, Palm Springs
When you're spending a weekend in Palm Springs and craving a round of golf, make your way to the elegant Escena Golf Club. The towering San Jacinto Mountains and blue desert skies provide an unparalleled backdrop to your swingin' session. (But be warned: This experience may just make you want to pack your suitcase and move to this desert community.)
Ranked as the sixth-best 18-hole public course in California by PGATOUR.com, the Escena Golf Club boasts strategically placed bunkers, generous driving corridors, and water hazards—all thanks to the Nicklaus Design company, which was founded by professional golfer Jack Nicklaus. The undulating greens of the back tees stretch to nearly 7,200 yards. When you're ready to take a break, indulge in a lovely meal at the Escena Lounge and Grill.
Location: 2492 Old Ranch Road, Escondido
Offering spectacular views of San Diego County’s finest features, Eagle Crest Golf Club is one of the best places to golf in Southern California. The San Diego gem has been providing championship-quality golf for locals and visitors alike since its opening in 1992. With top-notch customer service, first-class courses, and high-quality amenities, Eagle Crest Golf Club is the region’s premier golfing destination.
The club offers facilities for players of different skill levels and incorporates wildflowers, waterfalls, and several lakes to create an incredible golf venue. Entertaining and captivating, this par-72 course’s striking design allows visitors to experience the majesty of nature while golfing in all its splendor and glory.
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