Did you know the Gold Coast is actually the golfing capital of Australia? There’s more golf courses here per capita than anywhere else in the whole country. There’s over 35 courses – ranging from some of the best championship courses designed by the world’s most famous golfers, to knock-about nine-hole courses perfect with a beer on a Sunday afternoon. We show you where you should go swinging…
RACV ROYAL PINES
You’ll get to play the same course as the world’s best golf pros who tee off each year for the Australian PGA and the Australian Ladies Masters. There’s 27 holes designed by Australia’s best golf course designer, former pro Graham Marsh. Recently renovated in a multi-million-dollar project, there’s no easy holes here – with water and bunkers in play on each tee-off. But hey, if Sergio Garcia and Adam Scott can put their tee-offs into the drink, don’t feel so bad if you follow suit. The resort here was recently named Best Golf Hotel in Australia in the World Golf Awards.
THE LINKS AT HOPE ISLAND
There’s far more than just a golf course here; this is a legitimate suburb of the Gold Coast – with a fancy marina, retail stores, restaurants… even a theme park. There are even three golf courses on this island – but the best of them is The Links At Hope Island, which many call the finest course in Queensland. This is a links-style course – so it’s a piece of bonnie ole Scotland here in the tropics. Our greatest ever golfer, Peter Thomson, designed it, and don’t be fooled by the lack of trees: there’s more sand and water on this course than you’d find playing on Surfers Paradise’s beach.
LAKELANDS GOLF CLUB
You won’t find a prettier course in Australia – holes play out around lakes and between enormous local trees. It’s as pretty as Augusta (site of The Masters) – but perhaps that’s little wonder when you consider who designed the thing. This was Jack Nicklaus’s first Australian signature course – the man who ruled the Masters at Augusta, and world golf for four decades. A few years ago you couldn’t get on Lakelands Golf Club, it was for members only. But now social play is allowed all week except Saturday mornings, so golfers get to revel in a place that feels like it should still be off-limits.
BEST HIDDEN GEM
BOOMERANG FARM GOLF COURSE
It’s just five minutes from the town of Mudgeeraba, but you’re hidden away at Boomerang Farm in 20 hectares of rainforest, fringed by the Mudgeeraba Creek. You’ll be playing amongst historic farming barns and shearing sheds – with just kangaroos for company. There’s only nine holes, but tees are set at different points to make 18 holes an option. Green fees are just $35 for 18, or $12 for unlimited golf between 2.30 and 5.30.
BEST VALUE FOR MONEY
SURFERS PARADISE GOLF CLUB
This championship course is a hidden secret stashed away amongst the bigger name courses on the Coast. Located just five minutes drive from Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach, tree-lined fairways weave through lakes, with views across to Surfers Paradise. A course of this quality with its proximity to Surfers Paradise should cost a lot more to play, but golfers can play unlimited golf on Mondays for $27, or every day after 3pm for $19.50. Golfers on Wednesdays and Sundays can also play 18 holes with a burger for $40. You’ll also find a street food fiesta – Cuisine On The Green – every Saturday evening from 5pm to 9pm.
GOLF ATTRACTIONS WHERE YOU DON’T ACTUALLY HAVE TO PLAY GOLF!
Forget about getting out on a golf course, at Topgolf you can play golf like you’re at a bowling alley – and drink and eat just as much too! Set up in lanes called ‘bays’, groups take turns hitting micro-chipped golf balls at targets in the outfield. It means that even beginners have a chance to win, which won’t happen on a golf course. And with an executive chef preparing food, and music on tap, Top Golf is as much about the party as the game itself.
Come play nine holes of golf completely under lights (between 5.30pm to 9pm) or use the Gold Coast’s largest driving range – there’s 40 undercover driving bays at KDV Golf. If you want to get really serious about your golf, there’s five private golf coaching bays with some of Queensland’s best golf teachers on-site. Located at Carrara, just a 15 minute drive from Surfers Paradise, KDV Golf is open seven days a week and rain can’t stop you playing.