There are few finer ways to spend an afternoon than on the rolling fairways of your favourite Sydney golf course. As far as sports go, golf is relatively straightforward and inexpensive to pick up. It is also an inherently social game with many a networking opportunity presenting itself; myriad business deals are struck on the greens of a golf course. All the best golf courses Sydney offers are welcoming to players of all creed and class, so long as you adhere to the dress code. There are dozens of golf courses around town, some more worthy of note than others. To save you the time and the (at times considerable) green fees searching for where to play your next round, we’ve put together this list of the 15 best golf courses Sydney has to offer.
Moore Park Golf
Nestled in the Centennial Parklands, minutes from the CBD and offering unobstructed views of the Sydney skyline, Moore Park Golf is one of the most acceessible public golf courses in Sydney. The eighteen-hole championship course offers a pleasantly complex layout sure to excite golfers of all ability levels. Moore Park Golf also boasts a three-level, sixty bay driving range – one of the largest in the southern hemisphere. If you’re serious about shaving a few digits off your handicap, be sure to enlist the help of the resident pros at the adjoined Sydney Golf Academy.
Cnr Anzac Pde & Cleveland St, Moore Park, NSW 2021.
Mona Vale Golf Club
If escaping the bustle of the city is high on your agenda, replace the roar of the freeway with the rumble of the surf at the Mona Vale Golf Club. Considered one of the best golf courses in Sydney for under $50 per round, the first ten holes blends the challenge of parkland hills and woods before turning into the fickle ocean breeze and levelling off along the coast for the run home.
Golf Avenue, Mona Vale NSW 2103.
Northbridge Golf Club
The only Sydney golf course with harbour views, the Northbridge Golf Club features eighteen challenging holes that wind through the huge red gums that litter the heritage-listed park making it one of the best public golf courses in Sydney. The compact collection of par threes at Northbridge means you might be leaving the driver in the bag. Trading distance for accuracy, success at this golf course comes down to careful club selection and a tight short game. Sorry, Happy.
Sailors Bay Rd, Northbridge, NSW 2063.
The Coast Golf Club
Perched on the cliffs at the mouth of Botany Bay, the Coast Golf Club is affordable and challenging, offering eighteen holes of tricky seaside play. Offering one of the best views of any Sydney golf course, be sure to factor in the cooling sea breeze that picks up along the back nine. Precise shooting is essential on some of the more difficult holes; particularly the 15th, where too much power into the teeth of the wind runs the risk of losing a few balls into the Pacific.
1 Coast Hospital Rd, Little Bay NSW 2036.
Long Reef Golf Club
With views stretching from the Central Coast in the north to Manly in the south, Long Reef Golf Club enjoys a commanding position on the headland between Collaroy and Dee Why beaches. Long Reef has been praised by multiple British and Australian Open Champion Peter Thompson, who considers the course layout among the finest of all the best golf courses in Sydney. Thanks to its lofty perch on the sandstone hills, excellent drainage means when nearby courses are rained out, Long Reef is good to go.
Anzac Ave, Collaroy NSW 2097.
St Michael’s Golf Club
Sat on the cliffs of the Little Bay peninsular, the stately St. Michael’s Golf Club is one of three golf courses cohabiting this patch of land. A tough but fair challenge is posed by the generous, yet often misleading fairways and the ever-changing influence of the sea breeze. A must-see on any serious golfers list, St Michael’s stands up to the task of living in the shadow of its illustrious neighbour, the New South Wales Golf Club.
Jennifer St, Little Bay NSW 2036.
Bondi Golf & Diggers Club
Let nothing but the sound of the ocean lapping the cliffs disturb your backswing as you play around the 9-hole Bondi Golf & Diggers Club. A buggy may not be required for this short but hilly course of mostly par threes, but fret not; the view from the cliffs above Bondi Beach is some of the best scenery of any Sydney golf course. Some more challenging terrain exists on the seaward side of the course where the rough constitutes a fifty-meter cliff (the view alone makes it one of the best golf courses Sydney has to offer), though the gusty nor’easters do their bit to keep the ball in play.
5 Military Rd, North Bondi NSW 2026.
Royal Sydney Golf Club
All grandeur and pomp aside, the Royal Sydney offers a demanding, no-nonsense challenge to professionals and amateurs alike. Once boasting an average of one bunker every twenty yards, the regal course has since eased up on the sand traps. However, the sand is still the dominant hazard of this proudly traditional Sydney golf course which forgoes any gimmicks, tricks or water hazards. Many of golf’s royalty has strolled the undulating freeways; the Royal Sydney has hosted the Australian Open on multiple occasions.
Kent Rd, Rose Bay NSW 2029.
The Australian Golf Club
Founded in 1882 and residing in its present location since 1903, the Australian Golf Club is considered one of the best golf courses Sydney has to offer, as well as one of the best golf courses Australia has to offer. And for a good reason; the oldest golf course in the country hosted the first and inaugural Australian Open in 1904 and has hosted the event eighteen times since. A complete overhaul in the 70s under the supervision of Jack Nicklaus transformed this Sydney golf course into a truly world-class venue. A further redevelopment in 2013 ensures a top-calibre challenge for those lucky enough to play there.
53 Bannerman Cres, Rosebery NSW 2018.
New South Wales Golf Club
Regularly listed among the fifty best golf courses on the planet, the New South Wales Golf Club has been praised by golfers from all walks of life for the past ninety years. Making the most of the rugged beauty of the northern headland of Botany Bay, the NSW is one of the toughest tests of golf in the country. Since its inception, a succession of renowned architects – most recently Greg Norman – have refined this course into the masterpiece it is today.
1528 Anzac Parade, La Perouse NSW 2036.
The Lakes Golf Club
A testing championship-calibre golf course, the Lakes Golf Club boasts several challenges in addition to the multiple the water hazards that give the course its name. Be sure to have an abundance of balls on hand; the Shark himself lost three strokes to the drink on Hole 14 at his own Greg Norman Classic, indication enough that these hazards are not to be negotiated carelessly.
Vernon Ave & King St, Eastlakes NSW 2018.
Bonnie Doon Golf Club
Established in 1897 and moved three times before settling in its current location, Bonnie Doon Golf Club boasts much more than the most imaginative name among the best golf courses in Syndey. The unique layout strives to mimic the work of nature with its irregular undulations and wind-swept bunker lips courtesy of some of golf’s preeminent course designers including Eric Apperly and Geoff Ogilvy. A downside: the inability of one of your playmates to resist the urge to strike up a chorus of “We’re going to Bonnie Doon”. An upside: the serenity.
38 Banks Ave, Pagewood NSW 2035.
Stonecutters Ridge Golf Course
Another Greg Norman creation and the newest course on this list, Stonecutters Ridge opened in 2012 and has been turning heads ever since. Designed to make the most of the rolling topography alongside the meandering Eastern Creek, this course will test players of all abilities with its imposing water features and an abundance of well-placed bunkers.
Stonecutters Dr, Colebee NSW 2761.
Terrey Hills Golf & Country Club
Few of the best golf courses Sydney offers can boast to escape the distracting hustle and bustle yet remain within city limits. Bordered by the Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park to the north, the Terrey Hills Golf & Country Club makes the most of its spacious, serene setting offering over seven thousand yards of play, one of the longest golf courses in Sydney. The course features a variety of tees strategically positioned to accommodate the adventurous and the conservative golfer alike.
116 Booralie Rd, Terrey Hills NSW 2084.
Elanora Country Club
Tucked in the hills above the Northern Beaches, the Elanora Country Club gets its name from the Aboriginal word meaning ‘home by the water’; and it certainly satisfies this etymological requirement. The Elanora’s strongest attributes are its excellent turf standards, which rank deservedly alongside the best golf courses Sydney has to offer, and unmatched vistas. Its superbly manicured fairways and fast greens overlook Narrabeen Lagoon and adjacent Collaroy Beach.
54 Elanora Rd, Elanora Heights NSW 2101.