Pebble, Bandon, Streamsong dominate list
GolfPass, NBC Universal’s membership program for avid golfers, has published a list of the top 100 U.S. courses you can walk. Topping the list: Pebble Beach Golf Links.
Rounding out the top five are: Pacific Dunes at the Bandon Dunes Resort (No. 2), the Straits Course at Whistling Straits (No. 3), the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island (No. 4), and Bandon Dunes’s original course (No. 5).
Nos. 6 through 10 on the GolfPass list of courses you can walk are: Pinehurst No. 2 (No.6), Pasatempo Golf Club (No. 7), Mammoth Dunes (No. 8), Bethpage Black (No. 9), and Harbour Town Links at Sea Pines Resort, Hilton Head (No. 10).
All of the Bandon Dunes Resort regulation 18-hole courses are in GolfPass’s list of the Top 25, as are both Sand Valley Resort courses, all three 18-hole Streamsong Resort courses in Florida, and one other Pinehurst Resort course, Pinehurst No. 4.
“The post-pandemic golf boom has been good for the game in so many ways since 2020, but one of the most unique impacts has been that walking while playing has become more popular than ever,” said GolfPass Managing Editor Jason Scott Deegan.
“In the early days of the pandemic, most golfers either couldn’t use carts or didn’t want to,” he said. “Many rediscovered the joys of walking. They bought new push carts and carry bags and have kept on walking.”
Little-known gems make list
GolfPass is an annual membership program that currently costs $140 per year. It includes video, monthly tee time credits,instruction, travel tips and credit at popular resorts. GolfPass has published other best-of lists, including the top resort courses, best layouts, friendliest courses and best course for value.
GolfPass noted that two courses in the top 25 of courses that you can walk that fly somewhat under the national radar include Charleston Municipal Golf Course in South Carolina (No. 24) and Forest Dunes (The Loop) in Michigan (No. 25).
Other hidden gems in the remaining 75 courses on the Top 100 list of courses you can walk (which GolfPass lists in no particular order), include Lake Placid Club (New York); Wild Horse (Nebraska); Warren Course at Notre Dame (Indiana); Manakiki Golf Course (Ohio); Keney Park Golf Course (Connecticut); Fort Myers Country Club (Florida); and Soule Park Golf Course (California).
To compile the list, the GolfPass editorial team analyzed the walking data from thousands of GolfPass user reviews of more than 3,000 courses and reached out to staffs at hundreds more facilities to find and select the best choices.
When reviewing a course on GolfPass, golfers are asked “Did you walk?” and they also have the option of checking another box that notes, “This course/club is great for walkers.” To make the list, all courses have to be accessible to the public. Other criteria considered include the quality of the golf course, how conducive it is to walking and how welcoming the facility is to walkers.
“If a course lacks interesting features along the route, it becomes more of a hike than a great golf experience,” Deegan said.
Featured image courtesy of Pebble Beach Golf Links