If you live in the lower 48, at least one of these nine golf courses is within striking distance and open to the public. So what are you waiting for? Fill up your tank and make a tee time.
1. Southeast: TPC Sawgrass Stadium Course, Florida
There are more than 1,300 golf courses in Florida and the finest is the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass. It’s home to The Players Championship, one of the biggest and richest tournaments on the PGA Tour. Due to the iconic island green 17th hole, the course sits squarely on many players’ bucket list. It’s a short par-3 that shouldn’t pose much of a problem, yet the resort’s caddies estimate more than half of amateurs who play the course lose at least one ball to the abyss.
The Pete Dye-designed track is a mettle tester through and through: The final crescendo—the par-5 16th, the infamous 17th, and the cape-hole-designed par-4 18th—is rigorous and wonderfully telegenic. But the 15 spectacular holes that come before can also bite or reward players of all stripes.