B&B’s Ranking of the Top PGA Tour Courses We NEED to Play!

The PGA Tour schedule is absolutely loaded with courses that are bucket list worthy. Several stops are at public access courses that are perfect for a buddies trip (although you might have to sacrifice a car payment or more to play), some are so private you can just keep on dreaming, and of course, THE ONE where you have a better chance of winning the Power Ball than ever stepping foot through the gates with your own clubs. (Note: B&B co-founder Chris Lohman has played ANGC and would give up a year on earth for another loop. AMAZING!)

With the PGA Tour season in full swing, the small, yet opinionated, Balls & Bogeys team of diehards blowhards voted on our favorite Tour courses.

Here are our Top 10 choices — with a few honorable mentions because, let’s face it, a Top 10 just wasn’t enough).

  1. Augusta National Golf Club | The Masters (private) — The GOAT of the Tour. Was there ever any doubt this would take the top of our list? The powers that be are notoriously strict about tee times at Augusta National but there are a few ways to get on the hallowed grounds. The Media Lottery post-Masters is probably our best bet, but alas, we need to work on getting credentials to the 2024 edition first to even have a shot. (NOTE: B&B’r Chris Lohman has played ANGC and would give up a year on Earth to play there again. Odds to play again: 1-10,000.) STAFF EXPERIENCE: PLAYED
  1. Pebble Beach | AT&T Pro-Am/US Open (public) — No surprise here. Perhaps the most picturesque course on Tour (not named ANGC) that’s also Major championship-worthy. On April 1, the greens fees at Pebble Beach increased to a whopping $625/round (not an April Fool’s Day joke). But that’s not all, you’ll need to stay onsite for a minimum of two nights in one of three select lodging sites, bringing your grand total to around $2,465! It is possible to play Pebble as a non-resort guest, but you’ll have to roll the dice by booking only 24-hours in advance and finishing in the dark. Good luck… STAFF EXPERIENCE: PLAYED
  1. Riviera Country Club | Genesis Invitational (private) — Home of the Genesis Invitational and host course of the 2028 Olympics, even the pros drool over the aptly nicknamed Riv. This is a private club and one of the most sought-after golf memberships in the world. If you can’t find a member to play with, perhaps a tax write-off is up your alley. The Big Brothers, Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles holds an annual event at the club. So, for $4,500, you will get one twosome, a caddie and two spots at the reception gala. Let’s do it! STAFF EXPERIENCE: ATTENDED GENESIS MULTIPLE TIMES
PACIFIC PALISADES, CALIFORNIA – FEBRUARY 19: A general view of the 18th hole is seen during the third round of The Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club on February 19, 2022 in Pacific Palisades, California. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
  1. TPC Sawgrass (Stadium) | THE PLAYERS Championship (public) — Everyone who loves the game must make it a point to eventually take a shot at the iconic 17th island green at the home of golf’s unofficial 5th Major. The course itself was built atop 415 acres of Florida swamp by designer Pete Dye. Greens fees range from $600 (September-May) to $450 (July -August) which must be booked 14-days in advance. Consider the hefty price tag as a rite of passage for your golfing memories. STAFF EXPERIENCE: PLAYED IN US AM
  1. Muirfield Village | The Memorial Tournament (private) — If you’re not friends with the Golden Bear, The Memorial tournament director or a member, chances are you will have to shell out $100K for your own membership to have a chance to play here. The condition of this course is always outstanding and several updates have been made since the course’s opening in 1974. Heck, they even started on a renovation before the 2020 tournament ended. During play. The course now plays just less than 7600 yards. But remember, if you’re lucky enough to find yourself in Dublin (Ohio) with a tee time, you don’t have to hit from the tips. STAFF EXPERIENCE: PLAYED IN COLLEGE TOURNEY
  1. PGA West (Pete Dye Stadium Course) | The American Express (public) — Just how good a golfer are you? Want to suffer in the desert? Look no further than PGA West. “Build the hardest damn golf course in the world.” That’s what the developers told Pete Dye and he delivered. It opened with a 77.1 rating, the highest ever given at the time by the USGA. It rattled some of the game’s best – Tom Watson said he was “sick and tired” of Dye’s radical designs. PGA West boasts four other courses in La Quinta, CA to ease your torment if you are looking to play multiple rounds. STAFF EXPERIENCE: PLAYED MULTIPLE TIMES, AND LIVED
  1. Torrey Pines (South) | Farmers Insurance Open/US Open (public) — The Pacific Ocean views are stunning and the history is equally as prevalent at (debatably) the US’s best municipal golf course. Although, we wouldn’t recommend playing on a broken leg like Tiger in 2008, so make sure your game (and body) is in top shape before teeing off. The green fees are reasonable for non-residents ($202-$252) but if you’re lucky enough to live in the San Diego area, it’ll only set you back $78 – at the most. STAFF EXPERIENCE: PLAYED COURSE BEFORE REMODEL, JUNIOR WORLD
  1. Quail Hollow Club | Wells Fargo Championship (private) — Another exclusive club in the South, Quail Hollow has hosted prestigious events – from the annual Wells Fargo to the Presidents Cup to the PGA Championship (and again in 2025). This parkland-style course was designed in 1961 by George Cobb, and it has undergone several improvements over the last few decades by Arnold Palmer and most recently Tom Fazio. To play, either become an elite professional, apply for the exclusive membership (around $100K) or seek out a member. With only 350 of them, we’re not sure what your best shot is to tee it up at the Hollow. STAFF EXPERIENCE: NONE
CHARLOTTE, NC – SEPTEMBER – 2016: Course scenic of Quail Hollow, the site of the 2022 President’s Cup to be held September 19 through the 25th in Charlotte, North Carolina.
  1. Plantation (Kapalua) | Sentry Tournament of Champions (public) — Want to know what it feels like to absolutely bomb your tee shot? The 18th at Kapalua’s Plantation course can provide that Herculean-type feeling. Couple that with a trip to Maui, Hawaii and we’re all about tackling its dramatic elevation changes. Known as The Pineapple Isle for golf, you probably won’t balk at the standard $459 greens fee. STAFF EXPERIENCE: PLAYED
  1. Bay Hill | Arnold Palmer Invitational (public) — Your best bet to score a tee time is to stay at Bay Hill Club and Lodge (for around $200/night – upwards of $1,200). Since the price point can be reasonable, we’re more than willing to make the trip to Orlando to walk in the footsteps of The King. If you’re taking the family to Disney World, maybe plan on a “business meeting” one of the days. Enjoy one of the PGA Tour’s finest finishing holes and walk in the steps Arnie! STAFF EXPERIENCE: STAYED AT HOTEL, HAD TO TURN DOWN A CORPORATE OUTING…BAD DECISION

Honorable Mention

Congaree Golf Club | The CJ Cup (private) — A literal billionaire’s playground. There are only two official members (and one is dead) at Congaree. This course is all about philanthropy so to play, plan on making a sizable donation for the good of the game’s youth. STAFF EXPERIENCE: NOPE, NOT LUCKY ENOUGH TO GET AN INVITE

Harbour Town Golf Links | RBC Heritage (public) — We will stay in the Lowcountry of South Carolina because The Heritage’s rebirth (see this year’s outstanding field) and iconic lighthouse makes this a must-play. It’s public access but the fees can be pretty steep depending on the time of year. STAFF EXPERIENCE: PLAYED

Colonial Country Club | Charles Schwab Challenge (private) — This is the longest-running PGA Tour host site and one of its tightest & toughest. The 4th hole is a 247-yard monster Par 3 that’s never had a hole-in-one in the history of the Charles Schwab. We want to take on that Challenge, bad… STAFF EXPERIENCE: NOT LUCKY ENOUGHT TO GET AN INVITE

What say you?

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