St Andrews Links Trust
St Andrews, Fife KY16 9JE
Tel : +44 (0)1334 466666 Fax : +44 (0)1334 477036

St Andrews Links Trust is generally regarded as the 'Home of Golf', St Andrews is second to none as a golfing Mecca. It has been closely associated with golf from the game's earliest beginnings and is of course, home to it's governing body, the Royal and Ancient Golf Club. It has also made golf's most prestigious tournament, the Open, it's own.

Contrary to popular belief, St Andrews is built on public land and welcomes visiting golfers from all over the world. Green fees are very affordable. A trip to St Andrews is a golfing experience almost a pilgrimage. The town has almost been completely given over to golf and therefore offers the golfer every possible amenity.

Besides playing golf one can also visit the excellent Museum of Golf nearby.

Directions
St Andrews, Fife in Scotland.

Further Information
To play St Andrews, you have to turn up EARLY and enter your name into a massively oversubscribed ballot. Best to contact a tour operator. Note that several clubs play over the links. For more information on St Andrews Links Trust see www.standrews.org.uk

Course Details
Course Name: The Old Course Holes: 18 Yardage: 6566 SSS: 72

The Old Course under the auspices of the R&A are the birthplace of golf as we know it today. The course itself perhaps defines the term 'classic links course'. Just imagine the feeling of teeing off in front of the R&A clubhouse, to walk the fairways trodden by so many legendary golfers and to return to the clubhouse as you play the 18th hole. In a word - sublime!

The course is located on a peninsula where the elements have sculptured a course completely at variance to today's manicured parkland courses. The ground is generally flat but dominated by depressions and undulations. Besides the obvious sandy ground, there is an abundance of bunkers which can easily trap those long drives required of this long course. Instead of doglegs to hide holes, the course has plenty of large mounds covered in coarse grass and heather. Of course the wide open spaces and the prevailing sea winds also play an important part of any round.

The Old Course is particularly special as it still poses a real challenge to the best golfers in the world.

For an appreciation and independent view of this course please see golfer reviews.

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Course Name: The New Course Holes: 18 Yardage: 6604 SSS: 72

Built in 1895 in response to the growing demands on the Old Course, the New Course was commissioned by the R&A, designed by Blyth and laid out by Old Tom Morris. It is a classic links course with great skill designed to exploit the natural topography. It is built over flat open-spaced ground with many undulations and depressions. Sandy soil and coarse grasses dominate the course. Interestingly some of the fairways and greens are actually shared amongst the holes. Some say that the reputation of the Old Course has caused the magnificence of the New Course to be one of golf's best kept secrets.

For an appreciation and independent view of this course please see golfer reviews.

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Course Name: Eden Holes: 18 Yardage: 6112 SSS: 70

Opened in 1914 and designed by HS Colt. Updated by Donald Steel in 1989. The Eden course is a very natural course designed to offer the character and interest of the championship courses but not the same degree of difficulty. As such it provides the low handicapper an opportunity to enjoy a round of classic links golf.

For an appreciation and independent view of this course please see golfer reviews.

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Course Name: Jubilee Holes: 18 Yardage: 6805 SSS: 73

Opened in 1897 with 12 holes and named in honour of Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee accession to the throne, the Jubilee course was intended as a course for ladies and beginners. Since then it has been upgraded to championship standard (1988). Like other St Andrews' courses, it is long and exposed to the elements, where wind, length and the natural links topography are dominate aspects of any round.

For an appreciation and independent view of this course please see golfer reviews.

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Course Name: Strathtyrum Holes: 18 Yardage: 5094 SSS:

Designed by Donald Steel and opened in 1993, Strathtyrum complements the longer championship courses by offering a game to suit the high and low handicapper alike. The length combined with carefully placed bunkers (12) and hidden greens demand good iron play. Sloped and undulating greens often make getting down in the regulation two, a real challenge. The prevailing winds blow east to west and can severely impair distance.

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Course Name: Balgove Holes: 9 Yardage: 1503 SSS:

Opened in 1993 as part of a general re-modelling, Balgove has evolved into a beginners course with children given priority over adults in the summer months. It has proper tees, greens and bunkers and a par of 30.

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Accomodation in the Area:
Best Western Scores Hotel
St Andrews,
Fife KY16 9BB
Tel: (01334) 472451 Fax: (01334) 473947


Reader Comments / Reviews Leave a comment
  • The Old Course

    Simon Mackenzie wrote on: Oct 14, 2008

    Managed to basically walk on the Old Course and play. The biggest problem with this was I didnt have a caddie which is a total necessity. Obviously the history adds something to playing here but the course doesnt make my top 10 but as an an experience it does.

    Reply

  • Old Course

    Stan McDaniel wrote on: Jul 25, 2004

    After finishing our first 18 on The Old Course at 6:05 p.m., we went immediately back to the starter's hut to inquire about another 18. At 6:20 p.m. we teed off again on The Old! What an experience. Anyone who loves the game of golf, must play The Old Course. The history, the course, the people are great. What an experience to take your tee shot over The Old Course Hotel and make a 4. You just do not want the walk up the 18th fairway to end!

    Reply

  • RE: Europe Golf courses reviews E. Paul Lian, Scottsdale, AZ USA 05/01

    wrote on: Jan 19, 2004

    My e mail address has changed to: paul@theliangroup.com

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews David S. Lott 7/02

    David S. Lott wrote on: Jun 30, 2002

    Don't sell the Eden short. It's a fine course with several fabulous par fours, excellent views, low greens fees and (often) wide open availability. If this excellent links were not in direct comparison to the Old Course (which it borders), it would be getting high praise as a must play hidden gem. I played it a dozen times the summer I lived in St. Andrews and always had an enjoyable round.-David Lott, Chicago, Illinois

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Charlie E Brough, Sarazen ST, Olympia , WA 98513 05/01

    Charlie E Brough, Sarazen ST, Olympia , WA 98513 wrote on: Apr 30, 2001

    I played St Andrews in 1987 while on a Paid Golf Vacation. I stayed at the Russacks Hotel, which was a real treat in its self. I had a single room over looking the Old Course. When I got up in the Morning I looked out the window and there on the 17 green was 6 men walking o bleak, casting fertiliser by hand. I could see way out where the course made its turn from my 3rd story room. I can tell you honestly I had tears of joy in my eyes.
    Later when I played the Old Course. I had a Caddie that looked a little ragged, but he was a wonderful man and an expert as a caddie, I never had to look for my ball, He used my camera to take wonderful pictures of me and my game.
    The food and service in the Russacks was tops. The Golf and the Lodging gave me the best days of my life.

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Charlie E Brough 05/01

    Charlie E Brough wrote on: Apr 30, 2001

    I played the New Course about 3 years ago. I found it to be a harder course than the old Course. To me it was just another course, not that I did not enjoy the Golf. All golf in Scotland is like frosting on the cake to me.

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews D'Arcy Kavanagh - kavanagh_d@a1.lethbridgec.ab.ca

    D'Arcy Kavanagh - kavanagh_d@a1.lethbridgec.ab.ca wrote on: Nov 30, 2000

    The New Course really isn't so new and it really isn't as trim as many Scottish links courses. It's rough and rugged, demanding a thoughtful approach on every single shot. What more can you ask from a course? Playing the New Course is like playing chess. You make a move and then wait for your opponent to attack. On the New Course, you hit a shot and then wonder what will happen to you next because you often can't see your next challenge until you're almost standing by your ball. I've never played a course where I had to think as much. Some golfers figure a visit to St. Andrew's means playing only the Old Course. They should try the New Course. It may not be as old, reknown, well-kept or handsome. But it will provide a lot of 'I should have tried hitting a...' discussion long after the round is over.

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Toby Keel

    Toby Keel wrote on: Nov 30, 2000

    Eden, Strathtyrum - well, if the others are busy, they're good training courses with the odd lovely hole on the Eden.

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Dr Mike O'Sullivan 11/98

    Dr Mike O'Sullivan wrote on: Oct 31, 1998

    Re Strathtyrum, I was a little surprised to see such a negative review. I played it a few years ago (1996) and found it to be a very enjoyable experience. Certainly, it's not Muirfield, St. Andrews (Old) Troon, North Berwick or Carnoustie, BUT , here's the secret....it does not claim to be! It is a fun course, with good bunkers, interesting par
    threes, and always the ambience of just being near the Old course. A course does not always have to take you to the edge of oblivion and distraction in order to be enjoyable.
    Would not be my first St. Andrews choice or even my second, but if I had the chance to play it again I would look forward to eagerly taking it on.

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Robert Little 9/98

    Robert Little wrote on: Aug 31, 1998

    As an exiled Scot now living in England, I feel I must add my comments in defence of what I personally consider to be a 'National Treasure'. The Old Course at St Andrews is certainly not what it used to be - but what is ? I had the great pleasure of playing the Old Course in the 60s, when there was no ballot and when the cost was a lot less than it is now. I played it again in the 70s when it was still accessible and reasonably inexpensive. When the Old Course Hotel was refurbished in the early 80s, it opened up a visitors golf package that was to introduce an increased level of commercialism that has never gone away. While I have no problem with the burghers of St Andrews making money, I would be more comforted if I saw evidence of re-investment in the Course and its many attributes.
    Certainly other courses have been developed in the area to accommodate the high number of 'hungry' golfers, but when you visit St Andrews, you want to play the Old Course and anything else is just padding. One final point if I may! I agree that the Old Course is not the most difficult nor the most visually attractive of the major golf courses. However I would challenge any true golfer not to feel a twang of the heart strings, when you drive off the 1st Tee; or when you play the Road Hole; or when you stand on the 18th Tee looking across the Swilken Burn or when you putt out on the 18th Green!! Please remember that you are walking on history and where the great and good also walked and when you look around you - not a lot has changed, has it? Whatever the going rate, you cannot put a price on that kind of quality!

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Rick Kunz 9/98

    Rick Kunz wrote on: Aug 31, 1998

    I've played the old course twice, once in 1990 and again in October 1996. In 1990 it was a delightful experience, but now I wouldn't play it for free. Supposedly one must have a handicap of 18, but there were many playing that played maybe two or three times in their entire life. Foursomes are herded on the first tee box like cattle regardless of handicap. We waited on virtually every shot and every tee box. One needs to paly faster. How can you play faster when there is no open hole in front of you and there are on average three foursomes on every hole? I'm a nine handicap and regularly play three and a half hour rounds.

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Brad George 9/98

    Brad George wrote on: Aug 31, 1998

    Critics of the old course seem largely to be unimaginative Americans who demand that all variety be eliminated and their golf holes be clearly defined from tee to green. I was raised on parkland golf and have played a few links, but this was my first exposure to what might be defined as 'cross country' golf. The Old Course must rate as one of the few courses in the world you could 'honestly' say could be played a thousand times and still never become dull. To play the Old Course is not a game, it is an adventure, which is supposed to be, after all, what the game is all about.

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Bill Ellis 9/98

    Bill Ellis wrote on: Aug 31, 1998

    The greatest day in my golfing life was the day I teed it up with my 14 year old son on the first hole of the Old Course at St. Andrews. This gave us an appreciation for the heritage and tradition from years gone by. In the '90s world of stadium golf, corporate outings and cart golf a return to basics and tradition gave both my son and myself a deeper appreciation for the game. For any considering this trip one word of advice ..... .ENJOY!

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Toby Keel 9/98

    Toby Keel wrote on: Aug 31, 1998

    For once in your life, do believe the hype. The tee shot on the first, the Road Hole, and the incomparable feeling of coming up the last... playing the gorgeous 11th, probably my favourite par 3 in the world... standing in Hell bunker on the 14th, and realizing that it really is 15 feet deep... Driving the 9th green (310 yards more or less) with an iron down wind only to need a drive and two woods for the 10th (330 yards) into the teeth of the gale... the shared green of the 5th and 13th that could probably stage a football match... the bizarre putts on the 2nd/16th green, once described by Sam Torrance as like 'putting over Dolly Parton's chest'... And then, above all, the feeling of par on the 17th - multiply this last by ten if you got up and down from the bunker! - followed by the tee shot on the 18th and a walk with the ghosts down the last fairway of the world's first course...
    AND ANYBODY WHO WANTS TO PLAY THE OLD - it's usually easy, even in summer: get up early and go to the starters box - singles get to join up with 2/3 balls all the time, or alternatively you can put your name down for a 'dark' time at the end of the day - with the chance of finishing by the orange streetlights, of course, but the first 2 or 3 dark times are usually fine. Have fun!

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews David Barsalou 9/98

    David Barsalou wrote on: Aug 31, 1998

    I played the Old Course in the summer of '96 and must admit that I felt like I had died and gone to heaven. Playing the Old Course is akin to a religious experience for the true golf fan. Yes there are prettier golf course and yes there are tougher golf courses however you must remember this is pretty much the origin of the game and to me, this make the course rank up there with the best in the world. I have never been so nervous as I was for the tee shot of the first tee. You do not want to look foolish in front of all the tourists and especially your caddy. I would play this course again in a heartbeat.

    Reply

  • Europe Golf courses reviews Jan Flygh - 9/98

    Jan Flygh - wrote on: Aug 31, 1998

    If you want to play at one of St. Andrews seven courses do not play Strathtyrum as there are hundreds of better courses around, Montrose, Muray, Nairn,Dornock and of course the fantastic Cruden Bay. Strathtyrum was for me a big disappointment, more or less just a big field with holes going back and forth.

    Reply

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