Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club
Founded in 1886, Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club was originally laid out by George Lowe and later modified by Harry S. Colt. Considered one of the most challenging links courses in England, the course has hosted two Ryder Cups and hosted its 11th Open Championship in 2012 where Ernie Els triumphed after Adam Scott faltered. Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club has wide fairways, deep rough, fast-paced greens and 206 bunkers lining the fairways and surrounding the greens. While not the longest of links, it is a course where careful thought and accurate shot making are required. Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club is Ranked #17 on Golf Digest’s list of 100 Greatest Courses Outside the US.
Royal Liverpool Golf Club
Royal Liverpool Golf Club is commonly known at Hoylake, has hosted 11 Open tournaments, most recently in 2006 with Tiger Woods the winner, and will host the Open again in 2014. Built in 1869, Hoylake is the oldest of all the English seaside courses with the exception of Westward Ho! in Devon. Royal Liverpool Golf Club was lengthened and altered in recent years by Donald Steel. Hoylake provides a good mixture of holes all with varying degrees of difficulty. While it may appear fairly flat and unthreatening, when the wind picks up the game here becomes quite a challenge. Royal Liverpool Golf Club is ranked #26 on Golf Digest’s list of 100 Greatest Courses Outside the US.
Royal Birkdale Golf Club
Royal Birkdale Golf Club is a course that provides a formidable test of links golf and fully deserves its recognition as an Open Championship venue. Each hole runs in valleys between towering sand hills. Royal Birkdales pedigree rivals any course in the United Kingdom having played host to two Ryder Cups, the Walker and Curtis Cups, the Women’s British Open, and the Open Championship on 9 occasions. The most recent visit saw Irishman Padraig Harrington become the first European to win back-to-back Championships since James Braid way back in 1906. Royal Birkdale Golf Club has established itself as a top attraction in England’s most impressive golfing area as its pure links test enchants all those fortunate enough to visit and play a round here. Ranked #14 on Golf Digest’s list of 100 Greatest Courses Outside the US.
Formby Golf Club
Formby Golf Club, founded in 1884, is a magnificent traditional links course of charm and elegance situated close to the shoreline of the Irish Sea. The course lies within sand hills and pinewoods. A true championship links course unlike any other, the course will challenge you at every shot as accuracy is always at a premium here. The original 1884 design has seen alterations from revered names like Willie Park, James Braid, Hawtree, Steel and Pennick, some of the most prominent individuals in the history of British golf architecture, and with this pedigree it is easy to understand why Formby is held in such a high regard for the visiting golfer.
Hillside Golf Club
Hillside Golf Club, situated next door to Royal Birkdale, is widely regarded as perhaps one of the best links never to have hosted the Open Championship. This links course provides a variety of holes in a majestic setting that will test the best of players. The course is well known for its wonderful conditioning with its very slick greens. Hillside runs alongside Royal Birkdale meandering through the same stretch of majestic sand hills and tranquil pinewoods. The back nine is really special and is often compared to Ballybunion Old Course in Ireland as the holes meander through giant dunes. Many of the holes have elevated tees with fantastic views over the Irish Sea.