Chicago is a fascinating city that attracts people for many reasons. The diverse range of attractions and the rich culture and history of the city are what draw many people to the area. However, step outside the urbanized parts of Chicago and you will find plenty of outdoor activities to enjoy. One popular option is golf, as there are some excellent golf courses in this city and the surrounding area. These vary significantly, so you can enjoy a unique experience at each of them. Here are 10 of the best golf courses in Chicago.
10. Ravisloe Golf Club
IN the past, Ravisloe Golf Club was a private club, and it has retained the charm and elegance that are associated with private clubs. However, this is now a public 18-hole golf course. It was built in 1901 and didn’t become a public course until 2009, and this was due to a change of ownership. The course has been redesigned several times, so it has changed over the years. Bunkers are one of the main features of this course, as there is extensive bunkering around the waste areas and small greens. The layout means that this is a walking course that presents a range of challenges along the way. The clubhouse was originally designed by George Nimmons, although it has been updated many times over the years.
9. Mount Prospect Golf Club
Just outside Chicago in Mount Prospect is Mount Prospect Golf Club, which is one of the top-rated golf clubs in Chicago and the surrounding area. This 18-hole public golf course was opened in 1929 and the head pro at this club is Brett Barcel. It is part of the Mount Prospect Park District, which covers 454 acres. Surrounding the golf course are parks, play areas, and several sporting facilities. The course was redesigned by Esler Golf Design to return the course to its original glory. Each of the holes was inspired by holes from golf courses around Great Britain.
8. Harborside International Port Course
If you prefer a quick game on a nine-hole course, then The Chicago Traveler recommends Harborside International Port Course. This nine-hole course is described as having an astonishing layout over terrain that is intended to mimic the hills of Scotland yet set against the city skyline of Chicago.
7. Prairie Landing Golf Club
Designed by famous golf architect Robert Trent Jones Jr., the fairways of this course are always in exceptional condition. It is one of the most challenging courses you will come across in Chicago, says Golf Digest. This is due to the many contours and the strategically placed bunker that will keep you on your toes. It is often windy on this course, which adds a further challenge to play. Other elements of the course that you will need to negotiate are the tall grass, the wetlands, and the fast sloping greens. These challenges only add to the fun of a round of golf on this course.
6. Jackson Park Golf Course
Situated next to Lake Michigan, this stunning golf course attracts many celebrity golf players. It is a historic feature of Chicago as this muni built walking course was created in 1899 as part of the Chicago Park District. Another reason to visit is that this is one of the most affordable options in the Chicago area for visiting golfers.
5. The Glen Club
Although this is a members club, they do have sessions for the public, says Golf Digest. The course was designed by Tom Fazio, and it has a beautiful layout that makes playing there a true pleasure. It was created on a former Navy base that was completely flat, so it is fascinating to see the bunkers and elevations that are now features of this course. The greens are prairie grass, and the course is dotted with thousands of mature trees.
4. The Preserve at Oak Meadows
Located in the Addison area of Chicago, this golf course is one of the oldest in Chicago as it has been open since 1915. The Preserve at Oak Meadows is an 18-hole public course that features 6,718 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 71. This course has a slope rating of 126 on Bluegrass and an overall rating of 72.1. The course is managed by Dean Westrom and the head professional is Ed Stevenson.
3. The Highlands of Elgin
Larry Packard designed this 18-hole 7000-yard course, which first opened in 1971. It is a public course that is designed to suit a variety of ability levels, as some sections are relatively flat while other sections offer some tricky challenges. This course is open to the public throughout the year and it boasts an excellent restaurant where you can eat on the veranda and enjoy views across the links.
2. Cantigny Golf Course
This golf course is one of the largest in the Chicago area. In total, there are 27 holes at this course, although they are divided into three nine-hole layouts. This gives you the option to play nine, 18, or 27-holes at each visit. This course has hosted many major events, including the 2007 U.S. Amateur Public Links and the Illinois Amateur Championships in both 1998 and 2002.
1. Cog Hill Golf & Country Club
According to Chicago Golf the best golf course in Chicago is the Cog Hill Golf & Country Club. Therefore, if you only play at one course during your visit to Chicago, then this is the one that you should choose. Opened in 1927, this club is home to four 18-hole championship golf courses, each of which has won awards and each offering a different playing experience and challenges. This means that you have plenty of playing options if you visit this club. The course was originally designed by Dubsdred-Dick Wilson, although it was redesigned by Rees Jones in 2008.