st andrews old course

This is arguably the most famous golf course in the world and has hosted the Open Championship 27 times which is more than any other course.

st andrews old course

The course is steeped in history and has also seen some exciting championships in recent years, including Tiger Wood's win in the 150th Open Championship. The St Andrews Old Course has some extraordinary features including:

  • the Road Hole, where you must now drive over the Hotel if you want to get a chance of a 4 at that hole.
  • You will enjoy walking over the famous Swilken Bridge, where many a famous golfer has paused to get their photograph taken !
  • When you finally reach the 18th, be careful not to end up in the Valley of Sin, a dip in the course just before the 18th green, which is a notorious trap for those who play a bit short of the green !
  • there are notorious bunkers on the course, including hell bunker, the strath bunker and the road hole bunker ! Avoid these if you can !

playing st andrews

Old Course - Championship Length : 6,933 yards  PAR: 72  SSS : 72

You need a handicap certificate if you wish to try and arrange a game on the Old Course - for men they must have at least a 24 handicap, for women a 36 handicap. Details about how to play can be found on the St Andrews Links Trust website by clicking here or you may wish to book a holiday with a tour operatore who arranges everything for you.

Whether or not you have managed to arrange a game on the Old Course at St Andrews, you might also want to try some of the other St Andrews Links courses, such as the Jubilee, the New and the Eden course. There is also an excellent driving range where you can get some practise in if needed !  When you have played the actual golf courses at St Andrews, don't forget to test your putting on the ultimate challenge of "The Himalayas" - a very hilly putting course at St Andrews - right next to the Old Course !

himalayas putting course

history of st andrews

Golf has been played in St Andrews since the 1400s. In 1552, the people of the "Auld Grey Toon" of St Andrews were given the rights by Archbishop John Hamilton to play golf on the links.  The charter is principally a license to allow Archbishop Hamilton to breed rabbits on the links but the document also allows them to continue the "playing at golf, futball, schuting at all gamis, with all uther maner of pastyme as ever thai plais."

No single architect is given sole credit for the course. People who have contributed over the years to the design have included : Daw Anderson, Old Tom Morris and Dr. Alister Mackenzie.

staying nearby

St Andrews has numerous hotels and some excellent Bed and Breakfast Accomodation.

However some hotels that we can recommend are :

The Old Course Hotel : Click here to find out about some great golfing breaks at the Old Course Hotel

The MacDonald Rusacks Hotel:  Click Here to Book the Macdonald Rusacks Hotels

The Best Western Scores Hotel. This hotel overlooks the sea at St Andrews and is very close to the Old Course. It has a golf concierge service, bag storage and drying facilities.Click here to visit the website for the Best Western Scores Hotel in St Andrews

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Other hotels in St Andrews include the new Fairmont Hotel at St Andrews Bay Golf Course. There are also numerous very good Bed and Breakfasts and small hotels. The University also offers accommodation during the summer months.

things to see in the area

You may wish to combine a visit to St Andrews with a visit to other courses in the area, particularly Kingsbarns. There is also the Dukes Course on the outskirts of St Andrews and others as well.

In St Andrews itself you will be able to visit the Museum of Golf. You will see the Royal and Ancient Clubhouse. There are numerous excellent places to eat and to stay in St Andrews. And there are some interesting shops to browse around.

You can visit the ancient cathedral ruins and also visit St Andrews Castle which has an interesting underground tunnel !  There is also a public swimming pool in St Andrews as well as a cinema.

In Crail you can visit a lovely Pottery and view the fishing harbour. In Anstruther you will find some excellent fish and chip shops and can watch boats at the harbour and pier.