21 Best Golf Courses in New York (Private & Public) 2023

by Alvin Daniel
Best Golf Courses in New York

Golf is a beloved pastime in New York, and the state’s courses offer something for golfers of all levels. From private country clubs to public courses, there are plenty of great places for a round or two in the Empire State. Whether you’re looking for a challenging course with wide fairways or a place to relax and take it easy while enjoying a round, these 21 courses have something for everyone. Read on to find out more about some of the best golf courses in New York.

Bethpage State Park (Black Course) (Private)

Bethpage State Park (Black Course)

Bethpage State Park (Black Course)

Bethpage State Park’s Black Course is one of the most famous public courses in the country. The course was designed by A.W. Tillinghast has hosted many professional tournaments, including the 2002 and 2009 U.S. Opens as well as the Barclays in 2012 and 2016 PGA Championships. It’s an enjoyable yet challenging course for all levels of golfers, with wide fairways and challenging greens.

The Black Course at Bethpage State Park offers a remarkable layout that traverses hills, ridges, and plateaux greens, providing golfers with an unforgettable journey across the course. Every shot presents unbelievable elevation changes that keep players on their toes and add an extra layer of challenge. The narrow fairways and tangly rough add further complexity, testing the skills and precision of even the most seasoned golfers. Recognized for its natural beauty and masterful design, this once scruffy state park haunt has been transformed into a golfing gem with huge sculptured bunkers strategically placed throughout. It’s no wonder that the Black Course has hosted a U.S. Open, with Tiger Woods being the only golfer to break par for all 72 holes.

Location: 99 Quaker Meeting House Road, Farmingdale, NY 11735

The Creek Club (Private)

The Creek Club. Image Source: creek.net

The Creek Club. Image Source: creek.net

The Creek Club is truly one-of-a-kind, offering a captivating blend of natural landscapes. Nestled on a vast expanse of land, it encompasses woodlands, dunes, and wetlands. With its distinctive setting, this golf course perfectly captures the essence of the golden age of golf architecture. Combining elements of both parkland and seaside golf, the course provides a seamless fusion of beauty and challenge.

As players embark on their rounds, they are greeted by a solid yet tranquil opening. The first five holes, adorned with majestic trees, create an atmosphere of serenity. However, the course swiftly transforms as it approaches the Long Island Sound. The signature hole, Nos. 10 through 14, meanders through sand and water, with the stunning beach emphasized by the colossal island of Biarritz. At the 6th tee box, aptly named “Sound View,” golfers are treated to a breathtaking vista from a high bluff. The undulating terrain of the course adds to the intrigue, demanding strategic shots and providing great variety with the changing wind conditions. With its strategic design and captivating greens, The Creek Club promises an engaging and unforgettable golfing experience.

Location: 1 Horse Hollow Rd, Locust Valley, NY 11560

Shinnecock Hills Golf Club (Private)

Shinnecock Hills Golf Club

Shinnecock Hills Golf Club

Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, renowned for hosting five U.S. Opens, is an exquisite private club that boasts a challenging course spanning 118 holes. With a total length of 7,445 yards and a slope rating of 140, this exceptional venue offers a formidable experience for golfers. The prevailing winds blowing off the Atlantic Ocean further add to the course’s difficulty, complementing its sandy, rolling terrain. The strategic layout, skillfully woven between the dunes and undulations, evokes a sense of seclusion and tranquility, providing golfers with a remarkable and immersive playing experience.

The classic architecture of the clubhouse is a symmetrical masterpiece, epitomizing elegance and sophistication. Elevated above the surrounding landscape, it offers breathtaking views of the course. Notably, the 18th hole stands out as the most challenging, featuring an intricate dune complex that demands precision and skill from every golfer. The entire course, meticulously maintained, showcases well-manicured greens that roll true and fast, heightening the level of play. With its rolling sandhills and diverse routing, Shinnecock Hills Golf Club ensures that each round presents a unique test, beckoning players to explore and adapt to different points of the compass.

Location: 200 Tuckahoe Rd, Southampton, NY 11968

National Golf Links of America (Private)

National Golf Links of America

National Golf Links of America

The National Golf Links of America is a true testament to the mastery of strategic design in golf course architecture. Spanning over a massive property, this course boasts a marvelous collection of holes that captivate players and spectators alike. With greens that undulate wildly or remain as flat as pancakes, each hole offers a unique challenge and presents opportunities for strategic play.

This historic course holds monumental importance in the realm of golf. Its classic shaping and lovely land movements create a picturesque setting that covers more than 250 acres of gently rolling landscapes. The National Golf Links of America is renowned for its engaging and memorable play, thanks to the theatrical green complexes and thoughtful execution of every detail. With its enduring charm and unmatched beauty, this course stands among the best and most enchanting golf courses in the world.

Location: 149 Sebonac Inlet Rd, Southampton, NY 11968

Fishers Island Golf Club (Private)

Fishers Island Golf Club

Fishers Island Golf Club

Fishers Island Golf Club is a true gem that caters to the elite Old Money crowd. Nestled on a narrow island, this classic Seth Raynor design offers a captivating golfing experience. Meandering along the island’s northeast edge, the course showcases stunning, uninterrupted water views from almost every hole, adding to its charm.

With its links-like style and wonderfully firm and fast fairways, Fishers Island Golf Club provides a professional yet engaging challenge for golfers. The course features delightful tumbling terrain and meticulously designed greens, including numerous stage-like plateaux greens that demand strategic shots. Steeply-banked bunkers and geometric greens are scattered throughout, heightening the difficulty and beauty of the layout. Notably, the 335-yard third hole named “Plateau” stands out as a fabulous highlight, showcasing the course’s unique character and providing an exhilarating experience for golfers of all skill levels.

Location: 20449 E Main Rd, Fishers Island, NY 06390

Friar’s Head Golf Club (Private)

Friar’s Head Golf Club

Friar’s Head Golf Club

Located in Long Island, New York, Friar’s Head Golf Club is a prestigious private club that offers a truly captivating golfing experience. With its fun and playable course, the club attracts avid golfers from all over. The course is strategically designed, routing through rugged, wooded dunes and former farmland, providing golfers with challenging yet rewarding gameplay. From breathtaking sand dunes to tree-dotted fairways, Friar’s Head offers mesmerizing views of Long Island Sound from its bluff-top locations.

One of the distinctive features of Friar’s Head Golf Club is the size of its greens. Some of the greens are enormous, offering a unique challenge to players as they navigate through dense woods and underbrush. The bunkers at Friar’s Head are equally impressive, ranging from bearded to huge, adding to the overall allure of the course. A standout hole at the club is the signature par four 15th, stretching over an impressive 460 yards. Surrounded by wooded dunes and unbroken tree lines, Friar’s Head Golf Club is renowned for its significant and wild topography, providing golfers with an unforgettable experience on every visit.

Location: 3000 Sound Ave, Riverhead, NY 11901

The West Course at Winged Foot (Private)

The West Course at Winged Foot

The West Course at Winged Foot

The Winged Foot Golf Club, designed by the renowned architect A.W. Tillinghast, is a true classic that has stood the test of time. With a rich history of hosting prestigious golf tournaments, including six U.S. Opens and one PGA Championship, it has proven to be a formidable challenge for professional golfers. The West Course is nestled within a largely flat property, and the narrow tree-lined fairways add an element of difficulty to the layout. The course may remind players of the iconic Peachtree layout, with unique rock outcroppings adding to the character of the course. The raised greens, adorned with well-placed bunkers, create a captivating sight that draws in both players and spectators alike.

In 2020, the West Course showcased its true potential as it played host to the U.S. Open and witnessed the triumph of Bryson DeChambeau. His impressive display of skill allowed him to conquer the demanding course, emerging as the only competitor to finish under-par in his commanding six-shot victory. The West Course at Winged Foot continues to challenge golfers with its strategic design and iconic features, solidifying its reputation as one of the nation’s most demanding layouts.

Location: 851 Fenimore Rd, Mamaroneck, NY 10543

Garden City Golf Club (Private)

Garden City Golf Club, one of the few remaining men-only golf clubs in the United States with its extensive and challenging course, proudly holds the distinction of being the longest in the country. Its classic, old-school design captivates golf enthusiasts, who are drawn to the strategic nature of navigating the deep pot bunkers scattered across the green. As players make their way through the course, the sea breezes provide a constant companion, adding an element of unpredictability to their game. It is no wonder that Garden City Golf Club is revered as one of the rare 100 Greatest courses, culminating in a closing par 3 that leaves a lasting impression on all who experience it.

Not only is the course at Garden City Golf Club characterized by its breathtaking views and unique design, but it also offers a fascinating blend of different golfing styles. With traces of parkland, heathland, and links elements, the course provides a distinct experience for players. The landscape, although relatively wide open, holds hidden nuances that challenge players to carefully consider their shots. The small landforms near the greens and greenside bunkers add subtlety to the gameplay, requiring precision and skill.

Location: 315 Stewart Ave, Garden City, NY 11530

East Course at Oak Hill Country Club (Private)

East Course at Oak Hill Country Club

East Course at Oak Hill Country Club

The East Course at Oak Hill Country Club, designed by the renowned architect Donald Ross, stands as a testament to the impressive hosting of major tournaments. Situated alongside the scenic Allen Creek, this exceptional course boasts a challenging layout, with nine of its eighteen holes featuring lateral hazards. The fairways, starting wide but narrowing towards the end, are skillfully flanked by multiple strategically placed bunkers, offering an engaging experience for golfers of all levels. The immaculate bunkering and meticulously maintained environment contribute to the course’s outstanding quality, creating breathtaking vistas that leave a lasting impression.

Not only does the East Course at Oak Hill Country Club capture the essence of a truly exceptional golfing experience, but the attentive, candid, and friendly staff further enhances the overall enjoyment for players. With ongoing improvements being made to elevate the player’s experience, this world-class course never fails to impress. Challenging holes like the notoriously difficult par four 6th hole, with its slight dogleg to the right, test the skill and strategic thinking of every golfer.

Location: 145 Kilbourn Rd, Rochester, NY 14618

Maidstone Club (Private)

Maidstone Club

Maidstone Club

Maidstone boasts an exclusive golfing experience with both an 18-hole and nine-hole private golf course. Nestled on Gardiner’s Peninsula, this summer retreat has long been favored by New York City’s affluent and socially connected families. With its elite and prestigious reputation, Maidstone presents a challenge to even the most skilled players. Its traditional old layout, characterized by narrow fairways and small, tough greens, demands precision and skill. The course’s unique features, such as the 17th hole’s tight green site and the multiple hazard-filled 50 acres, add an element of excitement and strategy to every game.

Situated on the beautiful shore of the Atlantic Ocean, Maidstone also holds historical significance as one of America’s earliest links courses. Its sandy dunes areas and firm, fast grounds create an authentic golfing experience that attracts enthusiasts year after year. Whether you’re a seasoned golfer seeking a stimulating challenge or an avid player looking to appreciate the rich heritage of the sport, Maidstone offers an unforgettable golfing journey that combines natural beauty with unparalleled golfing conditions.

Location: 50 Old Beach Ln, East Hampton, NY 11937

Sebonack Golf Club (Private)

Sebonack Golf Club

Sebonack Golf Club

Sebonack Golf Club, located on Long Island, is renowned for its exceptional hosting of the prestigious 2013 U.S. Women’s Open. This exclusive club offers a truly captivating golfing experience with its undulating greens, panoramic views of Long Island’s Great Peconic Bay and Cold Spring Pond, and rolling fairways characterized by expansive bunkers and waste dunes. The course’s small greens, with their sweeping contours, add an extra layer of challenge to every shot, making it engaging for players of all skill levels. Designed to embrace the natural landscape, Sebonack’s wild terrain, tricky swales, and burrows create a unique look that is both breathtaking and thought-provoking.

Moreover, Sebonack Golf Club’s dedication to creating a remarkable experience extends to its commitment to catering to high-handicap club members. With well-thought-out course designs and exquisite facilities, the club ensures that all golfers can enjoy the splendor of this extraordinary course.

Location: 405 Sebonac Rd, Southampton, NY 11968

Sleepy Hollow (Private)

Sleepy Hollow

Sleepy Hollow

Sleepy Hollow is a historic country club located in Scarborough-on-Hudson. The club boasts a captivating charm with its buff-colored Italian brick facades that adorn its buildings. Spanning across a vast area of 338 acres, Sleepy Hollow offers a truly picturesque setting that includes tree-limb footbridges and breathtaking views of the majestic Hudson River.

One of the highlights of Sleepy Hollow is its remarkable golf course, which has been selected to host the prestigious 2023 U.S. Mid-Amateur championship. The course provides a fair yet challenging experience for players, featuring greens that posed as the main challenge during the competition. Designed as a template course, Sleepy Hollow offers holes that stay true to their original concepts, allowing golfers to test their skills amidst the presence of blind hazards and undulating terrain. With its rich history and stunning landscape, Sleepy Hollow is a captivating destination that combines sporting excellence with natural beauty.

Location: 777 Albany Post Rd, Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510

East at Winged Foot Golf Club (Private)

East at Winged Foot Golf Club

East at Winged Foot Golf Club

The East course at Winged Foot Golf Club is renowned for its challenging yet fair set of greens. With its firm and fast playing conditions, this course presents a formidable test for golfers of all skill levels. Tight and narrow fairways, along with a collection of strong par threes, add to the course’s difficulty. The presence of deep bunkering strategically placed throughout further adds to the challenge. One particularly demanding hole is the 6th, known as one of the toughest one-shutters. Despite its testing layout, the East course offers enjoyable walks and a unique character that sets it apart from others.

The strength of the East lies in its well-maintained greens. Sloping from back to front and featuring narrow entry areas, these greens require precision and finesse. Additionally, the set-up of narrow fairways and penal rough, coupled with lightning-fast greens, ensures that players must employ strategic shot-making and accurate putting to succeed. Overall, the East at Winged Foot Golf Club provides a professional and engaging golfing experience for those seeking a challenging round on one of golf’s most celebrated courses.

Location: 851 Fenimore Rd, Mamaroneck, NY 10543

Quaker Ridge (Private)

Quaker Ridge

Quaker Ridge. Image Source: David Perry Watkins

Quaker Ridge Golf Club, located in Scarsdale, New York, is known for its prestigious tournaments and enduring legacy in the world of golf. With its beautifully designed course and stunning surroundings, Quaker Ridge offers a touch of grandeur to golf enthusiasts from around the globe. The course features strategically positioned water hazards, including burns and lakes, that not only add to the visual appeal but also provide an extra layer of challenge and excitement. It is no wonder that Quaker Ridge is often considered one of the most unheralded golf courses in the USA, showcasing undulating, heavily wooded country and gorgeous trees that beautifully frame the fairways.

Upon entering the clubhouse, visitors are greeted by a touch of grandeur, reflecting the timeless elegance that Quaker Ridge embodies. The course itself is renowned for its challenging yet playable layout, with deep bunkering strategically placed to test the skills of even the most seasoned golfers. However, despite its challenging nature, Quaker Ridge offers an easy and enjoyable walk for players of all levels. The lightning-fast greens further elevate the experience, demanding precision and skill in every putt.

Location: 146 Griffen Ave, Scarsdale, NY 10583

Piping Rock (Private)

Piping Rock

Piping Rock. Image Source: Instagram: Golfclubhouses

Piping Rock is a remarkable 18-hole links-style golf course that captivates both professional and recreational golfers alike. Its green, measuring an impressive 60 yards deep, is discreetly divided two-thirds of the way back by a visually striking six-foot-deep trench. The front nine of the course gracefully wraps around a former polo field, while the back nine ventures into the more undulating terrain, offering a challenging and picturesque golfing experience.

Renowned for its meticulous conditioning, Piping Rock boasts impeccably manicured fairways and greens. Golf enthusiasts will find particular delight in the 6th hole, hailed as one of Macdonald’s finest par 5s. Set against a backdrop of lush scenery, the green on the 6th hole is perched on a back plateau, subtly guarded by potential hazards that demand strategic play. Piping Rock Golf Course showcases the enduring qualities of Macdonald-Raynor designs, rendering it a must-visit destination for golfers seeking a delightful combination of beauty, challenge, and tradition.

Location: 150 Piping Rock Rd, Locust Valley, NY 11560

Trump Golf Links Ferry Point (Public)

Trump Golf Links Ferry Point

Trump Golf Links Ferry Point

Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point features the acclaimed Jack Nicklaus Signature Design, optimized to capitalize on the breathtaking vistas of the Manhattan skyline, East River, and Whitestone & Throggs Neck Bridges. This exceptional golf course encompasses a picturesque landscape with an array of artificial dunes, creating a captivating sight on the south side of The Bronx. The challenging nature of the game is enhanced by the strategically placed bunkers, while the meticulously maintained fairways and greens offer a delightfully smooth experience. Golf enthusiasts will appreciate the exciting and rapid pace of the greens, providing an engaging and invigorating game.

One of the standout features of Trump Golf Links at Ferry Point is the presence of multiple centerline bunkers, adding an element of complexity to each hole. Moreover, water plays a significant role throughout the course, with the entire right side hugging the mesmerizing waterfront. This fusion of natural elements and exceptional design ensures a truly unique and unforgettable golfing experience.

Location: 500 Hutchinson Riv Pkwy, Bronx, NY 10465

Leatherstocking Golf Course (Public)

Leatherstocking Golf Course

Leatherstocking Golf Course

Leatherstocking Golf Course, true to Devereux Emmet’s design style, showcases the natural contours of the terrain, gently rolling along the picturesque shores of Lake Otsego. Renowned for its scenic beauty and captivating golfing experience, this course offers a delightful challenge to both seasoned players and beginners.

Impeccably crafted, the layout of Leatherstocking Golf Course features strategically placed elements that add excitement and skill to every shot. From false fronts, humps, and plateaus in the greens to deeper and shallower bunkers, the course demands precision and strategic thinking. While the fairways are typically wide, the presence of fairway bunkers requires golfers to make careful decisions on each hole, choosing their line with the utmost precision. Along the way, players are treated to breathtaking views of the glistening lake and the picturesque hillside, adding a touch of tranquillity and serenity to their game.

Location: 60 Lake St, Cooperstown, NY 13326

Turning Stone Resort (Atunyote) (Public)

Turning Stone Resort (Anyone)

Turning Stone Resort (Anyone)

Turning Stone Resort offers exceptional golf amenities with on- and off-site golf courses that are of PGA Tour quality. The Tom Fazio parkland design presents a captivating landscape featuring gently rolling hills, a stream of small waterfalls, and several picturesque lakes. Atunyote golf course was previously ranked for four years on our 100 Greatest Public lists, further exemplifying its excellence. With woodlands and pristine ponds, Atunyote showcases the essence of natural beauty and provides an engaging golfing experience amidst vast stretches of open space.

Apart from its extraordinary design, Atunyote also sets itself apart through its commitment to superior customer service. The resort’s dedication to ensuring an exceptional experience extends to every golfer that sets foot on this remarkable course. As the longest layout at the resort, Atunyote stands as a testament to Turning Stone Resort’s unwavering commitment to providing a truly magnificent golfing destination that combines the allure of a parkland setting with unparalleled customer service.

Location: 5218 Patrick Rd, Verona, NY 13478

Montauk Downs State Park (Public)

Montauk Downs State Park

Montauk Downs State Park. Image Source: Christopher Young

Montauk Downs State Park is home to an impressive 18-hole championship golf course, offering a thrilling experience for golf enthusiasts. Situated in Montauk, this state park boasts a unique feature – swirling winds and narrow driving corridors, making it one of the windiest locations in the country. Due to varying weather conditions, the course presents a different challenge each day, testing the skills and adaptability of players. The small greens require precision approach shots, providing an element of strategy and precision to the game. Additionally, the rolling landscape and the notorious 12th hole make Montauk Downs State Park’s golf course one of the toughest in Long Island.

When it comes to public golfing options, Montauk Downs State Park stands out as a premium choice. The meticulously manicured course offers an inviting atmosphere while also posing a sense of intimidation to players. With its strategic design, every hole presents an opportunity for players to showcase their skills and strategic thinking. Montauk Downs State Park consistently delivers a high-quality golfing experience, making it a must-visit destination for golfers of all levels.

Location: 50 S Fairview Ave, Montauk, NY 11954

Links at Union Vale (Public)

Links at Union Vale

Links at Union Vale

The Links at Union Vale, constructed on a nearly treeless site, is a renowned 18-hole golf course offering stunning views of the Hudson Hills and the Catskill Mountains. Spanning nearly 7,000 yards, this links-style course provides golfers with a challenging yet rewarding experience. With strategically placed bunkers and rough, players are encouraged to tactically navigate the course.

Featuring five sets of tees, the Links at Union Vale caters to players of all skill levels. The first nine holes, while not overly long, showcase the natural shape of the land with its gentle swells and troughs. One notable hole, the 16th, stands out as the signature hole. Stretching to 451 yards, this par-four is characterized by a split fairway, divided by three bunkers set in a slight diagonal from right to left. The Links at Union Vale truly exemplify a meticulously designed golf course that combines challenging play with breathtaking views.

Location: 153 N Parliman Rd, Lagrangeville, NY 12540

Sagamore (Public)

Sagamore

Sagamore

Sagamore Golf Course, under the personal supervision of Donald Ross, offers a truly exceptional golfing experience. With its breathtaking views of Lake George, undulating greens, and lush, narrow fairways lined with hardwoods, this 18-hole course showcases the beauty of its mainland location. The hillside layout provides a challenging yet rewarding game, while the vista, particularly on a clear day, allows golfers to soak in the stunning scenery of Lake George.

One of the standout features of Sagamore Golf Course is its meticulously maintained greens. Known for their perfection, these greens ensure a smooth and consistent putting experience. Golfers of all skill levels can appreciate the attention to detail and dedication to excellence that goes into every aspect of this course.

Location: 46 Frank Cameron Rd, Bolton Landing, NY 12814

Conclusion

New York truly is a golfer’s paradise, and these top 21 golf courses in the state clearly prove it! From breathtaking scenery to impeccable design, each of these courses offers something special that will make your day on the links unforgettable. With so many amazing options, you can’t go wrong with any of these courses. So grab your clubs and head to the nearest course for a day out on the green!

Author

  • Alvin Daniel

    Hello everyone, I'm Alvin Daniel. I was born in the Philippines and came to the United States when I was 16 years old. I started playing golf at that age and have loved it ever since. I turned professional when I was 21 and have been working as a golf instructor and guide ever since. My goal is to help everyone know more about this great game of golf. And, hopefully, through my instruction, they can improve their skills and enjoy the game even more.

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