For the fans, the majors bring a double challenge: getting in through the gates, and scoring a round at a decent course within 20 miles of the venue. Arm yourself with this guide to tickets to the events and tee times you can enjoy nearby, and you can finally play at the majors.
Ask Traveling Joe
We're headed to Orlando, Fla. We'll play some top-tier courses, but wondered if you could recommend a few bargain rounds?
-Jack Jordan, via e-mail
You can save some coin and still get quality golf at Black Bear ($35-$55), Diamondback ($75), Palisades ($30-$40), Remington ($40-$80) and Walkabout ($30-$50), in that order. For a slight splurge, Mission Hills' El Campeon ($150) and Orange County National's Panther Lake ($90-$150) are overlooked gems.
I am going to the Cape area of South Africa. With my 18-handicap game, what courses would you suggest I try?
-Robert H. Domey, Rotterdam, Netherlands
The Links at Fancourt in George, site of the 2003 Presidents Cup, is a stern test, but who wants to travel that far to be beaten up? You'll have more fun at any of Fancourt's sister courses, particularly Montagu. Other options for not being brutalized: Arabella ($80) in the West Cape, Pearl Valley ($81-$109), a new Jack Nicklaus course, and the Gary Player-designed Erinvale ($45-$98) will all make for a more relaxed trip.
Joe Passov has played more than 1,100 courses in 21 countries. If you need travel directions, zip him an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org