Best golf courses in England

1 of 14 Mark Newcombe

Royal Birkdale

Funky clubhouse aside, this layout in England's northwest corner will host its 10th British Open in 2017. In 2008, Padraig Harrington claimed his second consecutive Open title here, and the Women's British Open has visited Birkdale five times in the past.
2 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Royal Lytham and St. Annes

You saw plenty of Royal Lytham and St. Annes (pictured), during the 2012 British Open. But England has plenty of other layouts -- both links and parkland -- that are worth a visit.
3 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Royal St. George's

Surely one of Darren Clarke's favorite courses in England, if not the world, as it was the site of his lone major triumph at the 2011 British Open. Located on the coast southeast of London, the club celebrates its 140th anniversary in 2017.
4 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Sunningdale (Old)

The best parkland course in the country will never host an Open championship, but only for logistical reasons. It has, however, hosted the Women's British Open (and variations) four times. The superb layout in a London suburb was designed by Willie Park and later worked on by Harry Colt.
5 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Woodhall Spa

Home of the country's National Golf Centre, the facility also includes the stellar Hotchkin course, originally designed by Harry Colt and later tweaked by its namesake, Stafford Vere Hotchkin.
6 of 14 Mark Newcombe

Ganton

An all-star cast of golf legends -- including Harry Vardon, Harry Colt and Alister MacKenzie -- have left their imprint on this layout located in northeast England. The course is one of only two English layouts to host both a Ryder Cup (1949) and the Curtis Cup (2000).
7 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Royal Liverpool

Host of 12 British Opens, the course is also known as Hoylake (the town where it is located). The layout has also hosted the 2012 Women's British Open.
8 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Walton Heath (Old)

Golf on the Old course here has been played since 1904. Heather dominates the venue, located just south of London. If you do get a tee time, it's probably best not to bring up the nine-point U.S. victory here in the 1981 Ryder Cup.
9 of 14 Mark Newcombe

Swinley Forest

This ultra-exclusive club could be the country's toughest tee time. Another Harry Colt design, the beautiful heathland layout is short by today's standards (just over 6,000 yards) but not any less of a challenge. Getting a tee time is harder than any of its holes.
10 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Sunningdale (New)

Debating whether this course is better than its older (by 22 years) sibling is a discussion worth having. Play both on the same day (that will cost $438 between April and October) and you can offer your own perspective.
11 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Saunton (East)

The countryside of North Devon on England's southwest coast has been home to this club since 1897. The current version of the East Course debuted in 1919. Sergio Garcia won the 1997 British Boys' Championship there.
12 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Royal West Norfolk

Check the local tidal schedules (available on the club's website at rwngc.org) because access to the course is affected by the nearby North Sea. Also known as Brancaster, the 6,457-yard course is 125 years old and allows only two balls in play at once -- you're either playing as a single with one other person, or you're playing alternate shot with a partner and another twosome.
13 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

St. Enodoc

Located on the North Cornwall coast with Atlantic Ocean views, the 127-year-old club's Church Course is well worth the three-hour trek from London. It hosted the 2014 English Women's Amateur.
14 of 14 David Cannon/Getty Images

Royal Cinque Ports

This 1909 and 1920 British Open venue, just south of Royal St. George's in the county of Kent, is known for heavily undulating fairways.