Spring break bound? Here are the best courses in the best beach destinations

March 8, 2019

 

 

The calendar flips to March, the snow melts away, and the spring season is on the horizon. But just because winter is ending doesn’t necessarily mean that the cold weather is going away. Therefore, it’s officially that time of the year when burned-out workers, party-hungry college students, and others are looking to get out of the cold and head somewhere warmer for spring break.

Along with getting some sun and relaxing by the pool or beach, spring-break travelers will likely be looking to play some golf while in the warm weather. With that, we chose seven of the most popular spring-break destinations that people will likely be traveling to and selected one of the best public courses in each of those areas for visitors to check out during their visit.

El Camaleon is home to the Mayakoba Golf Classic every year.
Courtesy of El Camaleon

Cancún, Mexico
El Camaleón Mayakoba Golf Club

This Greg Norman-designed course, which plays host to the Mayakoba Golf Classic on the PGA Tour every year, does not lack in dramatic views and beautiful scenery. The par-72 course, which runs 7,024 yards, features tropical jungles, limestone canals and wetlands, an underground cave, and the beach for golfers to take in. Because of its ever-changing landscape, the course earned its name because of its similarity to a chameleon. The course is located along several miles of fresh water canals, and it has two ocean holes for golfers to enjoy. Rounds aren’t cheap; tee times typically start at $239.

Coastal golf is as good as it gets when you play at Teeth of the Dog in the Dominican Republic.
Tim Reilly

La Romana, Dominican Republic
Teeth of the Dog Golf Course at Casa de Campo

Teeth of the Dog, a Pete Dye-designed course that opened for business in 1971, is much like El Camaleón in that it brings the natural landscape into the course layout. The course features much of the rugged rock and coral that can be found along the Dominican coastline, and seven holes run alongside the ocean. Given its location along the Caribbean, golfers will encounter plenty of wind during their round. The par-72 track runs 7,350 yards and offers golfers six tees to choose from. If you’re staying at the resort, tee times typically go for $250.

Look no further than Cabo San Lucas Country Club if planning a trip to Cabo.
Courtesy of Cabo San Lucas Country Club

Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
Cabo San Lucas Country Club

While Cancún is the main Spring Break destination on the eastern portion of Mexico, Cabo certainly holds that title for the western coast of the country. Cabo San Lucas Country Club, a Roy Dye-designed course which opened for business in 1994, is a desert-style track that is largely flat with a gentle slope towards the ocean. The course features spectacular views of the mountains, desert, and ocean, and its sprawling fairways are lined with cacti and Palo Blanco trees. The 18-hole, par-71 course runs 6,852 yards and features Bermuda grass on both its greens and fairways. Tee times at this course don’t hit the wallet as hard as the previous two courses; an afternoon round will likely cost you only $120.

You won't find a better place to golf in South Padre Island than at South Padre Island Golf Club.
Courtesy of South Padre Island than at South Padre Island Golf Club

South Padre Island, Texas
South Padre Island Golf Club

South Padre Island Golf Club might not have the big-name mystique that the other courses here possess, but it does offer a little something for everyone. This links-style course has plenty of water hazards and sand traps to make things challenging. Tee times are extremely affordable here, as they range from $30-45. College students, we’re looking at you with this one.

 

The natural landscape is majestic at Half Moon Golf Club.
Courtesy of Half Moon Golf Club

Montego Bay, Jamaica
Half Moon Golf Club

If you take the Beach Boys’ recommendation of going to Montego Bay in Jamaica, look no further than Half Moon Golf Club for a round. Designed by Robert Trent Jones Sr. and opened in 1961, this 18-hole par-72 course has been home to numerous PGA Tour events over the years. Considered as a great walking course, Half Moon runs 7,141 yards and strictly uses Bermuda grass for its fairways and greens. The course features four tee boxes, undulating greens, numerous bunkers, and a “figure-eight” layout that can be difficult for any golfer to handle when windy.

Normandy Shores Golf Club is just one of many beautiful courses in the Miami area.
Courtesy of Miami Beach Digest

Miami Beach, Florida
Normandy Shores Golf Club

Miami Beach has no shortage of great courses to play. One of the best in the area happens to be Normandy Shores Golf Club. The par-72 course was originally built by Howard Toomey and William Flynn in 1941. The course then underwent a $9 million redesign in 2008 led by architect Arthur Hills, who put in new greens across the track. Given that the course is located near the ocean, expect plenty of wind and water hazards to factor into your round. Twilight rounds currently go for $80, while an earlier round will likely cost you $125.

The Royal Blue Course at Baha Mar is a Jack Nicklaus-designed track.
Courtesy of Nicklaus Design

Nassau, Bahamas
Royal Blue Golf Course at Baha Mar

For those who plan to stay at the Baha Mar resort in Nassau, the Royal Blue Golf Course is a must-play. This Jack Nicklaus-designed course consists of various elevation changes while giving golfers plenty of scenic views. The track has undulating fairways, white sand dunes and views of the Atlantic Ocean on the front nine, but a more downhill terrain that feels like the jungle on the back. Maybe the most unique aspect of the course is that it offers golfers only one set of tees that are placed in unique spots everyday. Rounds typically go for about $275.

Nicklaus Design and GOLF.com are operated by the same holding company, 8AM Golf.