U.S. Open 2019: These 3D images of Pebble Beach and the courses around it are mesmerizing

June 15, 2019

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. — Pebble Beach Golf Links looks good from any angle, and any dimension. Photographers (and fans) salivate at the idea of snapping the perfect photo during a trip to the site of the 2019 U.S. Open. But how about Pebble Beach from a decidedly different perspective?

Our team at GOLF, led by resident cartographer Sean Zak, took a look at Pebble Beach and the other courses on the Monterey Peninsula in three dimensions, using Google Earth and some savvy editing. Here’s a look at what they found.

Let’s start by orienting ourselves in the area. 17 Mile Drive, home to Pebble Beach Golf Links and a mess of other fantastic golf courses, is about two hours south along the coastline from San Francisco’s airport.

The first stop on our course list is also the highest-rated — and arguably the most intriguing private golf course in the world. Check out Cypress Point from above. (Read more about the course here.)

Next is Monterey Peninsula Country Club, an underrated 36 holes down the road. The Dunes Course and the Shore Course sit next to each other but have different characteristics (and even colors!) as you can see in the image below. One thing they share: spectacular views.

Monterey Peninsula boasts two 18-hole courses that border each other.

Next is Spanish Bay Golf Links, which boasts a whole host of coastline action and is “cheap” compared with Pebble Beach’s rates, which means you can get on for under $300. Check it out:

Spanish Bay Golf Links has a dramatic coastline.

Next up is a personal favorite: the back nine at Pacific Grove Municipal Golf Links. Pacific Grove has variable rates, but trust that they’re a heck of a lot cheaper than anything else in the area. The back nine is so loaded with character you’ll want to play it again and again. Good news: you can!

The word is out about Pacific Grove Muni, but you can still sneak out for a heck of a vibe — and a heck of a bargain.

Poppy Hills! A 2014 renovation has helped this course play firmer and faster, and even though it plays among the pines rather than along the ocean, this makes for a great change-up during a trip to the peninsula.

Poppy Hills plays firmer and faster after a 2014 renovation.

At our next stop, Spyglass Hill’s greatest strength may also be it’s greatest disappointment: the first five holes are so good they cause a sense of anticlimax the rest of the way around. You can see that perfectly right here.

Finally: Pebble Beach! The main event. What sticks out from this view is just the expanse of coastline covered by this iconic golf course. From 18 down to 17, then 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10…it’s a golf dream. Or, really, the dream of anyone who enjoys green grass, blue ocean and a broad view.

Pebble Beach Golf Links looks pretty good from this — and every — angle.

Let’s check out one more angle, looking back from the money stretch at Pebble. There’s a grandstand by No. 7 where, if you stand at the top, you can see everything: 6, 7, 8, beyond. It’s the best spot on the course, and this is that view on steroids.

Alternate angle and yeah — still good.

You can (and should!) check out the entire virtual tour here or below. And then of course we’d recommend exploring in person for yourselves.