California is a dream destination for golf enthusiasts. Except for those located near the mountains, California golf courses receive warm sunshine and near-perfect golf weather 365 days a year. Plus, the state has something for everyone—from luxury designer courses where the pros go to test their mettle, to easy courses that promise fun for every member of the family. And then there are the views: oceanside, urban jungle, desert landscape, or the mountains. So instead of wondering whether you should go to California for your next golf vacation, start wondering where in California you should go.
Los Angeles, California golf courses
In the City of Angels, you're just as likely to enjoy your golf game as you are to spot a Hollywood celebrity. That may be saying a lot, but Los Angeles' golf courses are indeed designed by some of the world's best golf architects to provide some thrills, not to mention a respite from LA's big-city hustle and bustle. No worries if you can't score a tee time at one of the city's more exclusive golf courses—LA has plenty of public golf courses that are as beautiful and challenging as the private ones.
California golf courses in San Diego
Despite the fact that there are more than 90 of them, no 2 of San Diego, California's golf courses are the same. Each can put you in a different setting—surrounded by mountain views, desert landscapes, or views of the ocean. Each has its own design, layout, and variety of terrain. And each can pose a different challenge, depending on what skill level you have. You can even find yourself teeing off with champions of the sport, as these golf courses have hosted many a professional golf tournament, including the US Open.
Palm Springs, California golf courses
The legendary Bob Hope made golf in California's Palm Springs cool. And so the city celebrates the man's legacy and contribution to golf by naming one of its premier golf events the Bob Hope Classic. It's easy to see why Bob Hope loved golfing in Palm Springs. The city is an oasis in the Sonoran Desert, and its designer golf courses remain verdant nearly all year long. The tree-covered mountains provide a dramatic backdrop, and the courses themselves can test the skill of even the most seasoned of pros. Of course, if you're still a newbie to the sport, you can easily find a course that you can play comfortably.
Golf in California's Pebble Beach
Playing a round in California's Pebble Beach is a bucket-list item for many golf enthusiasts—the golf courses here are counted among the most beautiful in the world, where you can take in views of the Monterey Peninsula's rugged coastline along the waters of the Pacific Ocean. Playing here can challenge the skills of a seasoned player, yet allow newbies to the sport to try their hand without being overwhelmed. Pebble Beach hosts many professional tournaments, including the US Open.
San Francisco, California golf courses
The San Francisco Bay Area is home to some of the oldest and most iconic of California's golf courses. Many of these are luxury golf courses designed by acclaimed golf architects, while some are public courses open for everyone to enjoy. The setting varies depending on where the course is located—on San Francisco's rugged coastline, or on rolling hills further inland. One thing's for certain when you do play golf in this part of California: the view is lovely wherever you go, but your game can be challenged by wind, rain, and even the Bay Area's famous fog.
California golf courses in Truckee
Truckee stands unique among the destinations for golf in California. That's because the town is near the mountains around Lake Tahoe. The golf courses here are elevated and open only from late spring to fall; in winter, Truckee becomes a ski haven. The elevation and the rugged woodland terrain can make golfing in Truckee extra challenging, especially as the weather becomes cooler. Don't worry if you don't break any records at one of the town's championship courses—the fresh air and the pristine alpine views will be consolation enough.