Add Golf to the Mix Next Time in Toronto

Royal Woodbine Golf Club (Image: Royal Woodbine Golf Club)

Royal Woodbine Golf Club is just a runway-length away from Lester B. Pearson International Airport. (Image: Royal Woodbine Golf Club)

Travellers know to expect acclaimed theatre productions, top restaurants and other stylish attractions in Toronto. But don’t forget to pack the sticks on your next visit to a booming metropolis that is also a world-class golf destination.

(Last updated May 2019.)

I recently shared a flight from Toronto to Calgary with a group of six retired farmers from Red Deer, Alberta. They had just spent a long buddies weekend in Canada’s largest city, taking in a Toronto Blue Jays’ home stand and drinking far more pricey big city brew than their wives and physicians would have thought wise.

As I discovered, they were all golfers—yet the idea of bringing their clubs to Toronto never entered their minds. That’s a shame. Most Canadians don’t realize that the Greater Toronto Area is one of the outstanding golf destinations in North America, with more than 230 courses within an hour’s drive of City Hall.

In fact, only sun-baked San Diego and its suburbs can claim a higher density of golf facilities.

Undoubtedly the top draw is Glen Abbey Golf Club, in nearby Oakville, which hosted its 30th Canadian Open in 2018. Another high-profile favourite is Angus Glen Golf Club, host of the Open in 2002 and 2007. Eagles Nest Golf Club, Wooden Sticks and TPC Toronto at Osprey Valley are other highly regarded public-play facilities.

How about an affordable and attractive 18-hole muni right on the subway line? Don Valley Golf Course is less than a five-minute walk north of the York Mills station on the Yonge Street line.

And here’s one that even regular visitors to Toronto might not have played: Lebovic Golf Club, a Doug Carrick design in Aurora, a short drive north of the city, which has received raves since opening in 2016.

Toronto is even an ideal golf destination for air travellers pressed for time. A challenging Dr. Michael Hurdzan design, Royal Woodbine Golf Club, is literally a runway-length away from Lester B. Pearson International Airport.

On a good day, you can be through security at Pearson and boarding your flight less than an hour after your final tee shot.