Old Course Tops Poll of Scotland’s Best Holes

Old Course St Andrews Silken Bridge (Image: Visit Scotland)

The Old Course’s 17th was named best par four, while the 18th topped the poll as both the best closing hole and the best hole overall. (Image: Visit Scotland)

The iconic 17th and 18th at the Old Course, together with Royal Troon’s Postage Stamp and the first at Machrihanish, lead the way in a poll of the most outstanding golf holes in Scotland.

It’s not for nothing that they call St. Andrews the “Home of Golf.”

In a poll of 3,000 golfers by Visit Scotland, the 18th hole at the Old Course, known as Tom Morris, was voted both the best closing hole and the best golf hole in Scotland. Meanwhile, the Old Course’s 17th hole, famous as the Road Hole, was voted the best par four.

From a selection of short-listed holes, golfers were asked to vote for the best opening and closing holes, the best par-three, par-four and par-five holes, the hole offering the best view, and the best hole overall.

The ninth hole at Cruden Bay Golf Club, on the Aberdeenshire coast, claimed the award for best view. The course, which boasts jaw-dropping outlooks across the Bay of Cruden and Slains Castle, beat out stiff competition from the Castle Course in St. Andrews, Machrihanish Dunes and Gullane Golf Club. The category included nominations for more than 300 holes.

Machrihanish Golf Club (Image: Visit Scotland)

Set beside the Atlantic Ocean, the 1st at Machrihanish was voted best opening hole. (Image: Visit Scotland)

No surprise to anyone who has made the trek to its remote location on the Mull of Kintyre, Machrihanish Golf Club confirmed its status as the owner of the most spectacular opening hole in Scotland. Known as The Battery, the dogleg par-four challenges golfers to carry as much of the Atlantic Ocean as they dare.

Surprisingly, a pair of lower profile clubs fared better in the polling than several more famous courses. Moray Golf Club’s 18th hole, overlooking the Moray Firth, ranked second in voting for best closing hole, ahead of the home holes at Carnoustie and Trump Turnberry. And the 12th hole at neighbouring Hopeman Golf Club, a course unknown to many golfers, received more than 120 votes in the best view category, despite not being shortlisted.

Postage Stamp, the iconic 123-yard eighth hole at Royal Troon Golf Club, was voted the best par-three in Scotland. The top par-five was the 12th hole at Kingsbarns Golf Links, a 606-yard beast fittingly named Orrdeal. Kingsbarns’ 12th beat out par-five holes at Castle Stuart (18th), Gleneagles (16th), and the recently redesigned Ailsa course at Trump Turnberry (10th).

The final poll results:

Best HoleTom Morris, 18th at the Old Course, St. Andrews (799 votes, 27% share).

Best Opening HoleThe Battery, 1st at Machrihanish Golf Club (1,025 votes, 30% share).

Best Closing HoleTom Morris, 18th at the Old Course, St. Andrews (825 votes, 24% share).

Best Par 3The Postage Stamp, 8th at Royal Troon (891 votes, 26% share).

Best Par 4Road, 17th at the Old Course, St. Andrews (1,176 votes, 36% share).

Best Par 5Orrdeal, 12th at Kingsbarns Golf Links (654 votes, 19% share).

Best View – 9th at Championship Course, Cruden Bay Golf Club (662 votes, 20% share).



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