Play Two in Beautiful Cape Breton

Together Highlands Links and Bell Bay Golf Club make one of Canadian golf’s most irresistible combinations.

Ultimate Golf Vacations offers a four-night package that includes accommodation at Keltic Lodge Resort and Spa, three rounds of golf (two at Highlands Links and one at Bell Bay) and a four-day midsize car rental with unlimited mileage. Cost: $1,239 to Sept. 30.

Highlands Links, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia

Stanley Thompson-designed Highlands Links at Keltic Lodge Resort and Spa. (Image: Highlands Links)

Opened in 1941, Highlands Links is a Stanley Thompson-designed jewel built near rugged oceanside cliffs in the quiet north shore village of Ingonish. Golfers come away dazzled by one of the most perfectly suited natural settings ever given to a Canadian course. Nova Scotia’s tallest mountains loom over rough-and-tumble terrain ranging from a pine-edged valley floor cut by the charging Clyburn River to rocky outcrops and seaside marshes. Adding still more charm to the setting is Keltic Lodge, a provincially operated resort that lies just a few hundred yards from the course at the end of a long birch-lined drive.

Located in the charming tourist town of Baddeck, about an hour’s drive from Ingonish on the famed Cabot Trail, Bell Bay Golf Club was named for telephone inventor Alexander Graham Bell, who spent the last 37 summers of his life across the bay in a hilltop mansion named Beinn Bhreagh (Gaelic for “beautiful mountain”).

Voted Canada’s best new course of 1998 by Golf Digest, the Tom McBroom-designed layout is marvellously scenic, with plush fairways lined with towering stands of birch and pine trees, boldly moulded bunkers and velvet greens.

Though not part of the Ultimate Golf Vacations package, Cabot Links is also a must-play while you’re in Cape Breton. Located seaside in the town of Inverness, Cabot Links is Canada’s most heralded new course.