Over the past three decades, Michigan has grown to become one of America’s premier summer golf destinations, drawing golf’s leading architects to build world-class resort destinations and award winning stand-alone golf courses. Below are five of our favorite Michigan golf courses.
Shepherds Hollow – Clarkston, MI: The Southeast region of Michigan has become a hot bed for great golf courses in recent years, and leading the way in the Motor City area is Shepherds Hollow. A 27-hole Arthur Hills design, the course is located on 420-acres of dramatically rolling and wooded land, which is one of the highest points in the region. Hills described the property as, “as good an inland site for golf as there is anywhere in the U.S.” The award winning course features spectacular scenery with strategic holes and water hazards, and combined with the charming Victorian clubhouse makes it one of the leading destination courses in the area.
Harbor Shores Golf Club – Benton Harbor, MI: Golden bear tracks have been found in Michigan’s Southwest corner. Jack Nicklaus designed his second signature course in the state in the St. Joseph/Benton Harbor area, which is part of a major reclamation project that includes home-sites along the golf course, a marina surrounded by lifestyle shops, a spa and green space.. Harbor Shores, which plays host to the PGA Senior Championship (2012 and 2014), is one of Michigan’s more innovative courses featuring dune holes just a wedge away from dramatic views of Lake Michigan and the remainder of the course cut through wetland areas, sand dunes, rivers, and hardwoods.
The Gailes – Oscoda, MI: The Northeastern part of Michigan’s lower peninsula has been billed as the “Sunrise Side,” and if you plan to visit, make sure to start your golf adventure at The Gailes at Lakewood Shores Resort. The Gailes, which was voted the No. 1 New Resort Course in 1993 by Golf Digest, recreates the look and feel of the famed seaside Scottish courses. The Gailes is one of the most authentic links style courses in America. Golfers will experience large double greens, meandering berms, sod faced pot bunkers and long fescue grasses. Whether you have experienced Scotland or not, The Gailes will fulfill all your expectations of a seaside links experience.
Forest Dunes Golf Club – Roscommon, MI: Forest Dunes Golf Club, located near Roscommon in northern Michigan, is one of the top award winning courses in the country. In 2013, Forest Dunes was included among the elite list of America’s 100 Greatest Courses by Golf Digest, and is always ranked among Michigan’s top courses. Forest Dunes was designed by former British Open winner Tom Weiskopf, who has said that Forest Dunes is in the top three among his designs in the United States. The unique design features a combination of parkland-style holes meandering through corridors of red and jack pines, and holes that play through rugged native sand dune areas. The new Lake AuSable Lodge enhances the golf experience at Forest Dunes.
Sweetgrass Golf Club – Escanaba, MI: Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, known more for hunting, snowmobiling and meat pies called pasties, has joined in on the state’s golfing craze as a top golf destination. Leading the way for the U.P. is the new Sweetgrass Golf Club at the Island Resort and Casino near Escanaba. The course pays homage to Tribal legend. The name, itself, refers to a sacred plant, used in Indian peace and healing rituals, and is found along the course. Masterfully crafted rock work, and cedar posts are prevalent throughout the design, which also boasts an island green, a Redan green, and a pair of breathtaking waterfalls, which greet golfers as they walk up the ninth and 18th holes to an enormous, shared green.
To plan your golfing trip to Michigan or to find additional ideas for things to do while in town, visit Travelocity’s Pure Michigan page!