Golf is an incredibly popular sport in Australia. Over one million Australians participate in a few rounds each year, with many shouting home about the myriad benefits it provides. Not only does golf naturally introduce a healthy competitive nature within us, but it gets us outside, socialising with others which does wonders for our mental health. The game of golf is also a great mentor for teaching traits such as patience and discipline, because, as anyone who’s ever played will tell you, it’s not a fast game at all.
Whether you’re a semi-pro golfer or a newbie who is more likely to spend their day hacking away in a blind rage, you may as well do it with a scenic backdrop. Fortunately for Sydneysiders, exceptional play and superb scenery are just a short jaunt from the CBD. Despite the City being relatively small by city standards, it, and the surrounding suburbs are well aware that its residents are keen ball-hitters and club-swingers. With this in mind, it’s easy to find a golf course close to home.
As with golf’s more fanciful connotations, a fair few of the golf courses and clubs in Sydney are membership-only, which, unless you’re able to play regularly, probably aren’t worth signing up to. Luckily there are a number of public courses available to book into as well, but there will be a greater chance of the tee time you want being fully booked. With regards to this, we strongly recommend booking a few weeks in advance. In the meantime, you can head to one of Sydney’s driving ranges to practice that swing of yours, or for a bit of fun, check out some of Sydney’s best Putt-Putt play.
Sydney Golf Course FAQ
How many golf courses in sydney?
There are around 20 golf courses in metropolitan Sydney.
How much does it cost to play golf in Sydney?
A public course green fee starts at $25 for 9 holes.
Which is the best golf course in Sydney?
Arguably The Australian Golf Club is Sydney’s best, but we have a few other great suggestions.
The Royal Sydney features on this list for two reasons: first, because it is a multi-time host of the Australian Open and second, and most importantly, because it is the hallowed ground on which John Daly set a career highlight by breaking a spectator’s camera in 2008.
Royal Sydney is as old-school as they come. It’s the sort of place where earning membership involves an absurd waiting list and references from powerful people. There are no fancy waterworks or signature holes, just a classic round of treacherous play that makes for one of the most rewarding experiences in Australian golf. You can even get a spot of croquet in after your round, should you and your chums feel like it.
Address: Kent Rd, Rose Bay NSW 2029
Phone: (02) 8362 7000
Whether you believe in heaven, nirvana, or any other kind of paradise, this is as close as it’s possible to get down under – golfically speaking, that is. Designed by Jack Nicklaus, The Australian is the oldest golf course in the country, predating the Royal Melbourne Golf Club by over a decade, and the birthplace of the Australian Open.
Though the course was remodelled in recent years, it still hosts the Cadogan Cup, which made its debut at the club in 1884 and is Australia’s oldest golf trophy. Those lucky enough to be granted entry to The Australian play in a rare mix of modern conditions and historic company.
Address: 53 Bannerman Crescent, Rosebery, 2018
Phone: 02 9663 2273
Equally as exclusive as Royal Sydney (yet somehow less intimidating), the NSW Golf Club makes the most of its rugged coastal surroundings. Players who make the pilgrimage to its undulating fairways and small greens find themselves at the mercy of Mother Nature, who sees fit to test them with fickle sea winds and the vast water hazard of Botany Bay.
The club’s signature hole is the 6th, an iconic par 3 perched on a rocky outcrop overlooking the wreck of the SS Minmi. It could also wreck your scorecard. The course is so challenging that players must have a handicap below 27 to get on the tee.
Address: Botany Bay National Park, 101 Henry Head Lane, La Perouse, 2036
Phone: 02 9661 4455
To the uninitiated, The Lakes is just that extra-fancy golf club next to Sydney Airport. To the enlightened, however, it’s a world-class course with a rolling layout and a prestigious tournament history, including hosting the Australian Open for three straight years in 2010, 2011 and 2012.
Becoming a member of The Lakes requires at least four referees, a letter of recommendation, an interview and the submission of your CV. That’s not a joke, but if you (understandably) choose to forgo that for now, playing The Lakes will cost you a pretty penny.
Address: Vernon Avenue & King Street, Eastlakes, 2018
Phone: 02 9669 1311
Sharing the same stretch of coastline as the New South Wales Golf Club, St. Michael’s is the rare golf club with a green fee listed on their website. A manageable $100 earns you access to a rolling links layout and ocean views that evoke thoughts of Scotland’s famous St. Andrew’s, with NSW’s local scenery adding to the charm.
While St. Michael’s is still in the upper echelon of Sydney golf courses, its generous fairways make for fairly forgiving golf at times, perfect for those looking to take a step up from the public course.
Address: Jennifer Street, Little Bay, 2036
Phone: 02 9326 8000
As you’ve surely caught onto by now, ocean views are kind of a big deal when it comes to designing top-shelf golf courses in Sydney. Thanks to its prime positioning in the Northern Beaches, Long Reef Golf Club boasts sightlines all the way to the Central Coast in the north and Manly in the south. Designer Peter Thomson even went so far as to describe it as “the best site of any golf course in Sydney”.
As a Group 1 course, Long Reef has hosted many of the qualifying rounds for both the Australian and NSW Opens. It also doubles as an excellent beachfront venue for weddings, birthdays, and other celebratory occasions.
Address: Anzac Avenue, Collaroy, 2097
Phone: 02 9971 8113
Despite its unassuming location in Sydney’s west, Bankstown Golf Club is regularly featured amongst the city’s best golf courses. Don’t be fooled by the nondescript entryway – pass through and you’ll be greeted by an urban oasis of tree-lined fairways on the banks of the Georges River.
Like many a parkland course dotting suburban Sydney, Bankstown Golf Club combines stunning scenery and immaculate year-round care to offer an upper-crust golfing experience in any season. The lack of ocean winds is an added bonus for players who prefer to avoid the whims of nature.
Address: 70 Ashford Avenue, Milperra, 2214
Phone: 02 9773 0628
Golfers who prefer public play rejoice, Moore Park is up there with the very best public courses in the whole of Sydney. Open to the general public since 1913, Moore Park has strived to remain just accessible ever since, welcoming golfers of all abilities are welcome to play the 18 holes on offer.
The course is a clever one too, as many of the holes look as though they should be simple to play, but they are in fact much trickier and require some strategic use of various clubs. For those who need an extra helping hand, Moore Park also has a number of PGA professionals on hand to offer assistance.
Address: Corner Anzac Parade & Cleveland Street, Moore Park, 2021
Phone: 02 9663 1064
The Simpsons references aside, Stonecutters Ridge Golf Club is a hidden gem in the far west of Sydney. You’ll find it nestled in one of the few places around Eastern Creek still untouched by the gradual urbanisation of Greater Western Sydney, featuring a tricky layout designed by World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman.
The course was crafted with three distinct landscaping themes in mind. Each aspect complements the overall development and provides a range of sensory experiences as players travel around the course. Expect a seriously challenging round of golf, with unforgiving bunkers and bountiful water features.
Address: 86 Stonecutters Drive, Colebee, 2761
Phone: 02 9627 7081
Another Group 1 course, Mona Vale regularly plays host to the NSW Amateur Championship. Though it has a more approachable feel than some of its Sydney counterparts, it’s regarded as one of Australia’s best courses (at least amongst the crowd that clocks in at under $50 a round).
Mona Vale brings together two distinct types of course for a well-rounded experience. Prepare to be frustrated for the first 10 holes as you snake your way through woody, hilled terrain, before holes 11-18 flatten out around the coastline.
Address: 3 Golf Avenue, Mona Vale, 2103
Phone: 02 9999 4266
The closest 18 hole course to the CBD you’ll find over the Harbour Bridge, Northbridge offers guests and members the chance to try their hand at its Par 64, all the while overlooking Middle Harbour. Expect to find numerous sloping fairways upon your visit, along with abundant birdlife for ornithological gazing while waiting for your mates to make their shot.
Northbridge also offers a range of membership options to suit all budgets (both in terms of time and finances) and students can receive an extra discount too.
Address: Sailors Bay Road, Northbridge, 2063
Phone: 02 9958 6900
Why settle for one golf course in a suburb when you can have two? Undeterred by the neighbours, the folks at The Coast Golf Club couldn’t resist sticking another 18 holes right next to the aforementioned St. Michael’s – and charging less for the privilege of playing.
Though it’s easier on the wallet, it’s no less of a challenge. The Coast makes full use of the views Botany Bay and its surroundings are famous for and boasts tight fairways and challenging greens designed to give any player a run for his money.
Address: 1 Coast Hospital Road, Little Bay, 2036
Phone: 02 9311 7422