A few weeks ago, we looked at some of the most expensive public courses in the U.S. This week, we’ve found some of the best value courses in the U.S. We looked at reviews from several top golf websites and compiled a list of the 18-hole courses that appeared on the top 10 of multiple lists. A range of rates is listed based on the season, time of day, residency, and demand. The courses are not listed in any particular order.
Wild Horse Golf Club ($61 - $99)
Wild Horse Golf Club is rated one of the best golf courses in the United States by top golf publications. It features firm fairways fringed by native knee-high grass and fast greens surrounded by natural rough-lipped bunkers cut out of the rolling terrain.
Belvedere Golf Club ($62 - $150)
Belvedere is a private course that welcomes outside play. The classic William Watson design has long been a favorite of many golf greats, including legends Bobby Jones, Walter Hagen, Gene Sarazen, and five-time British Open winner Tom Watson.
Lawsonia Links Course ($70 - $125)
Green Lake, Wisconsin
Lawsonia’s historic Links Course is often considered one of the best classic golf courses in the country. It is a big, bold golf course designed and built by golf architects, William Langford and Theodore Moreau in 1930. Rumor has it a boxcar was buried under the par-3 7th green to create a dramatic 20-foot drop-off.
Bethpage State Park Black Course ($44 - $85 for NY residents; $88 - $160 for out-of-state)
Farmingdale, New York
The Black Course at Bethpage State Park was the site of the U.S. Open in 2002 and 2009, the Barclays in 2012 and 2016, the PGA Championship in 2019, and will host the Ryder Cup in 2025. The narrow fairways, high roughs, well placed bunkers, and small greens help to make this an extremely difficult course. A sign at the 1st tee that recommends the course is “only for highly skilled golfers.”
Black Mesa Golf Club ($54 - $79)
Espanola, New Mexico
Nestled in Northern New Mexico’s Española Valley with views of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Black Mesa Golf Club features dramatic elevation changes, seasonal weather conditions, and beautiful scenery. It’s included in Golf Digest’s ranking of America's 100 Greatest Public Courses.
Rustic Canyon ($24 - $84)
Rustic Canyon has been ranked in the 100 best U.S. public access courses by top golf publications. The course was built on the floor of a broad canyon northwest of Los Angeles, and little was altered during the course’s construction. It is widely considered a triumph of architectural minimalism.
Sand Hollow Resort Championship Course ($50 - $135)
Located among the scenic red rocks of southern Utah, Sand Hollow’s Championship course has several holes that play on the edge of jagged cliffs. Reviewers say that while the front nine is eye-catching, the back nine almost needs to be seen to be believed. Don’t forget to bring your camera if you play this course!