Atlantic City golf: Tips for a top-notch trip

Seaview Bay third hole

Atlantic City has flown under the radar as a golf destination for years, with heavyweights such as Myrtle Beach and Ocean City gobbling up much of the attention.

But with golf suitable for every budget and level of playing ability, Atlantic City’s 25 regional courses (13 of which are less than a 20-minute drive) offer variety and a fully customizable trip. Having lived within driving distance of the casino destination all my life, I’ve had the chance to play quite a few of the gems in this part of the state.

First, with 12 casino hotels (including Revel, which will open in March, 2012), and many off-site options, Atlantic City has the nightlife and non-golf activities that so many other locations are lacking. Gambling, dining, drinking: What more can you ask for after a day on the links?

Second is the quality of golf. For a 3-4 day trip, you’ll run out of days long before you run out of good options. While I haven’t played them all, here’s a brief recap of some of the options. If there’s a place not listed here, it’s not a slight, it just means I haven’t played there or heard enough from reliable sources to include it in this list.

So without further adieu, The Subpar Golf Blog’s Atlantic City Must-Play List:

Atlantic City Country Club: Without a doubt, one of the best courses in the state of New Jersey, public or private. ACCC, built in 1897 is a fantastic example of classic golf architecture. ACCC should be on any list of America’s greatest seaside golf course.

Twisted Dune:  It’s been a few years since playing this gem, but it continues to rack up high praise. Dramatic holes leave a lasting impression, yet this design is imminently playable.

Harbor Pines: Architect Stephen Kay built this track with the masses in mind, at the request of ownership. He succeeds in laying out 18 holes that are fun and playable for someone shooting 100, but won’t be a pushover for someone who usually breaks 80. Tough greens provide a nice defense, yet wide, forgiving fairways keep it enjoyable for golfers who aren’t on the top of their games.

Vineyard Golf at Renault: While this remains on my personal must-play list, I hear great things about this course from those whose opinions I trust. Built alongside the Renault Winery, this track has gotten rave reviews since opening in 2004 and one I look forward to seeing with my own eyes.

Blue Heron Pines: This course traditionally boasts some of the best conditions in the state, and a fun playable design will be enjoyable by a group of golfers regardless of their handicaps.

Seaview: As part of a sprawling resort, Seaview’s 36 holes of golf have long contended for the crown of best golf in the Atlantic City region. The Bay course hosted an LPGA Tour event and many say that the Pines is the tougher test of the two. A massive practice facility as well as other recreational facilities would make this an ideal spot for families and anyone looking to stay someplace away from the hustle and bustle of the casinos.

Sand Barrens: While this is starting to get a little further away from AC, Sand Barrens is a real test. It has been a while since I’ve been there, but having played it twice, I can’t help but include it on the short list of toughest tracks I have played. It’s worth playing, but be forewarned, it won’t be a walk in the park.

Shore Gate: Another course that I’ve yet to personally play, but its accolades have poured in and I look forward to playing it sometime soon. It’s a bit of a drive from the casinos, but by all accounts, it’s worth the drive.

Scotland Run: While it’s nearly an hour outside Atlantic City, this course deserves a mention thanks to a fun, challenging and flat-out spectacular design. Most noteworthy are the holes built around a quarry, and conditions that have been pristine in all my previous experiences there.

McCullough’s Emerald Golf Links: This was a go-to course for me through the years as it offered quite a bit of bang for the buck. I’m also a sucker for Stephen Kay’s tribute design here, where he models each hole after a famous hole on a British links course.

There are more than a dozen more courses in the region, but I simply haven’t played them enough, or heard first-hand accounts to include them in this list. Have thoughts on someplace I need to see, or want to add your own suggestion? Please add it to the comments below.

Think I’m way off base with my picks? Let me know! But at the end of the day, find your way to Atlantic City for a few days. You’ll leave feeling well-golfed and well-fed, and hopefully a little heavier in the wallet after some time at the tables.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Train selfie star who got kicked in the…

  A 22-year-old Canadian man who posted a video of himself getting kicked in the head by a train conductor is set to cash in…

National

Call of Duty hoaxer blamed for $100K SWAT…

A heavilly-armed SWAT team and an army of police officers stormed a Long Island home fearing a grisly double homicide – only to find it…

National

Minnie Driver tweets naked celebrity snap to 'shut…

Actress Minnie Driver has responded to bitchy critics who sniped about her bikini body by Tweeting a naked picture of herself. The 44-year-old star of…

National

American middle classes no longer world's richest (guess…

America's middle classes are no longer the richest in the world – having been overtaken in the wealth stakes by their Canadian counterparts. For almost…

Books

'#GIRLBOSS': Nasty Gal CEO shares unlikely success story

Nasty Gal CEO Sophia Amoruso shares her rags to riches, dumpster to Porsche tale in her new book "#GIRLBOSS."

Movies

App Appeal: Unf— Your Habitat is a sweary…

Guilt trip yourself into some spring cleaning with the app "Unf— Your Habitat," which uses swearing and some rudeness to get you to get your s— together.

Movies

Review: 'The Other Woman' needs to be angrier,…

Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann and Kate Upton play women who team up to destroy the man they're all unwittingly sleeping with in "The Other Woman."

Going Out

Here's what to eat at East Passyunk's Flavors…

East Passyunk's flourishing food scene is never stagnant. If you've already bought your tickets, get a taste of the best dishes from every hot EP…

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: Brewers best in baseball, Dodgers,…

MLB Power Rankings: Brewers best in baseball, Dodgers, Cardinals, Yankees surge. The A's, Braves, Rangers, Giants and Rockies are also in the top 10.

NBA

Breaking down the Sixers top draft options

With the NBA Playoffs now in full force, there’s only one thing on the mind of Sixers fans at the moment -- the 2014 NBA Draft Lottery.

MLB

Metro one-on-one: Q&A with Phillies centerfielder Ben Revere

Charlie Manuel used to say that the Phillies go as Jimmy Rollins goes. Well, Ryne Sandberg might have a new Phillies catalyst, Ben Revere, in his midst.

Sports

2014 Boston Marathon results: American Meb Keflezighi wins…

2014 Boston Marathon results: American Meb Keflezighi wins men's race

Education

The benefits and challenges of intensive summer programs

Get the facts on taking an advanced college course.

Wellbeing

Why you need a facial

What can a facial do for your face that a washcloth and soap can’t?

Wellbeing

You can have your healthy snacks delivered

To take the guesswork out of procuring snacks good for you and your family, check out one of these companies.

Wellbeing

Jillian Michaels wants to ‘Maximize Your Life’

The fitness star returns for her second “Maximize Your Life Tour.”