The Clubhouse

Best golf courses in Europe

Europe has so many golf courses to choose from... we've selected our favourites to help you decide where to visit on your next European golf holiday.

Mark Bell
Mark Bell
8 mins read
EuropeBucket listParklandTurkeyItalyPortugalSpain

Golfers often ask us, what are the best golf courses in Europe? and with so many great courses across the continent, it can be difficult to decide where to go. That’s why we’ve put together our top nine European golf courses that our customers love playing year in, year out.

From the world-renowned PGA Camiral Golf & Wellness, to the stunning setting of Thracian Cliffs, these handpicked courses are some of the best golf courses in Europe.

Stadium Course at PGA Camiral Golf & Wellness (Spain)

Consistently ranked as the number one course in Spain, the Stadium Course at PGA Camiral Golf & Wellness is both spectacular and imposing. Trees press onto fairways, bunkers are strategically placed and lakes come into play on seven of the toughest holes, all of which are looking to catch golfers out. However, you may not realise the difficulty of this course thanks to its beautiful setting. It is no wonder quality players return time and time again.

Stadium Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 7,177 yards, front tees 5,565 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Neil Coles

  • Founded: 1999

  • Course type: Parkland

Stadium Course at PGA Camiral Golf & Wellness

Fontainebleau (France)

Located in the Fontainebleau forest, in close proximity to the town on the ancient imperial hunting grounds, this course’s narrow fairways are bordered by numerous species of trees to create a testing but enjoyable round of golf. To make the course both attractive and difficult, dense outcrops of brooms, lilacs, ferns and jennets come into play on the majority of holes, as well as fine sand bunkers. It is easy to understand why this course is regularly ranked as one of the best golf courses in France.

Golf De Fontainebleau Facts

  • Length: Back tees 6,690 yards, front tees 5,715 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Julien Chantepie, Tom Simpson (Redesign - 1920)

  • Founded: 1909

  • Course type: Parkland

Golf de Fontainebleau

Thracian Cliffs (Bulgaria)

As Gary Player once said: “You will not find a golf course like this anywhere else on the planet,” when talking about The Signature Course at Thracian Cliffs. Framed by rugged coastal cliffs and the vast blue of the Black Sea, the backdrop to this course is simply sensational. The holes are perfectly sculpted into the natural layout of the land and, as one of the most dramatic golf courses in the world, it is no wonder it is among the best golf courses in Europe.

Thracian Cliffs Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 7,055 yards, front tees 5,012 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Gary Player

  • Founded: 2022

  • Course type: Links

Signature Course, Thracian Cliffs Golf & Beach Resort

Monte Rei (Portugal)

Every single hole at Monte Rei is designed to blend effortlessly into the natural canvas of the landscape, making every hole as extraordinary as the next. Water comes into play on 11 of the 18 holes, with ingeniously shaped and sculpted bunkers adding to the impressive presentation of this course. When visiting the East Algarve, this 7,182-yard course, which offers unrivalled views of the Serra do Caldeirão mountains, should be at the top of your list.

Monte Rei North Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 7,182 yards, front tees 5,299 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Jack Nicklaus

  • Founded: 2007

  • Course type: Parkland

Monte Rei Golf Resort

Real Club Valderrama (Spain)

The world-famous European Tour venue that is Real Club Valderrama is one of Robert Trent Jones Snr’s greatest designs. The course has played host to the Andalucia Valderrama Masters, as well as the Ryder Cup in 1997, and its immaculate condition provides a challenging round every single time you play it. The 17th is the standout hole here as the green slopes towards an emerald lake, but bunkers behind the green mean anyone that flies the green will face one of the most testing bunker shots in golf.

Real Club Valderrama Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 7,020 yards, front tees 5,331 yards

  • Par: 71

  • Architect: Robert Trent Jones

  • Founded: 1974

  • Course type: Parkland

Real Club Valderrama

Carya (Turkey)

Day and night, you can enjoy Carya Golf Club. Part of the 5* Regnum Carya resort, the 18 holes here have recently seen a major reinvestment to install floodlights, meaning you can play golf at night, with the comfort of daylight. This, in turn, makes it the first full-lighted golf course in Europe. Situated in the Belek region of Turkey, the course is inspired by traditional heathland courses, similar to the likes you find in Surrey. While it has been designed to test the best of golfers, that is not to say it is not an enjoyable test for higher handicaps and one you won’t forget in a hurry.

Carya Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 7,186 yards, front tees 5,317 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Thomson Perrett & LOBB Golf Course Architects

  • Founded: 2008

  • Course type: Heathland

Carya Golf Club

Villa d'Este (Italy)

Winding its way through chestnut, ash and pine trees, Villa d’Este offers golfers a picturesque challenge, with spectacular views of Lake Montorfano on several of the holes. It is Peter Gannon’s winding design that has led golfers to consider this as the most challenging and difficult par-69s in the whole of Europe. One thing is for sure, golf in Italy does not get much better than this.

Villa d'Este Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 6,268 yards, front tees 5,344 yards

  • Par: 69

  • Architect: Peter Gannon

  • Founded: 1926

  • Course type: Parkland

Circolo Golf Villa d'Este

West Cliffs (Portugal)

Despite only opening in June 2017, West Cliffs Golf Links has quickly become one of the best golf courses in Portugal, among its already prestigious reputation at the leading Praia D'El Rey Resort. The Cynthia Dye design is an exceptional creation that disturbed the natural terrain as little as possible, offering golfers holes that are just as unique and remarkable as the last. Running alongside the silver coast, featuring rolling sand dunes and coastal vegetation, this course really is a must-play.

West Cliffs Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 6,440 yards, front tees 4,976 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Cynthia Dye

  • Founded: 2017

  • Course type: Links

West Cliffs Golf Links, Marriott Praia D'El Rey Golf & Beach Resort

Lofoten Links (Norway)

Lofoten Links is a relatively new golf course, having only opened in 2015, but is absolutely spectacular. Situated on the island of Gimsøya in Norway, the course sees the ocean act as a water hazard on several of the holes, and sandy beaches act as natural bunkers. Incredibly, the sun never sets on Lofoten Links between the end of May and the end of July, meaning 24-hour golf is possible. Furthermore, you can experience the Northern Lights from the end of August to mid-October.

Lofoten Links Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 6,687 yards, front tees 4,599 yards

  • Par: 71

  • Architect: Jeremy Turner

  • Founded: 2015

  • Course type: Links

Lofoten Links Golf Club

Troia (Portugal)

When looking for a holiday in Iberian Peninsula Troia Golf Course in Portugal ranks highly among Portugal's best golf courses. Designed by Trent Jones senior, it graces the Troia Peninsula near Lisbon, offering a championship course by the beach with stunning sea views in an unspoiled setting. Suitable for all skill levels, it's both challenging and unforgettable. Signature holes here include the Par 4 third hole and the impressive Par 5 18th hole. Troia is a must-visit for golf enthusiasts, promising lasting memories.

Troia Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 6,912 yards, front tees 5,328 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Robert Trent Jones

  • Founded: 1980

  • Course type: Links

6th hole at Troia

Palmares (Portugal)

Palmares Golf Club, referred to as the "Crown Jewel," is ranked 26th among Europe's Top 100 Golf Courses. This exquisite club boasts three distinct nine-hole courses: Alvor, Lagos, and Praia. It offers golfers a unique and visually stunning experience with panoramic river views and a links-style course by the beach. Located near the historic town of Lagos, Palmares seamlessly combines elements of both links and inland golf. It presents an initial challenge with a par 4 dog leg, followed by a transition to rolling valleys framed by pine trees after the 6th hole. For golf enthusiasts seeking a premium fusion of links and inland golf, Palmares is an excellent choice.

Palmares Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 10,373 yards, front tees 7,900 yards (3 sets of 9 holes)

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Robert Trent Jones JR

  • Founded: 2010

  • Course type: Links, Parkland

Palmares Golf Course

Terre Blanche Chateau (France)

The 18-hole Le Chateau Course at Terre Blanche spans 7,235 yards in length, and is recognised by Golf World as the 12th best course in Continental Europe. Le Chateau is the more challenging of the two courses located at the Terre Blanche Golf Club. With strategically placed bunkers and greens, it provides players with an authentic championship course experience. Le Chateau course distinguishes itself with stunning water features and picturesque backdrops making it one of the must visit courses in Europe.

Le Chateau Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 7,235 yards, front tees 5,662 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Dave Thomas

  • Founded: 2000

  • Course type: Parkland

La Chateau Golf Course

Finca Cortesin (Spain)

Viewed as one of the best golf courses in Spain by the esteemed Golf Digest magazine, the Finca Cortesin Golf Course offers a sensational experience suitable for golfers of all skill levels. The host of the 2023 Solheim Cup is nestled amidst a stunning natural backdrop. This 18-hole championship course boasts a mesmerising design, complemented by the region's consistently pleasant weather, creating an ideal setting for a round of golf. Impeccably maintained fairways and greens further enhance this spectacular golfing experience.

Finca Cortesin Golf Course Facts

  • Length: Back tees 7,388 yards, front tees 5,306 yards

  • Par: 72

  • Architect: Cabell Robinson

  • Founded: 2009

  • Course type: Parkland

Finca Cortesin 18th hole

Feeling inspired?
From nearby Spain to the further Turkey golf coast, play some of the top courses on your next European golf holiday.


Mark Bell avatar
Mark Bell

Sales Manager - Europe

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