Best golf courses in Naples
The holiday destination that has it all... high-end shopping, luxury resorts and fantastic golf courses! We countdown our favourite golf courses in Naples
Located on the edge of the Gulf of Mexico in southern Florida, Naples rates highly with the travelling golfer. The climate is ideal, especially during the winter months, and the golf is plentiful. Although a lot of the course are high-end private clubs and not always easily accessible, we’ve provided a selection of the best golf courses in Naples that can be enjoyed on your next golf trip.
Hammock Bay Golf Club
Designed by Greg Norman, the Gold Course at Tiburón Golf Club opened in 1998 to much praise. The course demands accuracy from the tee – where fairways are well protected by the natural palms, pines and olive trees lining their perimeter.
There are several lakes scattered across the course and this is best highlighted on the 12th and 16th holes, both par-3s that are well protected by the aforementioned water. The final hole requires a precise tee shot before you play your approach towards the clubhouse and the Ritz Carlton Golf Resort. The Gold Course annually hosts the PGA TOUR’s QBE Shootout, and is a must-play when in Naples.
The Black Course at Tiburón Golf Club was completed in 2001 and opened three years after its older sibling, the Gold. Greg Norman is also responsible for this design and the Black is typically seen as the more challenging of the two.
The layout is routed through acres of pines and accuracy is paramount, as any shots that deviate off line are guaranteed to be in danger - you’ll either be taking a penalty drop; find one of many bunkers or be hitting your second shot from a difficult lie off the pine straw. The entire set up at Tiburón is consistently rated among the top 20 in Florida by both GOLF Magazine and Golf Digest. Measuring 6,949 yards from the tips, The Black Course is often referred to as one of Naples’ finest.
Raptor Bay Golf Club is situated 25 miles north of Naples and is well worth a visit. With a traditional clubhouse and tournament-standard practice facilities, you are extremely well looked after before stepping onto the first tee. The layout isn’t overly long – measuring 6,461 yards from the tips – but this par-71 layout will require precision as opposed to raw power.
Raymond Floyd designed the course with the shot maker in mind and accuracy is the secret to scoring well. Golfers can expect wonderful natural surroundings, rolling fairways, intelligently placed bunkers and numerous water hazards. The signature hole, the par-5 7th, requires a long drive if you are seeking to find the green in two. However, for those of you that miss left, be wary of the water that protects the front left of the green. Raptor Bay should be high on the list when planning a Naples golf vacation.
The Rookery at Marco was named after the vast species of birds that have made the golf course their home. This layout offers both beautiful vistas and challenging golf, while the 45 acres of lakes are home to an abundance of wildlife, including: bald eagles, alligators and blue herons. You can expect fast greens, excellent turf condition and five sets of tees on each hole - allowing playability for all golfers.
Joe Lee is responsible for the unique layout and the oversized and receptive greens were recently renovated with Bermuda TifEagle grass. There are 74 bunkers throughout the course and water comes into play on 15 holes. It’s another great Naples layout.
Hammock Bay Golf Course was designed with an emphasis on showcasing the natural beauty of the local environment. The club has recently reopened after a $4.8 million renovation of the greens that saw PlatinumTE paspalum turfgrass installed, resulting in some excellent putting surfaces.
Designed by Peter Jacobsen and Jim Hardy, this par-72 championship course provides the perfect setting for golf - rolling terrain, oak tree-lined fairways, lots of water and well-protected greens summarise the layout. At just short of 7,000 yards from the back tees, it is a true challenge but with seven teeing options, golfers of all abilities can enjoy a day at Hammock Bay.
Naples Grande Golf Club is part of the Naples Grande Beach Resort and only those staying at the hotel will have access to play this course that has been rated as one of the ‘Top 50 in Florida’ by GOLF Magazine.
Rees Jones was the architect and the interesting, yet challenging layout will entice visitors back time and time again. Each hole is unique and demands a different approach to the last while the indigenous Florida foliage results in the fairways being in perfect condition all year long. Live oak and grand cypress trees are just one of the highlights of a round at Naples Grande while the club can also proudly boast sensational panoramic views.
Situated to the north of Naples, Old Corkscrew Golf Club is uniquely located in an area of stunning Florida landscape untouched by commercial development. Designed by Jack Nicklaus in 2007, it is a beast from the back tees at 7,400 yards, but a variety of tee boxes allow all golfers to enjoy this first-class Naples course.
Long par-4’s and 5’s, tree-lined fairways, expansive water hazards, deep bunkers, and impressive doglegs characterize the layout, and as a certified Audubon Sanctuary, the club’s natural scenery is sure to impress. Old Corkscrew is certainly worth a visit when staying and playing in the Naples area.
The par-71 championship track consists of five tee markers and it measures at 6,900 yards from the tips. It is a friendly facility that encourages newer players to the game, yet the challenge remains for lower handicappers. The longest par-5 on the course is 523 yards, which should allow birdie opportunities with either two or three well struck shots, and the par-3’s aren’t too daunting either, typically ranging from 160-190 yards. An enjoyable round awaits all that visit Naples Beach GC.
9. Lely Flamingo at Lely Golf Resort
The Lely Flamingo course, which is onsite at Greenlinks Golf Villas at Lely Resort, is the definition of paradise. Robert Trent Jones, Sr. is responsible for the design and it opened to the public in 1989. The course is considered one of the best in the Naples region and is characterized by thoughtful sculpting and shaping, large greens, extensive water and multiple tee markers.
Lely Flamingo Golf Course
While many of the holes qualify as ‘signature’ status, the 200-yard par-3 5th certainly steals the show. You’ll be hitting into a green that is surrounded by water and protected by bunkers. Plenty of the holes feature rolling fairways and big undulating Bermuda greens. When it comes to golf in Naples, you’ll struggle to find a more exotic setting than a round on the Lely Flamingo course.
10. Lely Mustang at Lely Golf Resort
The Lely Mustang is also situated onsite at Greenlinks Golf Villas at Lely Resort. Designed by Lee Trevino, his illustrious career provided the perfect knowledge to build an emphatic golf course. The track opened in 1996 and the par-72 layout measures at 7,230 yards from the back tees. The Mustang is best summarised by gently rolling fairways, large greens, multiple bunkers and 12 lakes to contend with.
This course was created with difficulty but fairness in mind and the unique holes are a testament to that vision. While many are challenging, they do also present opportunities to recover from errant tee shots. Whether you play the Mustang or the Flamingo, Lely Resort provides the perfect environment for south Florida golf.
Lely Mustang Golf Course
The south Florida climate in Naples makes it the perfect destination for a golf trip, especially during the winter when average highs remain at 80°F. There is a collection of fantastic golf clubs, superb resorts and an array of accommodation options. When spending time away from the course, you can experience boat tours, great beaches, aquatic activities and some of the best restaurants and nightlife in the country. A Naples golf vacation always comes highly regarded by our customers.
Golf Vacation Specialist
Golf Vacation Specialist, I advise clients on golf courses and accommodation options for our US, Mexico and Dominican Republic trips