North Carolina's Dream 18 Golf Courses for Women

North Carolina's Dream 18 Golf Courses for Women

Bald Head Island Club offers golf lessons from its pro staff

What makes a golf course great for women can be rather subjective. The ones selected here are places that have put some thought into the variety of their layout options for women. These courses offer stimulating designs from the women’s tees, not simply just shorter distances on the drive. They also retain their intended challenges to players without putting undue burden on the female golfer. Also considered are amenities and aesthetics, such as female pro shops, clinics for women and even the quality of the clubhouse.

Note: The courses are listed in alphabetical order, and are not ranked or rated other than having made the list.

Bald Head Island Club
Bald Head Island
Bald Head Island Club’s course winds its way over dunes, around lagoons, along the ocean and through a maritime forest. Many holes are bordered by the still lively natural habitats of herons, egrets, ibises, foxes and alligators. Awarded a coveted 3.5 stars in Golf Digest’s "Places to Play," average golfers find it very playable from the forward tees.

Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge
Selected as a "Great Golf Resort of the World" by PGA Magazine, Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge is home to a top golf course for women. The 4.5-star course enables golfers to play from a forward set of tees at 4,700 yards, making it ideal for many players. Ballantyne also is home to the Dana Rader School of Golf, consistently ranked among the Top 25 Schools in America by Golf Magazine. Rader is the school founder and LPGA Master Professional who is considered by Golf Digest Woman as one of the top teachers in the nation for women.

Boone Golf Club
This is a scenic course with a wonderfully rolling design by Ellis Maples. The course is challenging, but certainly a fair course (68.6 rating, 5,096 yards for women), and the maintenance and service are second to none. Centrally located in North Carolina’s High Country near Boone and Blowing Rock, the club offers easy access to the Blue Ridge Parkway, outdoor recreation, premier theater performances and art exhibits, as well as fine dining venues and resort lodging.

Bryan Park Golf & Conference Center
With two four-star courses, Bryan Park is listed among the best courses for women by Golf Digest Woman. Bryan Park hosts several women’s tournaments, including the annual Bryan National Collegiate Golf Tournament, a prime early season NCAA event. The course also conveniently places tee signage, hole layout info and ball washers at the women’s tees. Every Wednesday is Ladies Day with special rates.

The Golf Club at Chapel Ridge
Since opening in 2006, Chapel Ridge has drawn rave reviews from women golfers. It’s recognized as a course that’s very fair for the higher handicapper and, at the same time, very exciting for the better player. It also scores well for its undulating terrain and beautiful views. Chapel Ridge frequently hosts ladies clinics and women’s groups.

The Omni Grove Park Inn
Designed by Donald Ross, this is a relatively tough but fair test, with the picturesque views of Asheville’s skyline and the unique charm of the Inn overlooking the course making it always worthwhile. It plays very short from the forward tees, which is conducive to low scores if attention is paid to attacking the signature Ross greens. Even if you have a rough day on the course, you can restore your spirits at The Omni Grove Park Inn’s gracious spa.

Jefferson Landing
Jefferson Landing is hailed as a top-rated golf course in the Southeast for men and women. The course’s playability is heightened by multiple sets of tees offering yardages suited for every type of game. Nestled between the New River and Mount Jefferson State Park in the Blue Ridge Mountains, the course gets bonus points for beautiful scenery.

Linville Golf Club at Eseeola Lodge

The Eseeola Lodge

As a guest of The Eseeola Lodge, you can play the private Linville Golf Club course

Linville Golf Club
Designed by Donald Ross, the Linville golf course opened in 1924. It remains one of the most spectacular courses in the state and, with two sets of ladies tees, is a wonderful experience for women golfers of all levels. Golf Digest has placed it 10th among the "Top 75 Affordable Golf Courses" and Golf Magazine has ranked it No. 25 in the category of the "Top 100 Courses You Can Play in the U.S."

Magnolia Greens Golf Course
Magnolia Greens Golf Course gets high marks from female players for offering red tees for "standard" women’s play, and slightly longer gold tees rated for more advanced women. Most holes allow golfers to move the ball on land to greens with very few forced carries. Female staff conduct women’s leagues and events throughout the summer. Plus, Magnolia Greens offers locked, separate restrooms on the course that are air-conditioned and heated.

Masonboro Country Club
This Gene Hamm course captures the natural beauty of the coastal terrain as the course meanders through tall pines and natural marshlands. Masonboro has five sets of tees and the front one isn’t just an afterthought. From roughly 4,800 yards, ladies will enjoy the variety of shots required to navigate and score.

Mountain Glen Golf Club
Just 30 minutes from Boone, this pleasant facility features spectacular views of the mountains from virtually every hole. Mountain Glen is known for presenting a lively round of golf on a scenic course in a friendly atmosphere. The course is a great value, and offers lush fairways and smooth greens for an enjoyable round of golf. It’s also nice that the ball carries farther in the mountain air.

Pinehurst No. 8
Village of Pinehurst
Listed as a top women’s golf course by Golf Digest Woman, this Tom Fazio design is fair and compelling for ladies with both low and high handicaps. The course features strong shot values for women—no forced carries, no out of bounds and an overall length that is reasonable. The course has hosted a number of respected women’s events, ranging from the LPGA Club Professionals Championship to the women’s North and South Championship. Pinehurst also features a series of women-only schools at the Pinehurst Golf Academy, which is listed by Golf for Women as one of the best places for instruction.

Pine Needles
Southern Pines
Pine Needles ranked as the No. 1 course in the nation for women, according to Golf Digest Woman. This recognition certainly is bolstered by the fact the course has hosted the U.S. Women’s Open Championships three times. It is the home course of LPGA charter member and master instructor Peggy Kirk Bell, whose signature “Golfaris” are renowned learning experiences for female players.

The Preserve at Jordan Lake Golf Club
Chapel Hill
The Preserve is a signature course of North Carolina native Davis Love III, and it has been designated as an Audubon International Certified Sanctuary Golf Course. The Preserve’s goal is to provide the best golfing experience possible while maintaining a refuge for wildlife in a healthy environment. The course offers three tee options for women, with ratings ranging from 72.6 to 76.8.

Sea Scape Golf Links
Kitty Hawk
Sea Scape Golf Links club provides two sets of tees for women: The shorter set measures 4,733 yards for beginner to moderate skill level, while the longer layout measures 5,377 yards to test the most skillful of female players. The true beauty of the golf course lies in its natural surroundings, with rolling fairways, elevation changes, views of the Atlantic Ocean and holes that wind through the maritime forest.

Sea Trail Golf Resort

Rees Jones designed this course at Sea Trail Golf Resort

Sea Trail Golf Resort & Convention Center
Sunset Beach
Sea Trail Golf Resort offers three courses of distinction from top architects Rees Jones, Dan Maples and Willard Byrd. All three offer spectacular views and wind through tall pine forests along the shores of pristine lakes and creeks. The courses offer multiple tees so women can choose the challenge and length they wish to play. On-site accommodations make Sea Trail an ideal location for women’s groups looking for memorable golf vacations.

Star Hill Golf Club
Cape Carteret
Star Hill Golf Club is a semi-private facility offering 27 holes. From the regular ladies tees, there are no forced carries on any tee shot, greatly enhancing playability. For the more skilled ladies, the men’s senior tees offer greater challenge. In addition to an annual Pro-Lady tournament, Star Hill regularly hosts events and outings by area ladies golf associations.

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