St Andrews Old
St Andrews Links (Old Course), St Andrews, Fife
Founded 1754. Links Course
At 6,721 yards in length how tough can it be. The Old Course is not actually that tough if you can stop your knees from shaking standing on the first tee. The fairway is about as wide as you can imagine but its impossible to forget that you are about to follow in the footsteps of all the legends that ever played the game. It’s true that the sense of awe and history might outweigh the actual golfing challenge but that just does not matter. Playing very much out and back, if you tend to fade the ball you may find the outward seven holes a challenge, but playing here is one great experience after another. One big piece of advice is to take a caddy and believe them even when you think there is no way they could be right! Remember that the course originally played the other way around and there are bunkers located where you don’t know there are places.
Great golf is only part of the story when considering what makes the perfect golf trip. Thankfully, the other essential component parts are all found in abundance in Scotland, not least in the sights to see department. Whether scheduling a day off from golf or filling an afternoon after your morning round, there are many options regardless of which region you are visiting. The below is intended as a very general guide to sightseeing in Scotland.
SCOTLAND – ST ANDREWS & PERTHSHIRE
As part of a golf trip to this region, it is likely that you will stay in or close to St Andrews or Gleneagles. It’s also likely that you will be too busy playing golf to take in anything else but there are always options. Recommendations in St Andrews include the British Golf Museum, St Andrews Castle, St Andrews Cathedral and St Andrews Botanic Gardens, while venturing slightly further afield, the likes of Aberdour Castle and Inchcolm Abbey are also worth a visit.
Other possibilities from either St Andrews or Gleneagles include the many attractions in Perthshire and Stirling. Like the Highlands, Perthshire boasts its fair share of distilleries with two excellent options being the Famous Grouse Experience at Glenturret Distillery in Crieff and Blair Atholl Distillery in Pitlochry, one of the oldest working distilleries in Scotland. Other locations of interest in Perthshire include Blair Castle, Drummond Castle Gardens near Crieff, Scone Palace in Perth and Loch Leven Castle, where Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned for a time.
Connecting Perthshire with Greater Glasgow, Stirling also offers many attractions, particularly from an historical perspective. The Bannockburn Heritage Centre and impressive Stirling Castle are both must-sees in Stirling, while the National Wallace Monument, through a variety of exhibits and displays tells the story of William Wallace, Guardian of Scotland.