Golf is, at its heart, a beautiful game. The vibrant fairways, the whistling birds and the easy sound of the ball falling into the cup. Add in a fun city, a tasty meal and a fluffy pillow and turn those 18 holes into a vacation. At these golf destinations, you can take in the sights and sounds of Wisconsin while enjoying a round; we can guarantee the beauty, but take no responsibility for your score.
This lovely lakeside resort community is one of Wisconsin’s top travel destinations for golfers and non-golfers alike. Geneva National Golf Club tees up championship-level rounds at its Palmer Course, Player Course and Trevino Course – all 54 holes designed by the masters themselves.
Following your round, dine at the Hunt Club Steakhouse at Geneva National Golf Club and enjoy your meal with stunning views of sunsets over the course. Lake Geneva’s downtown area also features excellent shopping, fine dining and charming B&Bs.
University Ridge Golf Course complements 11 other courses in the metro-Madison area. Expect plenty of Badger sightings, as the University of Wisconsin golf teams call this course home. The course itself, designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr., is representative of Wisconsin, with prairies, woods, hills and water to test every aspect of your game – the classic risk-reward challenge.
Soothe your muscles (and maybe even your pride) with dinner in the shadow of the capitol building at the local favorites - The Old Fashioned, Great Dane Pub, or the more contemporary Graze. Stay at the modern HotelRED near Camp Randall Stadium or the historic site turned boutique hotel Mansion Hill Inn.
Wisconsin Dells has always marketed itself as the “Waterpark Capital of the World,” but it is also a top-flight golf destination. Wild Rock is at the top of almost any golf trip to the Dells. Previously chosen as one of the best resort courses by Golf Week magazine and one of the top fifteen in Wisconsin by Golf Digest, Wild Rock is an adventure. Wild Rock also has an executive nine on the property.
Of course, Wisconsin Dells offers a variety of restaurants, such as Del-Bar or Field's at the Wilderness, and accommodations, including the world’s largest indoor and outdoor waterparks. Stay at Chula Vista Resort or the Wilderness Hotel to soak in all the Dells has to offer.
It’s known for the par-3 Flower Hole, surrounded by 50,000 flowers, but SentryWorld is more than just another pretty face. Designed by famed architect Robert Trent Jones, Jr. and opened in 1982, it was one of the state’s true destination courses and has withstood the test of time. Expect plenty of water hazards, bunkers and lush fairways on this former marsh and woodland.
SentryWorld is also home to a full-scale restaurant, PJ’s, as well as an expansive field house with indoor tennis and volleyball courts and an indoor driving range for the cooler spring Wisconsin days.
Consistently ranked one of the top public courses in the country, Lawsonia offers two contrasting 18-hole layouts – the Links Course and the Woodlands Course. Both are full of magnificent design, scenic beauty, historical landmarks and abundant wildlife. The Links features gently rolling terrain, bentgrass fairways, and multi-tiered and moderately fast greens. All of this is surrounded by 90 steep bunkers, deep rough and large snaking sand traps.
The Woodlands Course is a stunning contrast to its predecessor. Its fairways are densely tree-lined and guarded by a series of about 80 traps, making it much tighter. Considered a modern target course, it’s comprised of radical elevation and large bentgrass greens that are moderately fast and well bunkered.
Open, rugged and windswept terrain defines the walking-only, links-style Straits Course, sculpted along two miles of Lake Michigan shoreline. A throwback to the raw freshness of Ireland, Pete Dye’s famous Whistling Straits offers two courses, which have hosted the PGA Championship, U.S. Senior Open and the Palmer Cup, and will host the prestigious Ryder Cup in 2020. Consistently ranked one of the best in the nation, this is a must play course for any golf enthusiast.
Another Pete Dye creation, Blackwolf Run is home to two more championship-style courses – the River course and the Meadow Valleys course. The River features target landing areas, large undulating greens and water or gorges on 14 of the 18 holes for a challenging and beautiful experience. The Meadow Valleys is described as subtle and devilish with rolling meadows and deep ravines. While in Kohler, stay at The American Club, a Forbes Five-Star resort where you can enjoy world-class spa services, fine dining and high-end amenities.
Ranked in the top 10 public courses by Golf Digest and host of the 2017 U.S. Open, Erin Hills is just a 35-mile drive from Milwaukee, but it feels hours away from the city. Natural is the name of the game at Erin Hills, and that’s by design. Its expansive 652-acre property has no houses or condos on the course, but you might catch an occasional glimpse of a barn or silo. And it’s not unusual to feel like you’re the only one there. Better to enjoy the long, hilly walk (no carts allowed). With on-site accommodations and a cozy clubhouse, this is one course not to be overlooked.
History is also an important part of the story at Brown Deer Park Golf Course in Milwaukee. Home of the Greater Milwaukee Open from 1994-2009, Brown Deer was one of the few municipal golf courses to ever host a PGA Tour event. In 1996, then 21-year-old Tiger Woods, made his professional debut at Brown Deer finishing in a tie for 60th place and winning $2,544.
Stay the night in Wisconsin’s biggest city at the boutique, motorcycle-themed Iron Horse Hotel or the historic Pfister Hotel. For dinner, head to any of Milwaukee’s go-to restaurants downtown, such as Hinterland, Bacchus or Carnevor.
Heading out with the guys? Discover golf courses, breweries at more with our getaway ideas.