Leeds boasts some of the UK’s oldest and finest courses, designed by the world’s best golf architects, and is home to some of the game’s biggest sporting events.
The only dilemma for a visiting enthusiast is which of the many courses to visit. Here is a look at ten of the best courses in Leeds.
Howley Hall Golf Club
The home of the PGA in the Yorkshire Open Championship and considered one of the finest championship courses in Yorkshire, Howley Hall is a must for any golf enthusiast visiting Leeds. Founded in 1900, with course improvements advised on by Dr Alister Mackenzie in 1913, it now boasts the best four finishing holes in Yorkshire, and welcomes visitors year-round.
Away from the stunning course, the clubhouse boasts views out over the Pennines, while the lounge bar and dining room serve up delicious food to cater to all tastes.Located only five miles from Leeds city centre and within minutes of the M1 and M62, it's in a perfect location for golf societies and visiting parties.
Scotchman Lane, Leeds LS27 0NX, England01924 350100; http://www.howleyhall.co.uk/
Cookridge Hall Golf and Country Club
Offering spectacular views across the Yorkshire Dales, Cookridge Hall’s par 72 championship golf course caters for golfers of all abilities.
While it provides a stern test of ability - the front nine holes are littered with daunting water hazards and strategic bunkering - those that make it round will be rewarded with the stunning 18th, the aptly named ‘temptation’. The green is reachable in a single shot from the tee, but surrounded by a lake waiting to swallow up any errant strike.
After tackling the course, players can relax and enjoy the hospitality and exceptional service of the 18th-century clubhouse, with the venue praised for its food - and particularly renowned for their Sunday roasts. The club is just 15 minutes from Leeds City Centre.
Cookridge Lane, Cookridge, Leeds LS16 7NL, England0113 230 0641; http://cookridgehall.co.uk/
Headingley Golf Club
Founded in 1892, Headingley is one of the oldest golf clubs in Leeds, and one of only 14 Yorkshire clubs to feature in the official Golf Club Directory of 1892.
In February 1906 it moved to its present home, alongside the 12th-century Adel Church, one of the finest examples of Norman architecture in the country. It is just five miles from the centre of Leeds, but with stunning views and an isolated rural setting it seems a world away.
The course, shaped in the early 20th century by a number of eminent architects including the world-famous Dr Alister Mackenzie, boasts many memorable holes which make full use of the varied and dramatic terrain. And the clubhouse has a stunning trophy room, excellent dining and lounge facilities and, of course, the famous 189th hole.
Back Church Lane, Adel, Leeds, LS16 8DW, England0113 267 3052; https://www.headingleygolfclub.co.uk/
Alwoodley Golf Club
Many of the finest courses around Leeds were designed by Dr Alister MacKenzie, who would earn world renown for his course at Augusta National and Royal Melbourne among others.
For those wanting to play through a little slice of history then, Alwoodley Golf Club is a must. It was the very first course Dr MacKenzie designed and is therefore known as the Original MacKenzie - as his layout remains to this day.
The course has been lengthened to over 6,900 yards from the championship tees, but the club have been careful to retain the heathland and moorland characteristics of the course. Visiting golfers are welcome year-round, and the course and clubhouse are frequently named as the top attraction for golf fanatics.
Wigton Lane, Leeds LS17 8SA, England0113 268 1680; https://www.alwoodley.co.uk/
Bradford Golf Club
The 2018 West Yorkshire Golf Club of the Year, Bradford Golf Club is a masterpiece of design from one of the game’s pre-eminent course architects, Herbert Fowler. Designed in 1923, the Par 71 Championship Course is one of the oldest in Yorkshire and provides a real challenge for golfers of all handicaps.
A moorland links with stunning views over Baildon and Rombald Moors, it is also home of The Hawksworth Trophy, a prestigious 36-hole competition for the leading amateur golfers in Northern England.
The club is only ten miles from Leeds and eight miles from Bradford, and the welcoming clubhouse offers excellent cuisine and a range of facilities to cater for events large and small.
Hawksworth Lane, Guiseley, Leeds LS20 8NP, England01943 875570; https://bradfordgolfclub.co.uk/
Moortown Golf Club
Founded in 1909, Moortown is another Dr Alister MacKenzie masterpiece, and is known around the world as the host course for the first Ryder Cup match on British soil.
A record crowd of more than 15,000 people turned out to watch Great Britain beat the US in 1929, and to this day the Ladies’ section plays annually for their own “Ryder Cup”, donated by Samuel Ryder to the ladies of the club for all their help and support during the event.
Regarded as one of the country’s finest inland golf courses, it provides a warm welcome to all visitors. And while steeped in history, it boasts a range of modern facilities, and excellent catering overseen by head chef Darren Senior and his team.
Harrogate Road | Alwoodley, Leeds LS17 7DB, England0113 268 6521; www.moortown-gc.co.uk
Moor Allerton Golf Club
Another essential for anyone interested in the game, Moor Allerton Golf Club has a fascinating history as well as providing a superb golfing experience.
The club was founded in 1923, with the original course designed by Dr. Alastair Mackenzie, but in 1970, due to demand for membership, the club relocated to its current site near the village of Wike in North Leeds.
The new course was designed by Robert Trent-Jones Senior, a fascinating figure in golf history, who designed or redesigned more than 500 golf courses in 35 countries and took pride in saying, "The sun never sets on a Robert Trent Jones golf course."
His clients included U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, for whom he built a putting green at the White House. At the time of the move the club’s head professional was golfing legend Peter Alliss, who described the course as ‘a golfing experience larger than life’. A friendly and relaxed environment offering perhaps the finest 27-hole parkland course in Yorkshire.
Coal Road, Wike, Leeds LS17 9NH, England0113 266 1154; https://moorallertongolfclub.co.uk
Sand Moor Golf Club
Dating back to 1926 and boasting stunning views over the Eccup reservoir, Sand Moor Golf Club was another designed by Dr Alister MacKenzie, who sat on the very first Greens Committee at the club.
Changes to the course, situated five miles north of Leeds city centre, first took place in the late 1960s to help the course stay abreast of modern day equipment whilst remaining loyal to its original concept.
The club has been fully refurbished in recent years and has excellent catering to complement the fantastic course, which is set over 100 acres and lined with a variety of stunning trees.
Alwoodley Lane, Leeds LS17 7DJ, England0113 268 5180; www.sandmoorgolf.co.uk
Scarcroft Golf Club
Often described as the hidden gem of Yorkshire golf clubs, and a pioneering ‘ladies welcome’ club, the 18 holes of Scarcroft Golf Club are set in beautiful parkland, which offers gorgeous views of the surrounding countryside, within easy reach of Leeds city centre.
A friendly club which welcomes visitors and prospective members of all abilities, Scarcroft has been gently modernised with an attractive bar, formal and informal catering and golf practice facilities for all to enjoy.
Syke Lane, Scarcroft, Leeds LS14 3BQ, England0113 289 2311; www.scarcroftgolfclub.co.uk
Fulneck Golf Club
Fulneck Golf Club was founded in 1892, making it one of the oldest golf club in Leeds.
Situated in the picturesque Fulneck valley running between Pudsey and the village of Tong, the club is accessible to both locals and visitors alike.
Its mature nine hole parkland course provides a testing game in beautiful surroundings. And the friendly and welcoming club has a well appointed clubhouse including a spacious modern function room.
Fulneck, Pudsey, Leeds LS28 8NT, England0113 256 5191; http://fulneckgolfclub.co.uk/