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Machrihanish – Championship Course

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Founded: 1876
Designer: Old Tom Morris, J.H. Taylor, Guy Campbell
Championship Length: 6,225 yards
PAR: 70
SSS (Course Rating): 71
Type: Links
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Who this course is best for:

A golfer who’d like to get off the beaten path and play a very natural & traditional links course and a World Top 100 Course that’s perhaps the most removed of them all. It’s either a long drive, a short flight, or boat ride to get there.

History of Machrihanish:

In 1876, several local dignitaries of Campbeltown visualized a golf course set amid the spectacular sand dunes of Machrihanish. During this time, the course was only accessible by steamboat and then carriage as it was miles from the nearest railway station.

Old Tom Morris initially laid out the the links of Machrihanish. He described the setting as being “specifically designed by the Almighty for playing golf”. Three time Open Champion JH Taylor then altered the course in 1914. While some 30 years later Sir Guy Campbell applied the final touches. The result being the course as we know it today (ranked #93 in the world by Golf Magazine).

Course Overview:

Situated on the Kintyre Peninsula, 140 miles from Glasgow, Machrihanish Golf Club may be slightly off the beaten track. However, its remoteness is central to its abundant charm. The best manner to reach Machrihanish is by mini-ferry, ideal for a small to medium sized group of golfers. From Troon the trip is 32 miles and takes just over an hour! Much like Royal Dornoch, the course has some of the world’s most naturally undulating fairways and amazingly contoured greens. Without a doubt, this links would certainly play host to many prestigious events, if not for its relative isolation.

Renowned as a top venue, Machrihanish possesses all the traits expected by the links purist. The outward nine holes follow the hills and hollows among the sand dunes bordering the sea, and each hole requires accurate tee shots and carefully thought out irons to reach the expertly maintained putting surfaces. No less demanding, the inward nine stretch home against the backdrop of the Kintyre Hills. Two par 5’s and three tricky par 3’s must be negotiated before the Machrihanish burn comes into play over the final two holes.

The First Tee:

Though it may take some time to get here, you are well advised to try. If for no other reason than to stand on the world-famous 1st tee and decide how much of the bay you wish to carry on the way to this 428-yard opener. And whether successful or not, the visitor to Machrihanish is inevitably struck by the beauty of the links and the wondrous way in which the sun sets over Islay.

Looking for something off the beaten path? There are many magnificent remote courses on Scotland’s West Coast. Ask about our Remote Scotland package today!

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“We were very fortunate to have selected your organization – it just could have not been any better – I enjoyed a week-long Father’s Day.”

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Tours that include this Course

Machrie Golf Scotland


Remote Scotland

Six rounds of golf:

  • Machrihanish-Championship Course
  • Machrie
  • Machrihanish Dunes
  • Shiskine
  • Royal Troon-Old Course
  • Turnberry-Ailsa Course