Old Course

St. Andrews, Fife | 18 holes | Links | Par: 72 | 6721 yards

St. Andrews Links - Old Course
St. Andrews Links - Old Course

The Old Course under the auspices of the R&A are the birthplace of golf as we know it today. The course itself perhaps defines the term "classic links course". Just imagine the feeling of teeing off in front of the R&A clubhouse, to walk the fairways trodden by so many legendary golfers and to return to the clubhouse as you play the 18th hole. In a word - sublime!

The course is located on a peninsula where the elements have sculptured a course completely at variance to today's manicured parkland courses. The ground is generally flat but dominated by depressions and undulations. Besides the obvious sandy ground, there is an abundance of bunkers which can easily trap those long drives required of this long course. Instead of doglegs to hide holes, the course has plenty of large mounds covered in coarse grass and heather. Of course the wide open spaces and the prevailing sea winds also play an important part of any round.

The Old Course is particularly special as it still poses a real challenge to the best golfers in the world.

Directions: A91 from Cupar. Once in town take third turning on left into Golf Place and follow for 500 yards.

Par, yardages and course ratings

Tee Par Yardage Rating Slope
White 72 6721 73.1 132
Yellow 72 6387 71.4 129
Red (W) 76 6032 75.6 138

At same facility


At a glance

  • Holes: 18
  • Designed by: Alister MacKenzie, Old Tom Morris
  • Type: Public
  • Style: Links
  • Built in: 1850
  • Golf Season: Low 11/1-3/31; High 4/18-10/16
  • Visitor Policy: All year apart from Sundays and by reservation or by ballot. Need to book well in advance. There is a daily ballot for play the next day but it does not always guarantee a game. Visitors must have handicap certificates or letter of introduction.
  • Tee times welcomed: Yes

Practice facilities

  • Driving range: Yes
  • Putting green: Yes


  • Teaching pro: Yes
  • Golf school / golf academy: Yes


  • Pro: Yes
  • Rental clubs: Yes
  • Rental carts: Yes - medical certificate required
  • Pull carts: Yes


  • Week days: £85 - £175
  • Weekends: £85 - £175


A view of hole #2 at Old Course from St. Andrews LinksOld Course, St. Andrews, Scotland ( Photo by Brandon Tucker )The front nine's only par 5, No. 12 is a par-4 named Now a favorite 19th hole next to the Old Course Hotel and 17th fairway, the Jigger Inn is a former station master's lodge, dating back to the 1850s. The new Links Trust clubhouse sits next to the second fairway of the Old Course. The Old Course's 18th hole can vary greatly depending on the wind. It can be drivable, or the Granny Clark's Wynd can come into play. The Swilcan Burn guards the first green of the Old Course. The R&A Clubhouse sits right behind the first tee box on the Old Course. No. 1,

St Andrews Links Trust
Pilmour House
St Andrews
Fife KY16 9SF
P: +44 (0) 1334 466666
F: +44 (0) 1334 479555
W: www.standrews.com

Reader Ratings / Reviews

  • 2.5 stars out of 5
    by john callaghan
    on March 25th, 2014 14:46
    Played this course in 1989. When ordinary people could afford it. Didn't hit a bunker. Shot 84 playing off 14 ,Not bad. Now you got to be very affluant to play it .Rip off area.
  • 2.5 stars out of 5
    by Gazza
    on December 19th, 2012 21:36
    I have played this course 7 times. It is not the most sophisticated course in the world. It is not the most difficult course in the world. It is not the most beautiful course in the world. It is not the fairest course in the world. It does not have the best golfing weather in the world. It is however the best golf course in the world. If you think this course is about history and not golf you would be right. If you think this course is about golf not history you would be right. The greatest course is said to be the greatest course by the two greatest players of the game, Nicklaus and Woods. I have ben fortunate to play on all kinds of courses in the world. California, England, Scotland, Ireland, Carribean, Greece, France, Wales many of them championship standard. Fantastic as they all are they are a mere diversion from the golf that St Andrews offers. Golf is at its purest at St Andrews and thats why it is the home of golf. Perhaps not the ultimate for some golfers but the ultimate for golf nonetheless.
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