5 of the Best – Golf Courses

Blog written and researched by @tom_ashurst and @richiewear13 (In 100 over par)!

KP Club2

Nestled in the heart of Kilnwick Percy, near Pocklington, is one of East Yorkshire’s secret gems, The KP.

As you make your way up the drive way, you can’t help but notice the chic, modern main building which contains the KP’s reception and their Glasshouse restaurant and the first tee on your left which looks green and inviting.

The golf course is immaculately kept with 120 acres of rolling terrain ready to test your golfing abilities. The first two tees are relatively straight forward, with fairly open fairways but then a short, uphill par 3 followed by a mammoth 600 yard par 5 really starts to challenge your golfing skills. The greens throughout the course provide a challenge as they’re quite quick and, on some holes, difficult to read.

The course in general contains lots of subtle undulations and whilst the fairways are fairly wide and forgiving, you’d be best advised to avoid the rough as it can be tricky to get out of. What’s nice about the course is there’s enough hazards to make you think on each hole and you really need to plan your way around rather than just hitting as hard as you can. My favourite hole would be 18th and ball positioning on the green here is key. Hit above the pin and you can end up looking a right wally as your ball rolls away off the green and back to the fairway if you’re not too careful.

KPMap

The Pro Shop is stocked with every golfing essential you might need (including Mars and Snickers bars for when you’re starting to lag around hole 13!), the team in there are incredibly helpful and there’s buggies, trollies and clubs available for hire should you need it.

It’s not just the golf that makes The KP stand out though. Their stylish, Scandinavian-style lodges are the ultimate in luxury with large comfy beds, contemporary bathrooms and outdoor hot tubs that’ll mean you can relax in style in the evenings. Also, their health and fitness studio, The Box, is packed full of all the most up-to-date gym equipment and the new Nordic Relaxation Area provides the perfect way to remove any aches and pains you might have after your round of golf with its sauna huts, hot tub, swim spa and spa pool too.

The Glasshouse Restaurant provides for those who are both looking for a three course meal or just light bites, with a tasty menu filled with traditional Yorkshire dishes. On a warm day, the outdoor terrace is a perfect, tranquil place to sit with drinks and watch your fellow golfers make their way up the 18th hole.

After all that, you’ll be rushing to return to The KP

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Oulton Hall

The 27 hole, Dave Thomas designed Oulton Hall golf complex, based just 10 minutes from Leeds, is not only a picturesque course, but also one of Yorkshire’s leading golf performance centres. This makes the complex a must for golf aficionados, with the new Nike academy available to really hone your skills.

With some “gettable” par 5s and challenging par 3s the 6482 yard par 71 Calverley course will test all aspects of your play. The 9 hole, par 36 Hall Course, based on the north east side of the estate, can be combined with 9 holes from the Calverley course to give a different golfing challenge.

Before or after playing Oulton, it is worth visiting the Claret Jug to sample the exceptional cuisine on offer. We visited before we played and enjoyed the varied lunch menu whilst overlooking the 18th fairway and green. We watched 4 or 5 groups come up the 18th as we had lunch which made us even more excited for the challenge that was ahead of us.

Oulton

Before your round, the knowledgeable and friendly staff can assist you with your golfing needs. The well-stocked pro-shop offers a wide range of golfing products at reasonable prices. On the day I visited I was sorted with a state of the art, electric golf trolley and my playing partners were aided by the loan of some left handed clubs. Golf buggies can also be hired.

The course itself offers varied challenges, the longer hitters can benefit from the reachable par 5s while the shorter holes keep you honest and require accuracy to avoid the menacing and intimidating sand traps and water hazards. The greens are challenging but slow, so if you get within 15 feet you will fancy your chances of 1 putting.

Most importantly, the course is immaculately kept. The fairways are lush and green and the rough isn’t impossible to hit from. The bunkers and water hazards are strategically placed to make you think about your next shot, while adding to the idyllicy of the course.

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Rudding Park

Part of a luxury Hotel, Spa and golf complex in Harrogate, Rudding Park has extensive golf and teaching facilities. Renowned golf course architect Martin Hawtree designed both 18 hole par 72 course and the Repton short course, to provide a challenge for seasoned golfers as well as those just beginning the game.

The Hawtree course is a championship 18 hole course that runs through the magnificent 18th century parkland of the Rudding estate. The Hawtree course is laid out in the old fashioned “out and back” fashion, with the front nine holes leading away from the club house and the back nine guiding golfers back in. In addition there are another two holes which can be combined to make a 10 hole round with holes 1-7, and finishing on the par 4 third.

The fairways are wide, the greens are fast and the hazards offer a strategic challenge for all levels of golfer. Every hole at Rudding Park is different, and the course’s signature hole, the par 3 14th, is guarded by 4 bunkers and has an undulating green. In the summer time this 14th green is surrounded in a flourish of colour due to the Rhododendron bushes that overlook the putting surface.

RuddingGolf

Rudding Park also offers you the option of playing the 6 hole Repton Course. This course is constructed to USGA standard, and replicates famous par 3 holes from golf courses around the world. Wentworth, Augusta, Sunningdale, St. Andrews, Sawgrass and Carnoustie all have representation here, and it offers “golf in an hour” to fit with lots of different lifestyles.

It would be remiss of me not to mention the other facilities that Rudding Park has to offer. The Grade I listed Regency house incorporates 21st-centry comforts by fusing contemporary design with traditional elegance and offers a range of experiences to suit all tastes. The stylish 88 bedroom hotel also features a spa and private cinema and has achieved numerous accolades, including being voted Best Hotel in UK outside London for the third year running in the TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Awards 2015. The contemporary Clocktower restaurant and bar at Rudding Park has 2 AA Rosettes, with monthly menus using local, seasonal ingredients served in stunning surroundings.

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Whitby Golf Club

There must only be a few golf courses in the world that have a backdrop to rival Whitby Golf Club. Located on the western side of the town, on the road to Sandsend, this golf course has a commanding position right on the edge of the cliffs and gives this course an authentic, windswept feel that you would struggle to replicate elsewhere.

A stiff sea breeze can be one of your biggest foes (or friend, depending on your shot!) on the day, and can play a big part in determining how difficult your day ahead will be. Luckily for us, we were blessed with glorious sunshine so this wasn’t a massive element to factor in.

However, regardless of the weather, the challenges on 4, 6 and 18 are always there. An accurate teeshot is required on all these holes as a wayward shot will see your ball disappear into the abyss of the ravines!

WhitbyGolf

After tackling the front 9, you then cross the road for holes 10 to 16 before crossing back for the final two holes. On holes 10 to 16 there’s some tricky holes, but if you hit the fairway there are birdies to be picked up here. Once you head back across the road for 17 and 18 you’re in for a treat.

17 is arguably one of the easiest holes to play, it’s fairly straight, the course crinkles up and down a bit, but there’s no huge hazards but the 18th hole is a spectacular challenge and arguably the best hole on the course. Once you’ve negotiated the formidable Upgang Ravine (a challenge in itself) you’ll need another crisp shot or two to get you down to the green and, with bunkers surrounding it, you’ve played well if you get away with par. I know I didn’t!

Overall, the greens are ok for golfers of all quality as you can give the ball a bit of a tap and you don’t need to worry that it’ll run off into the sea! Back in the club house, the club professional, Tony Mason, has over 35 years of experience and is always on hand to give you advice on how to approach each hole and is available for lessons throughout the week too.

This is a laid back and friendly golf club, ideal for holiday goers looking for a fun challenge. Also, once you’ve finished you’ve got an excuse to head in the Whitby town for some delicious fish and chips as a reward too!

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Aldwark Manor

Set within the stunning grounds of 4* Aldwark Manor, this golf course is a stunning, well kept treat for keen golfers.

This course is a 72 par, 18 hole course of 6187 yards and you can’t help but admire the way in which the course has been put together as each hole is quirky and different. Some holes placed around the gorgeous manor, some by the river Ouse and some up near Aldwark’s famous toll bridge too – there’s plenty of character to keep you interested.

The fairways in general are fairly narrow, so straight driving is definitely rewarded. This is never more true than on the Par 5s which are without doubt reachable and birdie opportunities are available on each of these.

Accuracy on the Par 3s is vital. As you start and end on Par 3s you’ll need to keep your game to a decent standard from start to finish. The Par 3 on the 1st hole is relatively straight forward except for the out of bounds area to the right, but the same cannot be said for the 18th which is a tricky little finish where the best aim is to drop the ball at the front of the green for an uphill putt as deep bunkers linger at the back. Don’t leave it too short though as it can end up with a splash…!

AlwarkMap

Once you’ve finished your round, a stop at the Terrace Bar might be required. Here you can relax in the sun and enjoy a tasty bite to eat from their menu whilst you recover from your golf session.

However, after 18 hard holes, you could be forgiven for deciding to reward yourself with a trip to their luxurious spa instead.  From a soothing facial to the gentle easing of muscles with an all over body massage, the tranquility and calming environment of this spa will leave you feeling invigorated and ready to start your round all over again!

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FOR MORE INFORMATION AND FOR OTHER COURSES IN YORKSHIRE, VISIT OUR GOLF SECTION.

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