Golf Trips to Take this Winter

 best winter golf trips on a budget

Your favorite local course may be covered with snow come December or January, but that doesn't mean you have to keep your clubs in the closet. Winter golf trips can allow you to keep your skills sharp, enjoy the sport and take a break from everyday life. 


Arizona and Florida are two great destinations for winter golf, and a trip to either state doesn't have to break the bank. To help you plan the ideal golf getaway, we put together this guide to affordable winter golf trips. Read on to discover some top courses to consider and to get some helpful tips on making the most of your vacation on the green. 


Benefits of Winter Golf 

Before we start inspiring your wanderlust with descriptions of some of the best courses for winter golf trips, it's worth it to review just why heading off to a golf getaway during the winter months is so appealing.


During the winter, you'll enjoy: 

  • Comfortable conditions: Florida and Arizona don't have snowy winters, but temperatures are much milder during the season. As a result, you can feel far more comfortable on some of the nation's top courses and be in a better position to play at your best. 
  • Fewer crowds: Even in areas where you can golf in all four seasons, people tend to play less during the winter. For you, that means a greater availability of tee times and less likelihood of crowds rushing you through the round. 
  • Training for spring: The key to being great at golf is consistent play. When you take the time to play for a few days during a golf getaway, you'll continue to develop your skills and be ready for the start of the season back home. 


Arizona Golf Trips 

Gaining in popularity, Arizona is a winter golfer's paradise with gorgeous courses and mild temperatures. From 2019 to 2021, participation in the sport grew a whopping 23%, and new courses are opening all the time to meet the demand. The following are some favorite courses to play for wintertime Arizona golf trips. 


Raven Golf Club - Phoenix - $145 

If you're looking for the best winter golf trips on a budget, head to Raven Golf Club. The course features a par-72, 7,078-yard championship layout and picturesque views of the Phoenix skyline from fairways situated between more than 6,000 mature pines. 


Papago Golf Course - $135 

Another affordable option for a winter giveaway, Papago Golf Course is nestled in the heart of a native desert and the work of William Francis Bell, designer of the prestigious Torrey Pines in San Diego. The course is an easy drive from Phoenix Tempe and Scottsdale and just two miles from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport for easy access. 


The Phoenician Golf Club - $240 

Architect Phil Smith designed this picturesque Scottsdale course in the middle of the breathtaking Sonoran Desert. With no surprise bunkers or blind hazards, it's a no-stress course that's great for both beginners and seasoned players. 


Troon North - $365 

Consistently ranked among the top courses in Arizona by publications like Golfweek, Troon North gives you two championship golf courses to test your skills. The Scottsdale-area club also offers a golf club shipping service that makes it even easier to head off to your winter getaway. 


The Boulders Golf Club - $280 

In Scottsdale's Sonoran Desert foothills, The Boulders is a luxurious retreat seamlessly integrating granite boulder formations with architecture. Members indulge in a lavish spa, two championship golf courses, and impeccable service amidst awe-inspiring views—perfect for social events, golf tournaments, and more. 


Florida Golf Trips 

From the Orlando area to the coasts, there are plenty of places to play golf in Florida during the winter months. A big part of the appeal of a Florida golf vacation is that there's also plenty of fun to be had off the course. If you're traveling with the family, they can check out some local attractions while you play rounds. Here are our picks for top courses for Florida golf trips. 


Streamsong Resort: Red - $330 

Located in Bowling Green, Streamsong is a true golf destination. Luxurious onsite dining and lodging options let you stay and play in one place, and the resort also offers a spa, guided bass fishing, sporting clays and archery, so there's plenty to experience. When it comes to golf, there are three courses to play, including the popular Red designed by top-ranked architects Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw. 


Trump National Doral Blue Monster - $450 

Put your skills to the test on a course that has hosted greats like Johnson, Nicklaus, Norman and Woods, the Blue Monster at Trump National. An abundance of water features and strategically placed bunkers make the course challenging, but it's still approachable for beginners. Plus, the resort is home to three additional courses and onsite accommodations. 


TPC Sawgrass: Dye's Valley - $250 

Home to THE PLAYERS tournament, TPC Sawgrass is a once-in-a-lifetime golf destination, and its Dye's Valley Course is surprisingly affordable. Pete Dye, Bobby Weed and player Jerry Pate designed the course, which has served as the location for a number of Korn Ferry Tour events. 



Practical Tips for Planning Winter Golf Trips 

To set yourself up for a memorable, enjoyable winter golf trip, follow these tips. 


Time It Right 

When you're planning your golf trip, do some research to determine if there are any major events like conventions planned for the winter months. To have your pick of tee times and reduced crowds, try to travel when there's nothing going on.


Also, keep in mind that airfare and hotels are often more expensive during the holiday season, so consider January and February for your golf getaways. 


Be Ready for Unpredictable Weather 

You're unlikely to encounter snow during your winter golf trip, but you might be faced with rain and chilly temperatures in the morning and afternoon. Make sure you're prepared by dressing in layers. Think one of our tees or polos worn under a jacket or pullover, and choose quick-dry joggers or pants for your bottoms. 


Stock Up on Winter-Ready Gear 

Before you head off on your trip, make sure you have the gear you need for the game.


Consider bringing: 

  • New golf balls: Choose colored balls for high visibility on gray winter days. 
  • Golf hat: Even though the sun isn't as hot during the winter months, you still need adequate protection from its rays, so bring along a baseball cap or bucket hat. 
  • Headcovers: Protect your putter, driver, woods and hybrids from damage while in transit and exposure to the elements with headcovers. 
  • Golf towel: An absorbent golf towel can come in handy for cleaning your ball, wiping your brow and maintaining your clubs on your trip. 


Experience the Best Winter Golf Trips 

Winter golf trips allow you to challenge yourself with new courses and keep your skills sharp all while enjoying pleasant weather conditions and thinner crowds. Use the travel ideas outlined above as a starting point for your own planning and get ready to enjoy the best winter golf trips in the U.S. this winter. 


Have you taken a winter golf trip before? Let us know about your experiences in the comments, and don't hesitate to ask questions about planning your golf getaway. 

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