Want to play king for a day? Visit one of these 3 top public winter golf courses in the state of Georgia. You’ll pride yourself in having played at some of America’s grandest golf destinations. Somewhere among these fairways, forests, and fishing coves, your perfect golf game is waiting to happen.
1. Sea Island (Seaside), St. Simons Island.
The Sea Island Golf Club offers sweeping ocean views alongside its three separate 18-hole championship courses. The best course out of the three is Seaside. The course features dunes, salt marshes, and tidal creeks and lakes. (It was marshland before it became a finely sculpted green.) The first thing you’ll notice is its distinctive red wicker baskets instead of hole flags. Seaside was designed in 1929 by famed architects Harry S. Colt and Charles Alison, and then updated in 1999 by Tom Fazio. The course has hosted many USGA events and the PGA TOUR’s RSM Classic.
2. Reynolds Plantation (Great Waters), Greensboro.
Reynolds Lake Oconee features 117 holes of golf on 6 legendary courses. The most famous, Great Waters, is a Jack Nicklaus golf course that has nine holes coming into play along the shores of Lake Oconee. It offers some of the most dramatic golf scenery in the Southeast. Great Waters has also played host to the 41st PGA Professional National Championship, the showcase event for PGA professionals, on June 19-22, 2008. The greens underwent a restoration program in 2009. The restoration and some modifications have enhanced the shot value and preserved the integrity of the original design.
3. The Frog at the Georgian, Villa Rica.
The Frog is another top public winter golf course halfway between Atlanta and the Alabama border on I-20. Owned by Canongate (a great organization if you enjoy playing multiple courses), The Frog is one of the 20+ courses in their stable. One of the few modern Fazio designs unspoiled by development, it’s a pleasing, pure golf experience from start to finish. You’ll enjoy its solitude. Except for a few holes on the back nine, there is no residential development in sight. The Frog has hosted the 2001 Georgia Open, the 2004 Georgia Senior Open, and the John Smoltz Celebrity Players Tournament.