Which golf courses have hosted the Open? Here's all the information you need

Fourteen golf courses have had the honour of calling themselves Open Championship venues. Here they are in the order in which they first hosted golf’s oldest major…

Open Championship venues: Prestwick

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Ayrshire, Scotland

Years hosted: 1860, 1861, 1862, 1863, 1864, 1865, 1866, 1867, 1868, 1869, 1870, 1872, 1875, 1878, 1881, 1884, 1887, 1890, 1893, 1898, 1903, 1908, 1914, 1925 (24 times)

Status: No longer on the rota

The birthplace of the Open, Prestwick helped to usher in a new tournament to establish the best golfer in the land, and hosted the inaugral edition of the fabled tournament in 1860. Yet Prestwick fell victim to its own success. After 24 stagings of the event, 65 years after its first, Prestwick held its last Open in 1925 due to being unable to cater to the now huge size of the event. To this day however, Prestwick remains integral to the story and tradition of the tournament.

Open Championship venues: St Andrews

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Fife, Scotland

Years hosted: 1873, 1876, 1879, 1882, 1885, 1888, 1891, 1895, 1900, 1905, 1920, 1921, 1927, 1933, 1939, 1946, 1955, 1957, 1960, 1964, 1970, 1978, 1984, 1990, 1995, 2000, 2005, 2010, 2015 (29 times)

Status: Hosted on a five-year basis since 1990, though will next host in 2021 to commemorate the 150th edition of the Open

In 1872, alongside Prestwick and the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers at Musselburgh, the Royal & Ancient Golf Club agreed to pay a third of the price towards the Claret Jug trophy and rotate the event between the courses of the three clubs. While the other two courses quickly lost Open status, the Old Course at St Andrews flourished and has become further established as not only the most hallowed turf in golf, but also as the home of the Open.

Open Championship venues: Musselburgh

 

Where is it? East Lothian, Scotland

Years hosted: 1874, 1877, 1880, 1883, 1886, 1889 (six times)

Status: No longer on the rota

The Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers, who have resided at Muirfield since its inception in 1892, also paid their third toward the Claret Jug. As a result, the club’s home of Musselburgh held the Open six times over a 15-year period in the late 19th century. When Muirfield was built however, Musselburgh lost its Open status for good, and has since become a publicly owned course.

Open Championship venues: Muirfield

Open Championship venues

Where is it? East Lothian, Scotland

Years hosted: 1892, 1896, 1901, 1906, 1912, 1929, 1935, 1948, 1959, 1966, 1972, 1980, 1987, 1992, 2002, 2013 (16 times)

Status: On the rota but next date to be confirmed

The new home for the Honourable Company in 1892, Muirfield has stood the test of time as not only a classic course, but also one of considerable test for even the modern player. Ironically, a bitter spat between the Honourable Company at Muirfield and Musselburgh raised the Open up another notch in stature. Musselburgh golfers adamantly protested the moving of The Open to Muirfield away from them, and created their own tournament with far greater prize money in opposition.

In response, the prize fund for the 1892 Open, Muirfield’s first, was quadrupled from the previous year, and was well over double what any previous Open had ever offered any winner. The resulting huge pool set the tone for future prize money and helped expand the tournament across Britain, opening the door for the Great Triumvirate’s introduction to the tournament.

Open Championship venues: Royal St George’s

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Kent, England

Years hosted: 1894, 1899, 1904, 1911, 1922, 1928, 1934, 1938, 1949, 1981, 1985, 1993, 2003, 2011 (14 times)

Status: Will host in 2020

The honour of hosting the first Open in England fell to Royal St George’s. The Kent links has hosted more than any other course outside of Scotland, and will host its 15th in 2020.

JH Taylor’s win in 1894, the first by an English professional, began the dominance of the Great Triumvirate, where Taylor, Harry Vardon and James Braid combined to win 16 of 21 straight Opens. The rivalry between the two Englishmen and Scotsman respectively increased the tournament’s publicity further, gaining traction across the channel and even across the Atlantic.

Open Championship venues: Royal Liverpool

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Merseyside, England

Years hosted: 1897, 1902, 1907, 1913, 1924, 1930, 1936, 1947, 1956, 1967, 2006, 2014 (12 times)

Status: Will host in 2022

The second most prolific host of the Open in England, the course is affectionately known as Hoylake after the town – some 12 miles from Liverpool – in which it is situated.

Royal Liverpool’s first champion was one of its own, as Harold Hilton, the Open’s most prolific British amateur, claimed his second and final Claret Jug in 1897. Hoylake also saw the first overseas champion, Frenchman Arnaud Massey in 1907, and as for the last two winners? Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy. Not a bad champion’s board.

Open Championship venues: Royal Cinque Ports

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Kent, England

Years hosted: 1909, 1920 (two times)

The first Open after World War I, Cinque Ports last held the Championship in 1920, despite being scheduled to host two further championships decades later. High tides around the course eventually rendered the course unable to host both times in 1938 and 1947, eventually leading to the removal of Royal Cinque Ports from the rota.

Status: No longer on the rota

Open Championship venues: Royal Troon

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Ayrshire, Scotland

Years hosted: 1923, 1950, 1962, 1973, 1982, 1989, 1997, 2004, 2016 (nine times)

Status: On the rota but next date to be confirmed

This famous course only came into hosting the Open after the Honourable Company briefly had doubts over whether they wanted Muirfield hosting the competition. Troon stepped in to replace Muirfield in 1923 and have never looked back, especially after Henrik Stenson and Phil Mickelson played out one of the greatest head-to-head duels in the history of golf on its grounds in 2016.

Open Championship venues: Royal Lytham & St Annes

Status: On the rota but next date to be confirmed

Where is it? Lancashire, England

Years hosted: 1926, 1952, 1958, 1963, 1969, 1974, 1979, 1988, 1996, 2001, 2012 (11 times)

Status: On the rota but next date to be confirmed

The 1926 Open at Royal Lytham & St Annes was a huge event in the history of the competition. Just six years after the R&A took full control of the the Open, it was spread out across three days for the first time and was the first Open ever to put up entry charges for spectators. The result of the tournament was historic too as Bobby Jones, the greatest amateur of them all, secured the first of his three Open wins.

Open Championship venues: Carnoustie

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Angus, Scotland

Years hosted: 1931, 1937, 1953, 1968, 1975, 1999, 2007, 2018 (eight times)

Status: On the rota but next date to be confirmed

Arguably the toughest course on the rota, Carnoustie took the place of Prestwick in 1931 for its first Open and, unthinkably for the era, presented a course just shy of an abominable 7,000 yards. Just a few miles from St Andrews, Tommy Armour reigned victorious and carried on the greatest ever American winning streak at the Open, 10 years after Jock Hutchinson won for the first time.

‘Carnasty’ also hosted the toughest Open ever played in 1999, where Jean Van de Velde, now inextricably linked with the Barry Burn, infamously collapsed on the 72nd hole of regulation.

Open Championship venues: Prince’s

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Kent, England

Year hosted: 1932 (one time)

Nearby to both Royal St Georges and Royal Cinque Ports, Prince’s remains the only course to ever hold just one Open. The tournament witnessed the debut of the sand wedge, as eventual champion Gene Sarazen used his new club to escape pot bunkers and stroll to victory, very aptly, near the town of Sandwich.

Open Championship venues: Royal Portrush

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Antrim, Northern Ireland

Years hosted: 1951, 2019 (two times)

Status: On the rota but next date to be confirmed

The only ever host of the Open outside of Scotland and England, the Dunluce Links originally hosted the Open four years after local hero Fred Daly conquered Hoylake. After a push from several tour stars, including Rory McIlroy, Darren Clarke and Graeme McDowell, the Claret Jug returned to Northern Ireland in 2019 and it is rumoured that the deal includes it being hosted across the Irish Sea on at least two more occasions in the next decade. Watch this space…

Open Championship venues: Royal Birkdale

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Merseyside, England

Years hosted: 1954, 1961, 1965, 1971, 1976, 1983, 1991, 1998, 2008, 2017 (10 times)

Status: On the rota but next date to be confirmed

The best course in England only hosted the Open for the first time 65 years ago, but has quickly made up for lost time. After Peter Thomsen started his love affair with the Claret Jug at Birkdale in 1954, winning for the first of three straight years, the Southport course hosted four times in 15 years from 1961 and firmly established itself as one of the premiere Open Championship venues.

Open Championship venues: Turnberry

Open Championship venues

Where is it? Ayrshire, Scotland

Years hosted: 1977, 1986, 1994, 2009 (four times)

Status: On the rota but next date to be confirmed

Like Birkdale, the best course in Scotland has been a latecomer to the Open party. Unlike Birkdale however, Turnberry has been scarcely used since its first Open 42 years ago. Despite hosting the famed Duel in the Sun, where Tom Watson beat Jack Nicklaus, and nearly seeing Watson make history 32 years later in 2009, Turnberry has had the most turbulent history of current Open courses. Donald Trump purchased the club in 2014 and it is rumoured the R&A is reluctant to host an Open there under the club’s current ownership.

Information collated by Chris Lewis. For more information, visit the Open Championship website