Scotland Guide: Trump Turnberry, Gailes Links and Prestwick
Thanks to its setting on the Ayrshire coast and fabulous condition, Gailes Links has been sought out by the very best players ever since Willie Park Jr created the world-class links 125 years ago.
He always considered Gailes to be one of his nest creations – quite something when you consider his design portfolio includes the likes of Sunningdale’s Old Course.
The routing has changed little since Park put spade to soil, aside from been lengthened, and it is no surprise the layout has recently been used as the Scottish venue for Open qualifying.
The birthplace of the Open, it was here on the South Ayrshire coast where the world’s oldest major began, on a course originally laid out over 12 holes by Old Tom Morris.
Prestwick is wonderfully quirky. From the opening hole, where you could strike a passing train if you leak your tee shot, to the brilliant Himalayas and the spectacular Alps, you’ll have never played a course like it.
Both fun and fiendishly difficult at the same time, playing at Prestwick represents a stroll through history. Make sure to experience the clubhouse – one of the best in the game.
Iconic. Just the mere glimpse of the famous lighthouse evokes a dozen Open memories, most notably Watson and Nicklaus’s ‘Duel in the Sun’.
Long regarded as the ‘jewel in the crown’ of Ayrshire, the Ailsa course, with Arran and Ailsa Craig as the most picturesque of backdrops, got even better following major changes by esteemed architect Martin Ebert.
An incredible eight-hole coastal stretch is crowned by the ninth – turned into an awe-inspiring par 3. Hitting your tee shot here across the rocky bay to the green beyond is up there with the game’s best experiences.