Ontario Golf Vacations

By Jim & Barbara Nicol

Ontario is the home of Mike Weir who recently became the first Canadian to win the Masters. The province has some of the most highly concentrated golfing regions in North America, and is home to many internationally renowned courses. But it's more than great courses that make Ontario such a natural destination for your golf vacation. Only its après-golf scene rivals Ontario 's great golf courses. Your choices are limited only by your imagination. In addition to the game's popularity and its unsurpassed collection of courses, Canada is quickly becoming a golf destination of choice for so many reasons.

Here's a sample of the golf experiences in Ontario:

The Muskoka region is where you will find Taboo, the 18-hole golf course that Mike Weir has chosen as his exclusive home course. Architect Ron Garl has described this 7,200-yard course as "frequently challenging, always enjoyable and eminently memorable".

Voted best new Canadian Golf Course of 1995 by Golf Digest, and designed by Doug Carrick, Angus Glen has been awarded the 2002 and 2007 Bell Canadian Open, as well as the 2001 Telus Skins Game.

Deerhurst Resort, ranked number two by Score magazine in the "Best Golf Resort" category offers 2 courses: The Deerhurst Highlands championship course designed by architects Robert Cupp and Thomas McBroom, and the par 65 Deerhurst Lakeside design by Thomas McBroom.

Score magazine rated Glen Abbey as Canada's best public course. Jack Nicklaus' first solo design is held in high esteem by Tour players for its difficulty: "The Valley", a five-hole stretch from the 11th tee, is renowned as one of the PGA Tour's toughest. The Club is also home to The Canadian Golf Hall of Fame.

Mark O'Meara designed Grandview Golf Club, which boasts spectacularly beautiful, rugged terrain, wide fairways, shallow bunkers and gently slopping greens that make this course both challenging and highly playable.

At Hockley Valley Resort, acclaimed golf architect Thomas McBroom has created an unforgettable Scottish-style links course known as the "shot makers' course", Hockley Valley challenges the versatile golfers and rewards accuracy.

Named Best New Canadian Course of 1997 by Golf Digest magazine, renowned golf architect Thomas McBroom has designed The Lake Joseph Club to be as strategic as it is scenic, framed by dense forest and granite outcroppings.

At Rocky Crest Golf Club, situated at the north end of Lake Joseph, golf architect Thomas McBroom sculpted this course out of the Canadian Shield of Muskoka, framed by forest of pine, white birch and hemlock.

At Legends on the Niagara, golf architects Doug Carrick and Thomas McBroom have created two championship 18-hole courses - Ussher's Creek and Battlefield - complemented by a 9-hole short course. This facility is adjacent to a War of 1812 battlefield where the Battle of Chippawa was fought.

Golf Digest calls Lionhead "one of the best courses, public or private, to be found anywhere." Course architect Ted Baker designed two 18-hole courses, the Florida-type Masters and the demanding Legends - a total of 14,318 yards.

Called "One of the five best public courses in Ontario" by Score magazine - and simply "Canada's toughest golf course by others, St. Andrew's Valley is as beautiful as it is challenging, with water coming into play on 14 holes.

Located against the backdrop of the Niagara River whirlpool and gorge, Whirlpool is a championship course designed by golf architect Stanley Thompson, ranked as one of the Top 100 Courses in Canada and rated as a 4 star facility by Golf Digest.

Wooden Sticks was designed to capture the spirit found in some of today's most recognized golf landscapes. Golf course architect Ron Garl created holes inspired by Augusta , St. Andrew's, Royal Troon, Camoustle, Sawgrass and Pine Valley.