Best Holiday Parks for Golfers21 September 2023
Whatever your level, golf is a brilliant pastime with a whole host of top benefits - and there are plenty of parks perfectly positioned for easy access to courses. You’ll find beautiful coastal sites close to spectacular links courses and hilly courses a short drive from spectacular mountain parks. Some holiday parks even have top-notch golf courses right there on site.
In this article, we’re going to look at some top holiday park locations for golfing fans. We’ll also have a look at some of the benefits of playing golf, and share some tips for getting started if you’re new to the game.
From the outside golf can seem like an intimidating hobby to get into, with lots of rules and regulations. But really it’s a friendly and welcoming pastime.
Golf is a unique sport with a range of unique benefits. It’s a great way to stay active and healthy while remaining low-impact with a low risk of injury. It’s also as social as you want it to be - golf can be a great way to meet like-minded people if you’re so inclined, but if you prefer to keep to yourself you can spend a happy few hours out on the fairway by yourself.
Let’s dive in and have a deeper look at some of the benefits.
It’s great exercise
You might not think it, but golf is actually a really great workout. You’ll develop great strength and flexibility as you work on improving your swing, gently working a whole range of muscle groups. And on an average 18-hole course you’ll walk around three and a half miles, up and downhill. So while it might not be as intense as a session at the gym or a run, there are a lot of advantages to longer, steadier exercise too.
It’s low impact
One of the biggest benefits of golf - especially if you’re not used to intense exercise - is that it’s low impact, with a very low risk of injury compared to other sports. It’s a terrific way to build your strength up if you’re used to being sedentary, or if you’re just not keen on the idea of more intense sports.
It’s great stress relief and encourages mindfulness
Just being in the outdoors is proven to be great for your mental health - but golf has strong benefits beyond just fresh air. The mindful moment as you focus purely on your swing, blocking out external stimuli is a great way to clear your mind, and learning to refocus through frustration following a sliced shot is a great skill to develop too. Playing golf also releases positive endorphins like serotonin which are known to be great for your mental health too.
It can help concentration and boost mental skills
To play a shot in a round of golf, you need pinpoint accuracy and laser focus on your swing and the ball. Developing that focus can be really helpful in other areas of life - and can have mindfulness benefits too. You’ll also improve your hand eye coordination as tiny adjustments can make huge differences to your shot.
It’s a great way to challenge yourself and see constant improvement
Golf is not a team sport - once you’re out on the course, the only performance that you can influence is your own. There’s no hiding behind others’ mistakes. But that means it’s the perfect sport to strive to beat your own performances and improve your own skills. No matter how good you think you are at golf, there’s always room for improvement.
It can be social or solitary
One of the best things about golf is that it can be as social as you like. If you want to spend time with friends, or make new ones then you can have a great time playing a round in a group or with a partner, and spend as much time in the clubhouse as you do on the fairway. But if you prefer a bit of quiet time you can play a round by yourself and really focus on your own performance.
With so many holiday parks to choose from all over the UK and beyond it can be tricky to pick the right one for you. We’ve picked some parks that are close to great courses but you can always use our park finder tool to locate your own perfect park with great golfing nearby. Just select ‘Explore Parks’ and you can use the amenities filter to only show parks with golf courses onsite or nearby.
Blairgowrie Holiday Park, Perthshire, Scotland
As well as being close to the spectacular Cairngorm mountain range, Perthshire is also home to some of the best golf courses in Scotland. The Rosemount course at Blairgowrie is reckoned to be one of the best inland courses in Scotland and is a short five-minute drive from the holiday park. Pitlochry is only 40 minutes away and boasts a great driving range as well as a great shorter course, and you’re less than an hour from the legendary Gleneagles course
Aberdovey Lodge Park, Gwynedd, Wales
Aberdovey Lodge Park is nestled on the south edge of the Eryri (Snowdonia) national park, with easy access to beautiful beaches and magnificent mountains. It’s also just 10 minutes away from Aberdovey golf club, one of the best courses in Wales. You’ll find other great courses like Machynlleth, Aberystwyth and Borth and Ynyslas less than an hour away too.
Meadowbank Holidays, Bournemouth, England
Meadowbank Holidays is perfectly sited to explore Bournemouth and its beautiful beaches - not to mention the lush New Forest and epic cliffs of the Jurassic Coast. It’s also less than 10 minutes drive to Christchurch Golf Club, and less than half an hour to famous courses like Ferndown, Dudsbury and Knighton Heath.
Waldegraves Family Holiday Park, Essex, England
With great on-site entertainment and an amazing beach-front location, Waldegraves is a great park in the South East. But if you’re a golf fan it’s even better, with only a 20-minute drive to the spectacular Five Lakes Club. Colchester and Braintree are less than an hour away too, so you’ll have plenty of choice.
Bromdon Caravan Park, Shropshire, England
Bromdon Caravan Park is perfectly situated for trips out into the glorious rolling countryside of the Shropshire Hills and the Long Mynd and has easy access to the lovely market towns of Ludlow and Bridgnorth. It’s also less than a 20 minute drive from Ludlow Golf Club, a great flat course interwoven with Ludlow horse racing track. There are plenty of other courses to choose from nearby too, including Church Stretton, Cleobury Mortimer and Sutton Park.
Cliff Farm Caravan Park, North Yorkshire, England
If you want a park that’s nestled right on the beautiful North Yorkshire coast then Cliff Farm should be on your shortlist. As well as easy access to the coast it’s also close to the North Yorkshire Moors, and only a quarter of an hour’s drive to the wonderful Scarborough South Cliff golf club. Filey golf club is close too, and Scarborough North Cliff and Ganton are not much further.
With a bewildering choice of equipment and what can seem like an overwhelming number of rules and regulations to follow, golf can feel a little intimidating at first. But it really doesn’t need to. There’s no need to go all in straight away - there are plenty of opportunities to ease yourself into the game and see if you like it without having to spend a fortune.
One of the easiest ways to have a go at golf is to book yourself a session at a driving range. You’ll be able to hire all the equipment you need for a small cost and get a feel for whether you enjoy swinging a club. If you do enjoy it then you can progress from there. A word of caution though - there’s a lot more to golf than bashing a ball as far as you can. Don’t think you can spend a few hours on the range and have all the skills you need for a round of golf on your local course.
Putting is probably the single most important skill you can have on the golf course and it’s super easy to practice almost anywhere. If you have a club and a ball then you can practice your putting in the garden or even in the living room.
There’s no need to spend lots of money on clubs when you’re getting started. If you have any golfing friends it’s worth seeing if they have any equipment you can borrow - they might have upgraded and kept their old kit as spares, or just built up a large collection of clubs. If not, then some golf clubs will hire you what you need for a round. This will give you the opportunity to develop your own playing style before you invest in equipment, so when you come to buy you’ll have a better idea of what you need.
Once you feel like you’re ready to visit a golf course, spend a little time doing research on nearby clubs. While it might be tempting to jump straight to a world-class prestige 18-hole course, you’ll probably have a more enjoyable, relaxing time at a shorter nine-hole pitch and putt course. Then when you build up your skills and confidence you can move on to more challenging, exclusive 18-hole courses.
What do I need to wear?
The key thing to remember here is to check with the club before you visit. Some clubs have extremely stringent rules about what you can wear out on the fairway and breaching those rules will result in you being asked to leave. Others are much more lenient.
That said, there are a few guidelines to bear in mind that will give you a good start at most clubs. Generally, if you’re heading out for a round of golf you’ll need to be reasonably smart.
- Top - a shirt with a collar. Some clubs will be fine with a polo shirt, others might not. Definitely not a round-neck t-shirt.
- Trousers - smart chinos or golfing trousers are a good bet. Golfing trousers tend to be more breathable and allow the range of movement you need for a good swing. Jeans or tracksuits are not appropriate.
- Shoes - some clubs will allow trainers, others won’t. Golf shoes are worth having as they’ll give you better grip as you take your swing. Most clubs won’t allow shoes with metal spikes.
How should I behave on the course?
Looking from the outside, there can seem to be an awful lot of rules and regulations - both written and unwritten - on the golf course. But actually, almost all of what you need to do is just a mixture of common sense and courtesy. All the rules are in place to make sure everyone has a safe, enjoyable time when they’re playing a round of golf.
If you only remember one thing when you head out on the fairway, make it this: be polite! If you’re polite and considerate to other players, they’ll treat you the same way. Here are a few more tips to make sure you fit in as well as you can.
- Be quiet, especially near other players. Golf is all about focus and concentration.
- If you’ve hit a ball in the wrong direction, and especially towards people, shout ‘fore’ as a warning.
- Always be on time. If you’re late to tee off, it will have a knock-on effect on players starting their rounds after you.
- If a group behind you is playing faster and catching you up, let them play through. Not only will you avoid holding them up, you’ll also have a more relaxed game yourself.
- Always stay out of players’ eye-line when they’re putting. Seeing you could break their focus.
- Always leave the course as you found it. This means if you make a divot (where you gouge out a chunk of turf) or disturb a bunker you should repair and rake over as best you can.
What do I need to know about clubs?
There are a lot of different types of golf clubs, for different shots on the course. But the key thing to get your head around is the loft of the club. This refers to the angle of the face of the club that strikes the ball. A high loft angle means that the ball will go higher when struck. A low loft angle means that it will go lower but travel further.
Different types of clubs are designed with different shots in mind, so you’ll need a selection to play a round of golf. You’ll need some low-loft clubs to make your long shots along the fairway, some high-loft clubs for hitting the ball in the air and of course a putter for those vital final shots.
- Woods are for the longest shots, and include the club known as the driver - which is what you’ll use for your first shot off the tee. They’re not actually usually made of wood any more and have a very low loft.
- Irons come in numbered sets from 1 - 9, and are used for the majority of shots along the fairway. Lower-numbered irons have lower loft angles, so are used for longer shots.
- Hybrids are also numbered and are usually used as replacements for irons. They’re shaped like a cross between a wood and an iron and are considered to be easier to use than equivalent irons.
- Wedges are very high-loft clubs and are for hitting the ball up and over obstacles or out of hazards like bunkers.
- Putters have very low loft and are for precise, rolling putts once you’re on the green.
What equipment should I buy?
Once you’ve decided that golf is the right hobby for you, and you want to continue to play regularly, it’s worth investing in your own equipment. But there’s still no need to spend a fortune. If you buy sensible entry-level kit you can always upgrade later when you’ve developed your own playing style more.
Although you’re allowed to take 14 clubs with you on the course, this is more than most players - especially beginners - will need. Once you’ve played a few rounds with borrowed or hired equipment, you should have a better idea of which clubs you use the most. Focus on getting a few good-quality clubs to cover these bases rather than buying a cheap set which won’t feel great to play with and will come with a lot of clubs you’ll probably barely use.
For most people, a good selection of clubs might look something like this.
- A driver for teeing off on long holes. Look for something with a large head but avoid anything with lots of adjustment - this will just complicate things.
- A fairway wood for longer shots from the fairway to the green.
- One or more short irons (around 7, 8 or 9) for shorter approach shots. Look for ones with bigger heads as they’ll be easier to use.
- A pitching wedge for shorter, higher shots where you want the ball to land still and not roll, and for clearing obstacles.
- A sand wedge for escaping from hazards and rough, and for shorter lobs.
- A putter for putting.
You’ll also need a bag to carry all your clubs on the course, and possibly to store them in. A carry bag will be fine to get you started, especially if you don’t have too many clubs - though it’s worth looking for one with a built-in stand. You might also want to consider a travel bag, which will be better for storing your clubs in when you’re not playing. These will be comfortable to carry and will fit well in a buggy, too.
You’ll also need some balls. There’s a lot of technology and nuance in modern golf balls, but don’t get too bogged down with this. Any set of balls from a reputable brand will be fine to get you going, and it’s cheap and easy to upgrade to different balls later on if you want to.
Golf is a great hobby to enjoy from your holiday home, but there are a few things to bear in mind.
Remember that golf clubs take up a lot of space. Think about where you’ll be playing, and where you’re going to store your clubs. If you mostly play from your caravan, then you might want to store your clubs there. They might fit in a wardrobe or a vertical cupboard. Or if you’re pushed for space then you might want to invest in some outdoor storage to keep them out of the way. Bear in mind that golf clubs don’t react well to extreme heat or cold, so you might need to find alternative storage in the height of summer and over winter.
If you play a lot from home as well as from your caravan it might be worth considering having a set of clubs for each, as they’ll take up a lot of space in the boot of the car when you’re travelling. If you do plan on moving a single set of clubs around with you then a travel bag might be a good idea to keep them safe and sound.
If you’re reading this article and wondering if you’d like playing golf then the best thing you can do is go and give it a try. You can have a session at a driving range or pitch-and-putt course for very little outlay, and these will give you a good idea of whether golf is the right hobby for you. If you do like it, then you can get as involved as you like from there.
Remember that golf is a sociable sport. If you have golfing friends, then going out for a round with them is a great way to get started. If not, why not suggest to non-golfing friends that you give it a go together?
If you don’t have friends to play with then it’s also fine to enjoy a round of golf by yourself, and a lot of players regularly do so. Most clubs will help you meet players at a similar level too, so golf can be a great way of meeting new people. If you’ve just bought a caravan somewhere away from your home then this can be a super way to extend your social circle.
However you choose to play, the most important thing to remember is to have fun!