A Quick Nine: Best courses in Southern California

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Torrey Pines
Getty Images
No surprise here: Our Facebook fans regard Torrey Pines South as one of the best courses SoCal has to offer.
By
T.J. Auclair, Interactive Producer
PGA.com

Series: A Quick Nine

Published: Thursday, February 24, 2011 | 9:18 a.m.

Few places in the world can boast as many beautiful public golf courses as Southern California. This week, we relied on our Facebook friends who either live in SoCal, or have spent time there to provide us a list of the best daily fee, semi-private, or resort courses -- basically places we all can play.

So what's your favorite Southern California golf course?

Here's the top nine, according to you:

1. Torrey Pines South Course, La Jolla, Calif. This breathtaking venue is an annual stop on the PGA Tour for the Farmers Insurance Open and also played host to the scintillating 2008 U.S. Open.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Torrey Pines, duhhh." -- Josh Adair

"I have played quite a few but for the challenge and scenery I have to go with Torrey Pines with Pelican Hill right along side." -- Les Page

"Torrey Pines South... Home HS and College course! Mission Viejo CC is second!" -- Robert Fraioli

"Torrey Pines... It's amazing... It's what golf should be... Beautiful views. Challenging... Love the course... Lots of great memories of PGA events also..." -- Jerome Simpson

"I have only played Torrey Pines and RiverWalk. Loved them both! The best thing was getting to play Torrey Pines with my son Jacob, then 14. We saw memorabilia in the pro shop from when Tiger won there as a Junior and my son loved that. They added our names on the list at Torrey Pines at the crack of dawn and my son and I got to play after only an hour wait. Then we had to tee off with all the other golfers waiting on the patio area watching us... A nerve racking experience, but we both happened to hit good tee shots!!! A mom and her son from Georgia getting the opportunity to play Torrey Pines together... PRICELESS!!" -- Sharon Nunnelly Stevenson

"Torrey Pines because of the breathtaking views and the weather. Although Pebble Beach is one of the ultimate courses globally, it's not as accessible as a public venue compared to Torrey South." -- FilmEmerge Jonathan Rayos

2. Aviara Golf Club, Carlsbad, Calif. Golf Digest and Golf Magazine both call Aviara one of the top resort courses in America.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Aviara is the best resort if you have deep pockets -- amazing condition and service. Best public courses I have played are Barona Creek, and Tijeras Creek -- they are fun places, great courses, and they make you feel welcome- also not built to sell homes. Torrey South is great, but it's too stressful waiting to get on the first tee." -- Craig Ward

"Aviara is the best I have played. Torrey Pines, though it may have been beautiful, was like a factory!" -- Deb Conner Shulski

"Aviara, the service is really nice. They meet you in the parking lot with your cart and present you with drinks, cookies and fruit to start. The course is an example of what can be done to a golf course that is not lucky enough to be situated along the ocean for views. The 18th hole is a great closing hole and the ones before that are all beautifully manicured." -- Garri Ogata

3. Pelican Hill Golf Club, Newport Coast, Calif. Nestled along the Pacific Ocean, Pelican Hill is one of those places where your score doesn't really matter. You'll be mesmerized by the views.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Pelican Hill, Newport Coast, California." -- Jack Zeigon

"Pelican Hill." -- Eric Soden

"South Course: Pelican Hill in NEWPORT BEACH. an ocean view on every hole. These Greens are the BEST in OC / SO CAL... TRUMP NATIONAL in PV has nothing on this course!! HANDS DOWN." -- Steven Teutli

4. Maderas Golf Club, Poway, Calif. Maderas is San Diego's top-rated golf course. Enough said.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Besides Torrey Pines, Maderas, & Mt. Woodson are grand." -- Mary Ann Wadosky

"Torrey Pines and Maderas, beautiful courses." -- Danny Rios

"Maderas Golf Club in Poway, rolling terrian and good course conditions." -- Jeff Adamson

5. Barona Creek Golf Club, San Diego, Calif. Rated as the fifth best casino resort course in the country, Barona Creek has played host to the Nationwide Tour Championship.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Sorry Pauma Valley and SD CC are private. Barona Creek is my favorite resort course!" -- Marc A Pylkki

"Barona." -- Mark Baron

"Barona Creek Golf Course." -- Dwayne Battise

6. Industry Hills Golf Club, Industry Hills, Calif. Host venue of the LPGA's Kia Classic, Industry Hills recently underwent a multi-million dollar renovation, making a great place even better.

Facebook fan quotes:

"If your talking quality, Trump National can't be beat. There are many quality courses in the SoCal area. Hidden Valley, Oak Quarry, Eagle Glen, Industry Hills and then there's always Palm Springs." -- John McNeil

"Industry Hills the Ike. Best public course for the price hands down." -- Brad Conrad

"Industry Hills GC. Semi-Private. Both the "Ike" and the "Babe" courses challenging ALL skill levels. Monday's have special rates allowing member prices for non-members. Course is gorgeous, well manicured, fast greens and excellent staff. Home to this year's LPGA 2011 Kia Classic." -- Frank Choi

7. Rustic Canyon Golf Club, Moorpark, Calif. During the work week, you can play 18 holes at Rustic Canyon for under $40. Great value, spectacular course.

Facebook fan quote:

"Rustic Canyon in Moorpark. It has a links kind of feel. Fantastic course and not too expensive." -- Bryan E White

8. PGA West Resort, La Quinta, Calif. Offering six golf courses in the desert, surrounded by mountains, PGA West looks more like a painting than a golf resort.

Facebook fan quotes:

"I'd go with PGA West Nicklaus Resort Course... scenic, challenging, but fair." -- Gary Gentile

"PGA West... I wish I could retire there today and play every day." -- John Farrell

"Any course at PGA West. You can't go wrong!" -- Jamie Fisher

9. El Dorado Park Golf Course, Long Beach, Calif. Perhaps it's not as popular as some of the others, but El Dorado Park is a gem to at least one of our Facebook fans.

Facebook fan quote:

"My home course -- El Dorado Park Golf Course is goregous. It's the course that hosts the Long Beach Open each year. It's a narrow tree-lined course with lots of tricky traps and inviting waters." -- Debbie Drumheller  


Comments

bastiguff3

Great list, although not sure about El Dorado Park being on the same list as Torrey Pines, here's a guide a map to 200+ of the better public golf courses in California with a map to find the ones closest to your destination

http://www.pga.com/golf-courses/quick-nine/best-courses-in-southern-california-quick-nine

tbjletson

Monarch Beach Golf Links in Dana Point is one of the best. And Torrey Pines should be both the South and the North courses.

clarkpar4

Missing one of the great course in So.Cal. North Ranch C.C. Tiger played it 4 or 5 times in his college days and never broke par.

namtx8

Maybe Santa Barbara is to far north but if it isn't Sandpiper is my choice.