The Best Public Courses in Maryland
By Brendon Elliott, PGA
Bulle Rock Golf Course Getty Images
The 2022 KPMG Women's PGA Championship will be held this year at historic Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Maryland. The state boasts some amazing golf courses and Marylanders indeed love their golf. With next week’s third LPGA major of the year teeing it up in the Free State, let’s take a peek at some of the best public access golf that Maryland has to offer.
Bulle Rock GC- Havre de Grace, MD
A Pete Dye gem, Bulle Rock has long been considered one of the area’s best tracks and the top-ranking public course in Maryland. It is named for Bulle Rock, the first thoroughbred racehorse brought to America. The course hosted the LPGA Championship from 2005 through 2009. The challenging yet fair layout, provides golfers of all abilities a golf experience second to none. This is a must play on many a golfer’s bucket lists.
University of Maryland GC, College Park, MD
The University of Maryland Golf Course in College Park, Maryland, is the home of the Maryland Terrapins men's and women's golf teams. The semi-private championship course was designed in 1955 by George Cobb, who incidentally, designed Augusta National’s Par 3 course. With its many elevation changes and large, fast green complexes, golfers will be tested at every turn. The University of Maryland Golf Course can be enjoyed by all ability levels however when playing from the appropriate tees.
Links at Perry Cabin, St. Michaels, MD
The Links at Perry Cabin, a championship 18-hole golf course, is an absolutely amazing facility on the Eastern Bay. The last course completed by the legendary Pete and Alice Dye; Links at Perry Cabin is a golfer’s dream. Built on a peninsula where farmland and forests meet along the shore of the Eastern Bay, this gem showcases Pete Dye’s unique ability to sculpt fairways and greens into a breathtaking golfing landscape. Throughout the course, you see nods to some of Dye’s greatest signature golf holes such as the island green at TPC Sawgrass, and the “Biarritz” hole at the course at Yale.
Worthington Manor GC, Urbana, MD
This Ault-Clark signature course is one of the Mid-Atlantic’s premier daily-fee golf clubs. A frequent U.S. Open Qualifying site with numerous accolades including a “Best Courses You Can Play” nod as voted by Golfweek Magazine. This scenic track, complete with rolling valleys, tree lines fairways and magnificent green complexes is always in fantastic condition. Play it once and you will see why the USGA has chosen Worthington Manor as a host site for countless USGA Championship qualifiers.
Musket Ridge GC, Myersville, MD
Musket Ridge was the final golf course designed by renowned golf course architect Joe Lee. Using the natural contours to sculpt one of Maryland’s most picturesque courses, Lee called Musket Ridge one of the finest property’s he ever had the opportunity to work with.
"Musket Ridge is the best piece of property I have ever had the privilege of working on. The terrain and views are absolutely spectacular." - Joe Lee, May 10, 2002
In talking with Middle Atlantic PGA Section Executive Director Jon Guhl, I gained some additional great insight on all that Maryland has to offer for both local golfers and those visiting the area.
“There is a tremendous amount of great public access golf in Maryland. About 50% of our golf facilities are public access. Many of our counties and municipalities have municipal golf courses. Local to Congressional CC, the Montgomery County Revenue Authority operates 9 municipal golf courses alone.”