Scenic and unique golf courses like this one, the Big...

Scenic and unique golf courses like this one, the Big Cedar Lodge at Top of the Rock in Ridgedale, Missouri, can be the centerpiece of your family's next vaction.  Credit: US PGA TOUR/Ryan Young

Make golf the cornerstone of your family holiday. The game provides youngsters the chance to develop skills in a sport that can be enjoyed for a lifetime.

Here are five places where your tribe can tee it up together.

Juniper Preserve

Bend, Oregon

Set amid ancient juniper groves in Central Oregon’s high desert, this resort, near Bend, is a mecca for outdoor lovers. Bond with your crew during a round of golf on the Jack Nicklaus-designed course, or a par-72 championship track crafted by Tom Fazio.

Later, ride bikes, explore the on-site cave or plan a hike along nearby rivers or on forested trails. Stay in vacation rentals or the 104-room Juniper Lodge where panoramic views of the Cascade mountains will take your breath away.


Big Cedar Lodge

Ridgedale, Missouri

Nature lover Johnny Morris, founder of Bass Pro Shops and Big Cedar Lodge, built three championship courses as well as a par 3 and a walking course, hoping to inspire people with play amid extraordinary natural beauty. Among the three courses is Payne’s Valley, an homage to Ozarks-native and World Golf Hall of Fame member Payne Stewart. It is also the first public-access golf course designed by 82-time PGA Tour winner Tiger Woods and his golf course design firm, TGR Design. Players on The Buffalo Ridge course roam with, yes, buffalo.

In addition to water sports, spa time and biking, resort guests will also want to access Dogwood Canyon, a 10,000-acre nature park. 


Oasis at Death Valley Resort

Furnace Creek, California

At 214 feet below sea level, the rolling 18-hole, par-70 Furnace Creek course scores extra points as the world’s lowest elevation golf course (and for the occasional golf-ball-snatching coyote). Water comes into play on nine holes and multiple sets of tees provide a challenge for every member of the family. The course is at Death Valley National Park, where hiking, biking, wildlife viewing are all possible. Stay at The Inn or The Ranch, two unique and historic properties.


Four Seasons Resort Lanai

Lanai City, Hawaii 

It's a lush island of contrast, where seafaring activities and land adventures compete for your attention. Play a round of sunset golf on the stunning, oceanside Jack Nicklaus Signature Manele Golf Course, where the views will take your breath away. Built on lava outcroppings, you'll be hard-pressed to keep your eye on the ball. Your biggest hazard on at least three holes? The Pacific Ocean. Complimentary clubs, including sets for junior players, are available as well as a lesson program for beginners.


Madden’s on Gull Lake

Brainerd, Minnesota

Games take center stage when you visit Madden’s on Gull Lake in Minnesota, a historic and classic Midwestern resort in the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

Take a family stroll around the Social 9, a casual, tree-studded setting where eight par threes and a lone par four provide an ideal introduction for new players or a tuneup for the more experienced. Then, test your skills on one of three longer tracks. Don’t miss the Classic, where stunning views, challenging shots and punishing pin placements make for an unforgettable round.



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