Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin: A Golfer’s Paradise

Introduction to Golf in Wisconsin

Wisconsin’s diverse landscape, from rolling hills to lush forests, makes it an ideal location for golf courses. The state’s courses are designed by some of the most renowned architects in the industry, including Pete Dye and Robert Trent Jones Jr. Whether you prefer links-style courses reminiscent of Scotland or parkland courses with tree-lined fairways, Wisconsin has something to offer.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 1: Whistling Straits

Located along the shores of Lake Michigan, Whistling Straits is one of the most iconic golf courses in the United States. Designed by Pete Dye, this course features rugged terrain, deep bunkers, and stunning lake views. It has hosted major championships, including the PGA Championship and the Ryder Cup.

Key Features:

  • 36 holes split between two courses: The Straits and The Irish.
  • Known for its challenging layout and wind-swept dunes.
  • Beautiful views of Lake Michigan.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 2: Erin Hills

Erin Hills, located in Hartford, is another gem in Wisconsin’s golfing crown. This public course gained international fame when it hosted the 2017 U.S. Open. The course’s design emphasizes the natural contours of the land, offering a unique and challenging experience.

Key Features:

  • Links-style course with wide fairways.
  • Hosted the 2017 U.S. Open.
  • Set on 652 acres of rolling terrain.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 3: Blackwolf Run

Blackwolf Run, in Kohler, is home to two magnificent courses: The River and The Meadow Valleys. Designed by Pete Dye, Blackwolf Run combines natural beauty with a challenging layout, making it a must-play for any golf enthusiast.

Key Features:

  • Two 18-hole courses.
  • The River Course is known for its challenging water hazards.
  • The Meadow Valleys Course offers a more forgiving layout.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 4: Sand Valley

Sand Valley, located in Nekoosa, is a relatively new addition to Wisconsin’s golf scene but has quickly gained acclaim. The resort features courses designed by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw, known for their minimalist and natural designs.

Key Features:

  • Two courses: Sand Valley and Mammoth Dunes.
  • Known for its sandy soil and natural bunkering.
  • Emphasis on walking the course for a traditional golf experience.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 5: The Bull at Pinehurst Farms

The Bull at Pinehurst Farms in Sheboygan Falls is a Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course. It is renowned for its challenging design and beautiful surroundings, making it one of the top-rated courses in the state.

Key Features:

  • Designed by Jack Nicklaus.
  • Features challenging water hazards and bunkers.
  • Beautifully manicured fairways and greens.

Lawsonia Links, in Green Lake, is a historic course that offers a classic golfing experience. Designed by William Langford and Theodore Moreau, Lawsonia Links is known for its elevated greens and strategic bunkering.

Key Features:

  • Classic links-style course.
  • Known for its challenging greens.
  • Beautiful views of Green Lake.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 7: SentryWorld

SentryWorld, in Stevens Point, is one of the most beautiful courses in Wisconsin. Designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr., SentryWorld is famous for its flower hole, a par-3 surrounded by over 30,000 flowers.

Key Features:

  • Designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr.
  • Known for its picturesque flower hole.
  • Offers a challenging but fair layout.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 8: University Ridge Golf Course

The University of Wisconsin golf teams use University Ridge Golf Course, which is in Verona, as their home course. Designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr., this course offers a mix of open prairie and dense forest, providing a diverse golfing experience.

Key Features:

  • Designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr.
  • Home to the University of Wisconsin golf teams.
  • Offers a mix of open and wooded holes.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 9: Geneva National Golf Club

Geneva National Golf Club, located in Lake Geneva, offers three courses designed by golf legends Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, and Lee Trevino. Each course provides a unique challenge and beautiful scenery.

Key Features:

  • Three courses designed by Palmer, Player, and Trevino.
  • Set along the shores of Lake Como.
  • Has a variety of difficulties for players of all skill levels.

Best Golf Courses in Wisconsin 10: Brown Deer Park Golf Course

Brown Deer Park Golf Course, in Milwaukee, is a historic public course that has hosted PGA Tour events. Designed by George Hansen, it offers a classic parkland layout with tree-lined fairways and challenging greens.

Key Features:

  • Historic course that has hosted PGA Tour events.
  • Classic parkland layout.
  • Known for its challenging greens and fairways.

Honorable Mentions

While the top 10 courses are the cream of the crop, Wisconsin has many other noteworthy courses that deserve mention. These include:

  1. Trappers Turn Golf Club in Wisconsin Dells
  2. The Bog in Saukville
  3. Hawk’s View Golf Club in Lake Geneva
  4. Pine Hills Country Club in Sheboygan
  5. Meadow Valleys at Blackwolf Run in Kohler

Golf Resorts and Accommodations

Wisconsin’s top golf courses are often part of luxurious resorts that offer accommodations, dining, and other amenities. Some of the best golf resorts in Wisconsin include:

The American Club Resort

Located in Kohler, The American Club Resort is home to both Whistling Straits and Blackwolf Run. This five-star resort offers luxurious accommodations, world-class dining, and a variety of recreational activities.

Sand Valley Resort

Sand Valley Resort in Nekoosa offers comfortable lodging options ranging from cottages to lodge rooms. The resort also features multiple dining options, a spa, and various outdoor activities.

Erin Hills

Erin Hills offers on-site lodging options, including cottages and lodge rooms. The resort also features a full-service restaurant and bar, making it a convenient and comfortable place to stay.

Golf Events and Tournaments in Wisconsin

Wisconsin is home to several prestigious golf tournaments, attracting top talent from around the world. Some of the major events include:

The Ryder Cup

Whistling Straits hosted the 2020 Ryder Cup, one of the most prestigious events in golf. This biennial competition between teams from Europe and the United States is known for its intense competition and electric atmosphere.

The U.S. Open

Erin Hills hosted the 2017 U.S. Open, one of golf’s four major championships. This tournament brings together the best golfers in the world to compete for the coveted title.

The American Family Insurance Championship

Held at University Ridge Golf Course, this PGA Tour Champions event features some of the biggest names in senior golf. It is a major draw for golf fans in the region.

Tips for Golfing in Wisconsin

Golfing in Wisconsin can be an incredible experience if you come prepared. Here are some tips to make the most of your golfing adventure in the Badger State:

  • Check the Weather : Wisconsin weather can be unpredictable, so it’s important to check the forecast before you head out. Be prepared for sudden changes and dress in layers.
  • Book Tee Times in Advance : The top courses in Wisconsin can be very popular, especially during peak season. Make sure to book your tee times well in advance to secure a spot.
  • Take Advantage of Practice Facilities : Many of Wisconsin’s top courses offer excellent practice facilities. Arrive early to warm up and get a feel for the course.
  • Stay Hydrated and Bring Snacks : Golf can be a physically demanding sport, especially on hot summer days. To keep your energy up, wear good t-shirt, bring snacks and drink plenty of water.
  • Respect the Course : Always follow the course rules and etiquette. Repair divots, rake bunkers, and be mindful of your pace of play.


What is the best time of year to golf in Wisconsin?

The best time to golf in Wisconsin is from late spring to early fall. The weather is usually mild and the courses are in excellent condition. The usual peak season is from June to September.

Are there any public golf courses in Wisconsin that are highly rated?

Yes, there are several highly rated public golf courses in Wisconsin, including Erin Hills, Whistling Straits, and Sand Valley.

Can beginners enjoy golfing in Wisconsin?

Absolutely! While Wisconsin has many challenging courses, there are also plenty of options for beginners and casual golfers. Many courses offer multiple tees to accommodate different skill levels.

What should I pack for a golf trip to Wisconsin?

When packing for a golf trip to Wisconsin, consider the weather and the length of your stay. Essentials include golf clubs, comfortable clothing, golf shoes, sunscreen, and a hat. It’s also a good idea to bring rain gear just in case.

Are there any family-friendly golf courses in Wisconsin?

Yes, many golf courses in Wisconsin are family-friendly and offer amenities such as junior tees, golf lessons, and family golf events. Courses like Geneva National and SentryWorld are known for their family-friendly environments.

Do I need to be a member to play at the top golf courses in Wisconsin?

While some top courses in Wisconsin are private, many are open to the public. Courses like Whistling Straits, Erin Hills, and Sand Valley welcome public play but often require advance reservations.

What other activities can I enjoy at Wisconsin golf resorts?

In addition to golf, Wisconsin golf resorts offer a variety of activities such as spa services, fine dining, hiking, biking, and water sports. Resorts like The American Club and Sand Valley provide a well-rounded vacation experience.


Wisconsin is a true hidden gem in the world of golf. From the rugged beauty of Whistling Straits to the historic charm of Lawsonia Links, the state offers a diverse array of courses that cater to golfers of all skill levels. Whether you’re planning a golf-centric vacation or just looking to explore a new course, Wisconsin has something to offer. So pack your clubs, book your tee times, and get ready to experience some of the best golf courses in Wisconsin.

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