Brandon R wrote:My wife and I are using this amazing conglomeration of information to plan our trip. I don't see any mention of golf. If anyone can recommend a good course or two, that would be great (we haven't narrowed down where we're staying yet, so fire away with anything). Also, while I golf, my wife plans to hit a spa for a massage. Any recommendations for great spas would also be appreciated.
there are a number of public courses available to play in SC. here are a few (with my impressions):
The Links at Bodega Bay
- fun course out near the water at Bodega Bay. interesting holes across the board, definitely more "links-y" than "parkland". wind can be a factor depending on time of day (typically it picks up in the afternoon).walk-able, but a cart is probably best. green fees usually around $75. (there is a putting green, but no other practice area outside of a net to hit into, FYI)
- short-ish course in Sonoma Valley, winding in and out of homes in the local senior living community. fairly flat with small greens, it's one of the "easier" courses in SC, though it does have water that comes into play on about seven holes. very walkable, and green fees under $50. driving range & practice green available.
- fun course out in Petaluma. like Oakmont West, it's mostly flat with water on a number of holes. the front 9 is a little mundane IMO, and the back 9 is way more interesting. typically, you'll see wind in the afternoon. driving range and practice green available. green fees are around $50 and it's walk-able.
Windsor Golf Club
- this track is closer to Healdsburg, and i really enjoy it. a parkland setting, the are a number of fun holes on both the inward and outward nines. not too long w/ regard to length, it is a challenging course. driving range & practice green available.
Bennett Valley GC
- heavily played muni in Santa Rosa. for as much traffic as this course gets, it's in great shape. the downside: you're almost always looking at a 5+ hour round, and for that reason i tend to shy away from playing there. with the amount of play BVGC gets, you'll be paired with at least three, if not four others.
other options include Foxtail (the North course is longer and more challenging than the South course), Northwood and Sea Ranch. there are some outstanding private courses as well, so if you're staying at The Fairmont Mission Inn (for example), you'll have access to Sonoma Golf Club. if you have additional questions, let me know.