The Best Golf Courses in Ohio

Ohio doesn’t typically spring to mind when you think of golf, does it? For many, Ohio is cold snowy winters, hard-luck NFL teams and Ohio State, the alma mater of Mr. Jack Nicklaus.

The Golden Bear is not Ohio’s lone contribution to the golf landscape, however. Home to some celebrated and world-renowned tracks, Ohio deserves a look for your next golf trip. Here are some notable courses to put at the top of your list.

The Public Courses

Firestone Country Club

  • Location: Akron
  • Designers: Bert Way, Robert Trent Jones, Sr., Tom Fazio
  • Total Distance: 7,400 yards (South Course)

The South Course ranks as the most famous among Firestone’s three courses. This par-70 layout received a substantial renovation from Robert Trent Jones in the 1960s. It has played host to many professional tournaments, including seven Tiger Woods World Golf Championship wins. While a private club, you can get on any of the three Firestone courses via stay-and-play packages.

Manakiki Golf Course

  • Location: Willoughby
  • Designer: Donald Ross·     
  • Total Distance: 6,625 yards

Manakiki is a rare Donald Ross-designed muni. Located just outside of Cleveland, weekend green fees at this gem peak at just $47. The back nine at Manakiki starts and finishes with two memorable canyon holes.

Sleepy Hollow Golf Course

  • Location: Brecksville
  • Designer: Stanley Thompson
  • Total Distance: 6,754 yards

Manakiki isn’t the only high-caliber muni near Cleveland. Once a private course, Sleepy Hollow opened to the public in 1963 and remains among the best public golf courses in Ohio.

The opening nine is predominantly downhill while the remaining nine brings you back to the clubhouse playing uphill all the way in. Like Manakiki, $47 is the most you’ll have to pay to play. (Architecture buffs will know that iconic Canadian designer Stanley Thompson was Robert Trent Jones’s mentor and designed some outstanding courses such as Banff Springs in Alberta.)

Stonelick Hills

  • Location: Batavia
  • Designer: Jeff Osterfield
  • Total Distance: 7,145 yards

Water comes into play on half of the holes at Stonelick Hills. Not exactly a household name in golf course design, Jeff Osterfield is better known as the founder of the Penn Station Subs sandwich chain. You can play on his course for as little as $82, $100 on the weekends.

The Virtues Golf Club

  • Location: Nashport
  • Designer: Arthur Hills
  • Total Distance: 7,243 yards

The Virtues was first known as the Longaberger Golf Club, having been constructed by the Longaberger basket company.  It opened in 1999 and is well known for constant elevation changes throughout the course.

Private Courses

We get it—the next few are private. Getting on one of these tracks is tough, to say the least. But if you know somebody who knows somebody, these are the best private golf courses in Ohio.

Muirfield Village

  • Location: Dublin
  • Designers: Jack Nicklaus and Desmond Muirhead
  • Total Distance: 7,533 yards

You’ve seen this one on TV. Home to The Memorial, Muirfield Village is an annual stop for the PGA Tour and with good reason. Nicklaus has continually tweaked and renovated Muirfield Village. Combine that design obsession with flawless, bordering on Augusta-like conditions, and you have the best course in Ohio.

Camargo Club

  • Location: Cincinnati
  • Designer: Seth Raynor
  • Total Distance: 6,636 yards

A truly classic course, Pete Dye once declared Camargo as home to the best collection of par-3 holes in the world. High praise, indeed! A Tom Doak-led renovation in the early 2000s returned Camargo to its original Raynor design after several ill-conceived changes to the course.

Inverness Club

  • Location: Toledo
  • Designer: Donald Ross
  • Total Distance: 7,730 yards

Inverness will play host to the U.S. Women’s Open Championship in 2027 and the U.S. Amateur Championship in 2029. Its championship pedigree includes the Solheim Cup in 2021 and four U.S. Opens. Inverness puts a significant premium on second-shot accuracy, especially on the closing holes.

The Golf Club (New Albany)

  • Location: New Albany
  • Designer: Pete Dye
  • Total Distance: 7,268 yards

The Golf Club tries very hard to remain a hidden gem, having never hosted a major tournament despite clearly being of championship caliber.  One of Pete Dye’s earliest designs, The Golf Club features railroad ties framing bunkers and water hazards throughout the course.

Brookside Country Club

  • Location: Canton
  • Designer: Donald Ross
  • Total Distance: 6,876 yards

Don’t confuse this one with Brookside Golf and Country Club up the road in Columbus. Last renovated in 2003 to restore Donald Ross’s original design, Brookside Country Club concludes with back-to-back challenging par-5s.

The Bottom Line

I know, We’ve missed some. Maybe a lot. Ohio is surprisingly full of well-known, pristine golf courses. Too many to list here, in fact.

NCR Country Club in Kettering, just outside of Dayton, is another renowned course ranking high on any list of best private courses. On the public front, The Quarry in Canton and Boulder Creek Golf Club in Streetsboro are just a couple of many other top-quality public tracks.

Whatever your criteria for selecting a golf destination, Ohio deserves serious consideration for your next golf trip. While it might not be the first state that springs to mind when you think of golf, Ohio is full of incredible golf experiences that you should check out.

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