Updated June 2023 For some avid golfers, the term “family golf vacation” might strike fear…
You’ve heard there’s fabulous golf in Minnesota and your playing partners have expressed that they are up for something new– something less touristy. While resorts like Madden’s, Giants Ridge, and Breezy Point offer excellent golf and family fun, you will miss some local gems if you limit your golf plans to these resorts. So where do Minnesotans love to stay and play that may not show up on a Golf Digest list of courses? Glad you asked!
Minnesota has more than its share of golf courses that locals like to keep on the “down low”. It’s where golfers will be met with exceptional conditions, affordable green fees and memorable views that will have you planning your return trip immediately. Here are a few courses that Minnesotans treasure.
Willingers Golf Club
If you find yourself in the Twin Cities for a long weekend or if you’re looking for a day getaway to hit the links, be sure to check out Willingers Golf Club in Northfield. Located just 25 miles from Minneapolis/St Paul and only one mile off I-35, it’s an easy drive. This not-so-secret, hidden gem has quietly become a local favorite in the Twin Cities area. Willinger’s 18-holes wind through 275-acres of untouched wetlands and forests. This acclaimed course remains accessible and playable for golfers of all levels.
Territory Golf Club
Keep your eyes peeled for an understated sign pointing you in the direction of Territory Golf Club. Near the city of St. Cloud, Territory Golf Club is tucked into a mix of mature woods and expansive prairie, accompanied by a meandering river leading you through the course. This beautifully maintained championship course features 5 sets of tees and a par 5 that stretches more than 600-yards (there are tee box options to shorten it up to accommodate all skill levels). You’ll be planning your next visit before you walk off the last green.
Most Minnesotans spend a decent amount of their summer relaxing by a lake–it is the state of 10,000 lakes after all. Arrowwood Resort near Alexandria combines the love of lakes with excellent golf. The newly renovated Atikwa Championship Golf Course was designed to help preserve natural wetlands and is filled with breathtaking lake views. When you’re off the course, spend time with your family or friends at the indoor waterpark, spa, or marina. Arrowwood is an excellent option if you’re looking for a family get-away.
Minnesota National Golf Course
Located in McGregor, MN, Minnesota National Golf Course is your entryway to the northwoods. Designed by Minnesota’s own Joel Goldstrand, this 27-hole experience gives you the choice to take your game to the 18-hole Championship Course or the more relaxed 9-hole Savanna Course (this is an ideal course to introduce newer players to the game). With townhomes and cabins located on the Championship Course itself, you simply can’t go wrong by selecting a stay and play option while at Minnesota National.
Superior National Golf Course
The further north you go in Minnesota, the more your stress will fade from view. Located in Lutsen just off Lake Superior, you will find Superior National Golf Course. Boasting 18 championship holes with the combination of the River and Canyon courses as well as the option for the Mountain 9-hole course, you might have to join dawn patrol in order to play all 27 holes. The views here rival any oceanview course and with the accompaniment of sweet pine drifting in the air – you’ll never want to leave.
When you visit these golf courses you’re bound to run into plenty of Minnesotans. So pack your clubs, and your highest expectations and get ready for a hearty helping of ‘Minnesota Nice’. Will you feel at home? You betcha! The results will be you now that you have the inside scoop, where will you play first?