The Local Knowlege

Courses & Travel

Here's a very cool way of experiencing Bandon Dunes

A colleague sent me a link to Ashworth Golf's Bandon Dunes portfolio and I'm fairly sure he wanted to kill my Monday morning productivity. I can't look away. 

This portfolio offers a very cool way of experiencing Bandon Dunes in 15 photos. When you click on one of the black-and-white thumbnails you can view a much larger version of that image, sometimes in full color. Lock that image into place and just study it. 

Here are three images that I love:




This portfolio is part of a larger microsite that celebrates Bandon Dunes. Among other things, there's a section that introduces you to Mike Keiser, the guy responsible for the creation of Bandon Dunes, an outline of an ideal itinerary for five days at the resort (I don't agree with all of it, but that's the beauty of Bandon...there's no one perfect itinerary), and an introduction to the eccentric, fascinating Grant Rogers, Bandon's head of instruction.

Just in case you need more Bandon in your life, the resort's own website offers a live cam of Bandon Dunes, Bandon Trails, Pacific Dunes and the Punchbowl (a massive putting green). 

So yeah, you can go ahead and say goodbye to your productive Monday.

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Courses & Travel

Check out these stunning photos that prove playing golf isn't just about shooting a low score

Sure, it's always nice to play well. But part of the beauty of golf is that you can still enjoy a round even when you're losing a ball on every hole -- provided you're losing balls in a setting like this:


Or this:


The first place is Cape Kidnappers in New Zealand and the second golf course is Old Head Golf Links in Ireland. Both courses are featured in a Conde Nast Traveler feature, "Golf Trips Even Non-Golfers Will Enjoy."

Check it out for more stunning photos of golf in scenic locations like Hawaii and South Africa. And to learn about what else those places offer besides golf.

Related: The World's 100 Greatest Golf Courses

For instance, while at Cape Kidnappers, you could also do an ATV ride or whitewater rafting. At Old Head, you can go whale watching or deep-sea fishing (we assume NOT for whales). You know, in case you're traveling with people who don't want to play 36 holes every day.

Those aren't necessarily our favorite types of people, but hey, to each his own.

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Courses & Travel

You probably shouldn't be watching these webcam feeds

Sitting in the office. Tuning out your professor. Checking out of the end of a meeting. All the times you’d probably rather be on the golf course.

Which is what makes these live streams so dangerous.

The Old Course at St. Andrews and Pebble Beach are two world-class golf courses offering live feeds via webcam on their websites. They can be found here for the St. Andrews feed, and here for the Pebble feed. (Actually, there are five live feeds from Pebble -- the first, ninth, 17th and 18th holes, plus the putting green -- and nine from St. Andrews.)

Some of the coolest views? You can see the grandstands being assembled at the Old Course as it preps for this year's Open Championship. The stands at the 18th hole will seat more than 10,000 people this year, a tournament record. Now you can track the construction progress here!


You can see golfers teeing off and watch as they approach the famous Swilcan Bridge. This is the golf equivalent of FOMO!


One of the coolest parts? You could have family and friends watch the feeds whenever you visit these golf landmarks. But you can't lie after you duff your tee shot. It's all gonna be caught live!


Nothing beats the real thing, though, as this photo of the famous par-3 17th hole by our veteran photographer Stephen Szurlej proves.


There are other live feeds at great courses around the world, too. You’ll either thank us, or blame us, later.

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Courses & Travel

Why getting to Bandon Dunes is about to become a lot easier

The only bad thing you'll ever hear about a trip to Bandon Dunes is about the journey itself. Most people fly to Portland and then drive four and a half hours south to reach the popular golf destination.

Related: The 18 best holes at Bandon Dunes

Of course, the long trek is worth it, but an easier and quicker method will be available this summer. According to United Airlines will add two flights a week (Sunday and Wednesday) from its Denver hub to Southwest Oregon Regional Airport in North Bend from July 1 to Oct. 18.


And according to Google Maps, that post-flight drive is only 36 minutes. Hmm. We wonder what you could do at Bandon with a few extra hours. . .

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Golf pads

Check out this $200 million Florida listing that includes multiple practice greens and a miniature golf course

Sorry, make that "just under $200 million." That's what the Wall Street Journal reports a Florida island estate owned by the Ziff family is being listed at. Maybe that will change your tune about making an offer?

Related: 7 photos of Jordan Spieth's new Dallas mansion

Probably not, but you might enjoy seeing just how awesome this property is. Named "Gemini" (you know it's a sick property when it has an official name, especially one like Gemini), the family compound encompasses 16 acres on a barrier island just south of Palm Beach.


The main house measures 62,200 (can't forget that extra 200!) square feet and sits on the Atlantic Ocean. There's also a guest house that faces the Intracoastal and the two structures are connected by an air-conditioned and furnished tunnel. That alone might make this the most jaw-dropping piece of real estate on the market, but there's more.

The compound also includes a seven-bedroom house, two four-bedroom "cottages," a pool, a pier, a basketball court, a tennis court, and a golf practice area with two greens.


But while we've seen those type of amenities in luxury listings before, here's a new one: A miniature golf course. With a model train set running through it. Amazing.

Related: The best backyard golf holes

The Wall Street Journal describes that last feature as being "for children." Ha. That would be the first thing we'd check out if we ever visited.

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Courses & Travel

Our favorite #whyilovethisgame image of the week

Golf courses are downright photogenic. Nothing proves that more than the Instagram images you guys have been tagging with #whyilovethisgame. The majority of them are fantastic, but our favorite one this week comes from @channingbenjamin:

Remember, when you tag your Instagrams with #whyilovethisgame and #sweepsentry, you could win some really cool prizes.

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Here's an awesome photo of NFL star Larry Fitzgerald playing the most extreme golf hole in the world

Larry Fitzgerald has made a career of going deep in the NFL, but over the weekend he went long on the golf course. Very long.

Related: More on the world's longest par 3

Fitzgerald played the world's longest par 3, the Extreme 19th hole at Legend Golf & Safari Resort, and the Arizona Cardinals wide receiver tweeted this fantastic photo of him teeing off:

Fitzgerald was asked how long it took to get up to the tee, which is 1,410 feet above the putting surface and said it was a five minute helicopter ride each way. Transportation is included in the $700 fee a foursome pays to play the hole -- the rest of the resort's signature course has just a $61 green fee.

Related: NFL stars who love playing golf

Fitzgerald also responded to Hank Haney, who was more focused on the top of the NFL star's backswing rather than the stunning view from the top of a mountain.

Good comeback, Larry.

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Courses & Travel

A 42-hour trip through eight countries for a round of golf (yes, golfers are nuts)

Golfers are nuts, as we know from the motto they have appropriated from the U.S. Postal Service: Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night will keep golfers from their appointed rounds.

Nor a volcano, as it turns out.

(Getty Images)

On Throwback Thursday, the blog at the St. Andrews Links website recalls how a trio of golfers from Sweden with a tee time on the Old Course at St. Andrews had their flight canceled as ash from a volcano that erupted in Iceland disrupted air traffic throughout Scotland and across Northern Europe in the spring of 2010. They were not deterred.

“Their journey included a drive from Sweden to Denmark and ferry ride from Denmark to Germany,” the blog post said. “They then drove through Europe to Calais [France] where they boarded a second ferry to Dover [England] and finally a ten hour drive from Dover to St Andrews.”

It was a 42-hour trip that encompassed eight countries (Sweden, Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, France, England and Scotland) for a four-hour round of golf.

To play the Old Course, no further explanation necessary.

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Courses & Travel

Good news! Arnold Palmer is building his first course in Scotland

The Arnold Palmer Group has designs in progress all over the globe, including one in China and one in Brazil. But for the first time, The King is building a course in Scotland. And he's chosen a pretty awesome chunk of land for it.

Starting early next year, the course will be built on Moray Firth, an inlet of the North Sea near the Castle Stuart. Palmer's new design will make Castle Stuart a 36-hole destination because there's already an 18-hole course on the property. 

While other members of Palmer's crew have been to the site, Palmer himself has yet to see the property, but says he plans to before this year's British Open. According to Google Maps, it'll be about a three hour drive to get from Castle Stuart to St. Andrews. 

In his career, Palmer has found some success in Scotland, having won the British Open in 1962 at Troon. As the BBC reports, Palmer says, "The opportunity to build an iconic golf course in Scotland would be the culmination of all these great experiences." 

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Courses & Travel

Here's a GIF that shows how much Augusta National has changed through the years

Augusta National seems to change every year, mostly because it kind of does. We put together a feature a few years back detailing every one of those changes, but if you'd prefer the same information in a more general, visual form, check out this GIF put together by Golf Digest's Associate Photo Editor Ben Walton.

It's particularly interesting to note how much the plot of land in the top left corner of the property has changed. It's gone from being the course's old parking lot to its new (and much needed) driving range.

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