Best of 2016: Top 25 golf courses in Michigan

No northern state runs deeper with great, affordable golf than Michigan. The mitten doubles as a nationally coveted destination thanks to the great resorts around Traverse City and Harbor Springs, but also has loads of great semi-private and daily-fee courses from Grand Rapids to metro Detroit.

Michigan's Top 25 is one of our toughest state lists to make. In fact, a course needed well over a 4.5 overall rating to be eligible, compared to many other states whose scores needed closer to 4.2 or 4.3. There is also a tremendous amount of turnover compared to the 2015 state ranking. What's great about receiving so many reviews from golfers at Golf Advisor is that there are many great experiences that often go unnoticed by other national publications because they aren't part of a resort or have a "name" architect attached to them. The result is that the Golf Advisor list features some bucket list resort courses as well as top local courses in the southern part of the state. A course in the remote Upper Peninsula also made the list.

To compile our state lists, we used a similar method to that of our our national Top 50 ranking. A course's score is based on their overall (50%) rating and subcategory average (50%). Reviews are weighted based on how prolific that reviewer is on Golf Advisor, and a course receives a bump in their rating if their score is better than that reviewer's average score.

Don't see your favorite Michigan golf course? You can make your voice heard by writing a review here.

Top courses by subcategory in Michigan in 2016

Course layout: Eagle Eye Golf Club
Course conditions: Eagle Eye Golf Club
Value: Gladstone Golf Course
Off-course amenities: Forest Dunes Golf Club
Pace of play: Charlevoix Country Club
Staff friendliness: Eagle Eye Golf Club

Top 25 golf courses in Michigan in 2016



Paw Paw




Casco Township




Harbor Springs



New Era

Cedar Springs










No. 5 in the U.S. in 2016

Brandon Tucker is the Sr. Managing Editor for GolfPass and was the founding editor of Golf Advisor in 2014, he was the managing editor for Golf Channel Digital's Courses & Travel. To date, his golf travels have taken him to over two dozen countries and nearly 600 golf courses worldwide. While he's played some of the most prestigious courses in the world, Tucker's favorite way to play the game is on a great muni in under three hours. Follow Brandon on Twitter at @BrandonTucker and on Instagram at @btuck34.
Commented on

Eagle Eye is no doubt a very nice course but to put it over Arcadia Bluff is ridiculous. And to not even list Harbor Shores is just plain silliness.

Related Links
Traverse City, Mich. is one of the great family vacation spots in the U.S. Picking just 10 courses to highlight is a fool's errand. Be that as it may, these 10 serve as an introduction to the area.
4 Min Read
When asked to come up with my 10 favorite golf courses in northern Michigan, I took a mulligan and included 15 -- I just couldn't narrow it down! Don't consider this a "best-of" list, merely a personal guide to the 15 courses I love to play.
3 Min Read
It might not be thought of as a golf destination, but the suburbs surrounding Detroit certainly can play the part with more than a dozen courses worth playing. If you're visiting southeast Michigan for business or pleasure, there are multiple ways to play golf three straight days without spending more than $200!
3 Min Read
Northern Michigan's golf scene is spectacular and diverse, but also vast. Jason Scott Deegan offers some pointers to help plan your first trip.
5 Min Read
More from the author
7 Min Read
October 7, 2021
We found the 10 cities where it's easiest to score a tee time.
2 Min Read
September 28, 2021
In a new exclusive series from GolfPass, Rory McIlroy demonstrates with Martin Hall how to hit the 9 shots. Here's how to add them to your practice routine.
9 Min Read
September 23, 2021
We've crafted a Dream 18 from the most exciting holes in American public golf.
7 Min Read
September 21, 2021
Large buddies groups love playing Ryder Cup-style, multi-day team events on their golf vacations. And what could be more epic than playing a Ryder Cup match on a former (or future) Ryder Cup venue?
2 Min Read
September 21, 2021
Bernhard Langer recalls the turning point that led to a European wave at the Ryder Cup matches
4 Min Read
September 10, 2021
Pete Dye's golf course designs set the bar for innovation, creativity and challenge. We've compiled his top courses as rated on Golf Advisor by regular golfers like you.
12 Images
October 11, 2021
This Albuquerque gem is one of the tournament capitals of collegiate golf.
21 Images
September 30, 2021
This collection of photos sent in by reviewers might be the best we've ever seen.
3 Min Read
October 4, 2021
America's largest golf resort, and one of its smallest, are expanding to enhance the guest experience.
3 Min Read
October 7, 2021
Recent releases run the gamut from irons to apps.
Load More
Now Reading
Best of 2016: Top 25 golf courses in Michigan