Q: What are some of the better Vermont golf courses to play in the Burlington area? David W., Cleveland, OH
A: If you’re looking for big-name Vermont golf courses near Burlington, the first place to consider is Vermont National Country Club (vermontnational.com), just five miles south of the center of town. This Jack Nicklaus/Jack Nicklaus II design combines a Scottish links-style front nine with a mountainous back nine that winds through rock outcroppings.
It’s a private course, yes, but you could gain access to it by staying at any one of a number of local area hotels such as the Inn at Essex, the Green Mountain Suites, Courtyard by Marriott Burlington (there are two) or the Smugglers' Notch Resort.
There are less expensive Vermont golf courses in the area, but they tend to be on the shorter side. A few of the better ones are:
- Essex Country Club (essexccvt.com), a design by noted Montreal architect Graham Cooke, that tops out at 6,545 yards.
- Williston Golf Club (willistongolfclub.com), a charming, family-owned course since 1927, known for its superb conditions and brisk pace of play. It’s only 5,725 yards.
- The Links at Lang Farm (linksatlangfarm.com), located adjacent to the Inn at Essex, is slightly less than 4,000 yards, but it bills itself as, “the only championship executive golf course in new England.”
If you’re willing to drive an hour from Burlington to Warren, we recommend the venerable Sugarbush Resort golf course (sugarbush.com), which was designed by Robert Trent Jones, Sr. in 1961. This beautiful mountain course, known for its sporty holes and challenging, uneven lies, is set in the hills above the Mad River Valley and provides some of the best views among all Vermont golf courses.