Golfers' Choice 2022: Top 25 Short Courses

The best executive, par-3 and nine-hole public golf courses according to our reviews community.
A view from Winter Park Golf Course

Short used to be a connotation for "less than" when it comes to golf courses. Not anymore.

Short is in. Shorter courses mean more fun for less money and less time.

We've rounded up the Top 25 short courses according to the ratings and reviews from our community. We combined the overall rating with the six subcategory ratings to determine a total score.

What is a "short" golf course? The definition can be debated given the many non-traditional concepts given what's been created in recent years, but we define it as any golf course that is shorter than 18 holes or 6,000 yards or a par 70.

Reviews on our site tend to feature more local play at area short courses than at destination short courses. In essence, you'll find more local favorites than destination resort short courses. Be sure to give a short course a shot, whether you're on the road or in your home town.

  1. Winter Park, Fla.
    9 holes, par 35
    What they're saying: "Forget the bomb and gouge. This course requires you to plan out an approach and flight to the flag. The green complexes are very Pinehurst like and roll fast and true. Take your time, breathe and enjoy a walk in the park." - hnzlange

  2. A look back from the seventh green on The Links at Terranea Rancho in Palos Verdes, Calif. showcases the ocean views.

    Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif.
    9 holes, par 27
    What they're saying: "Course is in perfect condition. Greens are very difficult and there are lots of bunkers and traps. All age ranges and levels of golfers." - raysecar

  3. Akron, Ohio
    9 holes, par 35
    What they're saying: "Blind greens for experienced, wide open for beginners! Excellent course layout and greens!" - Nabaker21

  4. Neshanic Station, N.J.
    9 holes, par 32
    What they're saying: "If you plan to do 27 holes at Neshanic, start here. Very good nine hole course to warm up at. No need for a golf cart as it is not a hard course to walk. Very good shape too." - acsgolfer21

  5. Sacramento, Calif.
    9 holes, par 27
    What they're saying: "Great time - family atmosphere. Had a good time with my buddies. Beer, cigars and golf. Doesn’t get much better." - dwinrow

  6. Canyon walls surround the Ben Brown's Golf Course at the Ranch at Laguna Beach.

    Laguna Beach, Calif.
    9 holes, par 32
    What they're saying: "It is always a pleasure playing at Ben Brown. It is better to play early than late but the pricing for twilight is great! The only downfall is if there are groups playing late, it slows down the pace. The staff is amazing and the upkeep of the greens is wonderful. I love the wildlife." -

  7. Roseville, Calif.
    9 holes, par 36
    What they're saying: "Tees, fairways, and greens were awesome. Large beautiful course where you will use your big dog on 7 out of 9 holes." - GFMiranda5544

  8. Bixby, Okla.
    9 holes, par 35
    What they're saying: "Amazing 9-hole course. Greens were in fantastic shape and water came into play on almost every hole." - Jake7980180

  9. Woodstock, Ill.
    9 holes, par 34
    What they're saying: "I can walk the course in 90 minutes & never have to worry about pace of play. The staff is always friendly & it’s really hard to beat the price. Nothing fancy. Just a great place to work on your game or welcome a beginner to the game." - JaysonH

  10. Kenilworth, N.J.
    9 holes, par 33
    What they're saying: "Challenging, short 9 holes. Green very nice and good condition. Staffs are always nice and friendly!" - elaine888free

  11. Tewksbury, Mass.
    9 holes, par 33
    What they're saying: "The course is in great shape even though it is a challenge especially with the weather this year. It is also well managed and all staff members are very professional and friendly. We were here in March and love the new pro shop and dining area in and out." - cunninp

  12. Campbellsport, Wis.
    9 holes, par 36
    What they're saying: "Great course. Been going here for the last three years. I love the staff and the course is good enough for the price." - GrizzlyAdams

  13. Niles, Ill.
    9 holes, par 33
    What they're saying: "Good pace of play and well maintained. Relatively tight fairways but stay in them and you’ll be fine. I would recommend this to anyone that just wants a nice 9 hole course with good pace and value." - dave031377

  14. Saint Paul, Minn.
    9 holes, par 34
    What they're saying: "Good course, lots of challenges, tight fairways, small greens and fast, creeks and enough sand. Pretty hilly. So a cart is helpful." - David1318842

  15. Jacksonville, Fla.
    9 holes, par 36
    What they're saying: "The staff were attentive and courteous. The greens were in basically pristine conditions along with some tough hole locations, which made some of the shorter holes more challenging, and the pace of play was great."- gilmvieira1

  16. Sedona, Ariz.
    9 holes, par 28
    What they're saying: "Short & Sweet. The atmosphere is quaint, the course is short and easy yet in impeccable condition." - belindana

  17. Derry, N.H.
    9 holes, par 27
    What they're saying: "Nice little par 3 course! From the blue tees, nice mix of mid iron and wedge shots. 9th hole is actually really tough. Nice market for snacks, coffee, sandwiches. Greens are in great shape!" - Michael5001368

  18. Mesa, Ariz.
    9 hole, par 33
    What they're saying: "Fairly easy short course. All holes are straight in front of you. A variety of short to medium par 3 and 4s. One par 5. Course in good condition. Can play it in 90 minutes to 2 hours. Would play again." - ks1151

  19. A view from fairway #3 at The Backyards from The Yards (Florida's First Coast of Golf).

    Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
    12 holes, par 44
    What they're saying: "Nice range and practice areas. Greens were especially fast. Can be a demanding course for middle to high handicappers, otherwise bunkers and water are avoidable." - Bradley9305761

  20. Elk Grove, Calif.
    9 holes, par 33
    What they're saying: "Played a little slow, but the course is always in great shape and the staff are friendly." - steveleese

  21. Palos Heights, Ill.
    9 holes, par 34
    What they're saying: "Beautiful course. The staff is beyond kind. I brought my 7 yr old for a capstone round for the season. They were super friendly and encouraging to everyone. Great course, adequately challenging and very well maintained." - leonardhollander3

  22. Middlefield, Conn.
    9 holes, par 36
    What they're saying: "Great Golf Course. Nice and challenging course with very friendly staff. Good course to walk!" - jackdise

  23. Ocean, N.J.
    9 holes, par 35
    What they're saying: "We love this golf course. We come as often as we can. Friendly staff and wonderful grounds." - mavisjavis

  24. Bridgehampton, N.Y.
    9 holes, par 30
    What they're saying: "Pleasant 9 Holes. Easy access and fair price. Decent condition" -Arthur3819807

  25. Bronx, N.Y.
    9 holes, par 32
    What they're saying: "A Real gem. Surprising value. This is a tough little course in good condition for (the) money." - bwaronker

0 Comments
View all the Golfers' Choice 2022 lists, including all 50 states.
We tallied more than 320,000 reviews in 2021. Here are the courses you and your fellow golfers loved best.
18 Min Read
More than 40,000 reviews have been tallied to determine California's best public golf courses based on our community of reviewers.
1 Min Read
By Golfers' Choice
Best public golf courses in the state based on our community of reviewers.
1 Min Read
By Golfers' Choice
Explore the best public golf courses in Kansas based on our community of reviewers.
1 Min Read
By Golfers' Choice
The competition was fierce to be named among Michigan's best public golf courses based on our community of reviewers.
1 Min Read
By Golfers' Choice
These 25 courses topped a list of more than 230 across the Buckeye State.
1 Min Read
By Golfers' Choice
More from the author
3 Min Read
January 10, 2022
Find great bang-for-your-buck at these courses.
1 Min Read
January 10, 2022
These courses earned rave reviews from golfers in 2021.
1 Min Read
January 10, 2022
The best campus and college public golf courses provide higher education of a different kind.
1 Min Read
January 10, 2022
These 10 courses were the most popular among golfer-reviewers in 2021.
4 Min Read
January 10, 2022
A nice range and clubhouse, plus other amenities, can be the differentiator for many clubs.
4 Min Read
January 10, 2022
A friendly staff goes a long way toward a great day on the golf course.
Popular
2 Min Read
December 20, 2021
Golf course news & notes: December, 2021.
3 Min Read
January 10, 2022
Golfers loved the lack of congestion at these popular golf courses in 2021.
1 Min Read
January 10, 2022
According to our community of discerning golfers, these courses offered exceptional experiences in 2021.
1 Min Read
January 10, 2022
These are Wisconsin's best public golf courses according to our community of reviewers.
By Golfers' Choice
Load More
Now Reading
Golfers' Choice 2022: Top 25 Short Courses