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5.0
64 Reviews (64)
5 Stars
58
4 Stars
1
3 Stars
4
2 Stars
1
1 Stars
0
Conditions
4.9
Value
4.5
Layout
4.9
Friendliness
4.9
Pace
4.8
Amenities
4.9
98.8%
Recommend this course
60 out of 64 reviews
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Average Rating
Avg Rating
5.0
1 Reviews (1)
5 Stars
1
4 Stars
0
3 Stars
0
2 Stars
0
1 Stars
0
Conditions
5.0
Value
5.0
Layout
5.0
Pace
5.0
Amenities
5.0
StaffFriendliness
5.0
100.0%
Recommend this course
1 out of 1 reviews
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Average Rating
Avg Rating
5.0
3 Reviews (3)
5 Stars
3
4 Stars
0
3 Stars
0
2 Stars
0
1 Stars
0
Conditions
5.0
Value
4.7
Layout
5.0
Pace
5.0
Amenities
5.0
StaffFriendliness
5.0
100.0%
Recommend this course
3 out of 3 reviews
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About

Holes 18
Type Resort
Style Links
Par 72
Length 7356 yards
Slope 144
Rating 77.3

The Ocean Course at Kiawah Island in South Carolina is one of America’s most prestigious rounds of publicly accessible golf. The headliner of five 18-hole courses at Kiawah Island Resort, the Ocean Course was designed by architect Pete Dye and opened in 1991, just prior to its staging of the 1991 Ryder Cup, otherwise known as the “War by the Shore.” It also hosted the 2012 PGA Championship, won by Rory McIlroy, and the 2021 PGA Championship. The Ocean Course is a windswept coastal layout that plays along a narrow and sandy section on the east end of the island. Its defenses are numerous, from small, elevated greens to huge waste areas that surround plateaued fairways. New tees installed prior to the 2021 PGA Championship can stretch the layout to over 7,800 yards. For daily resort play, the Ocean Course is a walking-only layout that comes with caddies, with the exception of summer months after 10 a.m., when carts are permitted. It has been ranked within the Top 5 public golf courses in the country according to top magazine panels. Elevating the experience further is an oceanside driving range and putting green, as well as its iconic, lowcountry-inspired Ocean Course clubhouse, designed by Robert A.M. Stern architects. The 24,000-square-foot building features the Ryder Cup bar for casual dining and drinks as well as The Atlantic Room for fine dining. In 2021, Kiawah Island added four Ocean Course Cottages, each four-bedroom, 3,800-square-foot units that overlook the course. Accommodations at Kiawah Island include The Sanctuary Hotel as well as villas. Stay-and-play packages that include the Ocean Course an be booked with either option.

Course Details

Year Built 1991
Fairways Paspalum Grass
Greens Paspalum Grass
Golf Season Year round
Architect Pete Dye (1991) Alice Dye (1991) Chris Lutzke (1991)

Rentals/Services

Carts Yes
Clubs Yes
GPS No
Pull-carts Yes

Practice/Instruction

Driving Range Yes
Caddies Yes
Golf School Academy Yes
Teaching Pro Yes
Pitching/Chipping Area Yes
Putting Green Yes

Policies

Credit Cards Accepted VISA, MasterCard, Amex, Discover Welcomed
Metal Spikes Allowed No
Fivesomes Allowed No
Single Allowed No
Walking Allowed Yes
Dress code Proper attire is required.

Food & Beverage

Snacks, Restaurant

Available Facilities

Showers, Lockers, Locker Rooms

Accolades

Reviews

5.0
64 Reviews (64)

What Golfers Are Saying

The 19th Hole is Great For:
Drinks 16
19th Hole Scenic Views 15
Dinner 14
Course Challenges Include:
Bunkers 13
Forced Carries 12
Plays Long 9
This course/club is great for:
A Bucket list/Top 100 Pick 16
Wildlife/ Scenic Views 15
Advanced Golfers 13
This Course's Location is:
At a Resort 13
Worth the Drive 10

Numbers based on reviews tagged with attribute.

Reviewer Photos

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Overall Rating
Recommended
Handicap
Age
Type of Golfer
Gender
Played On
Reviews 1
Handicap 15-19
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Windy weather
Used cart

Ocean Course Experience

It's definitely a 'bucket list' course to play for the average golfer. I booked a reservation only because my family and I were in the area and was able to get an afternoon tee-time. I played from the Kiawah tees (whites) and the course was challenging, but manageable.

The weather was sunny and breezy (it's an ocean course). The conditions were fantastic and it showed.

The staff was as expected in a high-end environment. The check in was quick. I was then referred to the starter when I was coupled with my caddy for the day.

If you get the opportunity, request Jamison to be your caddy!! Not only did we share Long Island roots (we lived in the same area), but he is very personable, knowledgeable about the course, and was full of anecdotal stories to make the day more interesting.

I can't say this for many rounds, but time did fly by and when we arrived at 18, I was disappointed the round was over.

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Reviews 110
Handicap 5-9
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Top 100 Contributor
Florida Advisor
First Time Playing

A Religious Experience

Golf of this quality is unheard of for a regular public course player. The carpet like grass showed no blemishes, the bunkers are uniquely crafted to present an aesthetically pleasing walk and a tormenting test should you find yourself in one. Greens were pure and course is looking absolutely prime in the wake of the upcoming major championship. The price is worth it. Play this course.

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Reviews 48
Handicap 15-19
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Missouri Advisor
Top 1000 Contributor
First Time Playing
Cold weather
Walked

Best Course I’ve Ever Played

Simply put, the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island is the best course I have ever played. It is also the most beautiful and most difficult track I’ve been on. The views along the Atlantic Ocean are amazing and need to be seen by all golfers at least once in their life. A must-play and bucket-list course with incredible wildlife on the course.

We lucked out and played on a cool and not too windy day. The first few holes “ease” you into the round and are more of a parkland/marsh type course. As you turn back towards the clubhouse on hole six and are by the ocean, that is when the round really gets scenic and even more difficult. FYI, the distance from the ninth green to the 10th tee is far.

The back nine is where the course shines. Pictures and videos do not do it justice. The par 3s on 14 and 17 are brutal yet so beautiful. The tee box on 14 sits up high at the far end of the course and is an amazing viewpoint. The green on 14 is like a volcano and seems impossible to hit, while the 17th green just looks like an island in the lake and is even more difficult to play. To close the round out, the 18th green has a great view of the back of the clubhouse.

In general, the fairways are wide but if you get off line, it gets hard to find your ball. I’d suggest bringing more golf balls than you think you might normally need, but you will likely find a bunch, too! The greens are big and were in perfect condition but a little slow.

As with many bucket list courses, The Ocean Course is really expensive to play but worth it. (I actually did not list the exact date we played because we were lucky and got a “special” rate through a Kiawah Island property owner.) If you can combo it with another of the resort’s courses, you can get a cheaper rate.

Can’t emphasize it enough, though… Every golfer needs to play The Ocean Course at least once in their life!

Conditions Excellent
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Extremely Challenging
Played On
Reviews 50
Handicap 5-9
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Top 1000 Contributor
First Time Playing

Amazing golf experience!

Played the beautiful Ocean Course on a brilliant Monday morning. The golf course is extremely hard but fair. Good shots are rewarded and there is room for a little off-line shots as well. Greg our caddie was awesome and kept me out of trouble. The turf and green complexes were in suburb condition. The clubhouse is understated but fits right in the low country vibe of S Carolina
Well worth the fees and a must play!

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Good
Pace Excellent
Amenities Good
Played On
Reviews 1
Handicap 15-19
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Perfect weather
Used cart

Ocean fun

I recently had the pleasure of enjoying a round on this course, I was attending a 2 day event sponsored by the AMTOUR. I was able to play two very good courses on the island, Turtle Point and the Ocean course. I will say the Ocean course is all it's billed to be both challenging and rewarding in the awesome views from the course. I would highly recommend playing this course if you ever get the chance or opportunity

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Good
Difficulty Extremely Challenging
Played On
Reviews 1
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Previously Played

Course was in perfect condition...
Never had a bad lie in fairway and greens rolled true with good speed.....must play course...

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Reviews 1
Handicap 0-4
Skill Advanced
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Windy weather
Walked

Loved the course

Facility from entrance to exit was immaculate. Course played tough but very forgiving off the tee. The caddy was outstanding and I suggest anyone who plays the course for the first time get this experience as well. Will definitely save you strokes and make your leisurely walk more memorable.

Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Reviews 1
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing

Brilliant

I have had the good fortune of playing many great courses and don’t understand how this course is not ranked in the top 5
Incredibly fair for any level with sensible teeing options
Multiple ways to play most holes that work for long hitters or those who are not so long
Fantastic condition, even more significant considering it’s location and the challenges presented.
I remember the holes because they were all different
Even when playing badly the views and location made it difficult not to thoroughly enjoy a day’s golfing. Not many courses can say this

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Reviews 4
Handicap 10-14
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Previously Played
Windy weather
Walked

Golf Channel Major round at Ocean course

This course is extremely challenging. At this time of year (March) the greens are very firm and fast with not a lot of grass. Very difficult to read and get speed correct. The layout is breath taking. I would love to do it again in June when the greens are prime

Conditions Good
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Extremely Challenging
Played On
Reviews 4
Handicap 15-19
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Perfect weather
Walked

A great Course, a great day, and a great experience

I played the course on a perfect sunny day in the mid-50's with about 5 mph wind. cool enough to walk, and just low enough temperature and enough wind to challenge me and keep the bugs at bay.

i was playing in the Golf Channel Amateur Tour and it was a terrific experience of challenging golf , fantastic views, great people, and a terrific caddie. When you go, the caddie can make a huge difference.

The course was in great condition. i believe the secret to enjoying a course like this is not only the weather, getting a caddie who knows the course, and playing from the right tees. i scored the lowest score i have ever scored in competition to prove the point.

I have been very fortunate to play Pebble Beach, Torrey Pines, Doral, and many other famous courses. i enjoyed the golf here as much as Pebble Beach and the scenery rivals both Pebble and Torrey Pines. the view of the ocean, the flora and fauna were an added bonus. ok, i'm biased. i've been a sailor for 30 years, so playing golf by the ocean is nirvana for me. Nonetheless, this course is a bucket list candidate for any golfer who wants to experience a unique course, without flying to Scotland or the west coast.

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Good
Pace Excellent
Amenities Average
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Reviews 2
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing

Great Experience

Really enjoyed playing this course. It was extremely challenging. Helped a lot to have a great caddie. Thanks Mike.

Conditions Excellent
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Reviews 1
Handicap 0-4
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Previously Played
Perfect weather
Walked

Great Day

The course was in great shape with perfect weather. My caddie Alva was fantastic, overall a fantastic day playing golf

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Extremely Challenging
Played On
Reviews 2
Skill Advanced
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing

Yes - It’s that good

I went back and forth on whether to take the trip to play the famed Ocean Course. It had been the last of the top courses that I really felt I needed to play or at least had reasonable access to play. The question was, should I cough up the money. I did it and I’m glad I did. Don’t skimp on the caddy. You will walk further if you take a cart. It’s an easy walk and you really experience the whole golf course along the way. I was surprised that the fairways were as wide as they were. But placement and the angle you approach from is paramount. Precision with shots into the green will decide how well you score. Greens are true and fast and You never need to touch your ball, fairways are that good. Excellent conditions. I recommend you experience everything The Ocean course has to offer. Soak in the view from the clubhouse, the warmth of the fireplace, the history in the locker room, stories from the caddies, beer and burger in the Ryder Cup bar. The Ocean Course is worth it and it deserves its high ranking amongst the best.

Conditions Excellent
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Reviews 2
Skill Advanced
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Previously Played

In my top 3!

This was my second visit to the Ocean course and I played it three times in three days. The location and layout are amazing. I definitely recommend grabbing your own caddy because this is one of the best walks in golf. Every hole is different and there’s not a bad one on the course. The caddie program is excellent here and they definitely enhance your round.
Come prepared to play in the wind and make sure you understand how to play out of those hard pan bunkers. That wind definitely affects your putts so take your caddy’s advice on the line.
If you haven’t been down here yet, go!

Conditions Good
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Good
Played On
Reviews 3
Handicap 10-14
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Windy weather
Walked

A must play course that will challenge your golf skills.

The Ocean course will challenge your golf patience.
Bucket list course is a must and worth the long drive. Every shot from tee to green must be thought out due to the windy conditions. Ocean course will play long so play tees of your skill to enjoy the round and all the beautiful senic views. I suggest you practice your tight lie short game before playing and watch putting with the wind. Greens are outstanding. Hitting out of bunkers will be differnt because of packed sand. A caddie is a must. Henry, my caddie, was the best. Accommodations are great with many great food choies. Breakfast at the Town Market is a must. Make sure you take your wife!!

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Extremely Challenging
Played On
Reviews 15
Handicap 10-14
Skill Advanced
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Windy weather
Walked

Gotta Go!

There are plenty of bucket list golf courses for people who play regularly and this is certainly one of them. In many cases, you can pay a lot of money and just not feel like it was worth the time and cost involved. Not here! This experience lived up to the hype and then some. What a spectacular facility. The course while certainly difficult is fair. I am sure the second time around will be even better! It is a top shelf golf experience all around. Just go!

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Reviews 1
Skill Advanced
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing

A Complete Golf Experience

The Ocean Course is everything you would want in a challenging Pete Dye layout. Mr. Dye distracts you with the majestic ocean views while putting your entire game and all your senses to a fantastic test of golf. The golf course staff was very hospitable, making you feel right at home. The caddies were second to none. A “Must Have” when playing a Dye course! Can’t wait for a return trip to Kiawah Island and playing the famous Ocean Course!

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Reviews 3
Handicap 5-9
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Windy weather
Used cart

Very Nice Course, but Oddly Different

I'll start off by saying this is an unbelievable golf course. But... It's much different than most golf courses. Reason being there aren't any bunkers. All of the green side bunkers are hard pan. It takes getting used to. Sometimes getting into a green side bunker isn't such a penalty. Here it is. Unless your used to playing muni courses then you won't have any trouble. With that being said it's all around a great course. This is why it is a major in 2021 for the pros. When the wind is up like it was when I played it, good luck. Even when the wind is down it is extremely difficult. All of the greens are raised higher than I've ever played. Even when you hit the green there is a good chance your ball will bounce and fly over the green or spin and come right of the slope. The greens were fast and crunchy when I played it. The grass was dormant when I played it as well. I'm assuming during the spring and summer the greens smooth out and become much more playable.

The only reason I could even give this course a 4 star in the course conditions, value for the money, and course layout is because of the bunker or lack their of conditions. There technically aren't any bunkers on the course as they all play like wastelands. Anyways this is a wonderful track, one of the the best challenges I have ever faced. I'm basically nit picking the conditions and bunkers, but I wanted to provide my honest feedback.

Anyways everyone should play this course at some point in their life. It's a true test and a great course.

Conditions Good
Value Good
Layout Good
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Extremely Challenging
Played On
Reviews 2
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a month
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Windy weather
Walked

Windy and Cold

Played a practice round with 2 friends on a Fri before our Golf Channel AM Tour 2 day tournament, then another round Sat during the tournament (final round was on Turtle Point course). Ocean course conditions were tough to say the least with 55 degree high temp, mostly cloudy, winds 15-25 mph. Beautiful and very challenging golf course with all bunkers (hard packed mud) treated as waste areas. Greens were in poor shape during our practice round, but were mowed and much more speedy and consistent for the tournament round.

Conditions Average
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Extremely Challenging
Played On
Reviews 1
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Previously Played

Best course I've everplayed

The Ocean Course at Kiawah is a true test of your golf game. The views, from the time you arrive, are spectacular. You'll see plenty of the Atlanic Ocean. I'd definitely recommend a walking caddie. The wind is what makes this course deserving of the title of Americas toughest, and the caddies do a great job helping you navigate your way around the links. Do yourself a favor and check out the Ryder Cup Bar in the clubhouse. The food is fantastic.....I recommended the Bagger burger btw. Can't wait to get back on Kiawah Island.

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
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Golf Packages
FROM $177 (USD)
KIAWAH ISLAND, SC | Enjoy 5 nights' accommodations in a Resort Class Villa at Kiawah Island Golf Resort and play 4 rounds of golf at Osprey Point, Turtle Point, Cougar Point and Ocean Course.
FROM $167 (USD)
CHARLESTON, SC | Enjoy 5 nights' accommodations at The Francis Marion Hotel and play 4 rounds of golf at the Links at Stono Ferry, Dunes West GC, Charleston National Country Club & Rivertowne Country Club.
FROM $267 (USD)
ISLE OF PALMS, SC | Enjoy 2 nights' accommodation in a Oceanside condo at Wild Dunes Resort and play 3 rounds of golf at Links Course and Harbor Course.
FROM $237 (USD)
HILTON HEAD ISLAND, SC | Enjoy up to 5 nights' accommodations at The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa and and up to 4 rounds of golf at Palmetto Dunes Golf Club (Fazio, Hills & Jones Courses) and the Country Club of Hilton Head.
FROM $367 (USD)
SEA ISLAND, GA | Enjoy 3 nights' accommodations at The Inn at Sea Island and 3 rounds at Sea Island Seaside, Plantation & Retreat Courses.
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