New South Wales Golf Club - hole 1
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New South Wales Golf Club - hole 1
A look back from the elevated first green at New South Wales Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales Golf Club - first hole
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New South Wales Golf Club - first hole
The 293-meter, par-4 first hole on the New South Wales Golf Club course from 2005. David Cannon/Getty Images
New South Wales Golf Club - hole 5
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New South Wales Golf Club - hole 5
Once you crest the hill, golfers fall in love with the fifth hole at New South Wales Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales - hole 5 - 2009 Australian Open
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New South Wales - hole 5 - 2009 Australian Open
im Wilkinson of New Zealand plays an approach shot during the third round of the 2009 Australian Open at New South Wales Golf Club. Cameron Spencer/Getty Images
New South Wales Golf Club - hole 6
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New South Wales Golf Club - hole 6
The coastal par-3 sixth gets your attention at New South Wales Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales - sixth green - 2009 Australian Open
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New South Wales - sixth green - 2009 Australian Open
Matthew Ballard putts on the 6th green ahead of the Australian Open Golf Championship at New South Wales Golf Club. Craig Golding/Getty Images
New South Wales Golf Club - sixth green
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New South Wales Golf Club - sixth green
Golfers walking up to the seventh tee should take one last look back upon No. 6 at New South Wales Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales Golf Club - hole 8
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New South Wales Golf Club - hole 8
Bunkers guard the 8th green at New South Wales Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales Golf Club - hole 11
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New South Wales Golf Club - hole 11
The table-top 11th green at New South Wales Golf Club can be tough to hit and hold. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales Golf Club - Australian Open - Stuart Appleby
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New South Wales Golf Club - Australian Open - Stuart Appleby
Aussie Stuart Appleby plays an approach shot during the 2009 Australian Open at New South Wales Golf Club. Cameron Spencer/Getty Images
New South Wales - hole 13 - 2009 Australian Open
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New South Wales - hole 13 - 2009 Australian Open
Players putt on the 13th green during the 2009 Australian Open at New South Wales Golf Club. Cameron Spencer/Getty Images
New South Wales Golf Club - hole 14
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New South Wales Golf Club - hole 14
The 14th is a wonderful par 4 with great views at New South Wales Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales Golf Club - 14th green
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New South Wales Golf Club - 14th green
Be sure to take enough club to reach the uphill 14th green at New South Wales Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales Golf Club - hole 16
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New South Wales Golf Club - hole 16
Playing uphill as a sharp dogleg left, the 16th might be the toughest par 4 at New South Wales Golf Club. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
New South Wales Golf Course
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New South Wales Golf Course
The 501-meter, par-5 18th hole, seen here from 2005, finishes below the clubhouse at New South Wales Golf Club. David Cannon/Getty Images
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The Wonder Down Under: New South Wales Golf Club in Australia

Dr. Alister Mackenzie's design is the best reason to skip Melbourne for Sydney.

LA PEROUSE, New South Wales, Australia - New South Wales Golf Club will always be a bridesmaid to Royal Melbourne when it comes Dr. Alister Mackenzie courses in Australia.

Sometimes, the bridesmaid is more beautiful than the bride.

All the major world rankings - by Golf Digest, Golf Magazine and top100golfcourses.com - consider Royal Melbourne's West course to be among the top 10 courses in the world. It's hard to compete with a legendary venue that just held its third successful Presidents Cup, but New South Wales can, ranking between 33-46 in the world. If scenery is a deciding factor, then New South Wales reigns supreme.

The linksy course members call "La Perouse" has a charm all its own, overlooking Botany Bay just south of Sydney. It's wily and wild with surprises at every turn within the Kamay Botany Bay National Park. Although the Mackenzie ties are celebrated, it's actually Eric Apperly who executed important enhancements in the 1930s, including the addition of the stunning par-3 sixth over the inlet of Cape Banks. This magical moment comes after the greatest reveal in golf - the walk up the fifth fairway leading to the rocky shore below.

The water views become a focal point again when players turn left on the dogleg 13th, the first of an epic run of four score-busting par 4s, all dramatic and memorable in their own way.

New South Wales has hosted the Australian Open just once, won by Aussie Adam Scott in 2009. Greg Norman (2010) and more recently Tom Doak have tweaked the 6,245-meter (6,830-yard) course in the modern era. Doak is specifically looking to refine the penal par-3 17th and heavily bunkered par-5 18th. The integrity of the layout will remain intact. It's already a coveted classic.

Visitor play is available after noon Monday, Thursday afternoon from 12:30-1:45 and Friday morning from 8:10-11:20.

Jason Scott Deegan has reviewed and photographed more than 1,000 courses and written about golf destinations in 20 countries for some of the industry's biggest publications. His work has been honored by the Golf Writer's Association of America and the Michigan Press Association. Follow him on Instagram at @jasondeegangolfpass and Twitter at @WorldGolfer.
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The Wonder Down Under: New South Wales Golf Club in Australia