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The burn on the Old Course, St Andrews

Incredible Scotland Itinerary: St. Andrews and The Highlands

February 22, 2016

It’s the ultimate dream golf vacation twosome…

You’ll combine two of Scotland’s most desirable golf regions with this fantastic Premier Golf itinerary.

From the legendary, world renowned golf  in St. Andrews to the Scottish Highlands, a land of majestic mountains, mysterious lochs, world class single malt whiskys and revered golf courses, this itinerary is the quintessential Scotland dream golf trip.

Enhancing its appeal is the flexibility in accommodations choices and possibilities to add extra days for off-the-course activities.

Day 1

Fly into either Edinburgh, Glasgow or Inverness through London.

Play NAIRN – Host to the Walker Cup and British Amateur Championship, this legendary course founded in 1887 was designed by Tom Morris and later enhanced by James Braid. Nestled on the shores of the Moray Firth, Nairn is a wonderland of Highland wilderness, gorse and heather.

Accommodations: Three night stay in Inverness or Dornoch


Your accommodations choices are:

The Kingsclub & Spa (5 Star) – Oozing with luxury appointments, these special rooms are set in a building separate from the main hotel, The Kingsmills Hotel.

The Kingsmills Hotel  (4-Star) – Encircled by four acres of beautiful gardens, this 134-room hotel features two dining options, a spa, fully equipped gym and swimming pool.

Culloden House (4-Star) – Occupying a stunning Palladian mansion set on exquisitely maintained grounds, this 28-room hotel has common areas that include a cozy Library Bar and the Adams Lounge with an open fire and chandeliers.


Your accommodations choices are:

Links House (5-Star) – A country house hotel with lots of charm, grace and elegance, this property has eight bedrooms and a restaurant that overlooks beautiful gardens with an exterior fireplace.

Royal Golf Hotel (4.5-Star) – Recently refurbished, this 22-room hotel offers views of the Royal Dornoch Golf Club and the Dornoch Firth in the distance. The Royal Golf Hotel Bar is a popular place for a post golf wee dram.

Day 2

Play ROYAL DORNOCH – Looking like a Monet painting, Royal Dornoch Championship Course is a stunning mixture of lush fairways framed yellow gorse in the spring and purple heather in the fall.  A wild and isolated setting, it’s Scottish links golf at its finest.

* Suggested after the round: You can schedule a whiskey tour at Glenmorangie Distillery, the highly respected purveyor of single malt Scotch whiskey that was founded in 1843.

Day 3

Play CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS – Opened in 2009, this course 6 miles east of Inverness has rapidly become a fixture on many vacationer’s must play list in Scotland. Designed by Gil Hanse and Mark Parsinen, the layout overlooks the Moray Firth and is known for its landmarks–the Chanory Lighthouse, Kessock Bridge and the Black Isle.

Day 4

On the way to Aberdeen, stop and play CRUDEN BAY – Set against the backdrop of the North Sea, this legendary layout designed by Old Tom Morris and Archie Simpson in 1899 is nicknamed “the palace in the sandhills.” Occupying rugged links land, it has massive sand dunes as high as three-story buildings, elevated tees cut into the dunes, undulating and hollowed fairways and punchbowl greens.

(NOTE: If you love whisky, you can build in an extra day in your itinerary to visit Scotland’s Malt Whisky Trail in Speyside. Here, you’ll visit seven working distilleries, including Glenfiddich, Glenlivet, Glen Grant and Benromach. For those who don’t want to add the extra day, you can visit one distillery in the Aberdeen area.)

Spend night at Malmaison in Aberdeen.

Malmaison Aberdeen (4-Star) – A 79-room boutique hotel known for its huge beds, power showers and chic decor. Enhancing the appeal is the Brasserie Restaurant, which serves British dishes and Black Angus steaks.

Day 5

Choice to play either:

TRUMP INTERNATIONAL GOLF LINKS ABERDEEN – Designed by highly respected architect Dr. Martin Hawtree, this decidedly picturesque and challenging course is routed through a series of amazing dunes giving golfers spectacular views of the North Sea and dramatic coastline.


ROYAL ABERDEEN – Founded in 1780, it’s the sixth oldest golf club in the world. The Balgownie course is a classic links layout that goes out through the dunes and back along a plateau.

Day 6

On the way to St. Andrews you play CARNOUSTIE – Dating back to 1842, Carnoustie Golf Club is one of Scotland’s most famous and revered. The Championship course has hosted seven Open Championships and will host the Open Championship again in 2018. Bring your “A” game because the Championship course has one of the toughest stretches of closing holes anywhere.

Arrive in St. Andrews that evening. Stay 4 nights in St. Andrews.

Your accommodations choices are:

Old Course Hotel St. Andrews Golf Resort & Spa (5-Star) – An exceptional luxury experience, this property features rooms and suites designed by French designer, Jacques Garcia, the Kohler Waters Spa, Jigger Inn Pub, and, of course, spectacular views of the Old Course and the village of St. Andrews.

Fairmont St. Andrews (5-Star) – An amenity-laden property on a 520-acre estate with two on-site golf courses, an atrium lobby and luxurious spa.

Hotel Duvin (4-Star) – An elegantly appointed 36-room hotel with custom-made beds and a bar with an extensive wine list and sommelier.

Macdonald Russacks Hotel (4-Star) – Originally opened in 1887, the historic property overlooks the Old Course with views of the 18th hole and St. Andrews’ West Sands in the distance.

The Dunvegan Hotel (3-Star) – Owned by a Texan and his Scottish wife, the family-owned, golf themed hotel can accommodate up to 16 golfers for overnight stays in its 5 bedrooms in the main building located above its famous bar.

Ardgowan (3-Star) – A small (29 rooms) family-run hotel situated about 200 yards from the Old Course clubhouse.

Day 7

Play ST. ANDREWS NEW COURSE – It’s really not that “new”. It was built in 1895 by Tom Morris and is a classic test of links golf. It plays to par 71 from 6,625 yards.

Day 8

Play KINGSBARNS – A modern course opened in 2000, it’s a phenomenal seaside golf experience often compared with Pebble Beach Golf Links. Designed by Californian Kyle Phillips, it’s set on land that gently slopes down toward the coastline with almost every hole offering a great view of the sea.

Day 9

Play  THE OLD COURSE – The most famous course in the world, this iconic layout is the ultimate round of golf for anybody that truly loves the game. Set alongside the village of St. Andrews the images are very familiar to golfers who have watched the Open Championship on T.V. or heard stories from friends who’ve been lucky enough to play there. From the Swilcan Bridge and Road Hole to its majestic clubhouse and knowledgeable caddies, the Old Course is a magical golf experience.

Things to Do

* You can add extra days for special off-the-course sights and attractions

  • Scotland’s  Malt Whiskey Trail
  • Fishing Villages of East Neuk near St. Andrews.
  • Eilean Donan Castle (village of Dornie in Western Highlands)
  • Loch Ness (The large lake that’s the reputed home of the Loch Ness Monster)