The Top 5 Golf Destinations in Washington State

General Views of Chambers Bay Golf Course
David Cannon / Getty Images

Washington state is famous for its gorgeous views and there’s perhaps no better way to enjoy them than on a golf course. Luckily, the state is home to fabulous greens in areas filled with diverse activities, amazing food, and breathtaking backdrops. In other words, Washington state is perfect for your next golf trip.

01 of 05

Lake Chelan

aerial photo of the 14th hole at gamble sands

 Courtesy of Gamble Sands

Lake Chelan is the largest natural lake in the state of Washington. The gorgeous views of the lake and North Cascade mountains, friendly residents, and laid-back pace have been luring Seattleites there for years. 

Lake Chelan is also the perfect place for a golf trip. There are eight different golf courses located in and near the Chelan Valley. Bear Mountain Ranch boasts stunning views of the mountains and/or lake in each one of their 18 holes. The Lake Chelan Municipal Golf Course is another course with amazing views and some of the most reasonable greens fees in the area. The award-winning Gamble Sands golf course is less than an hour from downtown Chelan and consistently tops lists as one of the best golf courses in the country. 

What to Do: There’s plenty to do in Lake Chelan when you’re not golfing, too. Other activities include tasting wine at more than 30 different wineries (including Succession Wines and Sigillo Cellars), kayaking, boating, camping, and fishing. 

Where to Stay: Stay at Grandview on the Lake, located less than a five minutes walk from the shops and restaurants downtown. It has a gorgeous view of the lake and condos with full kitchens and one to three bedrooms for all your golfing buddies.

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02 of 05

Blaine

Flag in golf hole at Loomis Trail

Courtesy of Loomis Trail Golf Course 

Blaine is a small town near the Canadian border and home to the Semiahmoo Spit, a thin strip of land between Semiahmoo Bay and Drayton Harbor. Visitors are surrounded by views of the water, trees, and Washington and Canadian mountain ranges everywhere they turn, including the Arnold Palmer-designed Semiahmoo Golf and Country Club, It’s a private club but non-members can book tee times through stay and play packages at the beautiful Semiahmoo Resort. Other golf courses in the area include the smooth greens of the top-rated Loomis Trail Golf Club.

What to Do: Be sure to leave time in your trip for exploring Bellingham and the rest of Whatcom County. Highlights include the jaw-dropping scenery on Chuckanut Drive, Whatcom Falls State Park, and Village Books—one of the finest independent bookstores in the Pacific Northwest. End the day at Fat Pie Pizza, a local eatery with a devoted following where pizza enthusiasts can choose between three different styles of crust.

Where to Stay: The aforementioned Semiahmoo Resort has incredible golf along with stunning views, amazing restaurants with a focus on Washington wine, and a spa.

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03 of 05

Columbia Gorge

A beautiful view of the Columbia River Gorge from the Washington side of the river, USA
paulacobleigh / Getty Images

The Colombia River Gorge is an 80-mile canyon of the Columbia River surrounded by hiking trails, waterfalls, and quaint small towns. Elk Ridge Golf Course at the Carson Hot Springs Golf and Spa Resort is one of the best-kept secrets in the area. The course has wide fairways and views of the gorge from virtually every hole. It’s open to the public and you need not be a guest of the resort to book a tee time. The nearby Skamania Lodge golf course is being remodeled, but it's well worth keeping on your radar. The location offers stunning views of the gorge, mountains, river, and forest.

What to Do: While you’re visiting the Columbia River Gorge you can also taste wine at one of the more than 30 different wineries who call the region home, enjoy kayaking, windsurfing, or take in the sights along the river on a Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler Cruise. Be sure to cross the Bridge of the Gods into Oregon to take the 20-minute drive to the awe-inspiring Multnomah Falls. Most of the restaurants around the area are casual, with restaurants like Big River Grill, offering delicious takes on comfort food.

Where to Stay: If you’re coming from out of town, Skamania Lodge happens to be one of the best places to stay in the area. The lodge has stunning views and unique activities such as ax throwing, ziplining, and an aerial park.

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04 of 05

Walla Walla

Golf course green in walla walla washington

 Courtesy of Wine Valley Sports Club

Walla Walla is fun to say, but it’s also a great place for a golf trip with at least four golf courses within an hour’s drive of the city. Wine Valley Golf Club is one of the best golf courses in the area, and they offer steep discounts if you happen to be visiting during the off-season. The course is renowned for its perfectly-manicured greens and sweeping views of the blue mountains. Veterans Memorial Golf Course is another great option for picturesque views and extremely reasonable fees.

What to Do: Walla Walla is home to some of Washington state’s finest wineries and gorgeous tasting rooms. Highlights include Long Shadows Vintners and Seven Hills Winery. Hiking, biking, and shopping downtown Walla Walla’s historic main street are also popular activities. Walla Walla is farm country and the food is second to none. Walla Walla Steak Company and Brasserie Four are both famous for serving up fantastic meals.

Where to Stay: Eritage Resort is the perfect place to stay. Its rooms are elegant and luxurious in a serene setting with views of a small, private lake, the Blue Mountains, and rustling wheat fields. Be sure to take in a meal in their amazing restaurant, easily one of the best meals you’ll have in the area.

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05 of 05

Seattle

Golf Course with Green Grass and Seattle Downtown
IceCo / Getty Images

Seattle is an excellent base for anyone who wants to experience multiple highly-rated golf courses in one trip. There are four municipal golf courses within the city limits, including West Seattle Golf Course, whose sloping greens offer fantastic views of the city.

Seattle is less than an hour’s drive from several other world-class courses, such as Chambers Bay, the stunning public course overlooking Puget Sound which hosted the U.S. Open in 2015. Don’t miss the Golf Club at Newcastle, a public course located less than a half-hour from Seattle offering amazing views of the city, Lake Washington, Puget Sound, and the Olympic Mountains. An hour away from Seattle in Bremerton, the highly-rated Gold Mountain Golf Club offers lovely views of the forest and the Olympic Mountains.

What to Do: When you’re not golfing, explore Pike Place Market, spend an afternoon on Lake Union, and take a ride up the elevator of the Space Needle at Seattle Center. End your night by treating yourself to a mouthwatering meal at Seattle’s iconic steakhouse, El Gaucho.

Where to Stay: Spend the night at Loews Hotel 1,000, a luxury boutique hotel located within walking distance to many of the city’s main attractions. Be sure to partake in a final round of golf in the hotel’s virtual reality golf simulator before your departure.

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