Door County, Wisconsin, draws over two million guests annually, many of whom come to play on its 11 golf courses. The heavily wooded land and natural lakes throughout the area make a challenging and beautiful setting for a game of golf. The courses range from nine to 36 holes, providing golf experiences for families looking for a leisurely afternoon activity and skilled players looking to challenge themselves.
Public Versus Private Courses
All but one of Door County’s golf courses are open to the public. Horseshoe Bay Golf Club is the only private club in the area. The course ranks among the top four private golf clubs in the state. If you know someone with a membership, you can play at Horseshoe Bay as a guest, but otherwise the course and clubhouse amenities are reserved for members only. Four membership levels accommodate regular visitors and area residents who wish to join the club.
Golf Digest gave the Idlewild Golf Course four stars on its "Places to Play" list. This Sturgeon Bay golf course appeals to golfers who appreciate a water challenge, as it has lakes throughout and an island green on one hole. For a historic and scenic course, visit Peninsula State Park and the Peninsula State Park Golf Course, which opened in 1921. If your vacation includes your family, the nine-hole Stonehenge Golf family fun course and the nine-hole Bay Ridge Golf Course work well for children.
Discounts on Door County Golf
Golfers traveling to Door County on a budget can save money on some courses with the Green Card. Cherry Hills, Stonehedge and Idlewild all participate in the Green Card program. For a small fee, which was $5 in 2010, the card entitles its owner to two rounds of golf at a participating course for the price of one. You may also find discounts through your resort or hotel. For instance, Newport Resort in Sturgeon Bay has a package that gives golfers a discounted rate at The Orchards in Egg Harbor.
Where to Stay
Where you stay when golfing in Door County depends on the courses you wish to play. Egg Harbor has the most golf courses — four out of the 11 — while Sturgeon Bay has two courses. To stay where you play, book a room in one of Door County’s golf resorts, such as the Alpine Resort in Egg Harbor or the Maxwelton Braes Golf Resort in Baileys Harbor. If you have a membership at the Horseshoe Bay Golf Club, you can stay on-site in the Club Cottages.
When to Go
Golfing in Door County as elsewhere in Wisconsin is seasonal; the courses close for the winter. The months of July and August draw the biggest crowds, causing the cost for hotel rooms to jump up. Consider traveling in the spring or fall when the weather still permits golfing but fewer vacationers hit the area. Wisconsin Golfer recommends visiting in the fall, as the colors of the fall foliage create a scenic backdrop to the game.