Industry News

GolfPass reveals the 2023 ‘Golfers’ Choice’ lists where recreational golfers say which courses are the best

Top 50 U.S. courses highlights 69 list categories, also including rankings by state, most improved, pace of play, value, course conditions, staff friendliness, and more

ORLANDO, Fla. (Jan. 19, 2023) – The ninth edition of the highly anticipated Golfers' Choice lists were revealed this week by NBC Sports Next’s GolfPass, which include 69 categories generated by golfer reviews to determine the best golf courses played by recreational golfers in 2022. The lists are headlined by the “Top 50” courses in America and can be found within dedicated pages on GolfPass.

Relied on by recreational golfers for its user-generated golf course reviews and expert travel content, GolfPass creates the Golfers’ Choice lists every January to recognize top courses as determined by golfers who shared more than 315,000 reviews the previous year through NBC Sports Next’s leading online tee-time service, GolfNow. The pandemic golf boom continued to bring in more reviews than ever before.

“What I love about this year’s Golfers’ Choice Top 50 is the variety of courses represented,” said Jason Scott Deegan, GolfPass’ managing editor. “The difference in price point, architecture and setting is profound from the number one course - Mauna Lani South, a high-end resort course in Hawaii – all the way to number 50, the Gladstone Golf Club, a sort of hidden gem in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. No other publication offers such a unique mix in their course lists. It just showcases the wide range of courses our golfers play and appreciate for what they offer during a round of golf.”’

Unlike golf course rankings published by industry insiders who have access to golf courses the public may never have the opportunity to play, the Golfers’ Choice lists are totally consumer driven – by recreational golfers, for recreational golfers. Ages, handicaps and budgets of golfers using the website run the gamut, so the millions of reviews accumulated by GolfPass and GolfNow showcase the golf course characteristics that are the most important to avid golfers across the country in any given year.

This year’s Top 50 includes 32 courses new to the list. Deegan notes that turnover on the list happens naturally every year. Local weather can impact course conditions from year to year, just as staff changes can impact service levels, positively or negatively. All of these dynamics play into review scores.

“What doesn’t change is what golfers look for every time they play,” Deegan said. “They want to feel like they got a good experience for the price they paid. They want good service, nice conditions and a steady pace of play, all for the appropriate cost. Courses that delivered on all those fronts were rewarded with positive reviews.”

Categories and highlights in 2023 include:

  • Most Improved
  • Value
  • Layout
  • Staff Friendliness
  • Pace of Play
  • Course Conditions
  • Off-Course Amenities
  • Short Courses
  • College Courses
  • Military Courses
  • International Courses
  • Courses by State (includes 49 states, plus Puerto Rico)
  • A “Top 10 Hidden Gems of Australia” category was added to 2023 lists.
  • Several college football powerhouses also had their golf courses ranked, including University Ridge (University of Wisconsin) and Warren Course at Notre Dame (University of Notre Dame).
  • Several courses continue to be included on the Top 50 list in multiple years:  Yocha Dehe at Cache Creek Casino Resort (8 times); Annbriar Golf Course (5 times), Wickenburg Ranch Golf & Social Club (5 times), and Pinehills Golf Club, Nicklaus Course (4 times).

More than 3,000 courses received the minimum 10 reviews in 2022 to qualify for consideration. All Golfers Choice lists are based on more than 315,000 user-generated reviews received throughout the previous year.

Below is GolfPass’ Golfers’ Choice list of the “Top 50 U.S. Courses” for 2023. Additional categories can be found on GolfPass. An asterisk signifies the 32 courses that appear for the first time in the Top 50, with many making the jump to national recognition from being state ranked in past Golfers’ Choice lists:

  • Mauna Lani Resort, South Course – Waimea, Hawaii
  • The Highlands Golf Club at Fisher Mountain* – Franklin, W. Va.
  • Lick Creek Golf Course* – Pekin, Ill.
  • La Purisima Golf Course* – Lompoc, Calif.
  • Old Greenwood Golf Course at Tahoe Mountain Club* – Truckee, Calif.
  • TPC Sawgrass, Dye’s Valley Course – Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
  • The Traces Golf Club* – Florence, S.C.
  • Stonegate Golf Club – Twin Lake, Mich.
  • Harbor Shores* – Benton Harbor, Mich.
  • Journey at Pechanga* – Temecula, Calif.
  • Speidel Golf Club at Oglebay, Palmer Course* – Wheeling, W. Va.
  • Annbriar Golf Course – Waterloo, Ill.
  • Forest Glen Golf Club* – Naples, Fla.
  • St. Ives Golf Club* – Stanwood, Mich.
  • Forest Oaks Country Club* – Greensboro, N.C.
  • Old Channel Trail Golf Course* – Montague, Mich.
  • Tahoe Donner Golf Course* – Truckee, Calif.
  • Wickenburg Ranch Golf & Social Club – Wickenburg, Ariz.
  • Heritage Palms Golf Club* – Indio, Calif.
  • Golden Oaks Golf Club* – Fleetwood, Pa.
  • Big Cypress Golf Club, South Course* – Lakeland, Fla.
  • Poipu Bay Golf Course – Koloa, Hawaii
  • Pole Creek Golf Club – Tabernash, Colo.
  • University Ridge Golf Course – Verona, Wisc.
  • Laughlin Ranch Golf Club – Bullhead City, Ariz.
  • Black Lake Golf Club – Onaway, Mich.
  • Tiburon Golf Club, Black Course* – Naples, Fla.
  • Indian Wells Golf Resort, Celebrity Course – Indian Wells, Calif.
  • Warren Golf Course at Notre Dame* – Notre Dame, Ind.
  • Wyncote Golf Club – Oxford, Pa.
  • Yocha Dehe at Cache Creek Casino Resort – Brooks, Calif.
  • TPC Deer Run* – Silvis, Ill.
  • Miacomet Golf Club – Nantucket, Mass.
  • Mozingo Lake Recreation Park Golf Course* – Maryville, Mo.
  • Cimarron Golf Club* – Surprise, Ariz.
  • Las Vegas Paiute Golf Resort, Sun Mountain Course – Las Vegas, Nev.
  • Wildwood Golf Course* – Village Mills, Texas
  • The Reserve Vineyards and Golf Club, North Course* – Aloha, Ore.
  • The Meadows at Mystic Lake* – Prior Lake, Minn.
  • Links at Perry Cabin* – Saint Michaels, Md.
  • Gull Lake View Golf Club and Resort, Stonehedge South Course* – Augusta, Mich.
  • ChampionsGate Golf Club, International Course* – ChampionsGate, Fla.
  • The Grand Bear Golf Course – Saucier, Miss.
  • Koasati Pines at Coushatta – Kinder, La.
  • Desert Willow Golf Resort, Mountain View Course* – Palm Desert, Calif.
  • Heritage Glen Golf Club* – Paw Paw, Mich.
  • Schaumburg Golf Club* – Schaumburg, Ill.
  • Pinehills Golf Club, Nicklaus Course – Plymouth, Mass.
  • Paso Robles Golf Club* – Paso Robles, Calif.
  • Gladstone Golf Course* – Gladstone, Mich.

GOLFPASS HELPS GOLFERS PLAY MORE AND BETTER GOLF:  GolPass features a vast library of original video content available exclusively as part of a GolfPass membership, including original shows like The Conor Moore Show, On Tour/On Course, My Roots, My Daily Routine, and more. GolfPass also offers a vast instructional library featuring more than 4,500 video titles, including Ask Rory, The Golf Fix, with host Devan Bonebrake; Lessons with a Champion Golfer; and Build a Better Game – all hosted by top instructors like Martin Hall, Chris Como and Michael Bannon, as well as golf fitness expert Don Saladino. Developed in partnership between global golf superstar Rory McIlroy and NBC Sports Next – the innovation and technology division of NBC Sports – GolfPass is designed for today’s golfer and is the only digital golf membership that delivers exclusive content and comprehensive tee-time benefits designed to help every type of golfer – from beginner to expert – play more and better golf. A GolfPass membership is available in North America at, in the U.K. and Republic of Ireland at, and in Australia at The GolfPass membership also is available via connected TV, iOS and Android apps.

About NBC Sports Next
NBC Sports Next is a subdivision of NBC Sports and home to all NBCUniversal digital applications in sports and technology within its three groups: Youth & Recreational Sports, Golf, and Betting & Gaming. NBC Sports Next, known for its sports technology product innovation, equips more than 30 million players, coaches, athletes, sports administrators and fans in 40 countries with more than 25 sports solution products, including SportsEngine, a youth sports club, league and team management platform; TeamUnify, swim team management services; GoMotion, sports and fitness business software solutions; TourneyMachine, tournament management solutions for youth sports; GolfNow, the leading online tee time marketplace and provider of golf course operations technology and services; GolfPass the ultimate golf membership that connects golfers to exclusive content, tee time credits, coaching, tips and other benefits; and NBC Sports Edge, a leading platform for fantasy sports information and betting-focused tools. NBC Sports Next is fueled by its mission to innovate, create larger-than-life events and connect with sports fans through technology to provide the ultimate in immersive experiences. 

-NBC Sports Next-

Dan Higgins
NBC Sports Next