Top 10 Most Wanted Golf Courses – Michigan

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An Unlikely Golf Destination

When you hear the phrase golf destination, what's the first state that comes to mind? Show of virtual hands, who said Michigan?

Perhaps the most unexpected of all golf getaway states, Michigan is actually home to the second highest number of courses in the United States. In fact, Michigan has more golf courses than both California and Texas.

Go figure, right?

Our top 2 courses on this list are particularly noteworthy. The #1 course, as you'll find out later, is ranked among the very best in the country, while the #2 course has the dubious distinction of being the first Top 10 in any state to close before the rankings published.

To build our list of the best golf courses in Michigan, we turned to TheGrint and to real golfers just like you.


About Our Rankings

To generate our rankings, we used data from TheGrint, a golf handicap and stat tracking service that also allows golfers to rate the courses they play. Here are the pertinent details:

  • Ranking derived from over 200,000 golf course reviews
  • Only reviews from the last 365 days are considered
  • A course must have a minimum of 30 reviews is required in order to qualify for ranking

Nearly every aspect of a golf course review is subjective and there's always going to be a difference of opinion, so healthy (and hopefully polite) debate is to be expected.

Top 10 Golf Courses in Michigan


Michigan's 10 Most Wanted Golf Courses

About Tony Covey

Tony is the editor of mygolfspy. His coverage of golf equipment extends far beyond the facts as dictated by the companies that created them.

He believes in performance over hype. #PowerToThePlayer

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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Mike H September 4, 2016 at 9:18 am

Thanks for this. That said, (and having lived and golfed in Michigan for 45 years) the list just isn’t very good. The omission of such great and challenging courses as Tullymore, Bay Harbor, Pierce Lake, Hemlock, Timberstone, Greywalls, and Pilgrim’s Run (my personal favorite) is glaring and indicative of a flawed selection process based more on popularity than quality.


Erik August 27, 2016 at 2:21 pm

Yarrow was a great course, played it often when I was at Western. It does not belong on this list however.


Bill August 27, 2016 at 11:12 am

I played Arcadia Bluffs one great golf course . Hope to play again next year


Wm August 26, 2016 at 2:28 pm

No idea how Yarrow made this list. I disagree with Bill on Eagle Eye. Great track with solid holes (9,13,17,18). It belongs in the 5-10 range. The top three shouldn’t be questioned 1) Arcadia 2) Forest Dunes 3) Bay Harbor with Tullmore and Harbor Shores right there to round out top 5.


Bill August 23, 2016 at 7:22 pm

Eagle Eye has a 0 fun factor except 17. Idk how that course is even ranked in the top 10. Only in decent condition. Nothing special. Thornapple Point being on the list is a joke. Much better courses around Michigan.


Dan August 23, 2016 at 1:33 pm

I’ve been to Michigan for many years to play golf and I can attest to the quality and value of the courses there. You can’t go wrong with Arcadia Bluffs, even with the high price tag. You won’t forget your round there, and will want to play it again asap. Bay Harbor is another “must play” course and is by the way “open to the public” and NOT PRIVATE as mentioned above. Another wonderful course with no two holes the same and great scenery as well as challenge. I am a bit perplexed that no one mentioned Tullymore golf club which is in Stanwood, Michigan. A very fine golf course with impeccable grooming. The sister course there at the resort, St. Ives, is another great course with premium conditions and a peaceful setting with plenty of challenge as well. Another overlooked course is “Pilgrims Run” which is just about a half an hour drive from the Tullymore Resort .which is further north. Bucks Run which was mentioned above is extremely nice to play with lots of variety as well. All of the Treetops courses are worth playing, and none of the 5 courses are the same. And don’t forget “3 tops” which is the number one rated par 3 golf course in America. (9 holes of phenomenally fun golf and challenge.) Elk Ridge is about 40 minutes from the “Treetops Resort”, and is one of my all time favorites and is a gorgeous out of the way course which should be played by anyone who enjoys serenity and a great challenge. Finally, and not to be missed are 3 courses in the upper peninsula. Greywalls is blast and one of the most unique courses you’ll ever play. Timberstone is not to be missed and is a stunning work of art with lots of wild life. And finally an often overlooked course is Sweetgrass golf club, which is located right at the casino in Harris, Michigan. They offer wonderful golf packages there. Check out all of these courses and more when up north!!


Kelly August 25, 2016 at 2:16 pm

Have to agree with Dan on this one. Most on this list are decent, but they are not the top 10. Eagle Crest??? It’s a college town muni with maybe 2 nice holes. I also 2nd Elk Ridge as one of my favorites. Plus Hemlock, Black Lake, Pilgram’s Run, etc.


Jay August 21, 2016 at 8:39 pm

I am a little disappointed that yarrow was even included on this list. I am pretty sure the course permanently closed at the end of the 2015 golf season so it hasnt even been available to play this year. I would have liked to see what other active course might have snuck into that 10 spot on the list. There are a lot of great hidden gem courses in the state – I am excited to see how the new reversible “The Loop” course at forest dunes plays. Interesting concept that you really dont have a chance to play in many places.


derek August 21, 2016 at 3:57 pm

Interesting rankings but not very accurate. There is no way Yarrow, Thorneapple Point or Grande should be on here.


John August 20, 2016 at 2:57 pm

Bay Harbor is a public, not private course. There are 3 nines at Bay Harbor, all may be booked through Boyne Highlands website.


Justin August 19, 2016 at 6:27 pm

I was about to write, “how does Bay Harbor not make this list,” until I realized it was a private course. All these years I’ve had that course on my list of places I wanted to play very badly, but now sadly it looks like I’ll have to remove it. On a better note, Michigan sure does look like it has a bunch of great golf courses.


Pete S August 19, 2016 at 3:40 pm

I enjoy these summaries but it would be great if somewhere in the description of each one, you listed the city it was in. Or possibly even better, a map at the end to show where they are all located in that state?


Chris August 19, 2016 at 12:15 pm

Up north Michigan is the best golf value in the country… You can play hundred dollar courses in other states for under 50 bucks all season long.. treetops, boyne, black lake, grand traverse, bucks run, and many more. And the hundred dollar courses that are located there are phenomenal, Arcadia bluffs, Forrest dunes, greywalls. In my opinion the most under rated course in Michigan is little traverse bay.


Kenny B August 19, 2016 at 11:05 am

Not surprising. They need a lot of courses because the population can only play about half the year. Nice looking courses; never played there.


Huh August 19, 2016 at 2:41 pm

Your logic is spot on, not. They have half the season so they need more courses? That makes no sense..


Kenny B August 19, 2016 at 10:38 pm

The same population down south can play whenever they want, all year long. They spread their golf time out over a year. If you assume that the # of golfers for a given population is the same (maybe Florida is an outlier), then they all have to play in half the amount of available time. Thus, more courses are needed. It’s not so hard, really!


Chris August 20, 2016 at 3:13 pm

So Michigan golfers realize that Florida golfers have all year so they try to cram twice as many rounds in? That makes no sense. No one does this, you are dumb. Maybe it’s because the land is cheaper here, or we have more golfers.. if I moved to Florida I would not space my rounds because the season longer, I’d play the normal amount of rounds I do a week at 1 or 2.. everything season is shorter here so we are used to it.we don’t even think like that.


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