Florida Golf: Snowbird Retreat
I must admit I am now a “snowbird”.
To define, a snowbird is anyone who leaves the ice, snow, and cold of the north to spend some time during the winter in Florida (or, I suspect southern Arizona, California, or Nevada).
In most areas in Florida golf courses are plentiful. Some are in very good condition and others may not be in the be in the best of shape, but, when you just want to get out and practice or swing the clubs, they can be fun to play.
Many are unacceptably expensive for the average golfer with family responsibilities, or for seniors who have dwindling incomes, but there are courses where reasonable prices can be found if you are willing to do a little research and play in the afternoon, especially during the week.
A schedule that could work for many snowbirds, or any golfer visiting Florida in the winter or spring, is some sightseeing or fishing in the morning and then play golf in the afternoon.
I will not provide a research project on Florida golf, as there already are considerable advertisements and other available information on golfing in Florida.
I will mention a few golf courses that are somewhat reasonable in price and may be a good challenge and fun to play, and a few activities along the east coast of Florida (north to south) that may be interesting to all family members.
Jacksonville / St. Augustine area
If you can spend any length of time in the St. Augustine area you should visit the World Golf Hall of Fame, located just west of I-95 exit 323.
I was impressed! In addition to the history, information, and memorabilia presented at the Hall of Fame, the admission includes your try at one hole at St. Andrews via a golf simulator, admission to a movie at the onsite Imax Theater, and one round of play at an 18 green putting course.
18-hole Putting Course at the World Golf Hall of Fame
If you need to test your ego, for $5 you can take a couple of shots to a real island green that imitates a par 3 at the TPC Sawgrass.
There is one golf course onsite adjacent to the Hall of Fame. The Slammer & Squire golf course is a top of the line course that provides a professional level golf experience. Another snowbird who played the course told me that; “The fairways are like fine carpet". He said that they are nicer than most of the greens that he plays on in his home state.
Slammer & Squire Golf Course
For $20 at the Slammer & Squire Golf Course you can use the practice range for the entire day. There is also an excellent putting green and a chipping and sand trap practice green.
Section of the Practice Range at the Slammer & Squire
A short drive away in another area of the World Golf Village is the King and The Bear. This is also a very beautiful high-end golf course.
Although these two courses are out of my price range, I can appreciate their condition, challenge, and beauty. (NOTE: Summer rates are lower.)
There are a number of golf courses in the immediate area that are also very nice and quite challenging, yet can be played at a reasonable price, especially on weekday afternoons.
These include; South Hampton; Cimmarone; St. Johns Country Club; Royal St. Augustine Golf and Country Club; St. Johns County Municipal Course; Magnolia Point; The Sanctuary Golf Course (in Georgia, north of Jacksonville).
The sun is now setting on this winter's practice in Florida.
Because this entire blog article discusses these and the other courses that I visited along the eastern Florida coast, along with other activities enroute, from the Titusville area in the north to Key West in the far south, I placed the entire article in a pdf that you can download.
If you would like to see this entire picture-filled article we will e-mail it to you. Please CLICK HERE.
Hope you enjoy the article. Hit 'em straight!
Phil Lawrence (e-mail: lessons @ golfinstructioncourses.com)