The 18-hole course at Chapel Hill guides golfers along lush fairways framed by dense tree lines and confronted by water on 11 holes. Six holes—beginning with No. 1—demand precise course-management skills when navigating shots around the stream that cuts through their fairways, demanding that players lay up, muscle their shots over, or swap their golf ball out for a beach ball. Laid end-to-end, the course measures 6,089 yards from the blue tees, the farthest of four available for play on each hole.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 70 course * Total length of 6,089 yards from the back tees * Course rating of 69.7 from the back tees * Course slope of 125 from the back tees * Four sets of tees per hole
In the 1930s, Prohibition-era bootlegger Max Hassel was blacklisted by a Pennsylvania country club due to his illicit wheeling-and-dealing?so he took matters into his own hands. Hassel commissioned Sir Robert White, a renowned Scottish course designer, to craft a 9-hole course on his Robeson Township estate, where no one could deny him access. Though it's received several upgrades since its original construction, the 2,934-yard, par 36 course still bears the characteristics of links-style golf, with intricately contoured greens, deep bunkers, and blotches of thick rough that punish inaccurate play.
Cleaved through the waving meadows of Lancaster County farmland, Tree Top Golf Course beckons to golfers of all stripes with a 4,651-yard, par 65 layout. The scaled-down links allow players to squeeze in an expedited round after work, before sunset, or during theater intermissions, and nine par 4s and a 427-yard par 5 channel the feel of a full-length layout. The course hosts night golf, during which clubbers tee up glow-in-the-dark balls and putt across greens illuminated only by the moon. To spread the game of golf to those at the critical age when they have to choose between golf and croquet, the course offers free rounds for children 8 and younger.
Course at a Glance:
18-hole, par 65 course
Length of 4,651 yards from the farthest tees
Course rating of 64.2 from the farthest tees
Slope rating of 99 from the farthest tees
Two tee options
Combining the best aspects of amusement parks and triathlons, The Golf Zone runs guests through a gauntlet of activities that promotes warm-hearted laughs and icy nerves of steel. Armed with a bucket of 75 balls ($8), golfers slay distant target posts at the driving range or put numbered clubs through the paces at the nearby short-game area. After practicing putts and postputt fist pumps, golfers can take to the roundabout greens of the miniature golf course ($6 per round for adults; $5 for children), where sharp turns and perilous slopes spell doom for all but the craftiest balls. Three paintball fields host large brigades or lone soldiers as they blast enemies with colorful projectiles during two-hour firefights ($25 including gear), providing shelter in the form of wooden forts and a replica of the Maginot Line. Challenge land-speed records at the nearby Speed Zone, where the Python go-kart track tests drivers with harrowing twists and sneaky speed bumps that take indiscriminate bites out of single and tandem karts ($7 per race).
Instead of beating players over the head with extreme length, Ingleside Golf Club forces them to rely on accuracy and cunning course management if they want to perform well. Throughout the layout, water comes into play on seven holes, tall grass sways just beyond the second cut of rough, and deep, greenside bunkers are scrawled with "S.O.S." by fallen golf balls. Club selection proves especially important. The par fours and fives may bait players into pulling out their drivers, but a couple successes with the often wiser fairway metal or long iron?or a few errant drives?may show that the extra yards simply aren't worth the risks. Ingleside Golf Club also has a driving range, fully stocked Pro Shop, putting green and short game practice area.