Hips start swiveling with grace at White Sands Golf Course & Practice Centre, where golfers hone their form at a nine-hole executive course, extensive practice facilities, and academy classes. On the 1,477-yard course designed by Graham Cooke, golfers can choose from three tee options and finish rounds in less than two hours. To gear up for the water hazards and serpentine sand bunkers that stud the fairways, players can sharpen their technique at the extensive White Sands practice facility. Here, 30 fibre mats and 42 grass tees await along the driving range, and players can work on their victory half smiles after chipping out of the practice sand trap onto a green.
White Sands Golf Course & Practice Centre is also the site of the Graham Gunn Golf Advantage School, whose head is a member of the European Senior Tour and spent a decade as head professional at the Carleton Golf & Yacht Club. Gunn teaches clinics and offers private coaching for students who don’t want to be overheard asking how long you have to sit on a golf ball before it hatches.
Carved through the tree-lined wetlands near the Mont-Tremblant Ski Resort, Golf Manitou's par-58 course showcases the artistry of architect Darrell Huxham. By design, each hole is a grassy homage to a different legendary golf course—the sand encircling the tenth green, for instance, recalls the Desert Highlands Golf Club in Scottsdale, Arizona, and the towering pine trees around the third hole mimic North Carolina's legendary Pinehurst. Unlike the thick shag carpet covering other courses' greens, slick bent grass makes for fast putts at almost every hole—including the fourth green's two-tiered tribute to Ballybunion Golf Club in Ireland. Before rounds, golfers can warm up at the driving range, which sports both grass and synthetic hitting bays, or practice putting and chipping on a massive 18-hole, 30,000-square-foot practice green.
A year-round hotspot at the Jay Peak Resort, Jay Peak Pump House Indoor Waterpark beckons families to slip into its colorful slides and lounge in its 100-plus-degree hot tubs. La Chute, a quick-descending slide 65’ above the water, launches visitors through a 360-degree turn before depositing them in the pool below only six seconds later. In the Mill Pond kids’ play area, children man water cannons, adjusting their trajectory to blast unsuspecting friends or hydrate parched marathon runners.
An arcade replete with 3-D games and immersive ride simulators provides a break from underwater exploits, and the snack shack quells cravings for pizza, burgers, and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. Adults can lounge at the poolside bar, where bartenders serve up frozen cocktails, draft beers, and firsthand advice on shark wrangling.
After a three-year renovation by renowned course architects Graham Cooke and Stan Brigham, Gatineau Club de Golf unveiled a sleek new course layout in 2010. The site boasts championship-calibre credentials, including a total distance of more than 7,000 yards from the back tees and large bent-grass greens that punish poorly struck approaches with treacherous putts. Generous fairways reward precise bifurcation with excellent lies, but players guilty of errant drives will be pleasantly surprised to find plenty of room to make a bold go at the green. Water makes its omnipresence known as early as the 395-yard second hole, where players must tee off over a pond, negotiate with a creek that crosses the fairway 100 yards in front of the green, and avoid the water that buttresses the green to the left and rear. The 18th hole makes a 90-degree dogleg right around a massive reservoir and a pond stretching alongside the entire right length of the fairway, demanding the same precision as the moat around a driveway.
Dunnderosa Golf Club’s par 3 course lets golfers swing and putt their way through tree-dotted hills that look out on the scenery of nearby Gatineau Park. With greens that are reachable in one shot on every hole, the course invites players who are still seeking out their first hole-in-one or trying to arouse jealousy in their driver by spending more time with their short irons. Dunnderosa Golf Club also features Dunn-D’s mini-golf course, which wreathes around a central waterfall for 18 holes of tricky putts and scenic landscaping. Lined by brick rails and peppered with rocky obstacles, each hole presents geometric challenges, forcing players to carom balls around 180-degree turns and steer them through craggy outcrops before sweeping them into holes positioned on devious slopes. The mini-golf course’s front nine is designed to be accessible for players with reduced mobility, offering a competitive venue for clubbers of all ages and those intent upon playing with their shoes tied together.
Stretching across the tree-lined shores of the Ottawa River, Les Vieux-Moulins' 18-hole course spans 6,511 yards of immaculate fairways and greens. Stone faces hem a circuit of ponds that come into play on seven holes throughout the course, forming a rigid barrier between dry and peacefully drowned balls. The strategically incorporated water hazards create memorable shots on multiple holes, including the par 4 13th, where dimpled orbs seemingly pause in midair to gaze at their reflections in the large pond below, which players must carry if they hope to reach the green in regulation. A moderately difficult course when played from the farthest tees, the course caters to players of all abilities with three tee options.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Length of 6,511 yards from the farthest tees * Course rating of 70.5 from the farthest tees * Slope rating of 116 from the farthest tees * Three tee options