A Tour of the Olympic Peninsula courses

Updated: May 1, 2023

If you are heading toward the Olympic Peninsula for a golf trip, there are several terrific courses to choose from. Here are a few to consider when looking for a place to tee it up in this area:

Peninsula Golf Club

We have used the term hidden gem in the past to describe a course that is seldom written or talked about. We found a course that truly qualifies as a hidden gem: Peninsula Golf Club. Sitting between the Olympic Mountains and the Strait of Juan de Fuca, just outside of downtown Port Angeles, this private course has opened its doors for public play. When it was private, not much was written about the club.

Now with the public welcome, it is time to shine the spotlight on this jewel of a course. It first opened in 1926 with nine holes, then added a second nine in 1978. There is a scorecard on the wall in the clubhouse where the legendary Byron Nelson shot a 66 in 1938. How’s that for history?

The course is not long by today’s standard, playing to 6,332 yards with a par of 72. However, shooting a low number is not as easy as it may seem. Golfers have to be able to navigate some tall trees that can encroach on fairways, be able to play on sloping fairways, sometimes leaning toward OB, and hit precise approach shots to smallish greens. And, of course, there are a couple dozen bunkers to dodge. The wind blowing in off the strait can be a factor too. This is old-school golf at its best.

The course has a covered driving range and a full-service restaurant and bar open to all. It is best to play Peninsula Golf Club on a sunny day so you can soak in the spectacular views; on one side is the towering Olympic Mountains and on the other, a view of the Strait of Juan de Fuca with Vancouver Island sitting about 20 miles away.

The Cedars at Dungeness

The Olympic Mountains deflect the rain clouds around the city of Sequim, making the Cedars at Dungeness one of the driest courses in Western Washington – an average of 13-15 inches of rain per year.  With an 18-hole layout measuring over 6,400 yards, Dungeness is protected by sprawling bunkers and narrow approaches to elevated greens. 

The signature hole is the par-5 3rd with a series of bunkers in the shape of a Dungeness crab. Even the sand in this hazard is red. 

The Jamestown S’Klallam tribe bought the course in 2007 and has invested heavily in the clubhouse and landscaping. It is a great escape for Seattle/Tacoma area golfers who want some quality dry golf.

Discovery Bay Golf Course

Discovery Bay Golf Club sits on a secluded 200-acre point above Discovery Bay, just outside the historic Victorian Seaport town of Port Townsend, Washington.

The two nines are vastly different; the original nine is contained in the lowlands while the back nine is built on the top and along the side of a hillside that provides some challenging drives and approach shots.  Both nines have unique challenges.

The course is managed by Randy White who has orchestrated a continuous year-round plan of upgrading the course that includes new tee boxes, numerous drainage projects and brush clearing. 

The course has some of the fasted greens you will find west of the mountains thanks to a new greens roller – and with the undulating greens it will challenge your putting skills. The old-style clubhouse has a large deck that overlooks the front nine and is a great place to relax with food and drink after a round. There is also a practice driving range at the course. If you are visiting the Port Townsend area, you need to play this course.

Salish Cliffs

When Salish Cliffs opened for public play in 2011, it was obvious that this amenity of the Little Creek Casino and Squaxin Island tribe was something special, The Gene Bates-designed course won several awards in its first year, including being named one of the top new courses for 2011.

At 7,269 yards the course offers everything – from ponds to sand traps to wetlands to the elevation changes, Salish Cliffs is a place that is a golfing treat with some stunning Pacific NW views and some challenging holes along the way.

And don’t forget about the casino, hotel and convention center, which sit right next door to the golf course.

Port Ludlow Golf Course

Golf Magazine named Port Ludlow as one of the top five public courses in Washington. The two 9-hole courses are named Tide and Timber. Both nines have elevation changes with tall trees on the fairway edges. The course is well bunkered especially around the greens.    A tree trimming project on the back nine has opened up some shots as overhanging trees were trimmed, especially the tee shot on the par-4 13th hole.

A short ferry ride from Edmonds and a 20-mile drive from the Kingston ferry dock, Port Ludlow offers the perfect get-away for anyone looking to take a break from the city.  With a quaint inn, restaurant, spa and full service marina, the resort offers a variety of experiences. 

Port Townsend Golf Course

The 9-hole course is located in the historical seaport city of Port Townsend and features 2,731 yards of golf from the longest tees for a par of 35. The course will challenge you while providing a relaxing, picturesque backdrop.

The course starts out with a right sloping dogleg par 5 playing 490 yards down hill to a smallish green. The second hole can be a bit scary, as this par 3 requires a tee shot over water to a difficult sloping green.    

Port Townsend Golf Course has a driving range and a new restaurant with a popular outside deck overlooking the course. If you are visiting Port Townsend, this is a place to get in a quick nine holes in without driving a long way.

Lake Cushman Golf Course

Lake Cushman Golf Course sits on the edge of the Olympic National Park, high above the Hood Canal community of Hoodsport. 

The course and surroundings are truly a walk in the park – or a ride if you choose – where wildlife sighting is common.       This well-maintained nine-hole course has separate tees to make a par 72. It is popular among locals as well as with campers and vacationers. The natural forested setting produces a calming atmosphere for relaxing rounds of golf. The course is challenging yet playable for all levels of golfers. There is also a driving range and practice putting green at the course. Hot dogs and snacks are available at the pro shop.

SunLand Golf Club

Established as a private club, located in a mostly retirement community, in Sequim. The course winds through huge fir, cedar and spruce trees, and is well protected with bunkers and ponds. There are a couple of elevation changes that add a good mixture to the round. SunLand plays to just over 6,000 yards with a par of 72. While not long, it plays tight

Formerly private, it is now open to the public during limited times. The course hosted a sectional qualifying for the 2019 US Senior Amateur Championship.

LakeLand Village

LakeLand Village, located between Hood Canal and Puget Sound’s Case Inlet, in the town of Allyn, Washington, is the only residential community that offers 27 holes of golf – three distinctly different nines – Generation I, Generation II, and Generation III. With numerous ponds, gaping bunkers and majestic views of the Olympics and Mount Rainier, golfers will appreciate the scenic and challenging courses and the well-groomed putting greens.

There is also a spring-fed lake, stocked annually with rainbow trout, where residents can enjoy fishing year round.  In addition to a restaurant and sports bar, the clubhouse also provides banquet facilities.

SkyRidge Golf Course

SkyRidge Golf Course is a family owned and operated golf course off Old Olympic Highway in Sequim, WA. Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned athlete, you are able to enjoy all the amenities this public course has to offers, every day of the year. SkyRidge Golf Course has a driving range, putting & chipping greens, pro shop, power or push carts to rent, access to a PGA-certified pro for lessons, and their restaurant and bar, called Soren’s Café.

This link-style course has walkable, wide open fairways where you can walk or drive to your ball year-round. Though flat terrain, it has challenging holes, surreptitiously placed moguls, as well as water hazards, and sand traps that will keep you focused during your round. There’s a total of ten greens here, where the 9th hole plays to a different green when playing the 18th hole, giving SkyRidge the look and feel of an eighteen-hole course. The front nine totals a yardage maximum of 3,296, but if you want to play all eighteen, you’ll play from a separate set of tee boxes on the back nine totaling 6,529 yards. Their namesake comes from having a stunning view of the Olympic Mountain Range from every hole.

Ocean Shores Golf Course

Ocean Shores Golf Course is a challenging, yet fun-to-play course. Par for the course is 71 with a modest 6,252 yardage. The heavy ocean air, and moderate trade winds can affect ball flight and make it play much longer. The course offers a links style course and the shot-making challenges of a narrow, wooded course.

Lake Limerick Golf Club

Lake Limerick Golf Course was selected as the People’s Choice Best Golf Course in Mason County. The nine-hole course is open to the public and meanders through tree lined setback homes. Limerick is a beautiful, challenging course with two legitimate par 5’s, with one of those being the lake view #8 signature hole, two tough par 3s and challenging par 4s. The golf course offers multiple tee boxes providing different perspectives on the front and back nine. Their award-winning cafe is open Wednesdays through Sundays for breakfast and lunch.

Call 360-426-6290 for tee times or book online at www.lakelimerickgolf.com. Lake Limerick offers a Great Hall to rent for private events. Contact 360-426-3581 to reserve your next event.  

Highland Golf Course

Highland Golf Course originally opened as a nine-hole venue in 1930. It is now an 18-hole course that plays to 6,112 yards with a par of 70. There are not many flat lies, which makes it even more challenging and the greens are small adding to the difficulty.

Alderbrook Golf Club

Alderbrook Golf Club is a member-owned course in a golf-centric community and is open to public play. It is a classic Northwest forested setting high above Hood Canal in Union, Washington. The most talked about hole is the 8th (Often called the ‘S’ hole), a double dog leg par 5 that stretches to 536 yards and was once picked by Golf Digest as one of the Northwest’s toughest holes.

A modern clubhouse with a restaurant, banquet room and pro shop opened in 2009 providing the final piece to the up-scale facility.