South Carolina Road Trip

Updated: October 3, 2023

By Steve Turcotte, Inside Golf Editor

There are certain places and courses in the country that appear on a golfer’s bucket list. Hawaii, of course. Florida, for sure. Pebble Beach, certainly. Bandon Dunes, sign me up.

But don’t forget about Myrtle Beach, the place they call the Grand Strand and the place where golfer’s from around the country find their way when they get the chance. Myrtle Beach is basically the golf capital of the country. With over 75 courses within and hour and a half drive, some on the ocean and some overlooking the Atlantic Intercostal waterway, Myrtle Beach is loaded with golf. Great golf. Golf that is ranked among the best in the country.

The professional tours have all made their way to this area through the years. The LPGA has played tournaments at Wachesaw East. The PGA Tour Champions had their season championship at the Dunes Golf Club for years and next May, the PGA Tour makes its appearance in Myrtle Beach with a tournament at the Dunes Golf Club. And for a little more professional flavor, Dustin Johnson went to school and played golf at Coastal Carolina and has a golf school named after him at the TPC Myrtle Beach.

This is an area that is basically a golf-a-palooza. There are courses to suit everyone’s games. There are facilities that have multiple courses. This is golf at its best.

There its plenty of history in the area with Pine Lakes, the Granddaddy of all the courses in the area serving up plenty of history. There are places like True Blue at the south end of Myrtle Beach which features a links courses that must be played to be believed and an 18th hole that just might be one of the best in the area with water left, waste area right and the clubhouse perched in the background.

Founders Club

The one thing about several of the courses in Myrtle Beach is some fall under one umbrella. The Founders Club is just one of those umbrellas. This is a company that runs 21 golf courses in the Myrtle Beach area from places like TPC Myrtle Beach to Grande Dunes to its namesake course the Founder’s Club.

But one of the most interesting courses under the Founders Club umbrella is the World Tour Golf Links. This is a course with 18 holes modeled after some of the most famous holes in golf, like Augusta National’s Amen Corner and St. Andrews Old Course’s first and 18th holes. And the 18th hole comes complete with the Swilcan Bridge and the Valley of Sin in front of the green.

Another interesting tidbit about a Founder’s Club course is Myrtle Beach National’s King Course, designed by Arnold Palmer himself. There is a par-5 called the gambler with an island fairway that shortens the hole if you hit it. On this day, three of us splashed our tee shots. Gamblers we were. Winners we were not.

Even as you drive away from the area there is more golf. In Charleston, about a two-hour drive south, there is plenty more to like including Stono Ferry. This is a course that is terrific and has history, being built on the site of an old civil war battleground, in fact there is a sign that says Hugh Jackson, the brother of President Andrew Jackson died on this site. And with holes along the Atlantic Intercoastal waterway there are some great shots and sights.

Where ever you go, you will find golf in the South Carolina area. Not just good golf, but great golf.