San Diego Golf: Chart Your Own Course

There are more than 90 golf courses in San Diego County, which provides a wide variety of golfing experiences. Here are three to consider:

Barona Creek Golf Club

Best course for a guys’ getaway
The Barona Creek Golf Club offers everything a guy could want — an outstanding golf course, good food, gaming and lodging. Golfweek Magazine recently rated Barona No. 4 on its 2011 list of the Top 10 California Courses. Built on the Barona Indian Reservation (approximately 30 minutes east of downtown San Diego), the 7,448-yard, par-72 course was designed to incorporate the contours of the land and allow golfers to experience the natural surroundings. Lakes and ponds are fed by natural streams and come into play frequently, as do many of the 100 strategically-placed bunkers. The bent-grass greens set the course apart from most others in Southern California. The Barona Casino is among the nicest in the region, and it includes 11 restaurants that cover a wide range of dining experiences. The property also includes a 400-room hotel, so you can stay just a few steps from all of the action.

Coronado Golf Course

Best course for the money
A Golf Digest writer called Coronado Golf Course “a gem I consider the best value in the United States.” The course is situated in one of the most picturesque parts of San Diego. The front nine at the par-72, 6,590-yard course features views of the downtown San Diego skyline, boats in San Diego Bay and, of course, the Coronado Bridge. The sights on the back nine include the Hotel Del Coronado as well as boats sailing in and out of Glorietta Bay. The value comes from greens fees of $30 for weekdays and $35 on weekends for both locals or out of town visitors. Greens fees are so reasonable because the land is leased from the Port District and Coronado is limited contractually in what it can charge golfers.

Presidio Hills Golf Course

Best course to take kids or beginners
All of the holes at Presidio Hills Golf Course are shorter than 100 yards — the longest is the 94-yard fifth hole — making Presidio the perfect place for a family outing or introducing someone to the game. There is enough length for kids and beginners to take full swings, but its short enough that they’ll get to the green without too much effort. On the green, putting offers a different test of skill and the accomplishment of getting in the hole. Pace of play is such that groups won’t feel rushed, allowing time to snap a couple of pictures or offer some instruction. Even if you take your time, it’s easy to play a round in less than two hours. The course borders Old Town, which is a good place to find lunch or dinner afterwards.

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About Kirk

About: Kirk Kenney

I first gripped a baseball at the age of six. The game has had its grip on me ever since. I enjoy watching and writing about Little League, high school and college as much or more as the major leagues. I would be consumed by golf if it wasn’t for this voice in my head whispering “pay the mortgage, pay the mortgage, pay the mortgage.” I enjoying reading a good book, but I’m more likely to watch a good movie. I was born and raised in San Diego. If not, I’m sure I would have moved here.

What would you do on your ideal San Diego Day?

I’d join three of my buddies at sunrise in the first group off the tee at Torrey Pines, then head up the coast a few miles to enjoy Mexican food for lunch at Las Olas in Cardiff. We’d drop down to Del Mar after that, grab our Boogie boards (waiting an hour after eating, of course, before going in the water) and catch a few waves, then wash off the sand and head downtown to Petco Park to catch a Padres game.

What is your favorite San Diego outdoor activity?

There’s no way to pick just one. It doesn’t get much better here than playing a round of golf — especially a twilight round where the last putt falls just as the sun sets — because you can do it year-round. My wife and I also enjoy kayaking on Mission Bay or riding bikes along Crown Point Shores.

Do you prefer burgers and beer or linguine and red wine?

Burger and a beer. Make that a root beer. Nothing beats Mug Old Fashioned poured over two scoops of vanilla ice cream.

Latest music purchases for my iPod player are...

Crazy Heart: The Weary Kind (movie soundtrack)

Lady Antebellum: Need You Now

Eagles: Long Road Out of Eden

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