Mauna Kea Golf Course

4.5 stars out of 5
(based on 10 reviews)
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62-100 Mauna Kea Beach Dr
Kamuela, Hawaii 96743
Hawaii County

With Mauna Kea Golf Course, Robert Trent Jones Sr. transformed what was seemingly a barren lava field into what is now one of Hawaii's most popular courses. The challenging layout has holes that play right along the sea as well as over 300 feet above.

Mauna Kea Golf Course - ResortA view of a green with water in background at Mauna Kea Golf CourseA view from a tee at Mauna Kea Golf CourseView of the par-3 3rd hole at Mauna Kea Golf CourseThe signature par-3 third at Mauna Kea Golf Course on the Big Island can play as long as 270 yards.The par-4 second hole at Mauna Kea Golf Course plays downhill.The 438-yard, par-4 fourth at Mauna Kea Golf Course is the No. 1 handicap hole.The sixth at Mauna Kea Golf Course is a short par 4 that's driveable for big hitters.The beautiful, downhill, par-4 ninth at Mauna Kea Golf Course turns at the clubhouse.The par-5 10th at Mauna Kea Golf Course has one of the most difficult greens on the course.The 11th, along with the third, gives Mauna Kea two of the prettiest par 3s in the world.Avoiding the fairway bunkers on Mauna Kea Golf Course's 13th is critical.The dogleg-left 14th at Mauna Kea Golf Course encourages a right-to-left tee shot.The ocean is distracting on the 211-yard 15th at Mauna Kea Golf Course.The 484-yard 16th at Mauna Kea requires a well-struck and well-placed tee shot.The par-5 17th at Mauna Kea Golf Course plays 620 yards from the tips.The finishing hole at Mauna Kea Golf Course affords a great view of the clubhouse and the Pacific Ocean.Cliffs and waves stimulate the senses on the third hole at Mauna Kea Golf Course.No. 1 introduces the first of many elevated greens at Mauna Kea Golf Course in Kohala Coast, Hawaii.It's all ocean carry from the 272-yard tips of the third hole at Mauna Kea Golf Course on the Big Island of Hawaii.The demanding fourth hole at Mauna Kea Golf Course climbs uphill. The sixth hole at Mauna Kea Golf Course tumbles downhill off the tee to set up an uphill approach. Only the brave step back to the 250-yard tips on the scenic 11th hole at Mauna Kea Golf Course in Kohala Coast, Hawaii.The 16th hole at Mauna Kea Golf Course doglegs right to reveal the ocean. At 620 yards, the 17th hole is the longest par 5 at Mauna Kea Golf Course on the Big Island of Hawaii.

With Mauna Kea Golf Course, Robert Trent Jones Sr. transformed what was seemingly a barren lava field into what is now one of Hawaii's most popular courses. The challenging layout has holes that play right along the sea as well as over 300 feet above. The course tumbles across seaside cliffs, offering views of the beautiful Kohala Coast. The elevated, undulating greens and prevailing coastal winds demand accuracy. On blustery days 200 yards could feel like 1,000 yards. There are also more than 100 bunkers strategically placed throughout. Mauna Kea Golf Course's signature third hole is the course's most well known by far. This legendary par 3 requires a dramatic carry across a rocky shoreline, sprinkled with nooks and crannies that are filled with hundreds of lost golf balls. To prepare for this demanding course, golfers can warm-up on the driving range and putting green.

4.5 stars out of 5
(based on 10 reviews)
See all reviews | Submit your rating

Golf course details

  • Holes: 18
  • Designed by: Rees Jones, Robert Trent Jones, Sr., Steve Weisser
  • Public/Private: Resort
  • Year opened: 1964
  • Golf Season: Year round
  • Guest Policy: Open
  • Tee times welcomed: Yes
  • Fairways: Tifway 419 Hybrid Bermudagrass
  • Greens: Ultra-Dwarf Tifeagle Bermudagrass


  • Pro in house: Yes
  • Driving range: Yes
  • Rental clubs: Yes
  • Rental carts: Yes - included in green fees

Green fees price ranges

Course policies

  • Metal spikes allowed: No
  • Dress code: Proper golf attire must be worn at all times
  • Credit cards accepted: VISA, MasterCard, Amex Welcomed

Length, slope and rating for each tee

Tee Par Yardage Slope Rating
Championship 72 7370 144 76.6
Forward 72 5096 122 66
Tournament 72 6806 140 73.6
Composite 72 5798 133 69.2
Resort 72 6358 138 71.4
Composite (W) 72 5798 132 75.7
Forward (W) 72 5096 124 71.3

Reader Ratings / Reviews

  • 4.5 stars out of 5
    by Ed, Scottsdale
    on February 28th, 2011 12:05
    Beautifully scenic with wonderful views of the ocean and a challenge for all. The elevated undulating greens are surrounded by very deep bunkers that make it very difficult to hit over. The front nine will intice you but be advised the back nine becomes very hilly and more difficult. Beware if the wind kicks up as it ususally does in the afternoon. Without a doubt, a great golf course layout.
  • 5 stars out of 5
    by bob
    on February 21st, 2011 06:53
  • 5 stars out of 5
    by ScottN
    on January 07th, 2011 10:02
    This is Hawaii resort golf at it's finest. Staff and facilities are impeccable. Course goes from the ocean and then up into the hills with lava and Kohala scenery. Bring the camera. The course is in great condition. As typical for resort golf, the rough is bermuda and after that it can be lava, scrub and other unpleasantness. The grass plants that line many holes will just swallow up the balls. If you are a recreational golfer, I reccomend the resort tees to maximize the enjoyment of the place. The Par 3 3rd is the signature hole over the ocean and lava. While the course is not cheap (be prepared to pay $175-$240 depending on tee time) everything is included (unlimited range balls, tees, water, drinks and snacks at two "comfort stations" on course and yardage book). If you want the true "Big Island" resort golf experience, this is the place.
  • 4.5 stars out of 5
    by Lionell
    on November 12th, 2010 20:45
    This is an absolutely beautiful course. I enjoyed the total experience. I received superb customer service. Course was windy when I played. Make sure you hit your shots true. Greens were fast and smooth. I would highly recommend this course. The par 3 3rd is breathtaking.
  • 5 stars out of 5
    by Golf player
    on August 22nd, 2010 09:31
    This is an astonishingly beautiful golf course. Do not play during high wind unless you have balls.
  • 4 stars out of 5
    by Jim Olson
    on February 28th, 2010 13:51
    A very nice course in excellent
    condition. Wide fairways and
    beautiful vistas add to the
    enjoyment of playing it. The only negative in my
    mind was the large number of
    elevated greens which made seeing the bottom of the pin impossible without taking the tome to drive up
    to the green.
  • 4 stars out of 5
    by derek Roach
    on February 26th, 2010 17:33
    I played it near the end of february and when I arrived the service was a a very exceptional level. The range is a small grass range but in fairly good condition and had a small chipping and putting area. The course itself was very hilly and their was plenty of elevation making it plenty difficult. The greens were quick and very challenging because they are most defiinately not flat.

  • 4.5 stars out of 5
    by Thompson
    on December 30th, 2009 11:40
    One of my favorite courses. The course is famous for its stunning Par 3 over the ocean (the third hole if I remember correctly) but features dramatic views (ocean and lava) throughout the course. The hotel is elegant, restful, and the beach here is one of the best in the world (in fact the site was chosen just because of the incredible beach). Service is uniformly excellent. Just a great golf experience.
  • 4.5 stars out of 5
    by Jay
    on December 22nd, 2009 00:51
    I played Mauna Kea Thanksgiving week, and it was definitely one of the better golfing experiences of my life. Booked the tee time on which gives you a nice value - $150 is a pretty good value for this course. The views are amazing on most of the holes. The course is kept in great shape. You'll want to break out the camera for the par 3 oceanfront 3rd hole and the LONG par 3 11th. I only take the 0.5 stars off for the fact that its not really a walkable course like some of the other great courses I would rate a 5 that I've played on the mainland (Pinehurst, Bethpage, Pebble Beach, TPC Sawgrass).

    You know a course is great when you don't even discuss the playability of the course until the 2nd paragraph. It's a very difficult course from the back tees, but also very fair. RTJ wants you to play the course a certain way, and having played other RTJ tracks in the past, you should listen! You'll probably use every club in the bag at least once... Drivers, 3 woods, hybrids, irons off the tee... you don't even really need a yardage book because for the most part you have a feel for how to play the hole from standing on the tee - another sign of a great architect IMO.

    Anyway, if you want to play golf on the Big Island, your experience won't be complete without playing this course. Having played most of the others, this is my favorite, and I'll be back!
  • 4.5 stars out of 5
    by James Rarick
    on November 17th, 2009 08:51
    This is a course that can be extremely hard or moderate depending on the tees you play from. The setting is beautiful with many holes playing within view, if not over or towards, the ocean. This course has a lot of elevation however it gives both uphill and downhill tee shots for balance. There are 99 sandbunkers with the new design.

    The holes also turn a bit and you have to seriously plan your shots around the course which I love. Don't expect to just pull driver and wack the ball out there.

    This is definitely a course I'll play everytime I'm in Kona. VJ was playing the same day I played so that should say a bit about the design.
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