Tour Oahu to find grand golf in Hawaii
OAHU, Hawaii -- Oahu is home to 23 18-hole golf courses, a 27-hole Arnold Palmer design, two nine-holers and an executive course, a tally of 477 holes that easily adds up to the largest supply of public golf in the Hawaiian islands.
Quality accompanies quantity, too.
The private Waialae Country Club, host of the PGA Tour's Sony Open, isn't the only one good enough to attract pro tournaments. The LGPA Tour's Hawaiian Ladies Open bounced between three strong courses from 1987-2001, the excellent Palmer Course at Turtle Bay Resort on the North Shore and two fine Ted Robinson designs on the island's leeward side, Ko Olina Golf Club and Kapolei Golf Course.
Ko Olina, a beauty dotted with landscaped water features, has a rich tournament history, starting with the 1992 Ko Olina Senior PGA Invitational won by Chi Chi Rodriguez. It hosted the LPGA's Fields Open from 2006-2008 and returned to the ladies' tour calendar with the 2012 LOTTE Championship (the second edition is set for April 2013). In September of 2012, Kapolei joined Ko Olina and Turtle Bay's Palmer Course as a Champions Tour host by holding the first Pacific Links Championship.
It's just a 40-minute shuttle ride from bustling Waikiki to Palmer's forgiving Hawaii Prince Golf Club and neighboring Ewa Beach Golf Club, a fun track always in great condition. On the windward side of the island, where it tends to be wetter, the Ko'olau Golf Club comes across as one tough hombre, ranking 25th on Golf Digest's list of toughest courses in America in 2012. The jaw-dropping mountain views will make up for any balls lost in jungle ravines.
The Royal Hawaiian Golf Club, a tough Pete and Perry Dye course formerly named Luana Hills, and Turtle Bay's Fazio Course serve up great scenery as well. Michelle Wie learned to play at Olomana Golf Links.