The Machrie Golf Links

Isle of Islay, United Kingdom

The Machrie Golf Links is located on Islay, the southernmost island of the Inner Hebrides. This is one of the most remote, not to mention romantic, golfing locales in all of Scotland. To reach Islay however, you must fly in from Glasgow.

Though the flight to Islay takes only 35 minutes, a simple day-long round trip is not recommended for those visiting The Machrie Hotel and Golf Links. It might be enough time to play all 18 holes, but you won’t get to see the links at its most enchantingly atmospheric early and late in the day. You also won’t get to tour the island’s world-renowned whisky distilleries or see what else historic Islay has to offer. And honestly, this is all part of The Machrie Golf Links experience.

The main part of the Machrie experience however, is the course. Dating back to 1891, it was designed by Willie Campbell three years before he left for America. With the goal of attracting golfers to Islay, Campbell made the course intentionally long and took the land as he found it.

Machrie was later modified by Donald Steel in the 1970s, which, in his words, made it “more complete, more modern, and more challenging.” Following a recent redesign done by DJ Russell, The Machrie Golf Links is the best it’s ever been, featuring less blind shots and more views of beautiful Laggan Bay.