Your New Year's resolution was to golf more, right? It might explain the numerous golf tour operators whose bookings, toward the end of 2009, began to look much rosier for this year than last.
So if you haven't started planning your 2010 golf vacations, it's time to quit slackin'. To help, I've compiled my own dream golf travel calendar: One world-class golf destination each month, from coast to coast and beyond the U.S. borders.
Even if you've got a desk job that hinders a golf trip each month, just try and keep up as best you can.
Right about now, you're sick of the snow, the clouds and the early darkness. That's exactly why the United States acquired Hawaii - or so we can assume. Each Island of Aloha presents a unique, though usually perfect, environment, from the volcanic, black sands of the Big Island to Kauai's lush mountains. So it's best to island hop between at least two during your trip.
Scottsdale's spring golf season offers something as close to perfection as you'll find in the game of golf: Dry, temperate weather, lush, green conditions, top-notch service at outstanding resorts with spa and dining amenities. Visit for a long weekend, and chances are, you'll retire here.
The weather is nice, usually with temperatures in the high 60s or low 70s, but the real draw to Las Vegas in March comes away from the golf course. The NCAA's March Madness, which starts this year on March 18, provides a load of sportsbook hoops action to go with the golf, not to mention all the other mainstay attractions of a Las Vegas golf trip.
A lot of northerners head to the South Carolina coast as early as February or March, but the course conditions blend perfectly with the weather in April. The days are longer. Frost delays are an afterthought, and you beat the summer beach crowds, which helps lower accommodation costs.
The biggest crowds to Scotland's links arrive from June through August, so if you want a better chance to score top tee times and accommodations, go in May. The weather is as spotty as ever, but the days are long, and the golf courses are in good shape.
Summertime golf in Canada is special. And Alberta's Canadian Rockies, home to remote, mountain scenery and more roaming wildlife than you can wave an 8-iron at, provides some of the best golf. Don't spend a minute indoors here, unless a grizzly appears at your cabin's window.
Days in scenic northern Michigan are long. The golf is everywhere, and it's never expensive in comparison to other top spots. In July, 36-hole days are the norm - even 54 are possible - so get your golf muscles primed.
Bandon Dunes Resort is the real draw. But if you visit this corner of the country, stay and see all of Oregon during this beautiful time of year. Take in the mountains of the Cascades, the high desert of Bend and the outstanding microbrews in exciting Portland.
It's a tough call, deciding between the Scotland and Ireland links. Come back to the isles in September, the last month of peak summer season, for a taste of Eire. Here, the Guinness is fresh, the dunes are towering, and the hospitality is first class.
The yachts and jet-setters have pulled out of Puerto Banus by October, and the coast transforms again into the Costa De Golf. With a golf course for every taste and budget, plus wonderful sights and delicious wine and tapas, you'll go to bed every night stuffed, drunk, and eager to tee it up in the morning. Or more accurately, in the afternoon.
San Antonio and Austin, separated by just a one-hour drive, can both make a case as the best golf destination in Texas. It makes perfect sense, though, to combine the cities into one trip. Head to family-friendly San Antonio for the Riverwalk, the Alamo and the new TPC San Antonio and JW Marriott Resort. Check out the capital city for its "Keep Austin Weird" downtown sights and sounds. Besides, you're here during football season, so consider skipping a Saturday tee time for a tailgate.
A trip to Thailand, the jewel of Asia's golf scene, consists of daily massages, caddies, dynamite cuisine and plenty of off-course activity that assures a relaxing, yet never dull, vacation. Sure, the plane ticket might get into four figures, but you'll be treated like royalty for a mere pittance. Additionally, December offers some of Thailand's best weather, though you can almost always wear shorts, even at night.
Favorite Thailand golf courses: Banyan Golf Club, Siam Country Club, and Thai Country Club.
Where's Planet Putter headed in 2010? So far, my itinerary includes some places I've yet to hit, like Palm Springs, Pinehurst and Tucson. So stay tuned.
January 15, 2010
Simply select where you want to play, find a tee time deal, and golf now!