United Arab Emirates

The United Arab Emirates, or UAE for short, is a federation of seven emirates, which were constituted in 1971 when the British withdrew from the oil rich Gulf. The sheikhdoms comprise of Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm al-Qaiwain, Ras al-Khaimah and Fujairah and all are located along the southeastern tip of the Arabian Peninsula.

The capital and largest city of the federation is Abu Dhabi but the vast majority of foreign visitors head in their droves to Dubai where there are a number of the world’s best hotels. Naturally, much of the UAE comprises of desert, which is the perfect foundation for golf courses. Add a bit of water, actually quite a lot of water, and some clever hybrid grass and you’ve got perfect playing surfaces.

According to the Emirates Golf Federation, there are twenty-one golf clubs in the UAE's sheikhdom, and the number is slowly growing. The majority of clubs gravitate to Dubai and Abu Dhabi but there are also clubs in Ras Al Khaimah and Sharjah.

As most people know, the best golf courses were in Dubai, and the cream of the crop for many years was the Majlis course at The Emirates Club, home to the renowned Dubai Desert Classic. But new on the scene are two Dubai courses from Greg Norman at Jumeirah Golf Estates, called Fire and Earth.

However, the new Kyle Phillips and Gary Player creations of Yas Links and Saadiyat Beach have combined with the National course to elevate the capital, Abu Dhabi, to a level that perhaps even exceeds Dubai.

Our Middle East rankings were last updated in February 2017. Click the link to read the story.

Top 100 Golf Courses - United Arab Emirates

Yas Links

1st United Arab Emirates Ranking

Extending to 7,450 yards, Yas Links was over three years in construction and it lies across the highway from the Yas Marina car racing circuit with eight of the holes located right against the coastline.

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Emirates (Majlis)

2nd United Arab Emirates Ranking

The Majlis course at the Emirates Golf Club opened for play in 1988 and it was the first 18-hole grass golf course to open in the Middle East.

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Abu Dhabi (National)

3rd United Arab Emirates Ranking

Saltwater lakes, ornamental trees and palms make the setting oasis-like with lush playing surfaces, bold, strategic bunkering coupled with large greens paint the Abu Dhabi picture.

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Jumeirah (Earth)

4th United Arab Emirates Ranking

The Earth course at Jumeirah Golf Estates was the first course to have been built specifically for a championship and then unveiled as the first tee shot was hit at that championship.

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Dubai Creek

5th United Arab Emirates Ranking

The Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht club grabbed considerable world-wide attention on opening in 1993 when golf in the Middle Eastern desert was in its infancy.

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Saadiyat Beach

6th United Arab Emirates Ranking

Opened in March 2010, the Gary Player-designed course at Saadiyat Beach Golf Club is billed as the Persian Gulf’s first ocean course.

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Els Club - Dubai

7th United Arab Emirates Ranking

The Els Club was the first completed venue within a multi billion dollar development at Dubai’s Sports City that now includes the world’s first purpose-built Manchester United Soccer School facility...

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Al Zorah

8th United Arab Emirates Ranking

Unveiled at the end of 2015, the 18-hole layout at Al Zorah Golf Club was the first golf course to open for play in the United Arab Emirates for more than six years.

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Al Badia Golf Club

9th United Arab Emirates Ranking

Twelve holes contain water hazards in the shape of ponds, streams or waterfalls and architect Robert Trent Jones is rather pleased with this proliferation of aquatic features...

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Montgomerie Dubai

10th United Arab Emirates Ranking

The Montgomerie is an open, expansive championship course with huge green complexes, laid out on a 265-acre site where the eighteen holes occupy almost half of this area...

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