Braid Hills - Lothians - Scotland

Braid Hills Golf Course,
27 Braid Hills Approach Road,
EH10 6JY,

  • +44 (0) 131 447 6666

  • David Atkinson

  • Bob Ferguson and Peter McEwan

  • None

Visit for a golf holiday at Braid Hills

Braid Hills has two municipal golf courses (Braid Hills and Wee Braids) and its flagship Braid Hills layout is one of the most vertically challenging golfing tests in Edinburgh. Weighing in at less than 6,000 yards, Braid Hills is not about length, it's about testing golf shots from one hilly crag to the next.

This heathland cum moorland track was founded in 1893 and it was laid out by three times Open Champion Bob Ferguson and Peter McEwan, a 19th century Musselburgh club maker. The course will be busy, especially at weekends and public holidays, but the green fee will cost you around fifteen quid, making Braid Hills one of the most affordable courses to be featured on the Top 100 website. The walk is certainly hard on the legs but the views of the Pentland Hills and the panorama across the top of Edinburgh's skyline to the Firth of Forth beyond make it all well worth the effort.

Despite its name, this course was not designed by James Braid. Rather, it is laid out over Braid Hill. A proliferation of gorse and sloping lies make scoring very difficult, despite the fact that there are few bunkers and the rough is relatively light. Braid Hills is not about brawn, it's about careful course management. If you can keep on the straight and narrow and keep out of the gorse, you're in business.

Braid Hills has some entertaining par threes, most notably the 2nd and 13th, but undoubtedly, the highlight of the round comes at the 14th. It's an inviting tee shot from a glorious elevated position.

Braid Hills is basic in terms of facilities, which is a surprise given that it's so close to the city centre and attracts thousands of green fees each year, but there's a delightful feeling of space and isolation here making it an enjoyable city venue.

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Reviews for Braid Hills

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Description: Braid Hills is set high above Edinburgh - the views across the city are simply stunning. The golf course is a short but hilly public layout that will test the best. Rating: 4 out of 6 Reviews: 4

I used to play here as a boy so returning after 40+ years was a fairly nostalgic experience. Of course, way back then, panoramic views held little interest. Now they form the core of the Braid Hills experience. As at Strathpeffer oohs are quickly followed by aahs as one surveys the vista below. The course itself is ok, indeed for a municipal and at the wonderfully low price it is a bit more than ok. There are some very challenging driving holes early on - balls will be lost! The best hole by some way is the 14th - a simply brilliant hole with an elevated tee and a split fairway. 17 is a long par 3 and 18 is, frankly, silly but there is compensation in the best view of all with the majestic city of Edinburgh spread out below. So I came away from my walk down Memory Lane (or should that be up and down Memory Hills) several golf balls lighter but enriched by some wonderful photographs for my ever-expanding trove of golf screensavers!
3 / 6
Braid Hills
January 03, 2012

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Gordon Brown
December 05, 2012
James Braid played here and was a member of the Edinburgh Thistle G.C.which is still based here,there are three other Golf clubs with their own premises close to starters ,these are ,Edinburgh Western g.c. and Harrison G.S.If you contact these clubs, parties of golfers can be catered for.Tommy Armour also learnt to golf here and was a playing member of clubs here.Muirfield,ie,the Honourable company of Edinburgh Golfers .nearly moved here prior to aquiring Muirfield site. When built,{to accommodate ,displaced golfers from Bruntsfield Links/meadows (after public petition )}it was first, true ,purpose built Inland public/municipal Golf course.
James Braid did indeed have a close association with Braid Hills Golf Club - he was president of Edinburgh Thistle Golf Club (based at Braid Hills) for many years, as were his brother and son afterwards. Braid Hills no. 1 has been described as the most stunning public course in Britain, and few would disagree after playing this tough course on a benign day. It's just fantastic - and a real challenge for anyone. Beware of it on a windy day however....bring plenty of golf balls unless you like wading in gorse chest high. There are some truly spectacular holes such as the 14th and the 17th.
6 / 6
Braid Hills
April 20, 2009

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November 30, 2011
6 balls for Braid Hills is laughable. It’s an OK course (4 balls at most) but it’s usually in poor condition, is too hilly, is too busy (expect long rounds at peak times) and has no facilities to speak of. Whoever posted the 6 ball review must work for Edinburgh City council.
March 27, 2016
Hugh is clearly an idiot and no, I don't work for the council. It's a very good municipal course. There are four affiliated golf clubs which all have facilities. It is busier on a Saturday morning as the clubs have preferential tee times but the rest of the week is a wiser choice. The Braid Hills hotel is a five minute walk away for lunch/beers.
April 03, 2016
Tiger, who am I to question your golf course knowledge. I may be a fool but I know a world class golf course when I see one and Braid Hills is NOT world class. A decent course yes... my point is that 6-ball ratings should be reserved for the world's best not for the Lothian's second best.
Braid Hills No.1 is one of the oldest and still one of the best municipal golf facilities in Scotland.Braid Hills - Photo by Jim McCann You don’t exactly have to have your climbing boots on to play here (though there are some severe changes in elevation amongst the hill top setting overlooking “Auld Reekie”) but the hikes around the course are exhilarating and the views over the capital are simply stunning. Several holes are out of the golfing top drawer and two sets of three holes, in particular – holes 7 to 9 and 14 to 16 – are very good indeed. In fact, the 14th is one of the most memorable holes you will come across on any course (with an elevated tee shot over gorse and a blind approach shot to play) so it’s no surprise that it has a stroke index of 2, making it the toughest on the back nine. If I am being picky, some of the early hole tee positions adjacent to the preceding green are more than a bit iffy (and they cause play to back up because they are so close to putting surfaces) but balance that against the fantastic condition of all of the greens on the course and you would be a real curmudgeon to not enjoy Braid Hills No.1 course. Overall, the Leisure Department of Edinburgh City Council do a fine job promoting the game at the Braid Hills golf complex. Jim McCann.
4 / 6
Braid Hills
August 07, 2007

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August 10, 2007
I have to agree with Jim. We played Braid Hills in April and it has been the most amazing experience concerning the Fun Factor we had all 12 days. To My mind for the price of 10-20 Pounds a must play in the area. Something very special you wont see again soon. Enjoy it!
April 21, 2009
I have been lucky enough to play Braid Hills No1 many times - often in the summer "gloaming", with only a very few stragglers around and with all of "Auld Reekie" seemingly resting at my feet. Must be one of the most serene and "spiritual" experiences in Scottish golf!
Anthony Drews
December 28, 2009
A great course totally abandoned and mis managed by Edinburgh Leisure This course should be better maintained and the total lack of after golf facilities is shocking.
Braids Hills No.1 is not long but it’s hilly, perhaps too hilly in parts with viscious changes in elevation. Leave your driver in the car, it’s tight and narrow in places. Clearly this course is a throwback to a bygone age and it’s certainly an adventure but it’s a tough walking course. Great value though
3 / 6
Braid Hills
March 14, 2006

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Jamie McSporran
April 14, 2011
Braid Hills is a fantastic public course and you have to think that if it were privately run it would be one of the best in Scotland. The gorse means you have to be accurate off the tee but don't leave your driver in the car as this reviewer suggests (even if it was in jest) as there are several holes that can reward good drives with birdies or simple pars,particularly if the prevailing wind picks up.
Adrian Twiss
November 23, 2014
I remember playing many rounds on this course as a child and the course always won. Mind you I was not much of a golfer in those days (still not much of a golfer off 14 if I'm honest). When I play golf in Scotland I always make a point of trying to play the Braid Hills just to get my revenge on it. Guess what, I haven't managed it yet. This course is special to be as it evokes many happy childhood memories especially the sound of the skylarks. In my young day the 5th was a challenging par 4 with thick clover all the way down the right hand side of the fairway. I wonder why they upgraded it to a par 5.