Brora - North Scotland - Scotland

Brora Golf Club,
Golf Road,
KW9 6QS,

  • +44 (0) 1408 621417

Brora Golf Club lies just off the A9, about 20 miles north of Dornoch. It's one of the most delightful short road journeys imaginable. The A9 follows the East Coast of Sutherland and skirts around the westerly edge of Loch Fleet before passing through the Highland village of Golspie - where there's another fine course. Grab a glimpse of Dunrobin Castle, where the Duke of Sutherland died in 1833 and then enjoy the coastal views before passing through the village of Doll, where a big cat-like animal was recently spotted. And then, you arrive at Brora, ready for even more excitement.

Scotland has dozens of famous classic links courses but Brora is probably the least well known and this most northerly course really does deserve to be discovered. When Brora Golf Club was founded in 1891 the members played on a nine-hole course and the Secretary of Royal Dornoch Golf Club, John Sutherland, later extended it to 18 holes. J.H. Taylor made further changes following a visit and, in 1923, James Braid was commissioned to redesign Brora and little has changed since.

It's a traditional out and back layout with the opening nine holes hugging the North Sea coastline. We can think of no other course in Scotland which has so many holes playing so close to the sea. What's more, there are no dunes to obscure the magnificent seascape, but the downside is that when the wind blows, you'll have to hold on to your hat. The ground undulates gently and you can expect to encounter the odd wily burn and a series of electric fences, which do a fine job in keeping the grazing animals off the fast Brora greens.

Measuring 6,211 yards from the back tees, Brora is certainly no championship layout, but playing to handicap will be a real achievement, not only because the greens are tough to hit and tough to read, but because it's even tougher to concentrate on your golf in these breathtaking surroundings. When you arrive at the 2nd tee, you'll know what we mean. The tee is sited on a small promontory directly next to the beach and from here you are presented with the most arresting view along the full stretch of the coastline.

If it is good enough for a five-time Open Champion, then everyone should play Brora. The late Peter Thomson visited regularly, proclaiming it to be his favourite course in the world.

There are so many great holes, but the 9th, a 162-yard par three called Sea Hole, is our favourite. It will come as no surprise that it's a visually attractive hole, where the North Sea is a rather large lateral water hazard. The inward holes are solid but less dramatic than the front nine. The closing hole is a tough par three where the tee shot must carry across a deep gulley to a green which seems to be too close to the clubhouse for comfort.

Our message to those pilgrims who are heading to tick Royal Dornoch off their list is this, take your time and add Brora to your itinerary, you will not be disappointed.

Just wild about blustery Brora

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Reviews for Brora

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Description: Brora Golf Club is a fine, natural seaside links. A Highland delicacy to be tasted alongside Royal Dornoch. Brora is one of the jewels in James Braid's crown. Rating: 8.1 out of 10 Reviews: 52
David Parratt
Played this course in July 2004. 36 holes for 40 pounds. This picturesque course is a multiuse playground-sheep and cattle grazing, people walking their dogs. Greens are all surrounded by electric fences. A fun, pretty layout. Some good par 3s. #9 very picturesque. #18 a challenging uphill par 3 to finish. A genuine Highland course well worth the trip.
February 08, 2005
8 / 10
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Steve Searle
A good course that doesn't live up to the standards of Nairn & Royal Dornoch; nonetheless it is a delight to play and some holes are very well designed. Typical James Braid in their simplicity but with the ability to ruin your card. The 6th, 9th, 13th, 16th and 17th are great holes. Don't forget your camera for the 9th, also if you tend to slice, a bucket and spade maybe required from the beach. It is that close to the green! If you are in the area a visit is advised. I played at 09:00 and had the course to myself, an absolute joy. Views of the sea are at every hole and this was good links golf.
September 22, 2004
6 / 10
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