Travel Blog

6 Apr

5 Reasons Golfers Choose Whistler

Co-written by Guest Author: Jay Grottoli, Tourism Whistler Golf Groups Specialist

It’s not all about the white stuff up here in Whistler, it’s also about the greens. With comfortable temperatures, 360-degree mountain views and four championship courses to choose from, it’s no wonder golfers have voted Whistler Canada’s #1 Golf Destination.

Whistler is home to four world-class, designer golf courses. Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Robert Cupp and Robert Trent Jones Jr. have all put their names on our courses, each with their own unique features and landscapes. Ask any local golfer what their favourite golf course is and there’s a very good chance you’ll hear four different answers. From true mountain golf to a bombers’ paradise, each of Whistler’s four award-winning golf courses has something different to offer.

Unique Features

Nicklaus North Golf Course

  • One of only two Jack Nicklaus designed golf courses in Canada and the only course to ever carry his name
  • Nicklaus North offers five separate tee decks ranging from 4,764 – 6,961 yards, allowing any player to challenge their game regardless of ability level  
  • Nestled between Green Lake and the River of Golden Dreams, the course has impressive views of the glacial mountain peaks. Be sure to look left when venturing from the 15th green to the 16th tee deck, you might just see a floatplane taking off or landing
  • Table Nineteen Lakeside Eatery boasts views of the floatplane dock, Green Lake and Rainbow Mountain. Not a bad background for enjoying your favourite cocktail.

Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Club

  • Robert Trent Jones Jr. carved this course into the flank of Blackcomb Mountain, because of this the terrain it is as rugged as it is beautiful
  • It was recently awarded the 2019 North American Golf Resort of the Year by the International Association of Golf Tour Operators
  • Players who are able to keep the ball in the fairway and can manage the ever-changing elevation will benefit greatly from this test of true western Canadian mountain golf
  • The Chateau,” as you may hear locals refer to it, is home to Canada’s only David Leadbetter Golf Academy offering world-class instructional sessions, a state-of-the-art practice facility and private range bays for lessons

The Chateau's signature golf hole

Wildflowers line the signature hole at The Chateau. PHOTO CHATEAU WHISTLER GOLF CLUB

Whistler Golf Club

  • This is Whistler’s first golf course and Arnold Palmer’s first Canadian masterpiece
  • The Whistler Golf Club offers a 6,722-yard valley layout beneath towering ancient cedar trees, with breathtaking views of Whistler, Blackcomb and Sproatt mountains
  • The course challenges golfers with beautifully firm and undulating green complexes. Always be sure to have a look at the pin placement before hitting your approach shot and account for a considerable amount of release on these flawless greens!
  • Palmer’s Gallery and Grill offers delicious meals with locallysourced ingredients
  • The Whistler Golf Club is hosting the 2019 British Columbia PGA Championship

Big Sky Golf Club

  • Located only 25 minutes north of Whistler Village, Big Sky Golf Club delivers a true bucket list golf experience
  • Situated in the heart of the Pemberton Valley at the base of 8,000-foot tall Mount Currie, it boasts an incredibly dramatic, natural setting
  • Tee decks allow for playability from a 5,200 to a not-for-the-faint-of-heart 7,001yard layout
  • This Robert Cupp masterpiece rewards the short game specialist in your group. The closely mown fall-away areas require precision and planning to get up and down around the greens
  • The par-71 layout includes four beautifully designed par fives, giving players an opportunity at birdie with risk-reward approach shots

The Big Sky Golf Club course under Mount Currie

Mount Currie makes for an idyllic backdrop. PHOTO BIG SKY GOLF COURSE

The golfing season in Whistler stretches from early May to mid-October. There are deals to be found on either side of the peak season, but if the summer months are what you crave then it’s worth noting that our average temperature is 22° Celsius (72° Fahrenheit) — not too hot, not too cold. If you’re looking for the cooler temps, early morning when the mist is rising is a good time and so is the evening when the mountain shadows provide shade from the sun.

There’s also something to be said for the views. Given our mountain locale, you’re surrounded by towering peaks; lush, green old-growth forest and wildflowers; glistening alpine lakes and mountain streams. You might even see some of our famous wildlife, the bears love a good game of golf.

Early booking offers are valid until April 30, 2019 and you’ll be able to save on Stay and Play Golf Packages throughout the season (these start at $149 CAD / $112 USD), but that’s not the end of the savings. If an early May or late September golf getaway fits your schedule, or if you don’t mind a late afternoon round, you can save up to 25% on greens fees.

The courses also offer juniors the chance to play for free, which makes it even more affordable if you’re bringing the family with you. For larger groups (12 or more), the Whistler.com group sales golf specialists are the people to talk to, they can get you the best rates available during your trip.

Golfers walking over bridge at Nicklaus North

Early birds get the worm. . .  or the birdie? PHOTO RICH GLASS

Not everyone is up for a full 18 holes before lunch – or after, for that matter. Here are a few ideas for those looking for introductory options:

5 After 5

From 5:30 PM onwards at The Whistler Golf Club, golfers can play holes one through five for only $25 per player (rental clubs and power carts are extra).

Big Sky 5-hole Par 3

Casual golfers can experience the fantastic greens and scenery at Big Sky Golf Club on their 5hole Par 3 golf course. It’s only $10 for adults and $5 for children at any time throughout the season.

Under 16 Deals

The Fairmont Chateau Whistler, Nicklaus North and Whistler Golf Club all offer free green fees to players aged 16 and under (when accompanied by a paying adult). At the Fairmont Chateau Whistler and Nicklaus North, this offer is in effect after 1 PM every weekday, and at the Whistler Golf Club it’s in effect all day throughout the week and after 3 PM on weekends.

Golfer taking a swing at the Whistler Golf Club

It’s great to see kids and teens getting some swing-time in! PHOTO JUSTA JESKOVA

Getting Tips from the Pros: Golf Lessons

Big Sky Golf Club

  • Big Sky has three fully-certified CPGA professionals who’re ready to help you take your game to the next level
  • Tailored lesson package options are available for the new to the experienced and competitive golfer. Remember – you can always get better!

Fairmont Chateau Whistler Golf Club

  • The Chateau offers a 350-yard, double-ended range with full short-game practice facilities

Whistler Golf Club

  • “The Range” at the Whistler Golf Club offers private lessons seven days a week. These lessons can be booked online and walk-ins are also accepted
  • The extremely popular Men’s Only Clinic and Ladies Only Clinic will return for the 2019 season. These packages include five lessons, five dinners and four green fees valid after 4 PM, all for under $300. Spots fill up fast so it’s best to sign up early!

Nicklaus North Golf Course

  • With the driving range only steps from the first tee and clubhouse, Nicklaus North makes it easy to get hooked on practicing while under the guidance of their CPGA professionals
  • As part of the collective initiative by each of the golf courses to grow the game we love, Nick North offers a Men’s Night and a Ladies Night throughout the golf season. This gives participants an opportunity to socialize and golf in a friendly environment. Starting at $95, nine and 18 hole options are available with dinner and a chance to win prizes included.

Ziplining by a mountain view in Whistler

Adventure awaits beyond the greens. PHOTO SUPERFLY ZIPLINES

Whether you’re looking for lake views, mountain views, golf course views or all of the above, the clubhouse patios at each of the four golf courses provide a perfect atmosphere for enjoying delicious, freshly prepared meals from Whistler’s top chefs. The Sea to Sky Corridor is known for its fantastic microbreweries and the golf courses are happy to offer their tasty products. Delicious wines from British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley are also on offer. Pair your game with a laid-back, picturesque dining experience and you’ve got a day on the links to remember!

Whether you’ve wrapped up your day on the greens or you’re looking to explore what else Whistler has to offer, there are plenty of activities to take advantage of. From ziplining or sightseeing on the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola to fishing, you might want to add a day or two to your golf trip to do it all.

The three golf courses in Whistler can be found within a 2kilometre (1.25 mile) radius of each other, with Big Sky Golf Club located a beautiful 30kilometre (19-mile) drive up the Sea to Sky Highway, making it easy to enjoy all four while you’re in Whistler. The journey from Vancouver International Airport is 1.5 – 2 hours and is one of the most scenic drives in the world. With flights from San Francisco and Los Angeles coming in at under three hours and flights from Toronto and Dallas just over four, Whistler should definitely be on your golfing radar.

Mountain views on the Sea to Sky Highway

Getting here is part of the fun. PHOTO MIKE CRANE

For more help booking your golf trip to Whistler, contact the Whistler.com golf-specialist team to plan your mountain golf getaway of a lifetime.

Article source: https://www.whistler.com/blog/post/2019/04/04/whistler-golf-trip/