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Course Review

Set on the southern shores of the Firth of Forth in East Lothian, Gullane Golf Club offers three beautifully maintained courses, simply called Gullane No. 1, Gullane No. 2 and Gullane No. 3. All three are superb links golf courses and offer some dramatic views across the Firth of Forth to both Edinburgh and Fife. There is little to choose in terms of quality between Gullane No. 1 and No. 2 and both have hosted final qualifying for the British Open Golf Championship, when it is held at Muirfield. And while the third course at Gullane cannot really compare to the other two, it still offers a fine par-68 links challenge and you should not be misled by its official yardage.

A veritable golfer's paradise, the village of Gullane (as well as its own three courses), is surrounded by four other outstanding links, namely Kilspindie, North Berwick, Dunbar and the renowned Muirfield Golf Club. And as with many great Scottish golf clubs, the history of golf at Gullane is a long and colourful one. As far back as 1650, it was recorded that groups of handloom weavers from the nearby villages of Dirleton and Aberlady met over the links for their annual golf match. But in terms of the formal institution of a club, it was not until 1859 that a group of farmers formed the East Lothian Club and from their ranks, Gullane Golf Club was instituted in 1882.

Though little to choose between Gullane No. 1 and No. 2, the former, which was established as an 18-hole layout in 1884, is generally regarded to be the better of the two. And with water hazards and trees absent, as is the norm with links golf, it is left to the gorse, wind, rough, tight fairways, bunkers and well-guarded greens, to ensure the course is a fair but serious challenge. Nowhere on the course do the views get better than from the top of Gullane Hill and the 7th tee. Described by Bernard Darwin as "one of the best views in golf", on a clear day, you can see for miles with the Lammermuir Hills, Firth of Forth and Bass Rock making up the stunning panorama.

Opening with a modest par four of only 302 yards, the challenge presented by Gullane No. 1 is only about to start. The 379-yard, 2nd hole, "Windygate", meanders up the hill and, as the name suggests, is often out of reach in two. The steady climb continues through the straight par five, 3rd hole, the 450-yard par four, 5th hole, rated as the most difficult on the course and onwards until you reach the panoramic 7th tee. Great holes come and go through the homeward stretch but one of the highlights is certainly the 537-yard par five, 15th hole named "Pumphouse", a testing dogleg, which culminates with a fearsomely sloping green. 


Directions from Edinburgh
1. Head out of Edinburgh on the A1 heading East.
2. Turn off at the junction for A198 at Tranent.
3. Follow the A198 through Longniddry and Aberlady.
4. As you approach Gullane, the Visitors' Car Park is on the right immediately before the Village.

Directions from North Berwick
1. Head for Gullane on the A198.
2. Go through Gullane Village and the Visitors' Car Park is on the left as you leave the Village.

The nearest airport is Edinburgh Airport and you should allow at least 1 hour to drive to Gullane.


Latest Rounds

Willie Law 20 Feb 10
Gullane 3 Golf Course
Claude Chene 15 Aug 09
Gullane 2 Golf Course
Claude Chene 15 Aug 09
Gullane 1 Golf course
Learn about golf scoring: Golf handicap explained    Stableford points explained

Reviews by Golfers

Reviews sorted by: Date | Rating | Friends
image of Reagan Pannell
h/c: 10.0
"A great links course"
Rating: 76%
Rating: 76%
 / 76%  Course: Gullane 2 Golf Course

Gullane No. 2 is a really fun and difficult golf course. I have heard that many local golfers prefer No.2 to No.1.

With great elevation throughout the course and some of the hardest and fastest greens you could imagine. The second is perched on the side of a hill and you have to play high up on the right to allow the ball to roll left. The 3rd is a completely blind tee shot straight up a hill.

I was unable to pitch the ball on most greens, so had to play bump and run's landing the ball 30 yards short sometimes.

The 17th is just an amazing hole - not a long par 4, but really downhill with a slope left to right, with a lovely bunker at bottom right.

I had not played No.1 so can not compare, but the No.2 course offers excellent value for money and would recommend it to any golfer that likes links courses.

Played 09 July 2011.

Rating: 8/10
Rating: 8/10
Rating: 7/10
Rating: 7/10
Quality of course
Rating: 8/10
Rating: 8/10
Quality of greens
Rating: 7/10
Rating: 7/10
Rating: 8/10
Rating: 8/10
Reviewed: 24/04/2012
The opinion in this review is from a player, not Report this

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