There is no doubt that golf is one of the most popular sports in the world. It is a game of rich history that has enticed people from all walks of life to give it a swing. And even though golf is loved by many, you can count on most golfers to admit that it can be an extremely infuriating and difficult sport. This is because some golf courses are known for being challenging and in addition, some holes are notorious for being harder than others. Let’s take a look at some of the hardest holes in golf throughout the world.
The 18th at Atlanta Athletic Club (Par 4)
North of Atlanta in the town of John’s Creek, Georgia, you’ll find one of the hardest holes in golf at the Atlanta Athletic Club. The 18th is a par 4 measuring 507 yards that is immediately difficult. From the tee, you’ll need to drive onto a 30-yard-wide fairway, and while you may think this doesn’t seem difficult, there are bunkers on the right and a lake to the left that leaves little room for error. Once past the lake (if you managed to do so) the green is sloped and surrounded by bunkers. One mistake and you’ll end up in the sand, fighting to get out.
The 16th at Cypress Point (Par 3)
On the west coast of California is the private golf course Cypress Point Club. Although it is probably one of the most beautiful golf courses in the world, it is also a course that is challenging on a number of holes. But perhaps the most challenging is the 16th. This hole forces you to drive your ball over 235 yards of the Pacific Ocean. For some, it is not impossible, but for others, the psychological aspect of driving a ball over the crashing waves of the ocean is too much.
The 12th at Augusta National (Par 3)
Another par 3 to make this list is the 12th at Augusta National. This particular hole is only 155 yards, which doesn’t seem so bad, right? Wrong. Because it is a short par-3, many golfers have underestimated its challenge. You’ll need just the right wind and the right club to not over-hit. Swing too hard and you’ve got a pair of bunkers and pines to get out of. Too short and you’re faced with a bunker and Rae’s Creek. Maybe this hole is a good example of why millions tune in to watch the prestigious Masters Event every year.
The 5th at Pinehurst (Par 4)
The beautiful Pinehurst Golf Resort in North Carolina offers its fair share of challenges. One of them is the par 4 that is 475 yards. This hole sees a lot of frustration, as many are lucky to get down in six. This is because designer Donald Ross originally intended it to be a par 5. In order to make this one, you’ll need to hit a perfect drive to land on the fairway, then you probably need to land another approach shot. Once there, you’ll have to hook it around the green to avoid a bunker on the right and pine trees on the left.
The 8th at Pebble Beach (Par 4)
There are probably several holes at Pebble Beach that could make this list but one that strikes fear is the 8th, a par 4 that is 421 yards. From the start, you’ll be faced with a blind tee-off that if not done correctly will land your ball in the Pacific Ocean. You’re also battling oceanic winds with not much fairway to find. There are a total of five bunkers to go up against that slope toward the ocean.
Bonus: The 19th at Legend Golf & Safari Resort, South Africa (Par 3)
This isn’t technically a regulation hole but it has to be one of the most challenging and unforgettable holes in the world. To get through the 19th hole, you’ll first need to get to it…by helicopter…on top of a mountain. Once there, you’ll tee off from a distance of 630 yards (which usually takes about 20 to 30 seconds to land) hitting towards a green located 1,300 feet below. The green, shaped like the continent of Africa, is also completely surrounded by a waste bunker. Chances are, you won’t make it, but do so and you get to cash in $1 million from the resort.
After learning about these challenging holes, it makes sense why some golfers have a love-hate relationship with the sport. After all, aren’t the most challenging things in life often the most rewarding?