Top 3 Ranked BEST Golf Courses in Minnesota

Minnesota may not be the first state that comes to mind when you think of golfing destinations, but it has a surprisingly large number of excellent and difficult courses to offer in the summer and early fall. From scenic and challenging courses nestled among lakes and pine forests, to world-class championship courses, there is something for every golfer in Minnesota. Here are our top three golf courses in Minnesota:

  1. Hazeltine National Golf Club

Hazeltine National Golf Club, located in Chaska, Minnesota, is widely regarded as one of the best golf courses in the United States. The club has hosted numerous major tournaments, including the U.S. Open, the PGA Championship, and the Ryder Cup. Hazeltine is a pretty challenging course, with narrow fairways, deep beachy bunkers, and water hazardsremember, this is the Land of 10,000 Lakesthat come into play on several holes. The layout of the course is both beautiful and challenging, with rolling hills, wooded areas, and several elevated tee boxes.

One of the most famous holes at Hazeltine is the par-3 17th, which requires a precise shot over a small lake to a narrow green. The course is meticulously maintained and offers world-class amenities, including a clubhouse, practice facilities, and a pro shop. Hazeltine National Golf Club is a must-play for any serious golfers visiting Minnesota or taking a golf trip there.

  1. The Quarry at Giants Ridge

The Quarry at Giants Ridge, located in Biwabik, Minnesota, is a unique and challenging golf course that is built on the site of a former sand quarry. Thick with coniferous trees, this course gives you the true "up north" feel Minnesota is known for. The course features dramatic elevation changes, large waste areas, and deep water hazards (again, welcome to the Land of 10,000+ Lakes) that make it one of the most visually stunning courses in the state. The Quarry is a challenging course that demands precise accuracy off the tee and even more precise approach shots.

One of the most memorable holes at The Quarry is the par-5 6th, which features a dramatic elevation change and a narrow fairway that is surrounded by brutal water hazards. The course is well-maintained and offers excellent amenities, including a pro shop, clubhouse, and practice facilities. The Quarry at Giants Ridge is a must-play for all levels of golfers who want a uniquely challenging experience.

  1. The Classic at Madden's on Gull Lake

The Classic at Madden's on Gull Lake, located in Brainerd, Minnesota, is a championship golf course that is known for its scenic beauty and challenging layout. Located just a couple hours north of the Twin Cities, this course features rolling fairways, towering pines, and several water hazards that come into play on several holes. The Classic is a demanding course that requires precision and strategy from golfers of all skill levels. This is summer cabin and vacation country in Minnesota, so be sure to book your tee times ahead of time. The Brainerd lakes area has quickly become the golf mecca of Minnesota, with many other incredible courses such as Deacon's Lodge, a short chip shot away.

One of the most memorable holes at The Classic is the par-4 17th, which features a challenging tee shot over water and a narrow fairway that is guarded by beachy bunkers. The course is well-maintained and offers excellent amenities, including a clubhouse, pro shop, and practice facilities. The Classic at Madden's on Gull Lake is a must-play for golfers who want a challenging and beautiful "up north feel" course but don't want to have to drive 5 hours from Minneapolis to get that. 

After your round, be sure to hit the quaint town of Nisswa for a fantastic shopping experience and pop into Ganley's for the best post-round breakfast you will ever have. If a late night is in your cards, hit Zorbaz on the Gull Lake chain channel. Their delicious pizza might just save you on the front 9 the next morning after a late one.

Whether you want to head north where the pine trees are thicker than the ice that caps the 10,000 lakes in January (pushing many golfers to swap out their clubs for the ice fishing gear), or stay close to the Twin Cities and enjoy a course that has challenged the most elite Pro golfers, Minnesota from June through September is a must-see premier golf destination. 

To make sure you are sharp in time for the first tee after a late night bonfire in cabin country, start your round with clarity and brew some Pre-Golf Mushroom Coffee.

Top 3 Ranked BEST Golf Courses in Minnesota
Back to blog