These five extremely challenging 'short' holes will test the very best
5 Of The Best Monster Par 3s
Royal Portrush Dunluce Links – 16th
At 236 yards, the appropriately named Calamity Corner (pictured above) is one of the most famous, iconic and revered par 3s in the United Kingdom. The carry from the tee over a deep chasm of rugged rough is a daunting prospect; anything short or right is in severe trouble. At this year’s Open Championship, the hole yielded just four birdies all weekend. There is no sand, and into any kind of a wind, it can require driver… or more!
Anstruther – 5th
Fife is packed with some of golf’s greatest courses, but not so many know about this sporty nine-holer a few miles south of St Andrews. The 5th hole, Rockies, is a whopping 245 yards, played into the prevailing breeze. From an elevated tee, the fairway and green are sandwiched between a steep bank lined with gorse and rough that obscures the green on the right, and the Firth of Forth and out of bounds all along the left.
Royal Ashdown Forest Old – 11th
One of the most natural and peaceful layouts in Sussex, the Old course at Royal Ashdown is a Next 100 favourite packed with interesting and varied holes. Unusually, there are no sand bunkers anywhere, and certainly none are needed at this 249-yard par 3. This lengthy one-shotter is played from a raised tee over a spine that can kick the ball left or right. Bogey is no disaster and it will be more than compensated for by the views.
St Andrews New – 9th
As at nearby Anstruther, water awaits all along the left-hand side of this 225-yard brute. The hole sits at the far end of the New course and runs pretty much due north along the Eden estuary. When the wind is howling in from the west, you will almost certainly have to aim out over the water, which itself is out of bounds. Recording a par here, even in benign conditions, will probably feel like making a birdie.
Royal St David’s – 14th
At a mere 221 yards, this west Wales cracker is the shortest of our supersized par 3s. The tee shot is semi-blind and all you’re likely to see is the top of the agstick beckoning in the distance as you enter the dunes at the start of a tough closing stretch. The green is almost kidney-shaped and surrounded by humps and bumps that can either help or hinder, while there are terrific views back to the castle and Snowdonia.
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