Best Golf Courses in Missouri

Updated February 2024 to update booking information.

Missouri.  It’s a land rich with opportunity and diversity.  From the Ozark Mountains, to rolling farmlands, to lowland valleys, the Show-Me State has something for everyone.

While you might not think of Missouri as a state where golf shines, it absolutely is.  In fact, there’s an abundance of great public golf compared to other states.

So, what are the best public tracks you can play?  Our readers have chimed in with a guide meant just for you.

1

Rolling Hills Country Club

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Even though Rolling Hills is located in the quiet town of Versailles, it’s considered one of the finest public courses in the whole state. 

The Zoysia fairways and Bermuda greens are a dream to play from.  It’s more than clear that the Superintendent knows what he’s doing. 

This par 71 is a classic design with tree lined fairways and small, quick greens.  Even though it’s not the longest course around, the shot values are a test for even the best players. 

What players especially note about Rolling Hills is the welcoming and friendly service they receive.  The staff go out of their way to personally ensure that all players have an exceptional experience. 

You don’t find great service like this along with an outstanding golf course very often.

 

2

Branson Hills Golf Club

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Golf Advisor called Branson Hills Golf Club the “#1 Best Golf Place to Play in Missouri.”  It’s not hard to see why either.

The Chuck Smith design sits in the heart of the Ozark Mountains and offers an experience that seamlessly blends golf and nature. 

If you’re a fan of mountain golf, this is as good as it gets in Missouri.  That’s evidenced by the 130-foot elevation drop between the first tee and green.

Even though this course sits high in the mountains, it’s regarded for its outstanding condition.  The greens roll true but can be tricky to read due to the mountain effect.  Make sure to pay attention to whether you’re putting up or down the mountain.

More than worth the trip, a round at Branson Hills isn’t one you’ll forget.

 

 

3

Ozarks National at Big Cedar Lodge

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Designed by Coore and Crenshaw, Ozarks National is nothing short of spectacular. 

Beautiful views abound at this course which sits high up the mountains. 

From the back tees, this track is big.  There are plenty of forced carries and the approaches can be visually intimidating.  Thankfully, the forward tees only measure a shade of 5,000 yards so anyone can play here and have fun.

Even though it costs a pretty penny to play Ozarks National, it’s a complete experience that you won’t regret.

 

   

4

Buffalo Ridge Springs Course at Big Cedar Lodge

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Buffalo Ridge Springs was the conception of Johnny Morris and Tom Fazio.

With nature and conservation at the heart of this design, the two have created a most wonderful track that epitomizes that mission.  In fact, you’ll likely encounter free-ranging buffalo from the nearby Dogwood Canyon Nature Park. 

In addition, the course offers stunning vistas of rugged outcroppings, creeks, lakes and naturally occurring waterfalls.  You’ll have a hard time focusing on your round when you play here.

There are plenty of choices for golf at Big Cedar Lodge, but you can’t go wrong with Buffalo Ridge Springs. 

5

Heritage of Hawk Ridge Golf Course

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There’s no denying that Heritage of Hawk Ridge Golf Course is one of the premier tracks not just in St. Louis, but the whole state.  With that said, you’d probably be surprised to hear that it’s a nine-hole par three course.

It’s all about family and friends at this track.  It’s been that way since the beginning.  No matter if you’re a seasoned veteran, or brand new to the game, you’re treated as an equal here.

Varying sets of tees and relatively uncrowded, Heritage of Hawks Ridge is a most pleasurable round of golf.

6

The Golf Club at Deer Chase

1 1
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The Golf Club at Deer Chase is one beautiful track. 

Rolling hills, frequent elevation changes, and pristine conditions make it a treat to play. 

You won’t find any bad lies or bumpy greens out here.

If you’re a fan of classic American target golf, Deer Chase is for you.  Plenty of hazards and well-placed bunkers come into play. 

The greens are undulating so make sure you leave your approach shots in the right spot. 

A hidden gem in the hill country, don’t miss a chance to play Deer Chase.

 

7

Eldon Golf Club

2
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Eldon Golf Club is one of the most iconic classic tracks in all of Missouri.

Open since 1934, this course is a classic design with tree lined fairways and sloped greens.  In the summer, they’re known for being quite fast.  Staying below the hole is one of the keys to scoring well.

Water comes into play on a number of holes too.  Combined with doglegs and narrow fairways, solid ball striking is a must. 

One of the finest public tracks in Ozarks country, don’t overlook Eldon Golf Club.

8

Old Kinderhook Golf Course

3
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Old Kinderhook was designed by the venerable Tom Weiskopf. 

Much like many other courses in Lake of the Ozarks country, the views and natural beauty of Old Kinderhook have to be seen to be believed.  The surrounding landscape is breathtaking.  On the course proper, you’ll find elevation changes, verdant valleys, lakes, and plenty of trees.

Regulars say this is resort golf at its best.  The fairways are generous and the greens receptive.  Friendly is the word used to describe every bit of the experience here.

9

Osage National Golf Club

4
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Some 27 holes await at Osage National Golf Club.  Two of the nines were designed by my favorite, Arnold Palmer. 

Each nine has its own distinct flavor which makes for an exciting experience. 

One thing that is constant throughout all three nines, is the presence of water.  While some of it comes into play, the views of the surrounding lakes are splendid. 

If you’re looking for an extended stay and play vacation, the accommodations are first rate.

 

10

Wolf Hollow Golf Club

5
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Maybe the best kept secret in Franklin County is Wolf Hollow Golf Club. 

Spread out over 175 acres, this course has a natural feel and setting.  Tree lined fairways ask you to keep the ball in play and think your way around. 

Called by locals the “hidden gem of St. Louis,” Wolf Hollow is also one of the best values you’ll find anywhere. 

Conveniently located and price that can’t be beat, Wolf Hollow is a solid choice.

Conclusion

The number of different landscapes and outdoor activities to be had in the Show-Me State is staggering. 

One thing that’s certain though, is that there’s no shortage of outstanding public golf.  What’s even more, the majority of the best courses provide an exquisite blend between great layouts and the natural surroundings.  Truly, some of the most beautiful courses in the country.

Knowing what I know now, thanks to the insight from our readers, there’s no doubt I’m planning a trip to Missouri in the near future. 

Thank you to everyone that contributed their time and insight.  I’m sure I’ve missed something, so if you could let us know in the comments below, that would be great!

  

  

  

Paul Liberatore
Paul Liberatore

As the Founder of Golfers Authority Paul Liberatore Esq. has spent the last 7+ years writing about the best golf equipment or instruction from the top golf instructors in the world. He has been a contributing writer for Sports Illustrated Golf and GolfWRX. After graduating with honors from Purdue University, he realized that he had a passion for the golf business and the law. When he's not practicing law, or creating golf content on YouTube, he can be found on his syndicated Behind the Golf Brand podcast both on Apple and Spotify talking with the most prolific leaders in the golf industry. 

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