Folks in Florida must be gearing up for the season. How do I know? Because everyday when I look at my inbox, there’s an email inquiring about a public course guide about a different Florida locale. This week, Brent asked me if we could highlight the best tracks in and around Fort Myers.
Having lived there for more than 25 years, Brent included a lot of valuable insight. When I reached out to our loyal community, even more feedback came flooding in.
I’ve only played a limited amount of golf in Fort Myers, so this guide is based solely on the feedback from our Golfer’s Authority readers.
I think you’ll like what they have to say.
Old Corkscrew Golf Club
The unanimous consensus is that Old Corkscrew is one of the best public tracks, not just in the Fort Myers area, but the whole state of Florida.
Designed by none other than Jack Nicklaus, this track is a modern design that highlights its natural surroundings. The layout is carved from mature pine forests which are accented by bright blue skies. The course is also a Certified Audubon International Sanctuary.
You’ll use every club in the bag here too. The long holes are demanding and ask that you execute quality shots. A number of short holes also allow opportunities to play aggressively.
Always in outstanding condition and a most memorable round, Old Corkscrew is more than worth the price you pay.
Raptor Bay Golf Club
Raptor Bay is another premier facility in the community of Estero.
This is a modern design that screams everything that defines target golf. The landing areas are big and well defined. Should you miss your spot however, plenty of water, sand, and natural areas are waiting to gobble up your ball.
Everyone that contributed their thoughts to this article emphasized the importance of choosing the right set of tees when you play here. Play up from where you normally would as there are a number of forced carries.
When you finish your round, be sure to stop by Braxton’s Bar and Grill. The menu utilizes only the freshest local ingredients and the prices are modest.
Another must play in the Fort Myers area, Raptor Bay has it all.
River Hall Country Club
“Casual Southern Elegance” is the motto at River Hall Country Club. Locals say that’s the perfect description.
The experience here starts the moment you walk in the doors of the clubhouse. The staff are notoriously friendly and eager to please.
Designed by Davis Love III, this track is always in pristine condition. The ball sits up in the fairway and the greens are pure. Even though the latter are Bermuda, they’re virtually grain-free.
If practicing is what you’re after, this is the place to do it. The driving range works in two directions with tees at each end. There’s plenty of room for everyone. For working on shots inside of 100 yards, there’s no better place. The short game area allows you to work on any shot you can imagine.
Everything from the service to the course is first-rate at River Hall.
Dunes Golf and Tennis Club
For as condensed as things might seem in Southwest Florida, the number of golf courses that prioritize environmental stewardship is impressive. Dunes Golf and Tennis Club is no exception.
Nestled in the heart of a nature preserve, this is yet another facility that’s received the certification of an Audubon Certified Natural Sanctuary.
The layout is yet another spectacular one. Water and sand come into play frequently, but there are plenty of chances to play aggressively and make birdies.
As part of the greater Sanibel Beach Resort, golf is only part of the story here. The amenities are top-shelf, and the activities endless.
Magnolia Landing Golf and Country Club
Even though Magnolia Landing has an active private membership, the public is always welcome. In fact, you’ll feel like a member from the time you show up to the time you leave.
Designed by Gordon Lewis and open since 2007, Magnolia Landing has quickly garnered a reputation as one of the most desirable courses in Southwest Florida.
Even though the course meanders through oak groves and pine forests, most of the holes give you plenty of room to work with off the tee. If you like to hit driver, you’ll have a ball here.
Feel free to use all the amenities in the 10,000-square foot clubhouse too. They include men’s and women’s locker rooms, a grill, and fully stocked pro shop.
San Carlos Golf Club
One of the most underrated courses in Fort Myers is San Carlos Golf Club. It’s also one of the most affordable.
Having opened in 1981, this course is the epitome of a classic Florida design.
Even though the course is somewhat flat, the routing is stupendous. Holes move both left and right, and ask that you manage your full shots accordingly.
Like a lot of other Southwest Florida courses, water and sand come into play on most holes. If you stray offline, you’ll pay the price.
Locals love this place that’s remained largely undiscovered. It’s not hard to see why.
Coral Oaks Golf Course
Coral Oaks was designed by the venerable Arthur Hills. He’s designed a lot of courses in this part of the world, but Coral Oaks is thought to be one of his best.
Carved out of a centuries-old oak hammock, this is a narrow track. Keeping the ball in play is the key to scoring well.
The TifEagle greens are large and demand precision on approach shots. Pay attention to hole locations and do your best to stay below the hole.
Coral Oaks also has one of the largest practice facilities in the state. The driving range is huge and has plenty of targets. The short game area features multiple greens, bunkers, and plenty of room to hit shots inside 50 yards.
A complete experience at a reasonable price, Coral Oaks shouldn’t be missed.
Del Tura Golf and Country Club
No less than 27 holes await at Del Tura Country Club.
Designed by Ron Garl, all three nines are perfectly manicured. The Champion Bermuda greens roll true and don’t have much grain. If you get hot with the putter, you can take it low.
The course is perfect for players of all abilities. The forward tees are great for beginners and allow you to reach most greens in regulation. On the other hand, the back tees test better players and demand your very best from tee to green.
Del Tura is one of the area’s best kept secrets. Come see for yourself.
Spanish Wells Country Club
Spanish Wells is another notable 27-hole facility.
This is an older design and that’s reflected in its characteristics. The fairways are narrow and lined by mature oak and palm trees.
Water comes into play on almost every hole, so you might want to bring an extra sleeve of balls just in case.
All three nines underwent an extensive renovation just last year. Since, everyone agrees that playing conditions have improved and the new look is outstanding.
If you want to hit balls, you’re in for a one-of-a-kind experience. The driving range targets are set in a large lake and the golf balls float.
Great golf at an even better value is what you’ll find as at Spanish Wells.
Seminole Lakes Golf and Country Club
By now, you guys know I’m a fan of shorter courses that are full of character. That’s exactly what you’ll find at Seminole Lakes.
Even though this course measures less than 3,800 yards, you’ll have to execute quality shots if you want to score. If you don’t, some eight lakes are waiting to drown mishit shots.
The greens are touted as some of the best in the area. Again, a newer strain of Bermuda lacks the grain traditionally associated with this type of grass.
For a fun, relaxing round that won’t break the bank, look no further than Seminole Lakes.
There are way too many notable public golf courses in the Fort Myers area to fit on this list. The ones that are here are the consensus favorites among our readers, especially Brent. It’s to them that I owe many thanks for making this course guide possible.
If you have additional thoughts, or other courses you’d like to mention, feel free to leave us a note in the comments below.