Accuracy is essential otherwise you will be climbing and searching the many sand banks. A brilliantly designed links with a wide variety of holes. Can be fairly benign on a calm day but with a touch of wind a real challenge. Perfect springy seaside turf, wildlife all around, and a collection of classy long par 4s.
A shining star of the classy collection of Atlantic Links courses and arguably the best links venue in the south west. Indeed six-times major winner Sir Nick Faldo once declared: “I have no doubt that if the East Course were located on the coast of Lancashire or Kent, it would have hosted an Open by now.” Faldo has a point: the East is Saunton’s main attraction is both good and challenging enough to examine the best players so you had better turn up with your A game, specially if the wind is blowing.
While the newer West course - it opened in 1974 - the higher and more spectacularly rugged duneland towards the sea, the century old East has always been the Championship layout and serves up one treat after another. None more so than at the stroke index one 4th which demands your Sunday best drive to a fairway that narrows into a neck protected by four pot traps.
Saunton Golf Club has to be one of the biggest accumulations of linksland anywhere in the world with enough dunes to build 15 golf courses let alone two. Don't play the star-studded East without a warm-up because you start with a devilish 472-yard par-4 and things don't get much easier after that, with two more long par-4s in the next three holes.