Cruden Bay


Peterhead, Aberdeenshire

DESIGNER: Simpson, 1899
YARDAGE: 6,615
PAR: 70

GREEN FEES: £80 Mon-Fri; £85 Sat-Sun
CONTACT: 01779 812285,

Cruden can divide opinion. Some love it immediately, others take a little longer to appreciate its unique charms. Most, eventually, usually agree it is top quality – hence its rise here.

There has been huge improvement in the condition of the greens after a long-term greens species conversion programme; they are now up to 80 per cent fescue content, resulting in really linksy surfaces. Three or four bunkers each year are now being completely rebuilt and revetted as part of an ongoing programme.

A new set of green tees at only 5,299 yards has been introduced, making the Championship Course playable for all, including higher-handicap ladies and gents, seniors and juniors – making five sets of tees for different abilities of players. Finally, any subsequent golf – a second round on the main course or the nine-hole St Olaf – is free of charge; £80 for a day’s golf here rivals Royal St David’s as the best value in the Top 100.