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Top 7 Must-Play Golf Courses in the Dominican Republic

Luis Anaya

Luis Anaya

Apr 20, 202210 min read

Are you an avid golfer in search of a unique experience? Nothing compares to oceanside golf on the paradisiacal Caribbean shores of the Dominican Republic! This detailed guide will take you through the seven most spectacular courses of the Punta Cana, Cap Cana and La Romana resort areas.

Most people think of the Dominican Republic as a tropical paradise of white sand beaches and crystalline warm waters. But for the past 20 years, the island has gained worldwide popularity among outdoor sports lovers as the premier golf destination in the Caribbean. While there are 26 magnificent courses scattered across the island, the east coast resorts of Punta Cana, Cap Cana and La Romana are considered the Golf Mecca of the Caribbean: the area boasts more than 250 oceanside holes designed by the world's top golf architects.

These are the top 7 Dominican Republic courses we recommend every golf enthusiast includes on their bucket list!

1. Punta Espada Golf Club

📍 Location & Opening Date

Cap Cana, 2006

⛳ Course Details

Holes 18 | Par 72 | Distance 7,396 yards | Rating 77.0 | Slope 137

✏️ Designer

Jack Nicklaus

🏌️ Signature Hole

13th hole: a 250-yard Par 3 which features a long carry-over the water with the iconic Punta Espada cliffs as a stunning backdrop.

Punta Espada Golf Club course.Punta Espada Golf Club course.

Inaugurated in November 2006, Punta Espada Golf Club is the first of three Nicklaus's signature courses developed in the Cap Cana area. Awarded the #1 spot in Golfweek's 2022 Top 50 Courses in the Caribbean, ranked 35th in Golf Digest's World's 100 Greatest list, and named the Caribbean's Golf Experience of the Year in the IAGT's 2020 awards, Punta Espada offers 18 competitive holes — 8 play along and over the sea and the other 10 have stunning ocean views — that expertly incorporate the area's natural elements (tropical foliage, bluffs, beaches, & lagoons) into their design. Nearby accommodations include the top-tier resorts of Sanctuary Cap Cana, Eden Roc Cap Cana, and Secrets Cap Cana.

2. Corales Golf Club

📍 Location & Opening Date

Punta Cana (Puntacana Resort & Club), 2010

⛳ Course Details

Holes 18 | Par 72 | Distance 7,650 yards | Rating 76.9 | Slope 140

✏️ Designer

Tom Fazio

🏌️ Signature Hole

18th hole: this u-shaped, par 4, 501-yarder features a dramatic forced carry over and around the narrow cliff-lined Bay of Corales. Along with the 16th and 17th holes, it's part of the so-called Devil's Elbow, considered by many as one of the world's most magnificent finishes.

Corales Golf Club course.Corales Golf Club course.

The exclusive and dramatic Corales Puntacana Resort & Club is a highly-coveted, must-play private course that's part of the Puntacana Resort & Club. Designed by Tom Fazio and inaugurated in 2010, the Paspalum grass blanketed course is known for its immaculate conditioning and its breathtaking oceanfront holes set on rocky cliffs next to the Caribbean sea. The area's natural cliffs, bays, and ocean coves are all creatively incorporated into a design that is as memorable as it is challenging. Since 2018 this scenic course has become a staple of the PGA tour as the home of the Corales Punta Cana Championship, the first and only official PGA event hosted in the Dominican Republic.

3. La Cana Golf Club

📍 Location & Opening Date

Punta Cana (Puntacana Resort & Club), 2001

⛳ Course Details

Holes 27 | Par Arrecife: 36 - Hacienda: 36 - Tortuga: 36 | Distance Arrecife: 3,676 yards - Hacienda: 3,768 yards - Tortuga: 3,483 yards | Rating 74.8 | Slope 129

✏️ Designer

P.B. Dye

🏌️ Signature Hole

3rd hole: this par-3, 146-yarder is a narrow island green bordered front and left by a lake. Meant to be a tribute to his parents, Dye's design was inspired by the iconic 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass.

La Cana Golf Club course.La Cana Golf Club course.

Also located in the Puntacana Resort, the P.B. Dye-designed La Cana Golf Club has a total of 27 holes divided into three nines: Arrecife, Tortuga and Hacienda — the latter added in 2012. On top of 14 breathtaking ocean-view holes, the course boasts 4 memorable ones that are played right along the shoreline. La Cana is the older sister to the Corales, but it's equally as stunning: its layout has even been compared by Golf Magazine to the iconic Californian Pebble Beach course. With wide and flat fairways and a more relaxed atmosphere, La Cana is the perfect course for more casual players that want to enjoy a scenic journey while they play: the coastal holes will blow you away with the mesmerizing contrast of the emerald grass against the azure waters, while the inland ones will surround you with exotic tropical foliage, small lakes, and hidden sand dunes.

4. Hard Rock Golf Club at Cana Bay

📍 Location & Opening Date

Macao (Rock Hotel & Casino), 2010

⛳ Course Details

Holes 18 | Par 72 | Distance 7,253 yards | Rating 76.1 | Slope 135

✏️ Designer

Jack Nicklaus

🏌️ Signature Hole

4th hole: an all-carry 175-yard par 3 bling-shot over water to a narrow back-to-front sloped green with deep bunkers guarding either side.

Hard Rock Golf Club course.Hard Rock Golf Club course.

The first golf course to carry the iconic Hard Rock brand — each hole is named after a famous rock song — opened in 2010 as part of the Hard Rock Hotel Punta Cana. Unlike most of the other courses on this list, Nicklaus's gem is located entirely inland: players are surrounded by big lakes, sandy terrain, and heaps of native tropical flora and fauna. The casual atmosphere and flat terrain make it the perfect course to play a round of golf for players of all skill levels.

5. Teeth of the Dog

📍 Location & Opening Date

La Romana (Casa de Campo Resort & Villas), 1971

⛳ Course Details

Holes 18 | Par 72 | Distance 7,263 yards | Rating 75.9 | Slope 145

✏️ Designer

Pete Dye

🏌️ Signature Hole

16th hole: one of the finest one-shooters in the Caribbean, the Dog's final coastal par-3 has a 183 yardage and a wide and shallow green surrounded by seven sand bunkers — a layout that resembles the famous Lake Michigan's Whistling Straits.

Teeth of the Dog course.Teeth of the Dog course.

Carved out from overgrown rocky land, Pete Dye's masterpiece Teeth of the Dog opened in 1971 as part of the luxurious Casa de Campo Resort & Villas, putting golf on the map in the Caribbean and kickstarting the popular oceanfront layout design. For over 50 years the jaw-droppingly beautiful jewel in the crown of La Romana has been consistently ranked by experts as one of the best courses in the world and it's widely recognized as the most iconic golfing experience in the Caribbean. Such is the picturesque beauty of its 7 sea-hugging oceanside holes, that Dye famously said "I created eleven holes and God created seven".

6. Dye Fore

📍 Location & Opening Date

La Romana (Casa de Campo Resort & Villas), 2005

⛳ Course Details

Holes 27 | Par 72 | Distance 7,677 yards | Rating 77.0 | Slope 134

✏️ Designer

Pete Dye

🏌️ Signature Hole

3rd hole in Chavón: this Par 3, 232 yarder is the most challenging of the course's 7 cliff-side holes that drop more than 300 feet to the Chavón River below. It's also one of the most scenic holes to tee off in the Caribbean, with breathtaking 360-degree views of the mountains, the river, and the marina.

Dye Fore course.Dye Fore course.

In 2002 a second Pete Dye's course joined Teeth of the Dog at the Casa de Campo Resort. Like La Cana, the 27 holes of Dye Fore — considered the most underrated course in the Caribbean by golf enthusiasts — are divided into three distinct and thrilling 9s: Chavón, Marina, and Lakes. The towering La Romana mountains, the spectacular Chavón river, and the endless Caribbean ocean make up one of the most varied and unique golf course backdrops that you'll find anywhere in the world.

7. PGA Ocean's 4

📍 Location & Opening Date

La Romana (Bahía Principa Golf), 2017

⛳ Course Details

Holes 18 championship + 9 holes executive | Par 72 + 27 | Distance 7,334 yards | Rating 75.0 | Slope 132

✏️ Designer

Maverick Golf & Jack Lund

🏌️ Signature Hole

8th hole: this spectacular 532 yards par 5 — both the most emblematic and hardest hole of the Ocean's 4 championship course — is surrounded by cliffs that force the player to take both strategic and risky shots. Adrenaline and excitement are assured when in every shot your ball can end up swallowed by the ocean.

PGA Ocean's 4 course.PGA Ocean's 4 course.

Previously known as La Romana Golf Club, the PGA Ocean’s 4 course — it gets its name for having 4 spectacular holes right on the sea — is one of the most versatile courses in the country: its numerous starting tees make it so that serious golfers can face an exciting challenge while also offering an entertaining and accessible experience for more casual players. A total of 27 holes are split into an 18-hole par 72 championship course (intended for intermediate and advanced players) and a short 9-hole executive par 27 (ideal for beginners and short game practice). With the gorgeous landscape of Playa Nueva Romana as a backdrop, a round of golf in the 18-hole main course will take you on a journey through four unique landscapes: an exotic tropical forest, a parkland-style setting with lakes and waterfalls, a rocky and sandy desert, and a Caribbean seaside area with white sand beaches and coconut palms.

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Don't settle for less when you have the opportunity to play on some of the world's best courses! Teeing off in the Caribbean paradise is an unmissable adventure that should be on every golfer's bucket list. Don't waste any more time and get in contact with our expert travel concierge by filling in our inquiry form: the most unforgettable golfing experience awaits you in the Dominican Republic!