6 golf courses and driving ranges around Budapest
The stately sport of golf has yet to gain widespread popularity in Hungary, but the rolling hills and meadowlands around Budapest present ideal terrain for creating courses – the handful of golf facilities established here are pretty impressive indeed. Every place on this list welcomes pros and duffers alike to play 18 or nine holes on verdant fairways and well-trimmed greens, or just to hit a few balls on driving ranges and practice areas. Some courses even provide English-language golf lessons, and host events where large groups can get in the swing of things together.
Academy Golf Budapest
Nestled amid the Buda Hills above urban Óbuda, this neatly manicured nine-hole course is Budapest’s most central full-service golf facility, featuring a modern clubhouse with a panoramic restaurant and event centre. The course’s terraced fairways are not too lengthy but present players with challenging hillsides to negotiate throughout these 30-par holes. Each round is enhanced by sweeping views over the city and the wooded high ground overhead, with the historic villa of Budapest’s intriguing Kiscelli Museum towering nearby. Academy also offers a driving range alongside chipping and putting greens, and provides English-language lessons for all ages with PGA-certified instructors – and this is the city’s most pet-friendly golf course.
For less than five euros, anyone in Budapest can travel to an island for a fun golf getaway surrounded by lush greenery. Sounds too good to be true? No fake news here – Golf Tanya (Golf Farm) is a welcoming three-hectare driving range found on forested Óbuda Island, the city’s parkland isle that hosts the legendary Sziget Festival. Here, baskets of 48 range balls cost only 850 forints, and guests can freely borrow varied clubs while practising their long game, or take range balls to the short-game practice area featuring two chipping greens complete with sand bunkers. Golf Tanya offers English-language lessons, a café and a playground amid a charmingly laid-back setting that sometimes serves as a wedding location or open-air cinema in summer.
Highland Golf Club
A professional-quality pleasure ground awaits Budapest’s golf aficionados at this efficiently operated nine-hole course, which includes an illuminated executive course comprising a trio of par-three holes. A two-level driving range features 14 tee stations – with half of them covered and heated during wintertime – located beside spacious pitching and putting greens, while the clubhouse offers sales and rental of all golf equipment. The par-36 course is gently undulating and has some lengthy fairways, inspiring exacting approaches from experienced players while offering beginners nice terrain for all-around golf training. Highland’s sophisticated restaurant and flexible meeting facilities make this an easy venue for organising a golf-themed team-building outing.
Magyar Golf Club
Sited on a sprawling Danube island north of Budapest, Magyar Golf Club is Hungary’s oldest, established in 1911 and possessing an ample dose of the serene spirit that history imparts on storied courses. It takes about a half hour to drive from downtown Budapest to the rustic clubhouse surrounded by tall trees and wide-open spaces; half of the 18 holes wind through hilly woods, while the back nine stretches across flatland. Many segments of the course feature views over the nearby Danube Bend mini-mountains, which are striking enough to justify letting the next group play through so that you can relax on a shaded tee-side bench and admire the scenery for awhile. The club also offers on-site accommodations, making this a fine spot for a weekend golf trip.
More details (in Hungarian)
Pannónia Golf & Country Club
Indulge in a deluxe round of 18 holes at this meticulously landscaped country club within a peaceful valley located less than an hour’s drive away from Budapest. Renowned Austrian course designer Hans G. Erhardt created Pannónia’s championship facility with hilly greens and picturesque ponds, and all teeing grounds and fairways meet PGA Tour standards. Pannónia offers complete English-language golf training with a private practice area and a variety of lesson plans, including individual and group lessons, and teaching rounds with an instructor on the course. The country club’s grandiose facilities – including an elegant restaurant – regularly attract A-list Hollywood stars to play a few holes here in between movie shoots at the nearby Etyek film studio.
St.Lőrinc Golf Club
Full disclosure: We Love Budapest has not yet visited this par-36 course in southern Pest’s District XXIII, but this is evidently an active facility with a sizeable number of regular visitors and a calendar full of tournaments, so St.Lőrinc might just be a hidden treasure well worth checking out. Judging by photos on the St.Lőrinc website, the course appears to be well maintained. Overall the grounds seem comparable to an upscale municipal course in the USA, so this place could be perfect for players looking for a low-key place to keep their golf skills sharp without spending a fortune; green fees for a nine-hole round are only 5,900 forints, while you can play the course all day for 9,500 forints.
More details (in Hungarian)