Golf courses

Secrets to playing the best golf courses in the world, according to experts

A view of Royal St. George’s in England.

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Welcome to Road Rules, a series in which we curate the brains of expert golf travelers, ranging from professional golfers and caddies to globetrotting course raters and teachers. We’ll unlock their must-have travel items, airline tips, and more to keep you informed on your next golf excursion.


Meet a trio of GOLF Magazine course raters who have played our entire list of the World’s 100 Best Courses – and survived to the end. Better yet, learn from their years of experience and advice.

Paul Rudovsky

Age: 76
Hometown: Pinehurst, North Carolina
Occupation: Retired businessman

Most courses were canceled on a single trip: “27.5 in 25 days, in GB&I and continental Europe”.

Most underrated class: “Palmetto GC. It’s superb and simple, challenging, fair and great fun – these are the hardest things to do simultaneously in golf architecture.

Hardest course to check off the list: “Ellerston, because it’s on a family estate in a foreign country [Australia], making it difficult to find connections. I finally did it in 2016 thanks to a friend.

Best travel tip: “Be flexible and always have a backup plan because things go wrong.”

I never travel without my: “Fiber One Cereals. I bought it in something like 45 countries.

How you continue to support your spouse in your quest: “Simple – choose the right one.”

Joseph Andriole

Age: 68
Hometown: Orlando, Florida.
Occupation: retired radiologist

Most Underrated Course: “Banff and Jasper Park in Canada. They’re drawings by Stanley Thompson, and he’s brilliant. They are both scenic, well laid out, and Banff in particular is done in an imposing, rugged style that matches the mountainous surroundings.

man traveling with golf clubs

Travel mail bag: Should you bring a hard or soft travel bag when traveling by plane?


Josh Sens

Favorite moment of the trip: “The first time I played Dornoch. My wife and I arrived after 9pm. I was so taken with the look that I decided to play it right away. I finished sometime after midnight, with the bunnies running around. It was quite unique.

I never travel without my: “I never travel with a watch. On that same trip to Dornoch, my sleep was disconcerted. I played in North Berwick, and when I finished I found out it was 5:25 in the morning. I had no idea.”

Keys to making friends in high places: “Send thank you gifts and date.”

jeffrey lewis

Age: 58 years old
Hometown: New York, NY
Occupation: CEO, American Flag Football League

Most lessons scrapped in one trip: “I drove 1,000 miles on a rental car without leaving England – Woodhall Spa, Ganton, Deal, Royal St. George’s, Rye.”

Hardest course to check off the list: “Augusta, as it’s the only course you can’t try to play — just wait for an invite.” But hanging out for a day on my honeymoon to play Durban CC was a great tip too!

Best Travel Tip: “Don’t overdo it. You don’t want to be over golfed when you discover the best courses in the world. Take your time and consider playing more than once. There is always another trip.

I never travel without my: “Raincoat and rain gloves. Buy the really expensive stuff – then it never rains.

How you continue to support your spouse in your quest: “Again: don’t overdo it.”

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A former editor of GOLF Review, Rothman is now a remote freelancer. His primary role centers around custom publishing, which involves writing, editing and gaining client approval on travel advertising sections. Since 2016, he has also written, under a pseudonym, the popular monthly column “Rules Guy”, and often writes the recurring page “How It Works”. Rothman’s freelance work for GOLF and runs the gamut from equipment, instruction, travel and feature writing to editing major championship previews and service packages.