Pebble Beach Golf Links is a bucket-list destination, a pilgrimage for golfers of all ages and abilities. But maybe you’re not a golfer. So what’s so great about Pebble Beach? Let’s show you!
Every major golf publication agrees that Pebble Beach is the No. 1 public golf course in the country. These rankings are a fairly scientific way of to judge the subjective, factoring categories such as memorability, aesthetics and ambiance, as well as the diversity of the design and how challenging the course can play.
You can’t play a company softball game at Wrigley Field, pick-up basketball at Madison Square Garden, or flag football at Lambeau Field. But anyone can relive the game’s greatest moments at Pebble Beach. Some of the greatest golfers to ever play the game, including Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson and Tiger Woods, have all forged career highlights here, cementing Pebble Beach’s championship pedigree.
Pebble Beach became the first public course to host a U.S. Open in 1972. This year marks its sixth U.S. Open, more than any other course in the last 50 years. A seventh is already scheduled for 2027, and the first U.S. Women’s Open will also come to Pebble Beach in 2023. But unlike other traditional U.S. Open venues such as Oakmont, Baltusrol, Merion, Winged Foot, Shinnecock and Oakland Hills, Pebble Beach is open to the public. Just six public courses have ever hosted a U.S. Open, and only Pebble Beach has done so more than three times.
Crooner Bing Crosby began hosting a PGA TOUR event at Pebble Beach with his celebrity friends in 1947, and the tradition has continued ever since.
Not only can you watch the likes of past champions Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth play the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am each February, but they’re also regularly joined on the course by golf-infatuated celebrities such as pop star Justin Timberlake; NFL MVPs Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Aaron Rodgers; comedians Bill Murray and George Lopez; and NHL great Wayne Gretzky, along with many more popular draws.
If you asked golfers to name their favorite par-3, par-4 and par-5, there’s a good chance that all three holes could be found on Pebble Beach. The seventh hole is the most famous short par-3 in the world, the eighth hole might be the most heroic par-4 you’ll ever play, and the 18th hole is celebrated as the best finishing par-5 in the game. In all, nine holes are draped over oceanfront cliffs, and the stretch along the Pacific from Nos. 4-10 is simply peerless.
Photography by Channing Benjamin, Evan Schiller and PGA TOUR Images.