Cruden Bay Golf Club

Cruden Bay Golf Club, Peterhead, North East Scotland, Scotland, AB42 0NN

01779 812285 | E-mail golf course | Golf course website

38 reviews of Cruden Bay Golf Club

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Stunning course. Me & 3 friends came up from London for a 4 day golf trip. This was my favourite course. We also played Murcar (brilliant), Newburgh (good), Letham Grange (brilliant), Royal Montrose (brilliant), Newmacher (very good). Started with 9 holer - very good course in its own right, then had lunch in the clubhouse with amazing views of the course & sea. Then the main event. The course is tough, but the variety & originality of the holes is tremendous. A must play if in the area.

Posted by David Hendry on 03/08/2011

Jim, I herald from Portmarnock and have travelled the world extensively playing top rated courses. I'm almost finished with the top 100 courses. I recently completed a trip to Scotland which included Turnberry (Ailsa), Loch Lomond, Royal Dornoch, Skibo Castle, Cruden Bay and Carnoustie. My father and I are still talking about Cruden Bay - the place is MAGIC! Undulating terrain, bath tub greens, sensational scenery, outstanding golf staff and golf holes that stretches the best of our imagination are all offered at Cruden Bay. I'm personally disgusted with how this legendary golf course is rated. To think that people rate Carnoustie miles ahead of CB is an act of terror. Every hole at CB has a wow factor and you step back in time just as you do at Yeamans Hall. Highlights for me were the approach shot to the 7th, reminded me of the 18th at Ballybunion through the narrow gap. The 9th hole into the wind is one of the toughest par 4s in the country - I had to hit a 1 iron for an approach just to reach the front! The 14th green is a bath tub, the likes which McDonald/Raynor would create across the pond. The par 3 15th & 16th are spectacular holes and the golfer can not relax until the ball is in sight - although once the ball has left the clubface, you're in the hands of the gods. The club have also designed a 19th hole out behind the 13th tee box in the event that they need to swap out a hole for maintenance. It's a par 3 out to the water from an elevated tee box and it's the best kept secret in Scotland. I'm of the opinion that this hole stands tall against the 7th at Pebble and the 15th at Cypress Point. IT'S INCREDIBLE! I won't be surprised if this "19th hole" is incorporated into the main course. I just wish this course got the credit it deserves.

Posted by Fergal O'Leary on 27/09/2009
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Overall Rating 4
  • Overall Ratings
  • Clubhouse 4
  • Course challenge 4
  • Value for money 5
  • Clubhouse 4
  • Course challenge 4
  • Value for money 5

Overall one of my favorite courses on my trip to scotland. There are some fairly simple and non-descrpt holes (1, 2, a couple near the end) however, what's in between are really great. Lots of variety to the course, some blind shots, some incredible dunes and gorse shots, some stunning ocean view shots. Played on a sunny cool day in May, and the air was so fresh and clean, especially the holes closer out near the ocean. Well recommended.

Posted by Alan Peschansky on 03/05/2009
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Overall Rating 5
  • Overall Ratings
  • Clubhouse 5
  • Course challenge 5
  • Value for money 5
  • Clubhouse 5
  • Course challenge 5
  • Value for money 5

I played Cruden Bay in early September 2008. We were lucky with the weather which was sunny though a strong breeze got up about half way. I had been eagerly anticipating playing Cruden Bay as I had heard so much about it and an English mate of mine ranked it as his favourite track, and he's played a few. As a Highlander i thought I should see what all the fuss was about. I unfortunately have to state that I was slightly underwhelmed by the course. The staff were extremely welcoming, the clubhouse was beautifully situated and the course spread out as if on a canvas below us but I found it too quirky for my liking when it came to playing it. I would surmise it as follows; Holes 1,2 and 3 offer a pleasant, comfortable start and the opportunity to be under par early. Holes 4 to 8 are the best on the course, especially 4,5 and 6. An excellent par 3, long par 4 through the dunes from a raised tee and a 3 shot par 5 with a burn in front of the green. Really top notch. Hole 8 is a very short par 4 which offers risk/ reward and is driveable with a 3 wood,but carve it right and you are dead. From the 9th i think the course is unspectacular bar 12 and especially 13 which is an absolutely top drawer par 5, again with a burn as a driving hazard this time. The back 9 has too many quirky holes for my liking particularly 14 and 15. 14 has a blind approach to a sunken punchbowl green (slightly similar to the 11th Alps at Tain) and 15 is an absolute joke of a hole. It is a blind, mid length par 3 which doglegs around a large dunebank. Whilst there we saw what looked like a new par 3 hole being created at the back of the 12th green down towards the shore. If the plan is to bring this into play and get rid of the 15th or alterately play from the 14th tee to the 15th green and make a new par 5 out of both holes then i think that this would improve the course no end. I think Cruden Bay is the sort of course that you will either love or just not get and despite being a Scot who loves links golf, especially Brora, Moray Old and Askernish (current condition not withstanding) I fell into the latter camp. I'm sure American visitors love it for the very reasons i don't and beauty ,as they say, is in the eye of the beholder.

Posted by James Winter on 28/04/2009
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Overall Rating 4
  • Overall Ratings
  • Clubhouse 5
  • Course challenge 4
  • Value for money 3
  • Clubhouse 5
  • Course challenge 4
  • Value for money 3

Oh man, is this place spectacular. Not sure what to even say except that I'd have paid the greens fees to walk the course let alone play it. Incredible elevation changes, great condition. My favorite course I've ever been on and this includes every St. Andrews course, Royal County Down, Ballybunion, and others.

Posted by Scott Matchette on 27/07/2004

My uncle organized a golfing weekend the bank holiday just gone around the Aberdeen area. Lucky for us, one of the courses he picked was Cruden Bay. We arrived there an hour and a half early to give us enough time to have a spot of lunch and a bit of a practice on the putting greens. The food was great, but the views overlooking the course and the coastline from the elevated clubhouse were really spectacular. Playing or not you could easily spend a couple of hours looking out of the window. We couldn't wait to get out there ! I would say without any doubt that this was the best course I've seen yet alone played on. The landscape is made up of undulating dunes with the fairways hugging the valleys followed by really large, fast, true immaculate greens. I found it relatively more forgiving than I was initially expecting; but don't get me wrong there are plenty of tests to keep you on your toes. If you're a chip and run type player I think you'll be in your element and if you're going to be within a 100 miles of the course it's definitely worth making sure that this is one you play.

Posted by Neel Patel on 02/06/2004

Sand dunes ! I have never seen so many. This is a good course. The front 9 I think is only average and isnt very difficult. The back nine spices up nicely though and some of the closing holes are very good indeed. On the whole I was slightly disappointed but that is not to say that this is not a very good golf course because it is. It just never quite lived up to the hype for me. It makes the GM top 100 courses in the world and so I expected off the dial. I got a good course in great condition but it wouldnt make it into my top 100.

Posted by CB on 08/07/2003

I played Cruden Bay with a group of friends on the 11th June 2003 shortly after the club had hosted the Northern Open. It was generally agreed that the first 3 and last 4 holes were not of championship standard. The remaining holes were excellent and the views over Cruden Bay were magnificent. The most impressive aspect about this course is its facilities as the clubhouse and driving range etc are second to none. Overall slighly disappointing and not nearly as punishing a course as Royal Aberdeen for example.

Posted by John Topham on 26/06/2003

Whatever gushing praise you read about this course is all true, believe me. This is up there with the best of our links courses. Not as quirky as I was lead to believe (though there are several blind approach shots to be played -but what old fashoined golf course wouldn't have these?). I played in the Open on 8th June 2003 and, although it rained for the last half dozen holes, it did little to diminish the enjoyment of playing such a cracking venue. As for the clubhouse, what a palatial building that is. The club has obviously made a few bob from selling land for housing on the way into the course and invested this in tiptop facilities for members and guests - it really is a magnificent complement to the 27 holes on offer (and what a view of the bay from the lounge, its breathtaking). Play this and see the future of links golf in the past.

Posted by James McCann on 09/06/2003

I am a Member of the PGA, and first went to Scotland in 1996. Met a fellow Rotarian in Montrose, who asked where we were planning on playing; I listed St. Andrews, Carnoustie, Turnberry, and Troon, among others. He replied, "When you're done at all those tourist traps, I'll take you to the most wonderful course in Scotland" Of course, he was talking about Cruden Bay. I have played it three time altogether, and can honestly say it was the most fun I've ever had on a golf course. It was there that I discovered the joys of links golf. I see that Golf magazine has listed it # 52 in the world, but if I'm really, really lucky, I'll have it ranked as number 2; I say lucky, because I seriously doubt that I will ever find a course I enjoy more than Cruden Bay.... I can't wait to go back

Posted by Larry Armatage on 13/03/2003

I played St, Andrews, Royal Dornach & Cruden Bay on my trip to Scotland in the summer of 2001. Even though playing the Old Course was something I will never forget, I decribed Cruden Bay to some of my friends back in the States that if God had created a golf course this was it. It has spectacular views and really challenging holes. With the wind at my back on 17 & 18 I hit drives over 300 yards so that was something special to finish the round. I would declare this course as must for anyone who is traveling to Scotland.

Posted by Mark Holderfield on 06/10/2002

Do not miss playing at Cruden Bay. I echo the earlier comments concerning the playability and condition of the course. And certainly the view from the 9th green and 10th tee is worth the trip even if you don't play golf. Played by myself and was able to figure out the blind holes with the help of the course guide from the Pro shop. Very short drive from Aberdeen and i will be making that drive every chance i get to visit Scotland.

Posted by Chuck Berta on 10/06/2002

i felt the course was rather poor and did not prsent the challenges i had hoped it would

Posted by Dougal on 11/02/2002

Our recent trip to Scotland included some of the best courses in the world, Carnoustie, Royal Dornoch, Prestwick,Western Gailes North Berwick but by far my favorite was Cruden Bay. We were lucky to play under near perfect conditions, sunny, warm with only a light breeze. The views from the tenth tee is spectacular worth the trip. No trip to Scotland is complete unless it includes Cruden Bay.

Posted by J Lucas on 14/09/2000

Three of us played Cruden Bay (ranked number 55 in the world) in June 2000; my second time. It is absolutely spectacular - a definite must play course ! The course is cut through tall sand dunes. There are some blind shots, a few hills to climb, and fabulous scenery. The new clubhouse overlooks the course, the bay, and Slains Castle. This is one of the the 2 best courses that I've played in Scotland, the other being Machrihanish.

Posted by Ray Rudolph on 31/07/2000

In June of 1999, I was fortunate enough to play 10 rounds in 8 days at such courses as St. Andrews, Turnberry, Royal Dornoch, Royal Aberdeen, Prestwick, Western Gailes and Nairn. But the one course that clearly stands out in my mind as being my favorite is Cruden Bay. Playing in the shadows of Slains Castle, on one of the most beautiful links layouts you could possibly imagine was truly one of my most enjoyable experiences. The views are magnificent. The course is challenging, yet fair and quite simply a joy to play. A stop at Cruden Bay is a must for anyone planning a trip to Scotland.

Posted by Andy Jones on 16/07/2000

A beautiful course, especially the walk passed the blooming rapeseed fields through the 9th, to the spectacular 10th tee, with the wind at your back and the sea in front and to your left. Bring along a strokesaver guide as there are plenty of blind holes and try to hit fairways, other wise you will be in for a rough time. One square yard of rough (gorse, I think they call it) can probably hide a dozen balls. Played this course in late May in great windy weather, and it was an unforgettable and challenging experience. One of my favourties. The staff at the proshop's friendly too.

Posted by NT on 07/06/2000

Great golf course. Marvellous scenery, blind par 3s, couple of short par 4s that help keep your score down and some challenging walking. Climb from the 8th green to 9th tee was something else, at least 150 feet between tee and green. View from the 10th tee has stunning. Glad we played it on a sunny calm day in mid-May! A must on any trip to Aberdeen.

Posted by danny smith on 18/05/2000

"It's a four-clubber" was the definition of the wind that greeted me on my sixth trip to this wonderful golf course. I had driven up to play it with three friends(two Scots and one American)who had little experience of links golf(Carnoustie and Montrose)and their first pleasure was the stunning view that opened up as we drove down to the clubhouse(one of the friendliest anywhere), the second was the breakfast and it just got better! With the wind blowing at 30-40mph 9-irons were going 200yds and drivers were going 75yds. It was a fantastic experience made even better by an inventive layout, great scenery and the fact that I hit the 550yard 13th with a driver and 9-iron(eat your heart out Tiger). Every golfer should take the chance to play here at least once and then die happy!

Posted by Alan Mackay on 31/03/1999

I played this course in 1986 in a howling wind. There were no caddies available so all 3 of us took off carrying our own bag. By the time we reached the 4th hole, one of my friends couldn't go on because of his bad back. He said he'd go back to the clubhouse and wait for us. I said that was crazy--I'm an old caddy and I told him I would carry my bag plus his so he could keep playing. So I played Cruden Bay while carrying two bags! I loved it. It is worth the short trip from Aberdeen to play.

Posted by C. Ferguson on 17/03/1999

I played 72 holes in 3 days in summer 1997. Cruden Bay is an absolute gem,\r\nprobably the most enjoyable links course, along with Port Rush, that I have \r\never played. Shooting 285 for the 72 didn't hurt my enjoyment much either!\r\nThe clubhouse, local hostelries and hotels were welcoming and of a good standard,\r\nand I can't wait to go back.

Posted by David Cunningham on 09/03/1998

Cruden Bay is SPECTACULAR ! Golf Magazine now ranks it in the top 100 in the world.

Posted by on 30/12/1997

I loved the course at cruden bay, I made eagle on 2 and 8 and still shot 43.\r\nThis is my second favorite course to carnoustie.

Posted by J.wells on 14/11/1997

Cruden Bay is a wonderful golf course. Along with North Berwick, it\r\nis the most beautiful course that I've played in my 2 trips to\r\nScotland. It is the true definition of a Scottish links course. I \r\nwas completely humbled by the course on the front nine, so I decided \r\nto ignore the big numbers on my scorecard and simply enjoy the inward\r\nholes of this truly unique track. The view from the 10th tee alone \r\nis worth the trip. A must for any true golfer. I shall return as \r\nsoon as possible for a rematch.

Posted by Chris Prentice on 30/10/1997

I recently returned from my first trip to Scotland. Twelve rounds in nine days on such courses as Turnberry, Troon, Muirfield, St. Andrews, Carnoustie and Royal Dornoch. However, my favorite day involved 36 holes at Cruden Bay. What a beautiful and imaginatevly designed golf course. The views were mesmerizing, no two holes looked or played the same, most of the fairways were enclosed by natural buffers so that I always had the feel of being the only golfer there, and there were plenty of challenging holes interspersed with holes that some might call gimmicky but which I found to be fun. Although a little out of the way, I would not hesitate to make the drive again to play these links. One other pleasant note: when we completed our first round, we were pleased to learn that greens fees are good for all the golf you can play before dark.

Posted by Brent Goldstein on 17/09/1997

Course information

Number of holes 18
Year opened -
Designer -
Style links

Tee information


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Summer/High season

Weekday round£50
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Weekend round£60
Weekend day-

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