There’s no place for golfing in all of California like Carmel-by-the-Sea . You can play courses trodden by the likes of Tiger Woods and Jack Nicholson, pause a moment before you putt to take in the sight of the stunning Pacific Ocean, and pay $300 or more for a single round of golf.
Golf has been a major pastime here since the late 19th century, and today avid golfers come from around the world to tee off in Carmel.
One of the Pebble Beach Resort courses, Spyglass Hill (1700 17-Mile Dr., Pebble Beach, 800/654-9300, www.pebblebeach.com , 18-hole Par 72) gets its moniker from the Robert Louis Stevenson Novel Treasure Island. But don’t be fooled—the holes on this beautiful course may be named for children’s characters, but that doesn’t mean they’re easy.
Spyglass Hill boasts some of the most challenging play even in the golf course-laden Carmel  region. Expect a few bogeys if you choose to play here, and tee off from the Championship level at your own (ego’s) risk.
Another favorite with the Pebble Beach  golf crowd is the famed Poppy Hills Golf Course (3200 Lopez Rd, Pebble Beach, 831/622-8239, www.poppyhillsgolf.com , 18-hole Par 72). Though it’s not managed by the same company, Poppy Hills shares amenities with Pebble Beach golf courses; you can expect the same level of care and devotion to the maintenance of the course and your experience as a player there.
If you’re looking to improve your game, check out their program that runs two days and gets you out onto both Poppy and Spyglass Hill for a great chance to really pick up some new skills (and a few incidentally gorgeous views).