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Gaylord Golf Mecca Travel Guide

A Destination Overview

By Brian Weis

Over the past two decades northern Michigan has grown to become one of the outstanding golf destinations in the country and, in my humble view, certainly the finest destination in the Midwest from the pure quality and quantity standpoint of remarkable golf. The nationally accredited golf course designers who brought their acum to the region found the state's varied topography and stunning dense forests the ideal location for the game to thrive.

The sheer abundance of remarkable golf in the region is most noticed in and around the alpine village of Gaylord, Michigan, which has grown to be known as America's Summer Golf Mecca, with three world-class resort destinations and 17 top courses within a 45 mile radius.

Top resort destinations like Treetops Resort, Otsego Club & Resort, and The Loon Golf Resort anchor a destination that is dotted with top designs by such great architects as Tom Fazio, Robert Trent Jones Jr., Rees Jones, Tom Doak, Gary Koch, and Rick Smith just to name a few. D Below you'll find a brief synopsis of all that Gaylord has to offer.

Where to Play

Treetops Resort, with its 81 holes of golf lead by Michigan's only Tom Fazio designed course features other strong designs by Robert Trent Jones Sr. and resorts owner, Rick Smith, who designed three of his own courses including the popular and nationally acclaimed Par 3 course - Threetops. From 1999-2007, ESPN broadcast the two-day event that pitted four of the game's greats against each other in a skins format par-3 contest. In 2001, Lee Trevino, made the richest swing in the history of professional golf, acing the par-3 7th hole for a one million dollar payout.

The Otsego Club & Resort is led by the nationally recognized Tribute course, designed by NBC golf commentator Gary Koch, and the player friendly Classic Course. Just down the road from Otsego Club are Black Forest and Wilderness Valley. Black Forest, designed by Tom Doak - arguably the World's most sought after golf course designer today - has been nationally ranked and very popular among golf aficionados.

Golfers will also be excited to know that The Loon Golf Resort is the Michigan home of the Butch Harman School of Golf, one of the top golf schools in the country. Harmon, the #1 golf instructor in the world, works with such top players as Phil Mickelson and Natalie Gulbis, and has made numerous appearances to the school over the summer months.

The Gaylord Golf Mecca also features such top stand-alone facilities as Black Lake Golf Club designed by Rees Jones, the "Open Doctor", Elk Ridge, Marsh Ridge, and Michaywe Pines. For those looking for an affordable option in Gaylord make sure to check out Black Bear, Gaylord Country Club, Mountain Lakes, and The Natural.

In conclusion, the Gaylord Golf Mecca offers something for everyone - top-notch public courses, exquisite fine and casual dining, award-winning resorts and quaint inns. It's an experience golfers of all skills and tastes can enjoy. For more information, visit or call (800) 345-8621.

Getting There

There are many options when traveling to Gaylord, Michigan. Obviously you drive from all points or take the high speed ferry from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Muskegon, Michigan and then drive the remaining three hours northeast to Gaylord. It is roughly a three and half hour drive from the Detroit Airport.

Best Time to Go

Anytime between late May and late September is ideal! During June and July you can easily play 54 holes with close to 16 hours of light per day. The fall colors of late September through mid-October are amazing as well!

Eats and Treats

The two local favorites and must visits for your buddy trip:

Big Buck Brewery and Steakhouse, Gaylord- homemade brews, nachos, fish fry's etc.

TreeTops Sports Bar, Wilkinson - amazing pizza, wings, and bar food favorites!

More Information

Please visit or call (800) 345-8621 to learn more about their affordable packages.

The Remaining Courses of the Gaylord Golf Mecca

Black Bear GC -
Black Forest -
Black Lake GC -
Elk Ridge GC -
Gaylord Country Club -
Loon Golf Resort (The Lakes) -
Marsh Ridge Resort-
Michawye Pines -
Otsego Club (2 Courses) -
TreeTops Resort (4 Courses) -
The Natural GC-
Wilderness Valley -


Revised: 01/22/2013 - Article Viewed 21,150 Times

About: Brian Weis

Brian Weis Brian Weis is the Publisher of, a network of golf travel and directory sites including,,,, etc. Professionally, Brian is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA), International Network of Golf (ING), Golf Travel Writers of America (GTWA), International Golf Travel Writers Association (IGTWA) and The Society of Hickory Golfers (SoHG). In 2016, Brian won The Shaheen Cup, an award given to a golf travel writer by his peers.

All of his life, Brian has been around the game of golf. As a youngster, Brian competed at all levels in junior and high school golf. Brian had a zero chance for a college golf scholarship, so he worked on the grounds crew at West Bend Country Club to pay for his University of Wisconsin education. In his adult years, his passion for the game collided with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 2004 launched In 2007, the idea for a network of local golf directory sites formed and was born. Today, the network consists of a site in all 50 states supported by national sites like, and It is an understatement to say, Brian is passionate about promoting golf and golf travel on a local, regional, national and international level.

On the golf course, Brian is known as a fierce weekend warrior that fluctuates between a 5-9 handicap. With a soft fade, known as "The Weis Slice", and booming 300+ drives, he can blast it out of bounds with the best of them.

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