Royal Aberdeen Golf Club

Links Road, Bridge of Don,

Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire AB23 8AT

  • Office

    +44 (0)1224 702 571
  • Pro shop

    +44 (0)1224 702 571
  • Fax

    +44 (0)1224 826 591
  • Golf pro

    David Ross (Head PGA Professional).

About the course

  • The Course:

    18 holes. Seaside links. Undulating terrain - a few slopes to climb.

  • Surroundings:

    Coastal duneland.

  • Designer:

    Originally designed in 1888 by the Simpson Brothers (Archie & Robert) of Carnoustie. Later re-bunkered and lengthened by James Braid. Donald Steel has made recent alterations.

SSS or slope

At the same location:

Also at Royal Aberdeen is the 18-hole Silverburn Course (par-61; 4021 yds).






How to get there:

2 miles N of Aberdeen

From the bridge over the River Don in the north of Aberdeen, follow the A90 north for 150 yards and turn right into Links Rd at the first set of traffic lights. After 100 yards turn left (still Links Rd). Clubhouse is 200 yards straight ahead.

Royal Aberdeen Golf Club (Balgownie Links)

4-PLUS: Must play course - excellent standard; worthy of 4½ stars.

Est. 1780

Royal Aberdeen Golf Club (Balgownie Links): For several generations, the historic Balgownie Links at Royal Aberdeen has provided a demanding test for top-level professionals and amateurs alike. Here you'll find a classic links layout that goes out through the dunes and comes back along a plateau. Within the course's natural eco-system, rich turf and tight rolling fairways are a delight to behold, but at times intimidating to play.

The front-nine hugs the North Sea shoreline, and is played through an impressive area of sand dunes ... as challenging and satisfying a stretch of links golf holes as you'll ever play. Wonderful North Sea views from elevated tee-boxes, tightish fairways and uncompromising rough are here in abundance. Balgownie's legendary reputation is further enhanced by its superb greens, often nestling down and ringed by deep pot bunkers.

The back-nine is different in appearance and nature from the seaward holes, with less undulating terrain characterising the holes. On the inward stretch blind tee shots, hidden troughs and mercurial greens come to the fore. The concluding three holes form an excellent 4-3-4 finish, with the par-3 17th played to a long three-tiered green, and the good-length 18th a great example of disguised difficulty.

List of courses: Scotland - North East


Who can play and when?

Visitors welcome at various times on weekdays, and after 3:30 pm on weekends.

Must book in advance. Maximum handicap: 24 (on Balgownie Links). Proof of handicap required.

Green fees

Visitor fee, 18-holes in high season (mid-May thru' mid-Oct) on the Balgownie Links: £215 (all days).

Contact club for full details, discounts, packages, etc. [Last updated: 2023].

Other information

Players generally walk this course. Limited availability of caddies (must be booked in advance).

Practice facilities


Did you know?

As the world's sixth oldest golf club, it is no surprise to find that Royal Aberdeen is brimming with history and golfing firsts. The 5-minute rule for searching for a lost ball is attributed to Royal Aberdeen, and there are those who claim it as the first place that golf was ever played!

Edward VII conferred the Royal prefix on Aberdeen GC in 1903, based on the earlier patronage of the club in 1872 by Queen Victoria's fourth oldest son Prince Leopold. By royal prerogative, 10 Scottish golf clubs use the "Royal" title, namely: Aberdeen, Royal & Ancient (St Andrews), Burgess, Dornoch, Duff House, Montrose, Musselburgh, Perth, Tarlair and Troon.

Published ranking

Scotland's 17th best course (Golf World, 2022).
Britain & Ireland's 34th best course (Golf World, 2022).
World's 56th best public access course (Golf World, 2023).


  • The Marcliffe Hotel & Spa5-star

    North Deeside Road, Pitfodels, Aberdeen AB15 9YA.

    +44 (0)1224 861 000

    Visit website

    Set in its own picturesque grounds on the outskirts of the historic city of Aberdeen, The Marcliffe Hotel & Spa at Pitfodels is a five-star Scottish country hotel offering 40 luxury guest rooms and suites. Since its official opening in 1993 by Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev, this luxury hotel has earned wide acclaim as an ideal base for exploring the many riches that North-east Scotland offers ... not least an excellent array of world-class coastal and inland golf courses that includes Royal Aberdeen, Cruden Bay and Trump Aberdeen. The hotel is a member of the coveted Small Luxury Hotels of the World collection.

    • Golf at this hotel:


    • Golf within 5 miles:

      Deeside; Royal Aberdeen (6 mi).

    • Golf within 20 miles:

      Murcar; Newmachar; Trump Intl; Newburgh-on-Ythan; Banchory; Meldrum House.

  • Ardoe House Hotel4-star

    South Deeside Road, Blairs, Aberdeen AB12 5YP

    +44 (0)1224 398 801

    Visit website

    The Ardoe House Hotel & Spa is set in a 19th century Scottish Baronial style mansion house, surrounded by 30 acres of tranquil countryside. This 4 star Aberdeen hotel is three miles outside the city centre, and has 119 traditionally decorated guest rooms. You can enjoy fine dining in Blairs Restaurant or a nightcap in Soapie's Lounge Bar. The spa has luxurious treatment rooms as well as an indoor heated pool and fitness room.

    • Golf at this hotel:


    • Golf within 5 miles:


    • Golf within 20 miles:

      Royal Aberdeen; Murcar; Trump Intl; Newburgh; Banchory.

Find a course



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(May 30-June 2).

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Stay&Play at Prince's: excellent onsite Lodge accommodation available

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