Number one with a bullet – The Black Course at Bethpage State Park makes nearly every list of the best courses on the planet and should be first on your itinerary when in New York. The 1936 vintage design by A.W. Tillinghast was the first publicly owned and operated course to host the U.S. Open in 2002. The Black now has two Opens under its belt, and will host the upcoming 2019 PGA Championship, making it destination worthy for pros and duffers alike. Playing the course is a bucket list round, but players should consider waiting until their game is ready. A famous sign on the first tee reads: "Warning – The Black Course Is An Extremely Difficult Course Which We Recommend Only For Highly Skilled Golfers." It’s not a joke, at nearly 7,500 yards; the course is a long, toothy beast. Miss the fairway, and prudence will dictate hitting a wedge back in to play. Many of the approaches are to elevated greens and serve as a test to even the most gifted shot makers. The Black is a long walk and doesn't allow carts, so be sure to wear your most comfortable golf shoes and call ahead for a caddy to help keep you out of the notoriously thick rough.
More info: About 50 minutes from Midtown, a weekend round for non-New York State residents runs $150.
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