North Berwick Golf Club West Links: Course Review, Green Fees, Tee Times and Key Info

Although imitation is often attempted, North Berwick is a unique course. It’s natural and pure links golf with some of the most memorable holes in the country.

An overhead view of the West Links at North Berwick
(Image credit: Getty Images - David Cannon)

Top 100 Courses UK & Ireland 2023/24

(Image credit: Future)

North Berwick Golf Club West Links Key Information

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Row 0 - Cell 0 Row 0 - Cell 1
AddressNew Club House, Beach Road, North Berwick, East Lothian, EH39 4BB
Phone Number01620 895040
Green Fees£110 - £200
Visitor TimesMonday to Friday 11.00am - 12.10pm, 1.30pm to 3.30pm, Sunday – 1.30pm to 3.40pm, (Those playing 36 holes on any weekday may tee off from 10:00, subject to availability)
Slope Rating131. (Black), 130 (White), 127 (Blue), 121 (Red), 141 (Women's White), 138 (Women's Blue), 134 (Women's Red)
OpenedFrom 1832
Designed byJohn Whitecross, Tom Morris, Davie Strath, Tom Anderson, Ben Sayers
Golf Monthly Verdict

North Berwick - Hole 18

(Image credit: Rob Smith)

A pure joy to play. It’s largely a traditional out and back links with the sea in play on six holes. It’s quirky with walls running through fairways, raised greens, sunken greens, barmy greens like the two-part 16th and just brilliant greens like that on the much-copied 15th “Redan. But it’s not overly quirky and the varied holes deliver a complete test of your game.


– Hugely characterful and much copied links course

– Beautiful setting playing out and back into town with views of the Firth of Forth and the Bass Rock

– One of Scotland's most natural feeling links courses


UK & Ireland Top 100 Golf Courses 2023/24 - 29

The West Links at North Berwick, on the golf-rich East Lothian coast, is living proof that the design philosophies of a bygone era can still be very much part of the modern game.

Indeed, many would argue that the challenges of some of the quirkier elements of this wonderful old links are exactly what the game is missing in certain quarters.

The club was founded in 1832, but golf has been played here on the Firth of Forth from the 17th century.

Beginning and ending in the town centre, the West Links feels as though it’s a part of North Berwick. It’s a similar symbiosis to that at St Andrews and, as with the “Old Grey Toon,” North Berwick has a great sense of history and is undoubtedly one of the best golf courses in East Lothian.

The course delivers characterful and incredibly natural links golf. Bunkers, burns, humps, hollows and even dry stone dykes must be negotiated as one makes their way around this very special course.

It's a course that lends itself to fun. You find yourself creating shots and facing some very difficult putts and chips. North Berwick doesn’t try and beat you up, for example, the bunkers are all shallow enough to advance out of. It relies on the atmosphere and your own mental weakness to create difficulty. It is an extremely clever course. Risk reward also plays a big factor, with several holes bordering the beach itself.

Although every hole at North Berwick is worthy of comment, the stretch of holes from the 13th to the 15th really grabs the attention.  The 13th “Pit” features a green sunken behind a wall, the 14th “Perfection” requires two precise shots and, with its sloping green, the par-3 15th “Redan” is one of the most copied short holes in world golf.

Those with a slice will need to pay particular attention to the beach on the 1st and rows of parked cars on the tantalisingly reachable finale.

The West Links at North Berwick is unique and it’s a course that all true lovers of seaside golf should make a point of visiting at least once.

North Berwick

The 4th at North Berwick
(Image credit: Getty Images)

What The Top 100 Panel Said

John Slater UK&I Top 100 panel
John Slater

A figure of 8 layout, out and back: so you see the sea half the time going out and coming home. The famous holes will divide opinion – the blind approach at 1, 2 and 14, the need to pitch over a wall at 13, the deep gully in the green at 16. But the 15th (Redan) is quite simply great. All the holes have difficulty and errors are soundly punished. It's a brilliant place to visit.

Richard Healy UK&I Top 100 panel
Richard Healy

There are some impressive and unique features that make it fascinating and perplexing, swift up-turned greens are protected by huge run offs feeding stern bunkers and vast swales. I was welcomed as a member for a day, I loved the old style features you don’t get on modern courses. What a fabulous experience.

North Berwick Golf Club West Links Location

North Berwick Golf Club West Links Green Fees

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1st Apr - 31st Oct 2023£200
Return rate within 5 days£95
1st Nov - 21st Dec 2023£110

Contact the club through their website for further information on visiting.

Best Courses Near to North Berwick Golf Club West Links


<a href="" data-link-merchant=""">GULLANE NO. 1

The course begins on the very edge of the town of Gullane before forging uphill towards the high point at the 6th and 7th holes where the views down to Aberlady Bay and beyond are spellbinding.

The wind plays its part in any round here, particularly up on the plateau, it’s a great test of golf.


<a href="" data-link-merchant=""">MUIRFIELD

Effectively playing as two loops of nine holes, with the wind coming at the player from every point on the compass during the round, Muirfield is a simply fabulous design, providing a stringent examination of every aspect of the game, both physical and mental.

Best Places to Stay Near North Berwick Golf Club West Links

Marine, North Berwick - Book now at
Recently upgraded, this excellent hotel is set right on the edge of the West Links. A historic building, it's stylish and comfortable with excellent dining and a revamped spa facility.

Nether Abbey Hotel, North Berwick - Book now at
Right in the centre of North Berwick, the Nether Abbey is very convenient for the golf course and the other attractions of the town. Bedrooms are en-suite and there's a great full Scottish breakfast to be had.

North Berwick Golf Club West Links Course Gallery

North Berwick Golf Club West Links Historical Top 100 Ranking UK&I

  • 2023/24 - 29
  • 2021/22 - 30
  • 2019/20 - 29
  • 2017/18 - 26
  • 2015/16 - 28
  • 2013/14 - 31
  • 2011/12 - 34
  • 2009/10 - 38

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need a handicap to play at North Berwick?

Advice on the North Berwick website says the following: "As we are a true championship course the test you will face reflects this. As a result, the course is not suitable for inexperienced golfers. All golfers should have a handicap of no more than 24 for gentlemen and 36 for ladies. Please arrive at the Starters Lodge with a paper or electronic copy of your certificate."

Is there a dress code at North Berwick?

On the course North Berwick expects formal golfing attire, including the wearing of golf shoes or training shoes. The rule of thumb being, if it can be purchased in a Professionals Shop then that is acceptable.

In the Clubhouse, smart jeans (no rips/ holes) and training shoes are welcome along with formal golfing attire.

Has North Berwick ever hosted The Open?

No. But it is a championship course that has hosted many significant events over the years. It has been used in Final Qualifying for The Open and has been co-host to the Amateur Championship. It has hosted the Ladies British Amateur Strokeplay.

Fergus Bisset
Contributing Editor

Fergus is Golf Monthly's resident expert on the history of the game and has written extensively on that subject. He is a golf obsessive and 1-handicapper. Growing up in the North East of Scotland, golf runs through his veins and his passion for the sport was bolstered during his time at St Andrews university studying history. He went on to earn a post graduate diploma from the London School of Journalism. Fergus has worked for Golf Monthly since 2004 and has written two books on the game; "Great Golf Debates" together with Jezz Ellwood of Golf Monthly and the history section of "The Ultimate Golf Book" together with Neil Tappin , also of Golf Monthly. 

Fergus once shanked a ball from just over Granny Clark's Wynd on the 18th of the Old Course that struck the St Andrews Golf Club and rebounded into the Valley of Sin, from where he saved par. Who says there's no golfing god?