Royal Wimbledon Golf Club Course Review

Royal Wimbledon is the third oldest club in England and its heathland course is an excellent Harry Colt design

The par-3 17th at Royal Wimbledon - the final one of four excellent and very attractive short holes
(Image credit: Rob Smith)

Royal Wimbledon is the third oldest club in England and its heathland course is an excellent Harry Colt design

Royal Wimbledon Golf Club Course Review

The historic club at Wimbledon was founded in 1865 and granted Royal status 17 years later.

By then, club professional Tom Dunn had extended its original course to 18 holes.

Harry Colt, a member here, designed the course we play today, and it opened for play in 1924.

The clubhouse with its lovely veranda - the Pro’ Shop is to the right

From the charming and characterful clubhouse, you head to the first tee past the enormous practice green and the chipping green.

The par is 70, and the course is nearing the end of an extensive, long-term upgrade by Tom Mackenzie.

This has focussed on trees and bunkering, and the result is far more visual and photogenic.

The green on the opening hole with the sixth tee beyond

The course is very highly rated and has featured in the Golf Monthly rankings for many years and is both one of the best golf courses in London and best golf courses in Surrey.

The Front Nine

It opens with a quartet of testing par 4s; the 1st a pronounced left-to-right dogleg where a 4 is almost one up on the card.

The first short hole comes at the fifth

The next three, all testing two-shotters, head down and then back up again before you come to the very pretty par-3 5th.

Not particularly long, it is arguably the first real chance of a birdie.

A sea of heather awaits on the tee of the par-5 seventh

A tempting short par 4 comes next, before a reachable par 5 that is slightly downhill raises the hopes still higher.

The eighth is a tough par 3, 213 yards to a sloping green

The 8th is the toughest of the four par 3s, stroke index 4 and usually calling for a long iron or wood.

Even if you make it, three putting is all too easy as the perilous green is more than 40 yards long.

The driveable par-4 ninth is extremely well protected by bunkers and run-offs

The front nine concludes with another short par 4, one that is greatly improved by the recent changes and requires far more than sheer brute force.

The approach to the par-4 eleventh with its 5- or even 6-club green

The Back Nine

The 10th is the second of just two par 5s, and the 11th heads down to a green that MacKenzie has increased in length to getting on for 60 yards.

The 12th is a cracking, left-to-right, long par 4 with a scary Road Hole-style bunker in front that will catch any mis-hit approach.

The par-3 thirteenth - not long, but with plenty of trouble surrounding

The 13th is the first short hole on the back nine and its green was once shared with that on the 17th.

Three tough par 4s in the valley will test the long game and are the final holes being upgraded.

The final short hole is a real beauty surrounded by seven deep and tricky bunkers

You then reach the shortest hole on the course - the picture-perfect, short-iron 17th.

The closing hole offers a real birdie chance if you can find the green with your approach

The final hole is a strategic, short par 4; play just right of the bunkers and there is every chance of a par or better.

Royal Wimbledon is home to an absolutely delightful course with endless variety and interest, presented in excellent shape.

The recent improvements have transformed its appearance, and it is a course that any keen golfer will fully enjoy.

Rob Smith
Contributing Editor

Rob Smith has been playing golf for 45 years and been a contributing editor for Golf Monthly since 2012. He specialises in course reviews and travel, and has played more than 1,200 courses in almost 50 countries. In 2022, he played all 21 courses in East Lothian in 13 days. Last year, his tally was 81, 32 of them for the first time. One of Rob's primary roles is helping to prepare the Top 100 and Next 100 Courses of the UK&I, of which he has played all but seven and a half... i.e. not the new 9 at Carne! Of those missing, some are already booked for 2024. He is a member of Tandridge in Surrey where his handicap hovers around 16. You can contact him at