How Can I Play Harbour Town?

We explore the options for playing the RBC Heritage course in South Carolina

The fourth green at Harbour Town at Hilton Head, South Carolina
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Harbour Town, which hosts the PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage, is viewed by many as the crowning glory of Peter Dye. The celebrated designer, who is also responsible for TPC Sawgrass and Austin Country Club, didn’t build this links course with the world’s biggest hitters in mind, though. Instead, it’s ideal for those who rely on guile. 

The South Carolina course is one of the most loved on the PGA Tour and one of the best golf courses in the Carolinas. Thanks largely to the 18th hole, it’s one of the most recognisable, too. Built in 1967, the par-71 7,191-yard course, which is part of the Sea Pines Resort, is known for its narrow fairways and overhanging trees, including oaks and pines. 

It’s a course that requires strategic tee shots and lay-ups to truly master, with those unforgiving fairways, its water features, bunkers and small greens leaving little margin for error. Meanwhile, if you’ve successfully navigated the first 16 holes, don’t get complacent on the final two – the wind off the Calibogue Sound channel is always a consideration. On the 18th, you can even play shots off the sand on the channel's banks at low tide, although the water line varies depending on the time you play. 

The par-4 18th is the course’s most recognisable hole. Guarded by the sound on the left, the right of the fairway is marked by out-of-bounds stakes, while ahead is the famous red-and-white striped lighthouse as you make your way towards the green. Overall, the course is challenging and picturesque, making it one of the most memorable on the PGA Tour. 

The 18th hole at Harbour Town, with the lighthouse in the background

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The good news is it’s open to the public, so securing a round at the course is not difficult. One of the best ways to play Harbour Town is by booking a stay at Sea Pines Resort. There are several packages, including the Villa Golf Package, which includes a three-night stay with rounds at Harbour Town and the resort’s other courses, Heron Point and Atlantic Dunes. It costs from $335 per golfer per night. You can also play a round without staying at the resort. Green fees range between around $189 and $359, depending on the season.

The considerably more expensive way to play any of the resort’s three courses is to become a member. However, with initiation fees reportedly between $25,000 and $50,000, and annual dues between $10,000 and $15,000, most people will opt to either stay at the resort or arrange a one-off round.

How Much Is A Round At Harbour Town Golf Links?

Green fees range between $189 and $359 depending on the season. Alternatively, you can book a stay at Sea Pines Resort, with packages available from $335 per golfer per night. A membership at Sea Pines Resort reportedly comes with an initiation fee of between $25,000 and $50,000, with annual dues of between $10,000 and $15,000.

When Was Harbour Town Golf Links Built?

The course opened in 1967 and was designed by Peter Dye in consultation with Jack Nicklaus. It has hosted the RBC Heritage since 1969 (when it was called the Heritage Golf Classic). Arnold Palmer won the tournament in its inaugural year.

Mike Hall
Mike Hall

Mike has 25 years of experience in journalism, including writing on sports such as golf, football and cricket. Now a freelance writer for Golf Monthly, he is dedicated to covering the sport’s most newsworthy stories. Originally from East Yorkshire, Mike now resides in Canada, where the nearest course is less than a mile from his home. It’s there where he remains confident that, one of these days, he’ll play the 17th without finding the water. Kevin Cook’s acclaimed 2007 biography, Tommy’s Honour, about golf’s founding father and son, remains one of his all-time favourite sports books.