For the traditionalists, there is nothing better than hitting the links and enjoying a relaxing round of golf with friends or family. But for those of you that like a little adventure or perhaps experiencing something new, perhaps the thought of trying out one of the coolest new sports is appealing. FootGolf is a combination of “football” (or soccer as it’s known in the US) and “golf” and we think we have found the perfect place to experience this – Glenlakes Golf Club in Foley, Alabama. The Gulf Coast may be home to 32 miles of pristine, sandy beaches but it’s also home to Glenlakes, offering a fun-filled attraction for all the family to enjoy!
Whether you are an avid golfer or simply want to try something new, Glenlakes is undoubtedly the perfect place to experience. During our recent visit to Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, we figured it was time to try something new. We LOVE experiencing the best golf courses on the Gulf Coast and have thoroughly enjoyed our visits to Peninsula, Craft Farms and Kiva Dunes but when looking for something new, Glenlakes is the place to go. If you plan your itinerary accordingly, you can experience the best of both sports and enjoy a round of golf and FootGolf at the same time! That’s the beauty of paying a visit to Glenlakes Golf Club.
Let’s take a look at why the Gulf Coast has quickly become a golfing haven along with a hotspot for one of the trendiest new sports that is perfect for friends and family to enjoy. The real beauty of FootGolf is that you don’t ever need to have played this before and you can have just as much fun as those seasoned professionals (that’s right, despite being a relatively new sport, there is already a professional FootGolf league with the American FootGolf Federation).
What is FootGolf?
FootGolf…it’s pretty simple really…it’s a combination of football and golf! That’s right, the aim of this game is to kick a soccer ball into a hole in the fewest number of kicks possible. Simple right? Well, theoretically yes but there are still some intricacies involved for those of you that want to get a little serious with this game.
If you love golf and have a little competitive edge running through your veins, the same will likely transfer over to FootGolf as you will have aspirations of being a combination of the next Tiger Woods and David Beckham. Whether you “bend it like Beckham” or prefer to hit a “Tiger stinger”, the concept of FootGolf is just as simple as it sounds.
There are a few rules that you will likely want to follow but generally speaking, it’s a game all of the family can understand and enjoy. Without going into the intricate rules and regulations, here are a few key things you should remember:
- You start each hole by kicking the ball from the designated tee box. The starting kick (and subsequent kicks) can only be made from the ground (i.e. you cannot kick the ball from your hands).
- Similar to traditional golf rules, a ball that is deemed to be unplayable can be moved (or taken from the original position) but with the penalty of one stroke (or kick).
- Water hazards – as with golf, you can try and “fish out” your ball but you will be kicking your next ball with a penalty stroke added.
FootGolf at Glenlakes Golf Club
What better way to start your day at Glenlakes Golf Club than by heading over to the 9 hole Lakes course and enjoy a round of 18 holes of FootGolf. Whether you choose to play the actual golf course later or simply want to enjoy the 18 FootGolf holes that have been carefully designed among the fairways, this is a challenging yet rewarding experience that all the family can enjoy.
Either bring your own soccer ball or rent one for $1 inside the clubhouse before heading over to the first tee to test your football and golfing skills on the Lakes course. Cart rentals are available for $10 but this is certainly the perfect way to get some exercise and walk the FootGolf course – plus, we think you will find it much easier to navigate your way through the course if you choose to walk.
You will quickly find that if you consider yourself to be a good golfer, this doesn’t immediately translate into you being good at FootGolf. Yes, the concept is the same but it’s a completely different experience and you don’t have 15 clubs to rely on…just your trusty right or left foot to try and get the soccer ball inside the hole.
As you wind your way through the course that is interwoven among the trees, you will likely realize that “putting” the soccer ball into the hole is the trickiest aspect of FootGolf. A plethora of trees add another layer of difficulty to many of the holes but just as with putting on greens, you need to take into consideration the undulations and conditions before trying to kick the perfect putt!
Enjoy 27 Holes of Traditional Links
While Glenlakes Golf Club offers the unique FootGolf experience, it’s also worth noting that this location is home to 27 holes that will test every standard of golfer. Whether you choose to play the 9-hole Lakes course before or after the FootGolf experience, I highly recommend considering heaving over to the 18-hole Vista-Dunes complex which offers the ultimate test and is certainly one of the best golfing encounters on the Gulf Coast.
Designed by renowned players and architects Bruce Devlin and Robert Von Hagge, Glenlakes offers an “engaging Alabama golf experience” that everyone is sure to enjoy. At just under 7000 yards, the Vista-Dunes 18-hole layout offers a unique blend of Scottish style links, with a number of natural features that you would likely associate with a course deep in the Scottish Highlands.
The undulating fairways and greens create a challenging layout for all standards, while the pièce de résistance feature hole is perhaps the 7th on the Dunes course. A par 5 which epitomizes the “risk reward” ideology that create the perfect long hole.
If you hit a long, straight tee shot, you will be faced with a tough decision as to whether to layup or hit the shot of a lifetime over water to the green. This is one of many holes that will leave you thinking about which shot to hit, but this reflects on the unique design and why Glenlakes is such a popular golf course in the Gulf Coast region.
Visit the Bunker Cafe
After a long day at Glenlakes testing your skills at FootGolf and sampling some of the finest links on the Gulf, head inside the clubhouse to visit the Bunker Cafe and indulge in stereotypical Gulf Coast fare. Whether you are intrigued by the thought of devouring a Fish Po-Boy or perhaps a burger, there is something for every appetite. For those of you looking for a quick bite to eat midway through your round, why not order a “Turn Sandwich” which is freshly prepared and the perfect snack as you head into the back nine.
Are you ready for a fun-filled family experience? Are you looking for something an little different to enjoy on your next trip to the Gulf Coast? Head to Glenlakes Golf Course and enjoy one of the trendiest new sports across the globe – FootGolf. We thoroughly enjoyed playing both FootGolf and regular golf at Glenlakes and honestly, regardless of which sport you prefer, you can have an amazing experience at this location.