The 4 Best Golf Courses in Southern Arizona

If you want to golf during your retirement in Southern Arizona, here are the best courses in the area.

The best golf courses in Southern Arizona easily hold their own with the best in Scottsdale and Phoenix—the places most people associate with the best golf in Arizona. You could easily draw up a list of the best ten, or even twenty, golf courses in Southern Arizona, and none of them would disappoint.

Southern Arizona also has a better climate for golf than Scottsdale and Phoenix. Being at a higher elevation, it’s usually a few degrees cooler on average, and this can make a difference in the summer when temperatures regularly get above 100 degrees. Tucson, for example, has an elevation of about 2,300 feet. That makes it about 1,300 feet higher than Phoenix, and some of its best golf courses are higher still in the foothills of the local mountains.

Here’s our selection of five of the best golf courses in Southern Arizona, given in alphabetical order. They include private, semi-private, and public courses.

The Gallery Golf Club

The Gallery is a private club east of Marana and about a 30-minute drive north of Tucson. It has an elevation of almost 2,800 feet, and its two 18-hole championship courses have won many awards.

The Gallery has spectacular views over the surrounding desert and mountains with hundreds of giant saguaro cacti visible all around, including along the courses themselves. Both courses are par 72; the South Course was designed by John Fought, and the North Course was designed by Fought and Tom Lehman.

One notable feature is that the North Course’s Hole 9 is the longest par-5 hole in North America, measuring at 725 yards. The North Course was also voted best in Southwest Arizona by Golf Digest, and the South Course has been nominated in Golf Digest’s Best 100 Courses in the USA.

The Gallery Restaurant is the club’s fine dining choice, while there’s also a Bar and Lounge with live music on weekends. In addition, the Sports Club has an outdoor pool, illuminated tennis and pickleball courts, fitness and yoga classes, and a spa. It also has running, hiking, and cycling clubs. If you want to try out The Gallery, they have an option to be a guest for a day.

Sewailo Golf Club

The Sewailo Golf Club is a public course that’s part of the Casino del Sol Resort, run by the Pascua Yaqui Tribe. Sewailo means ‘Land Where Flowers Grow’ in the Pascua Yaqui language. The resort is about a 20-minute drive southwest of Downtown Tucson where the Tucson urban area ends and the Arizona desert begins.

The course was designed by the former PGA Tour professional and golf course designer, Notah Begay III, along with Ty Butler. The two produced a course that blends the natural desert landscape with cultivated land, lakes, and streams. The result is a course of over 7,400 yards that has five tee boxes at each of the 18 holes to cater to golfers of all abilities.

Ventana Canyon Golf and Racquet Club

Ventana Canyon is consistently rated among the best golf courses in Southern Arizona, and it’s one of the most scenic in the whole state. It’s set in the foothills of the Santa Catalina Mountains at the northeastern edge of the Tucson area and about a 30-minute drive from the center of Tucson. The very popular Sabino Canyon Recreation Area is a 5-minute drive away.

This private country club has two 18-hole courses, both designed by Tom Fazio, which make full use of the impressive mountain backdrop. There are four sets of tees at each hole, practice facilities, and a pro shop. The club also has several golf professionals available for private lessons, and you can book half-day and full-day lessons that also allow you to experience the resort itself. The resort also has many other sporting amenities in addition to a AAA 4-Diamond hotel with 50 suites.

Weston La Paloma Resort and Country Club

The La Paloma Country Club is also northeast of Tucson, about a 25-minute drive from downtown and close to the Santa Catalina Mountains. The Sabino Canyon Recreation Area, where the mountains begin, is a 10-minute drive away.

This is another very scenic course that makes full use of the desert landscape of the Catalina foothills. The 27-hole course was designed by Jack Nicklaus, and it’s made up of three 9-hole courses. One of these, the Ridge Course, has been called the most scenic nine holes in Southern Arizona as it has elevated tees that provide breathtaking views of the mountain and desert. There are also extensive practice facilities, including two putting greens as well as a large number of pro staff available for advice and lessons. The country club also has two pools, tennis courts, an athletics club, a spa, and several dining options.

Can you spot the $207,744 difference between these identical homes?

Financing is the difference!

Get the details in The 62+ Loan Homebuyers Guide.

55places Mortgage is a joint venture between Mutual of Omaha Mortgage and
Details here.

We're here to help! (800) 928-2055

Call us to speak with a customer service representative.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Get Weekly Updates

I agree that 55places and its affiliates, partner providers or agents may call, text, or email me about my inquiry, which may be made with automated means. I understand that my consent is not a prerequisite for buying a property. I may revoke my consent at any time by contacting Message/data rates may apply. I also agree to’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

The Best Places to Snowbird in 2021

We’ve gathered 25 of the best places for snowbirds, including cities in Florida, Arizona, California, Texas, South Carolina, and Nevada. For each entry, we’ve also provided a list of recommended 55+ communities in the area. If you’re ready to find your own winter retreat this season, here are some of the best places to consider.

A group of 55+ adults discuss activities at adult communities.

Is Assisted Living or a 55+ Community Right for You?

As you weigh your choices, two of the ones to consider are assisted living and adult active communities. But how do you know which one is right for you? Let’s take a look at what each of them has to offer and how to pick the one that will meet your needs.

Closed up on a tiny wood home model on green grass with sunlight background.

This Month in Real Estate: A Housing Market Summary

The housing market continued to see a growing trend through the month of August. For 55+ homebuyers, there’s some competition still and some changes to look out for as the summer ends.

About 55places

We’re changing the way people 55 and older are searching for their perfect next place. With a national network of hand-selected real estate experts, plus comprehensive information, unbiased content, and on-the-go insight about thousands of communities across the country, we’re a trusted resource paving the way from here to home. Whether you’re interested in a low-maintenance single-level residence, an active lifestyle or age-qualified community, an intimate enclave, or anything in between, we can help you make your next move the best one yet.

Scroll to Top