Photo courtesy of Bill Sandke

Coronado Municipal Golf Course, Coronado

Hotel Del Coronado

At $25 a round, the Coronado Municipal Golf Course (CMGC) is, by far, the best golfing value in San Diego County.

Stretched like a necklace along the San Diego Harbor and Glorietta Bay, this course offers more than the natural beauty of Coronado.

For new golfers, it delights the senses with lush fairways and harbor views and for experienced ones, there is a bit of a challenge.

The first three holes might fool the first-time visitor into thinking this is like any other muni course because they are laid down side-by-side, similar to city courses of old, but from the fourth hole on, Coronado can become a roller coaster ride.

There is definitely a feeling of "something must be up" when you keep pulling out your long irons on the approach shots and you will soon realize the architect of this course actually knew what he was doing.

At times, it feels like Donald Ross, the venerable golf designer who laid out the Wellshire course in Denver in 1928 might have had his hand in the mix when the Coronado course was built in 1957.

Ross was known for his clever use of terrain to "fool" the player and there is more at work at CMGC than mere harbor breezes can explain.

Also, as in the Wellshire design, fairly easy holes (like number nine) look hard and difficult holes (like number twelve) look easy.

It all adds up to a thoroughly satisfying day of golf and the nineteenth hole is every bit as enjoyable as the rest of the course.

The only downsides of playing Coronado are the artificial mats on the practice range and the long wait if you don't have a tee time.

The mats are understandable; real estate is at a premium on Coronado Island.

As for the wait, get to Coronado and put your name in early. Then you can take your time to enjoy one of the best breakfast offerings in Southern California.

If you are planning a golf tournament, plan ahead. The course offers group outings on most Fridays and the well-appointed clubhouse can easily accommodate players for most tournaments.

However, because of high demand, the course should be booked well in advance of your outing.

For inquiries about tournaments and events, contact Jamie Darnell, events coordinator, at 619.435.3121 Ext. 102.

Coronado Municipal Golf Course
2000 Visalia Row
Coronado, CA 92118