Course Spotlight: Moody Gardens delivers thrilling golf on the Texas coast
March 31, 2021
Playing golf is a beautiful and light affair, and one that we usually associate more with Florida or Mississippi or Alabama. Texas has a handful of plays right on the coast, and none are more convenient in a major metro area than the Moody Gardens Golf Course in Galveston, Texas.
Moody Gardens is a well-known attraction on this historic barrier island about an hour from downtown Houston. It is also the only publicly accessible start time at the destination. This Texas golf resort has a legendary aquarium and tropical rainforest. Just keep an eye out when you arrive on the island for the three glass pyramids.
Not long after expanding their property to include a hotel and convention center, Moody Gardens acquired the existing municipal golf course on the other side of the small airport and invested more than $ 16 million in an extensive conversion of the golf course to build it. to make. drier and more fun to play. Opened in 2008, golf course architects Peter Jacobsen and Jim Hardy transformed the old layout into something very left, inspired by rolling and rippling fairways and the gulf sea breeze blowing from the wave. They also installed wall-to-wall paspalum grass, which is more saltwater tolerant and also promotes fun ground play (recommended in the wind here). Aside from a few forced carries, most greens are amenable to lower-running ground shots. Three par 5's up front, including a fairly soft opening par 5, make for some great birdie opportunities. As for par 3s, their distances vary wildly, but your best bet to hit it hard is on the chip-shot par-3 17th:
The 18-hole course winds through bayous end to end, and the back nine runs out and back along a narrow patch of land between the bayou and the airfield. There are many watering holes and forced porters all over the place so be warned. Hopefully you can make your birdie or two before the 18th. It is a long par 4 leaving doglegs and requires a long transfer of water on the second shot. You have been warned!
Facilities here include the small Pelican Grill which has recently undergone new management and serves breakfast and lunch. There is a full driving range and two practice greens, one of which has a practice bunker. After playing golf, you are just minutes away from Galveston's attractions, beaches and historic center at Moody Gardens.
Affordable rates on a resort course help Moody Gardens win GolfPass Golfers' Choice awards for the State of Texas each year (No. 7 in 2021).
"Great general conditions, great conditioned tee boxes, greens are great" wrote Garcia27 in a GolfPass review in December 2020. "Lunch: very fresh, good natural food … we ordered ahead and overall good . Beverage cart was well stocked, cold beer and the Rita & # 39; s were good. Staff at check in were very accommodating to our 4 plus 1 rider. The outside music playing in the chipping area provides a good atmosphere for the round. , great guys! We'll be back! ”