The Must-See Golf Events in Europe

During 2018, the European Tour features 47 tournaments, 24 of which are in Europe. With golf events spread right across the continent, there has never been a better time to travel to the must-see golf events in Europe.
To help you decide which European Tour tournament to visit in 2018, we’ve chosen a few of our favourites and shared some extra inspiration to help make planning your golf holiday a bit easier.


Famous for its Alpine landscape, Austria becomes a golfer’s paradise once the seasonal snow has melted. Famous for picturesque mountain villages, baroque architecture and spectacular music, Vienna, Austria’s capital city, makes the perfect destination for a golf holiday. Boasting an oceanic climate, Vienna enjoys warm summers with average high temperatures ranging between 24C and 33C.

Must-see Golf Events in Austria

The 2018 Shot Clock Masters

When: 7th June 2018 – 10th June 2018
Where: Diamond Country Club, Atzenbrugg, near Vienna.

Golf Holidays to Austria

Fly to: Vienna Airport
Stay: Transfers from Vienna Airport to Vienna take approximately 25 minutes.
Play: In addition to Diamond Country Club, we advise visits to Golf-Club Wien, Golf & Country Club Brunn and Colony Golf Club.


Largely comprising of low hills and plains, England’s terrain has produced some of the best golf courses in the world. Host to 3 major tournaments in the 2018 European Tour, the country boasts a temperate maritime climate that offers mild temperatures ideal for play.

Whilst there are many locations for golf holidays in England, if you are planning to visit one of the must-see golf events in Europe during 2018, we recommend staying in Surrey in southeast England, although all events can be reached from London through a transfer.

Must-see Golf Events in England


When: 5th May 2018 – 6th May 2018
Where: Centurion Club, St. Albans

BMW PGA Championship

When: 24th May 2018 – 27th May 2018
Where: Wentworth Club, Virginia Water, Surrey

British Masters

When: 11th October 2018 – 14th October 2018
Where: Walton Heath Golf Course, Walton on the Hill, Surrey

Golf Holidays to England

Fly to: London City Airport, London Gatwick Airport London Heathrow Airport, London Luton Airport, London Stansted Airport in addition to other major airports in England.
Stay: Transfers from London Airports to Surrey take between 30 minutes and 2 hours.
Play: In addition to the host golf clubs, we recommend visiting Sunningdale Golf Club, St. George’s Hill Golf Club and Queenwood Golf Club.


No description of the French landscape will ever be sufficient. From the undulating countryside, magnificent mountainous regions, sophisticated coastal resorts and iconic cities, whatever you are looking for in a golf holiday, France offers.

Host to one of the most exciting golf events in 2018, Paris is the ultimate destination for a golf holiday. Combining the chic cityscape with glorious golf courses, the French capital city will create a golf holiday to remember.

Must-see Golf Events in France

HNA Open De France

When: 28th June 2018 – 1st July 2018
Where: Le Golf National, Paris

The Ryder Cup

When: 28th September 2018 – 30th September 2018
Where: Le Golf National, Paris

Golf Holidays to France

Fly to: Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport.
Stay: Transfers from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport to Paris take approximately 35 minutes.
Play: In additional to Le Golf National, we recommend visiting Golf de Saint Germain, Golf de Saint-Cloud and Paris International Golf Club.


Separated from Great Britain by the North Channel, the Irish Sea and St George’s Channel, Ireland’s windswept landscape is home to some of the best golf courses in the world. Comprised of low-lying mountains surrounding a central plain, it is the island’s coast which has produced some of its most famous golf clubs.

Whilst golf holidays on either coast will prove to be a memorable experience, a journey to the most northerly point will let you experience the magic of Ballyliffin Golf Club.

Must-see Golf Events in Ireland

Dubai Duty-Free Irish Open

When: 5th July 2018 – 8th July 2018
Where: Ballyliffin Golf Club, Country Donegal

Golf Holidays to Ireland

Fly to: Dublin Airport or Shannon Airport.
Stay: Transfers from Dublin Airport to Letterkenny take approximately 3 hours 15 minutes.
Play: In addition to the 2 courses offered at Ballyliffin Golf Club, we recommend visits to Portsalon Golf Club, North West Golf Club and Rosapenna Golf Links.


Featuring strong Mediterranean influences, Italy is full of cultural cities and country clubs. Enjoying a pleasant climate, summers are generally hot. Whilst golf holidays to the famous cities of Rome and Venice make for great golf experiences, don’t forget to consider Sicily or Sardinia when planning your Italian golf trip.

Must-see Golf Events in Italy

Rocco Forte Open

When: 10th May 2018 – 13th May 2018
Where: Verdura Golf Club, Sicily

Italian Open

When: 31st May 2018 – 3rd June 2018
Where: Gardagolf Country Club, Brescia

Golf Holidays in Italy

Fly to: Milan Malpensa Airport, Venice Marco Polo Airport or Venice Treviso Airport are great for travelling to the Italian Open, whilst either Catania Airport or Palermo Airport is fine for the Rocco Forte Open.
Stay: Whilst we recommend staying at a golf resort in Sicily, transfers from Milan Malpensa Airport to Milan take approximately 50 minutes.
Play: If you are travelling to Sicily, we recommend playing at all three golf resorts: Donnafugata Golf Resort, Il Picciolo Golf Club and Verdura Golf & Spa Resort. On the mainland, in addition to Gardagolf Country Club, we recommend visiting Royal Park I Roveri Golf Club, Golf Club Arzaga and Circolo Golf Bogogno.


Situated on the Iberian Peninsula, bordering Spain, Portugal is known globally for its fantastic golf courses. Featuring a significant Atlantic coast, it is the Algarve that has the most iconic golf experiences. Enjoying a warm climate all year-round, this stretch of coastline is a golfer’s dream.

Must-see Golf Events in Portugal

Portugal Masters

When: 20th September 2018 – 23rd September 2018
Where: Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Course, Vilamoura

Golf Holidays in Portugal

Fly to: Faro Airport
Stay: Transfers from Faro Airport to Vilamoura take approximately 30 minutes.
Play: In addition to the host course, we recommend visiting Vale do Lobo, Vila Sol Golf Resort and Vilamoura Old Course Golf Club.


Featuring magnificent mountains, glacial glens and lochs, Scotland provides a memorable backdrop for any golf course. The home of golf, the country is filled with numerous internationally-recognised golf courses. Whilst we recommend Edinburgh as a golf holiday destination, with Edinburgh and Glasgow only 1-hour transfer apart, why not stay in both?

Must-see Golf Events in Scotland

Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open

When: 12th July 2018 to 15th July 2018
Where: Gullane Golf Club, Gullane

147th Open Championship

When: 19th July 2018 to 22nd July 2018
Where: Carnoustie Golf Links, Carnoustie

European Golf Team Championships

When: 8th August 2018 to 12th August 2018
Where: Gleneagles, Perthshire

Alfred Dunhill Links Championship

When: 4th October 2018 to 7th October 2018
Where: Old Course St. Andrews, Carnoustie & Kingsbarns

Golf Holidays in Scotland

Fly to: Edinburgh Airport or Glasgow Airport
Stay: Transfers from Edinburgh Airport to Edinburgh take approximately 40 minutes.
Play: Apart from the host golf clubs, we recommend visiting North Berwick Golf Club, Royal Burgess Golfing Society and Royal Musselburgh Golf Club.


Featuring diverse geography and cultures, Spain offers incredible variety for golf holidays. Famous for it’s several ‘Costa’s’, the Spanish coast enjoys a pleasant climate and is perfect for golf all-year-round. Whilst there are numerous destinations that offer great golf opportunities, we recommend looking at the famous Costa del Sol, also known as ‘Costa del Golf’.

Must-see Golf Events in Spain

Andalucía Valderrama Masters

When: 18th October 2018 – 21st October 2018
Where: Real Club Valderrama, Sotogrande.

Golf Holidays in Spain

Fly: Gibraltar Airport or Malaga Airport
Stay: Transfers from Malaga Airport to Estepona take approximately 1 hour 10 minutes.
Play: In addition to Real Club Valderrama, we recommend visiting  Estepona Golf, Real Club de Golf Sotogrande and San Roque Golf Club.

We hope this guide to the must-see events in Europe has helped inspire your next golf holiday.

Wherever you decide to go, don’t forget to get an instant quote from Golf-Drives for your golf transfers. Golf-Drives will transfer you from the airport to your hotel, your hotel to the golf course, and back again! Book online now!

The History of the Ryder Cup

In just 7 months, the Ryder Cup 2018 will begin, hosted at Le Golf National, Paris, France. Held once every two years, the competition is one of the most anticipated events in the international golfing calendar. As we move closer to the big event, we’ve had a look back at the history of the Ryder Cup.

Here’s what you need to know:

How did the Ryder Cup Start?

Although it is often stated that the Ryder Cup began in 1921, the Ryder Cup officially started in 1927.

Two unofficial matches were played between golf professional from Great Britain and the United States, with the first occurring at Gleneagles Golf Club, Scotland in 1921, and the second hosted by Wentworth Golf Club, England.

An English seed merchant called Samuel Ryder watched the second match and having recently taken up golf, was delighted by the event. Ryder was so moved by the competition that he donated a small gold cup, with a small golfing figure at the top as a lasting memorial to a popular golfer, and Ryder’s personal tutor, Abe Mitchell. This cup is still used as the Ryder Cup trophy.

Europe in the Ryder Cup

The United States of America played the first 22 Ryder Cup matches against Great Britain and Ireland. It wasn’t until 1979 that players from continental Europe were eligible to play in the Ryder Cup.

By the 1970’s, The European Tour had become more diverse, and players from all nationalities, and in particular, the continent, were playing. However, it wasn’t until 1977, during the Ryder Cup at Royal Lytham & St. Annes, England, that the golf legend Jack Nicklaus highlighted the need to improve the competitive level of the contest.  The U.S.A had won all but one Ryder Cup from 1959 to 1977, with the only exception being the iconic match in 1969 at Royal Birkdale in Southport, England. By allowing players from continental Europe to play, a greater pool of talent could be drawn on.

Past Ryder Cup Winners & Captains

Until players from continental Europe were eligible to play in the Ryder Cup, the USA dominated the competition, winning 18 of the first 22 matches, with Great Britain and Ireland winning three and the famous tie of the 1969 contest.

However, once the competition became a match between USA and Europe, the Ryder Cup transformed into a competitive display of sportsmanship, drama, camaraderie and of course, excellent golf.

Whilst there are have been many memorable moments in the last 41 Ryder Cup matches, we’ve shared some of our favourite stats:

  • Captained by Bernard Langer, Europe achieved the largest margin of victory in 2004 at Oakland Hills, Michigan and again in 2006 at Straffan, Ireland.
  • Sir Nick Faldo holds the record for the most Ryder Cup Appearances, taking part in 11 competitions and 46 matches between 1977 and 1997. He also holds the record for the most matches won, achieving a total of 23.
  • Although Sir Nick Faldo holds the record for the most points won, Neil Coles and Colin Montgomerie jointly hold the most single points won, beating Faldo by ½ point. Interestingly, Faldo is also ½ behind Bernhard Langer for the Most Foursome Points Won, achieving 11 points and 11 ½ points respectively.
  • Ironically, the USA has won all the points in a Foursomes series 4 times. Both the USA and Europe have won all the points in a Four-Ball series twice, but no team has ever won all the singles matches.

Past Ryder Cup Venues

Thanks to its long history, there are plenty of past Ryder Cup venues that you can play on yourself! Here are just a few of our favourites:


Host to the 2014 Ryder Cup, Gleneagles Resort offers three outstanding championship golf courses. Accessible via transfer from Edinburgh Airport, the resort is located in Perthshire, Scotland, and combines spectacular scenery with world-class golf.

Real Club Valderrama

Considered to be the best golf course in Spain, Real Club Valderrama is located on the famous Costa del Sol and hosted the 1997 Ryder Cup. Easily accessed by a transfer from Gibraltar Airport, Malaga Airport or Jerez Airport, the course is consistently ranked one of the best in the world.

Royal Birkdale Golf Club

Located in the coastal resort of Southport, the Royal Birkdale Golf Club has hosted more Championship and International events since World War 2 than any other course in the world. Regularly ranked amongst the top 35 golf clubs in the world, the course hosted the 1965 and 1969 Ryder Cups.

Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club

Host to the 1961 and 1997 Ryder Cup and eleven Open Championships, the Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club is easily accessed by a transfer from Manchester Airport or Liverpool Airport. A well-established golf club in North West England, Royal Lytham offers a premier links course in an authentic setting.

Southport and Ainsdale Golf Club

Easily accessed by transfer from Manchester Airport and Liverpool Airport, Southport and Ainsdale Golf Club hosted the 1933 and 1937 Ryder Cups. Located in North West England, the club offers an exceptional championship course and first-class golf facilities.

The Belfry Hotel & Resort

Located close to Birmingham Airport, the Belfy course has hosted more Ryder Cup matches than any other venue in the world. Host to the 1985, 1989, 1993 and 2002 tournaments, the resort offers three stunning courses routed through North Warwickshire countryside.

The K Club

Just 17 miles west of Dublin and Dublin Airport, the K Club has a spectacular international reputation. Host to the 2006 Ryder Cup, the 216 Dubai Free Irish Open and 13 European Opens, the club offers two exceptional courses designed by the iconic Arnold Palmer.

We hope this guide to the history of the Ryder Cup has prepared you for the 42nd Ryder Cup at Le National, Paris, France. Whether you are attending this year’s Ryder Cup or want to play in the footsteps of golfing legends at past Ryder Cup venues, Golf-Drives can provide hassle-free transport. Offering transfers from the airport to the hotel, hotel to the course and back again, Golf-Drives can take of all your golf holiday transfers.