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Central West Florida

Includes Tampa and St. Petersburg area and surrounding communities.

With so many memorable golf courses blanketing the state, it's simply not possible to divide Florida into three portions. We've had to divide central Florida alone into that many, and each of them has gems that you won't want to miss! The west part of Central Florida includes Brooksville, Clearwater, New Port Richey, Palm Harbor, Tarpon Springs, Spring Hill, Tampa and St. Petersburg. Much like the rest of the state, these areas are strung together, one leading into the next, as one travels from course to course. Each of these areas has a number of worthy courses, so you'll be hard-pressed to play them all, even within just this one region. As with most of Florida, there are special deals available at both the courses and the pro shops, if you know where to look.

Brooksville and Spring Hill

We'll start with Brooksville. If you're driving in from the north, you'll get there from I75, by heading west on Highway 50. If you've flown in to Tampa, you may want to reverse the order, but either way, the town is found by heading north on 589 (Suncoast Parkway). One quick glance at the map will give you ample reason to make that drive! The Brooksville Country Club, Sugarmill Woods, World Woods, Dunes GC at Seville... Southern Hills Plantation, Hernando Oaks Golf and Country Club, Rivard Golf and Country Club, Brookridge CC, Silverthorn CC, High Point GC, Spring Hill GC, Oak Hills CC, and Timber Pines Golf Course are just some of the many courses within a 5-10 mile radius of Brooksville, as you make your way over to Spring Hill! You'll follow highway 19 southbound along the gulf coast from there on your way to New Port Richey.

New Port Richey

If you've somehow still got time or energy left after playing even half of the awesome courses listed above, you'll find yourself in yet another heaven. Starting off with the Timber Green Country Club, which rests adjacent to the massive Jay B. Starkey Wilderness Park, you'll once again find yourself immersed in an awesome array of courses. River Ridge, Heritage Springs, Seven Springs, Fox Hollow, Magnolia Valley,.. Everything from the challenging to the unusual and exotic (such as Gulf Harbors, a public course which offers 18 executive-length par 60 holes for under $20 with cart, and rests along the Gulf of Mexico.)

Palm Harbor and Tarpon Springs

Continuing south down the coast, the next honeypot is near Tarpon Springs and leading on into Palm Harbor, off the face of St. Joseph Sound, and just north of the Tampa/St. Pete area. Tarpon Springs may be famous for their fishing, but their claim to fame on dry land is found in their golf courses. Less Executive-oriented, more challenging than the New Port Richey area, you'll find a dozen masive courses, public and private, and many more smaller courses. The Eagles, Fox Hollow, Heritage Springs, Tarpon Woods, Cypress Run, Copperhead Golf Course, Highlands, Islands, and Chi Chi Rodriguez, these are just a handful of the choices you'll have all around and between Lake Tarpon and the Gulf of Mexico.

Clearwater

While Clearwater is the northern gateway to Tampa and Saint Petersburg, the area has its own distinctive feel, flavor and topography. The Belleview and Belair, the Clearwater CC, East Bay and Largo Golf Courses, they're all part and parcel of the clubs available. One of the things that makes Clearwater an area unto itself is the thin string of barrier islands, culminating in the northern Caladesi Island State Park. The Gulf waters are warm all year, providing a truly marvelous way to relax and enjoy your stay, both on and off the course.

St. Petersburg & Tampa

Last, but certainly not least, are Tampa and St. Pete. Though many people speak of them synonymously, they, too, are distinct in their feel and geography. St. Petersburg is the tip of the finger that you'll come to as you continue the journey south from Clearwater along the coastline. It's a wonderful destination in and of itself, and is separated from the mainland of Florida by Tampa Bay. Depending upon which route you choose, you'll have between about 5 and 10 miles of waterway bridge (or causeway) to drive across to get back to the mainland. It's a wonderful view, with four very safe lanes of roadway (plus shoulders) in each direction, but if you feel bothered by such things, you can always make your way east at Clearwater instead. Once in Tampa, you'll be overwhelmed again by all the choices. Most of the courses are found in the north part of Tampa. Flying in to Tampa International Airport, you'll find the pleasant 9-hole Rocky Point Golf Course literally right across the street.

No matter where you go in Florida, you'll find plenty of outstanding golf courses and pro shops, and you don't need to drive very far to get to them. Florida really is a golfer's dream vacation destination, and the West Central Region offers plenty for every level of player – and their non-golfing family members as well! Be sure to include this beautiful area in your plans.