Scotland has been named the world’s best golfing destination at the prestigious World Golf Awards in Abu Dhabi. The annual World Golf Awards reached its ninth edition this year.
The awards, which are part of the World Travel Awards, celebrate excellence in golf tourism selected by tour operators, media, and fans worldwide.
Besides being named the world’s best golfing destination, Scotland was also named Europe’s best location to play golf.
For the first time in the nine-year history of the World Golf Awards, Scotland has picked up both of these awards. The awards recognize and celebrate the quality of Scotland as the world’s best golfing destination.
Around 200 guests attended the prestigious event in Abu Dhabi this week from November 14 to 16.
The award follows a spectacular golfing season held in Scotland, which hosted a couple of notable tournaments played over five consecutive weeks.
Widely regarded as the ‘Home of Golf’, Scotland has hosted a couple of notable tournaments, with the highlight being the 150th Open Championship at St. Andrew’s. It also hosted the Genesis Scottish Open, The Senior Open, Trust Golf Women’s Scottish Open, AIG Women’s Open, and the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
In a statement, VisitScotland’s chief executive said:
“These awards are a fitting end to an extra special year for golf in Scotland and fantastic recognition for all the people who work so hard to grow and enhance our reputation as the Home of Golf.
“I’d like to extend our congratulations to everyone, as well as the wider tourism and events industries and suppliers.
“Every year, we welcome hundreds of thousands of visitors eager to play our great golf courses and relax in our accommodation after a day’s golf, enjoying local produce and visiting nearby attractions.”
The golf industry in Scotland is worth more than £1.1 billion
The country boasts over 550 golf courses, including multiple championship venues and resorts, links courses, parkland courses, and nine-hole courses.
According to a report by VisitScotland, the golf industry in Scotland is worth more than £1.1 billion, with golf tourism accounting for £286 million annually while supporting over 4,400 jobs.
The awards are expected to attract visitors from all over the world to visit Scotland. The country attracts around 2,20,000 golf visitors annually and an estimated 92,000 regular winners will also play golf while on holiday.
Dermot Synnott, director of global partnerships for the World Golf Awards, added:
“Scottish golf tourism is thriving, and Scotland is a bucket list destination for most golfers around the world.
“It offers a vast range of parkland and links options across all its regions, so the traveling golfer really is spoiled for choice. No stranger to hosting landmark events, this award is fitting recognition to a top-quality golf destination that successfully staged The 150th Open in St. Andrews earlier this year.“
The ceremony also awarded Wilkinson Golf as Scotland’s Best Inbound Tour Operator, while Prestwick Golf Club took the title of Scotland’s Best Golf Club. Former Open Champion and Ryder Cup hero Paul Lawrie was given a Lifetime Achievement Award for his success on the course and for his Foundation, which aims to get as many young people to play golf.