On the beautiful Isle of Arran, they don't worry about an arbitrary 18 holes.
They have a small parcel of exceptional linksland, and they use every inch of it splendidly to create their wonderful 12 holes.
The first two are very good golf in beautiful surrounds, but they don't prepare you for what's to come.
The third is aptly named 'Crow's Nest'. A marker post atop an enormous dune is all that guides the way.
On the fifth tee it gets even better.
Panoramic views along the coast and over to neighbouring Kintyre completely distract from the task at hand.
Nearly 250 yards to a green 'at grade'. There's enough of a carry to focus the mind again, and a watery grave should you miss right
The quality of these golf holes is relentless. There are only a few where the water isn't directly in play. All play over rumpled links ground.
Is Shiskine not a 'proper' golf course because it's only 12 holes? It could acquire some adjacent farmland perhaps to make up numbers.
But it would be an entirely different character - and, in my view, ruin the experience.
The 12 holes are consistent in quality, equally interesting and all enormous fun. Not a weak hole among them, and there aren't many places you can say that.
I wish there were more like it...
While you're here...! If you're looking for a Christmas gift for a golfer, may I humbly suggest a 2021 Links Calendar? 12 of my favourite courses to visit when the world is back open for business, and more importantly, golf. Thanks for following, Sam.
👉 CLICK HERE 👈