If you're looking for a relatively unchallenging parkland course that is close to the centre of Manchester, Heaton Moor could be the ideal place to play. This 18-hole, 6,000-yard beauty might be in the southern suburbs, but it feels like you are playing in the rolling countryside. The narrow fairways and small greens reward accurate golfers, but there is no need to be a power hitter to enjoy a round here. The greens are known for their smooth surfaces as well, rewarding well-struck putts. Green fees are affordable, and you can also choose to play just a few holes if time is short, making Heaton Moor ideal for twilight golf in the summer months. The course can be easily reached via Burnage or Mauldeth Road stations.
The open spaces and wide fairways of North Manchester Golf Course might seem inviting to wayward drivers of the ball, but don't be fooled. This par-71, 6,440-yard course will challenge almost all amateur players. The course is known locally for being kept in excellent shape, with true greens and closely mowed fairways. The rough will penalise but won't be too frustrating, although there are plenty of bunkers that can do the job. One of the joys of playing North Manchester are the spectacular views across the city - the course is set on higher ground in the north of the city. This means that you can enjoy unique views across Manchester and experience a superbly maintained course at the same time.
Manchester Golf Club is the most exclusive of the city's many courses. Its moorland setting contrasts with the parkland courses that are numerous in the metropolitan area, and the course offers up a tough brand of links golf. That's why it regularly hosts amateur championships, although the luxurious hospitality facilities are also a major attraction. The course itself has a par of 73, is spread over 6,650 yards, with long, forbidding rough and tightly mowed heathland fairways. If you can drive straight and have a nifty short game, this course might be simple, but for most amateurs, playing Manchester will be a real test of their skills (without being unfair, of course).
For a less stressful golfing experience, Didsbury Golf Course could be the ideal venue. This 18-hole, 6,200-yard course has a par of 70 and a gorgeous, tranquil parkland setting next to the River Mersey. The course layout is varied, and marries picturesque appearances with generous fairways. There are plenty of hazards, with cunningly placed fairway bunkers, but every standard of golfer can enjoy Didsbury without tearing their hair out. Another feature of the course is the meticulous care that ground staff take to keep all areas in peak condition, so expect to be rewarded for your good shots.