Ever wondered what it sounds like when a golf ball bounces off the side of a dilapidated tractor before rolling into a moonshine operation? If you’d ever played 18 holes at Hillbilly Golf Gatlinburg, you wouldn’t have to wonder anymore. Hillbilly Golf is about as far from the rarified greens at Augusta National or the ocean views at Pebble Beach as it gets — but my guess is, it’s a lot less snooty and a lot more fun!
So who knew hillbillies were so into golf, or as the locals call it, “putt putt”? Certainly not me! But while there may not be one single scene in Deliverance set on a golf course — not even one! — it’s not so hard to imagine “Dueling Banjos” twanging in the background as you make your way from hole to hole, passing quaint, countrified obstacles such as outhouses and stills along the way.
Oh, and did I mention that Hillbilly Golf is on top of a mountain? And that you have to play downward? So it’s really, really easy to lose your ball? Repeatedly? Seriously, bring some extras. That old John Deere on hole seven is like a black hole that only attracts golf balls. Anyway, in order to get to the first hole, you’ll take a ride in a tram that shoots about 300 feet straight up a mountainside. The kids will love it, but if you’re at all afraid of heights… just suck it up and enjoy the view of the city below, because it’s stunning!
Once you get to the top, you’ll choose between two courses. We had such a hard time choosing which course to take, as we didn’t want to miss any exceptionally spectacular farm equipment, but after some heated debate we went to the right, instead of the left. Of course, we got stuck behind a big group, so our game was moving along pretty slowly.
After losing a few balls on the down slope, we finally made it all the way to number 18. At the end of the course, you get to take another little tram ride that deposits you safely at the entrance. Which, by the way, is where the restrooms are, so be sure to go before you go, or else you’ll be stuck on top of the hill with only fake outhouses in sight. Not fun.
If you are looking for “real golf,” check out our review of the Gatlinburg Golf Course.