Golf News for Monday, June 19, 2006 | Podcast

Florida golfing vacations: Disney World still tops in Orlando, but great courses abound

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The Disney World empire has overshadowed everything in the Orlando, Florida area for years. But golf is emerging as an important partner to the vacation capital of the U.S.

There are an estimated 150 golf courses in the Orlando area. If this were the case anywhere outside the shadow of Mickey Mouse, a golf destination like this would be considered world class. Orlando may not be quite there yet but golf is gaining on Disney World. Since the late 1990s some 20 new golf courses have been built here, more than almost any metropolitan area in the world.

This week host Dave Berner and National Golf Editor Tim McDonald go deep inside Orlando exclusively to help you decide the best places to play during your Central Florida golf vacation.

Among the top spots Berner and McDonald discuss are the Reunion Resort & Club, Isleworth Country Club, Orange County National, Grande Lakes Orlando, and the courses at the Grand Cypress. (Tim reports that reknown Bay Hill could very well deserve a rep as overrated.)

Some outstanding golf experiences lie just a bit outside Orlando proper, Tim says. He recommends the Mission Inn Golf Resort in Howey in the Hills, about a 30-minute drive NW of Orlando. There are two courses there (including the stellar El Campeon track ) and a marina that rents boats for fishing or cruising.

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