Lompoc might not be the first place you think of when considering where to play a great round of golf. The area is more well-known for its wine, featuring its own Wine Trail with close to 30 beautiful wineries for wine lovers to enjoy.
If you are a golfer, mixing your two passions together makes for a great day out. Lompoc’s golf and wine experience might require a bit of creative itinerary management, but it’s well worth it if you happen to be in the area and have a few days to spare.
Lompoc’s Golfing Greens: Where Dreams Take Flight
Lompoc only has two golf courses, but they’re both great layouts. Both beginner golfers and more experienced players will enjoy a round at both these courses. Here’s a quick overview of each golf course.
Nature’s Golf Masterpiece: La Purisima Golf Course
La Purisima Golf Course is a public golf course, but it’s advisable to book in advance because it’s a popular course! The terrain is somewhat tough thanks to rollercoaster undulations, so newbies might find this course to be a bit tricky.
Experienced golfers will enjoy the challenge, but tread carefully because the course is full of unique quirks! Doglegs, unexpected curves, and a couple of elevated tees add a bit of excitement to the course, so play carefully.
It’s surrounded by trees and out of the way of the hustle and bustle of everyday life, so if you want a bit of “me time” in a beautiful place, this is the ideal place.
Local Love Affair: An Introduction to Mission Golf Club
Mission Golf Club is about 600 yards shorter than La Purisima, but it’s still a tough course to play if you catch it on the wrong day! It features 4 sets of tees, so golfers of all skill levels can find a good starting point to swing their clubs.
That being said, the smooth fairways can lull you into a false sense of security because the greens are more undulating than they look. Your short game needs to be strong here, so make sure you have a good range of clubs in your bag.
Also, if you find yourself at Mission on a windy day, be prepared for a much tougher round! Your strategy will have to come out to play in a big way, but it’s a great learning experience.
Lompoc’s Wine Odyssey: Sip, Savor, and Explore
Regardless of how your round of golf goes, rounding your day off with a wine experience is the perfect way to finish up. Ever watched the movie Sideways? It’s credited with bringing Lompoc’s Pinot Noirs on the map.
The wines coming out of this region are unique, thanks to a perfect storm of calcium-rich soils, the right amount of sunlight thanks to the orientation of the hills, and the ideal climate for vineyards to flourish. And, of course, the master talents of the many winemakers in the area.
You’ll find spectacular pinot noirs, chardonnays, syrahs, and even one-of-a-kind sparkling wines that have been taking the world by storm. Whatever your reason for being in Lompoc, whether you’re visiting or you’re a local, you can’t miss the wine scene. It’s unique, exciting, and absolutely worth every minute.
The Ultimate Pairing: Golf and Wine Adventures
So, how do you mix golf and wine successfully when in Lompoc? Obviously, playing your round before doing your wine tasting makes more sense, or your golfing game will suffer! Here’s how to create the perfect itinerary.
1. Morning Drives: Tee Off for Golfing Glory
We highly recommend getting out on the golf course early in the morning. Not only will you beat the hottest part of the day, but you’ll be at the top of your game physically, especially if you’ve had a great night’s rest.
It’s also a good idea to call ahead and book your round so you don’t find yourself clashing with anyone else. While getting there early generally ensures that it won’t be crowded, you don’t want to arrive only to have to wait for another group to set off before you.
Opt for a light breakfast and take plenty of healthy snacks with you, especially if you’re playing a full 18-hole round. Jerky, energy bars, and fruit are great choices.
2. Afternoon Elegance: Sipping and Savoring Wine
Once your round is done, it’s time for the second part of the experience: wine. By now, you should be well and truly ready for some relaxation after hitting close to 10k steps and burning almost 1,000 calories on the course!
The good news is that with almost 30 wineries in Lompoc, you shouldn’t have to travel far to find a place that’s just right for you. If an urban atmosphere appeals to you, check out Lompoc Wine Ghetto, a small cluster of world-class wineries situated in an industrial park.
A little further away, you’ll find Midtown Lompoc, where you can enjoy two excellent wineries or visit the Lompoc Wine Factory, a unique community experience. Or, take a short trip to Sta. Rita Hills AVA (American Viticultural Area), the heart of wine country, where you can tour vineyards and enjoy wine estate tasting experiences.
3. Evening Enchantment: Dining in Lompoc
Aside from the wine, Lompoc boasts plenty of magnificent dining experiences. If you’re not in the mood for a heavy meal after your day, there’s an abundance of coffee shops and light “dessert bars” to visit and enjoy.
On the other hand, if you’re ravenous, there’s a surprisingly large variety of restaurants to choose from. But if you really want to experience Lompoc in all its glory, you should definitely end your golf/wine experience with a taco dinner.
In fact, just like Lompoc has its own Wine Trail, it’s also got its own Taco Trail! Whether you’re a taco enthusiast or just hungry for good food, hit one (or more) of our famous taco restaurants to really round out your Lompoc experience.
Beyond Birdies and Barrels: Lompoc’s Hidden Charms
Whether you’re here for a day or two or a few weeks, Lompoc is packed with interesting, exciting things to do.
If you’ve got a bit more time after your golf and wine experience, you can enjoy a few different museums, the La Purísima Mission State Historic Park, the Return to Freedom American Wild Horse Sanctuary, or head to Old Town Lompoc and explore the murals and historic sites.
Don’t miss the golf, wine, and nachos, but whatever your tastes, take some time to enjoy everything Lompoc has to offer!
About the Author
Jordan Fuller is a retired golfer and businessman. When he’s not on the course working on his own game or mentoring young golfers, he writes in-depth articles for his website, Golf Influence.
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