Ranking the Best Golf States for Retirees

Author Image Article By Ian Clampett
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Ranking the Best Golf States for Retirees
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In recent years, golf has seen a surge in the number of people enjoying the game. 

The National Golf Foundation reported that 45 million Americans played golf in 2023 — up almost four million from the previous year. This figure includes off-course options such as driving ranges, but 26.6 million played on traditional golf courses throughout the year -- an increase of one million over the previous year.

And the numbers keep climbing, including among golfers in various age groups.

The age group that logs the most hours on the course is in the 60-69 range, according to foundation, while golfers 70 and over also are active on the course. In the next 10 years, senior participation is expected to grow from about 3 ½ million today to five million.

With golf continuing to rise in popularity across the country, and with the older demographic recording the most rounds, we wanted to see which states ranked the best when it came to golf for retirees. We used various sets of data points to rank each of the 50 states to see how they compare for golf enthusiasts. 

Our findings discovered that Nebraska is the top state for golf retirees with an overall score of 84.1. Nebraska graded well in most categories. 

Iowa ranked second at 82.9, with a high number of facilities/golf courses per capita, and Arkansas was not far behind in third place at 81.2. 

As for the states at the bottom end, Washington’s limited number of courses and limited sunny days make it the worst state for golf retirees, followed by New Jersey, Alaska and Hawaii.

Best States for Golf Retirees

Worst States for Golf Retirees


Gambling.com gathered the following data for each state, to work out the Best Golf States For Golfers To Retire:

A PERCENTRANK calculation was then used to get a score out of 100 for every state in each data point.

  • An inverted calculation was used for Green Fees, Median Home Value & Pint Of Local Beer Cost - so lower prices resulted in a higher score.
  • The average of all five data point scores was calculated to find the Total/Final Golf Score for each state.
  • Finally, all states were ranked from highest to lowest Total/Final Golf Score.
  • All data was collected and correct on 06/06/2024
Author Image Article By Ian Clampett
Last Updated: 
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