Those interested in a summer golf round but tentative to spend four hours in the heat need not fear. Across Greater Palm Springs, a welcome host of shorter golf courses offer the opportunity to keep your game in play, but without the worry of too much fun in the sun.

Along with 2.5-hour rounds (if not less), shorter course golf in the summer provides all the same fun and challenge, while offering lower rates, fewer fuss over tee times and a swift pace of play.

Ready for some par 3 pleasures? Get those irons and wedges prepped for these shorter course plays across Greater Palm Springs.  

Shadow Hills Golf Club

shadow hills golf club

Sister course to the championship South, the Schmidt-Curley designed par-3 North Course at Shadow Hills Golf Club in Indio is no pushover. Water across the 3,000-yard play keeps the focus in-tact, and seven holes charting at 180 yards or more (including three holes at over 200 yards) makes this far more than a simple pitch-and-putt. Ready the accuracy for this course, which proves a terrific tune-up for your lofted irons.

Palm Royale Country Club

palm royale country club

Further par-3 fun can be had at Palm Royale Country Club in La Quinta, where the walking-only track matches good exercise across 2,000 yards of play with a stated need for wedge accuracy. Echoing the King of Waterscapes moniker attributed to prolific desert course designer Ted Robinson, Palm Royal crowns a challenge with water on half the card along with bunkering on every hole.

(Note: During the summer months thru mid-September, Palm Royale works on the honor system. The pro shop is closed, meaning guests sign in and pay in a drop box before teeing off.)

Hawk’s Landing Golf Club

Up in the cooler confines of Yucca Valley, Hawk's Landing Golf Club may well be providing a glimpse of golf's future.  Played in a pair of six-hole loops, the 12-hole course may be enjoyed in six, 12 or 18-hole increments (or more for the driven).  Sporting a par-47 card across nearly 4,000 yards of play, the course routes pleasingly through native area and proves a joy to walk. 

And for those seeking to glide around the grounds with a hawk's celerity, know that the course offers GolfBoards, which, after one gets oriented, make a truly fun way to fly across the fairways.

Cimarron Golf Resort

cimarron golf resort

In Palm Springs, the John Fought-designed Pebble Course at Cimarron Golf Resort serves as a fine complement to the resort's championship Boulder Course.  Playing a par-55 card (17 par 3s with a lone par-4), the Pebble tips at 3,020 yards with six holes playing at 175 yards or more, meaning those mid-irons will receive a fine test on the day.  The grounds' open and rugged feel make for a unique playing experience and one that will prove an aesthetic alternate to many desert-style courses in the region.

The Lights at Indio

Formerly known as the Indio Muni, aptly-named The Lights at Indio Golf Course is the valley's only course lit for evening play.  Known to be amongst the longest, 18-hole par-3 courses in the country at over 3,000 yards of play (2,583 from the Red tees), The Lights has long proven a great way for beginners to test their mettle, while still giving veteran players a true challenge.  For low-handicappers, holes 3 and 4 combined for 422 yards of play, equating into an earnest challenge for the best of players.

Swing into more fun with more golf courses in Greater Palm Springs.