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3.3
17 Reviews (17)
5 Stars
1
4 Stars
9
3 Stars
2
2 Stars
3
1 Stars
2
Conditions
3.0
Value
3.8
Layout
4.3
Friendliness
4.0
Pace
4.6
Amenities
3.2
74.8%
Recommend this course
12 out of 17 reviews
Read Reviews
Average Rating
Avg Rating
3.0
4 Reviews (4)
5 Stars
0
4 Stars
2
3 Stars
1
2 Stars
0
1 Stars
1
Conditions
3.0
Value
3.8
Layout
4.3
Pace
5.0
Amenities
3.7
StaffFriendliness
4.3
75.0%
Recommend this course
3 out of 4 reviews
Read Reviews
Average Rating
Avg Rating
3.3
6 Reviews (6)
5 Stars
0
4 Stars
4
3 Stars
1
2 Stars
0
1 Stars
1
Conditions
3.3
Value
4.2
Layout
4.3
Pace
5.0
Amenities
3.8
StaffFriendliness
4.5
83.3%
Recommend this course
5 out of 6 reviews
Read Reviews

About

Holes 18
Type Public/Municipal
Par 72
Length 6780 yards
Slope 131
Rating 73.0

Course Details

Year Built 1920
Golf Season Year round
Architect Donald Ross (1920)

Rentals/Services

Carts Yes
Clubs Yes
Pull-carts Yes

Practice/Instruction

Driving Range Yes
Teaching Pro Yes
Pitching/Chipping Area Yes
Putting Green Yes

Policies

Metal Spikes Allowed No
Walking Allowed Yes

Reviews

3.3
17 Reviews (17)
Advanced Filters
Overall Rating
Recommended
Handicap
Age
Type of Golfer
Gender
Played On
Handicap 10-14
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Perfect weather
Walked

Going in the right direction

For the last bunch of years the "whale" was miserable to play. It was not given the respect and care the course needed. After all this is a Donald Ross (front nine) gem. I can say after playing there yesterday 6/2/19 that is no longer the case. It finally had the right management. You can clearly see improvements in all area's. On the course, greens were much better that last fall. There are some that need some growth for the bare spots but you can see they are improving. The bunkers were edged, bridges in better shape, and even new signage, ball washers, and even drinking water on course. The clubhouse has been spiffed up. As much as possible considering the building was falling apart. Even seen golf carts that appear to be newer. Not the junks of the past. I look forward to playing it again to see how much more has been done...

Conditions Good
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Good
Pace Excellent
Amenities Good
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
1.0
Verified Purchaser
First Time Playing
Conditions Poor
Value Fair
Layout Average
Friendliness Good
Pace Excellent
Amenities Average
Played On
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
3.0
Verified Purchaser
Previously Played

Excellent layout

Excellent layout
It’s quite improved from last year
Saw lots of wildlife
Deer snakes turtles rabbits muskrats
Birds
Hope it doesn’t become a business park,
Where will the animals go?

Conditions Average
Value Good
Layout Good
Friendliness Good
Pace Excellent
Played On
Handicap 5-9
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Verified Purchaser
Top 1000 Contributor
Previously Played
Wet weather
Used cart

Great Course For All Levels

You cannot beat the friendly staff that greet you and are more than accommodating. My son decided to join me as he attends school nearby. BJ and Sue were great...we got to enjoy a rare afternoon. Course was really feeling the affects of the monsoon like New England spring but everything was pretty much at near peak season form. If we ever get some heat and don't have severe drought as with some seasons...this place will be able to get back to five stars. The layout and difficulty potential are superior. as with any Donald Ross layout. From the tips this an extremely difficult track as we played up since my son had not played in over a year and balls were not rolling out...it plays long from even the men's tee marker. Greens are fast and sloping but very true. Thank you for a great experience...would love to be back ASAP.

Conditions Good
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Handicap 10-14
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Previously Played

Great Progress

This was the first time I played Whaling City this year. I had played it late last summer. The first three greens are a marked improvement over last year. The rest of the greens are fine. There are all kinds of signs around the course of the hard work that is being done. The folks running the course deserve a lot of credit. They inherited a mess and the Improvement is very noticeable. This is a genuine Donald Ross course and must be supported.

Conditions Good
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Good
Played On
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Verified Purchaser
Previously Played
Conditions Good
Value Excellent
Layout Good
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Average
Played On
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
2.0
Verified Purchaser
First Time Playing

Ehhh

Course wasn’t in good condition. Fairways were dead. Lots of crab grass. Greens had disease. Ran good in some spots but very spotty. Not an easy course and didn’t find it very fun. Played the front 9 in 1 hour and a half. Get to the 10th tee and they must have let a foursome out. Played the back 9 in over two hours. Not a great experience. Wouldn’t reccomend.

Conditions Fair
Value Average
Layout Fair
Friendliness Average
Pace Average
Amenities Fair
Played On
Handicap 15-19
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Verified Purchaser
Previously Played
Perfect weather
Used cart

Fun layout - good condition

This is a fun layout and it is challenging. Staff is friendly and pace of play was good as we played 18 in 4 hrs & 10 min. Only complaint is there were no water stations anywhere on the course.

Conditions Good
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Good
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
3.0
Verified Purchaser
Previously Played
Conditions Average
Value Excellent
Layout Good
Friendliness Good
Pace Excellent
Amenities Fair
Played On
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Previously Played
Hot weather
Used cart

On the way up

New management, the groomers are working hard to get the course back in shape. Not crowded. Needs some renovations but great for play. very long and lots of space.

Conditions Average
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Average
Pace Excellent
Amenities Fair
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Handicap Don't know
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Verified Purchaser
First Time Playing
Perfect weather
Used cart

new beffa golf the whale!

nice d ross course i liked it and played in the 80's the woman they paired me with was a pain in the neck though

Conditions Fair
Value Average
Layout Good
Friendliness Good
Pace Good
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Handicap 10-14
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Previously Played
Perfect weather
Used cart

A Classic That Desperately Needs to Be Preserved

I hadn't played Whaling City in a few years. I used to play it fairly often and always considered it one of the most difficult courses around - and it still is. For those of you who don't know, Whaling City has a long and storied past, most of which I do not know. I know that the course was allowed to deteriorate by the city of New Bedford several years ago and then was taken over by a series of managers who did their best to keep it going. It's now being run by a married couple who pay the city of New Bedford for the right to maintain and make a go of the course. Trust me, they are not getting rich and this has got to be a labor of love. Both perform all the required duties from running the pro-shop to cutting the grass. The grounds staff is small consisting of young and very polite teenagers as far as I can tell.
I've played a lot of Donald Ross courses in my life time and Whaling City has always struck me as one of his classics. I have often fantacized about what someone with cash and an appreciation of the layout could do. I have no doubt it could be turned into one of the top golfing venues in the Northeast. The layout as it currently exists (no one seems to be sure how faithfully it represent Ross’s original design) if better than most in the RI/SE MA area. And there is tons of unused landscape that could be used to add tees. Most of the greens are classic Ross with lots of subtle breaks. Most of the tees are located close to the previous green as was Ross’s habit. I suspect there once was lots of fescue but I don’t see it now. The ninth hole is what I consider typical Ross (there are others) and the 14th is unlike any I have ever seen anywhere. I played it with a drive up close to the junk, 7 iron to the far edge of the middle section and 6 iron to the green. Of course, it’s always tempting to skip the entire middle section if you feel lucky. I didn’t.
So, how was my round. Well first I should tell you that I got to play with Donald Ross. As a GolfNower, I had played several rounds with a fellow named Don but never knew his last name. When I checked in at the pro-shop for the round, I was told, with a smirk, that I’ve be playing with Donald Ross. And sure enough, the Don I knew turned out to be none other than Donald Ross who, I might add, shares my love of Donald Ross courses. The entire round, we discussed the typical Ross features as we encountered them.
So how is the course condition? It needs a lot of work but don’t judge the entire course by the first three holes which, for some reason have fallen into much more serious disrepair than the rest of the course. Many of the greens had recently been plugged. The first two greens were especially bad and will require resodding. There’s lots of crabgrass throughout the course. And the brush areas are as thick as you will see anywhere. Forget finding your ball in them. The bunkers are in surprisingly good shape. The sand it the best around; I haven’t had 3 sandies in a long time. The range is excellent with a good assortment of balls and grass tees. The new managers recently installed new carpeting in the dining area and I love the ancient bathroom tile with the golfing motif.
My conclusion is that I’ve got to play Whaling City more often for two reasons. First, it’s an outstanding layout even if it does beat me up. And second, the course and the people working their butts off to preserve it need to be supported. I don’t know how many more chances Whaling City will have to survive. But I do know that its loss will be a devastating blow to the legacy of THE Donald Ross. Please don’t be so inclined to pass on the opportunity to play this course. Once it’s gone, it’s gone forever and that would be a crime. And be sure to throw some compliments to the staff. Considering they didn’t get control of the course until this past March and the condition it was in at the time, I think you will agree that they are doing an amazing job.

Conditions Average
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Good
Difficulty Extremely Challenging
Played On
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Verified Purchaser
Top 1000 Contributor
Previously Played
Conditions Average
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Good
Played On
Skill Advanced
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Previously Played

Great Value - Excellent course for beginner

This course is a gem albeit slightly rough around the edges. Wide open fairways and large greens make it a perfect place for beginners. In very good condition overall. Typical Donald Ross design has players using every club in the bag. Easy on the wallet and usually wide open. Easy access of the highway. Grass driving range, oversized putting green and dedicated chipping green. Proshop/clubhouse is antiquated and in need of upgrade. Would definitely recommend.

Conditions Average
Value Good
Layout Good
Friendliness Average
Pace Good
Amenities Average
Played On
2.0
Previously Played
Average weather
Used cart

Golf Elsewhere

Little to no attention to the golfing experience.
Grounds, Greens ok.
Staff attitude, poor/unprofessional

I would not recommend this course to any of my associates. Ever.

I was subsequently informed that the Management Company has taken the course to new depths.
They should be ashamed of themselves and the people of New Bedford should be angry.
Pete

Conditions Good
Value Poor
Layout Good
Friendliness Poor
Pace Good
Amenities Poor
Difficulty Somewhat Challenging
Played On
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
1.0
Previously Played

Don't play here !!!! Management company ruined this course!

Here's the deal . City of New Bedford turned over operations to Johnson Management . Management company pays the city for the rights to the course. City cashes their big check, no risk involved. Therefore management company puts NO money into maintaining course !!!! Course conditions are an embarrassment!!!!!!! Traps , unranked , full of rocks !! They don't have enough staff..so only SOME of the greens get cut daily. Diseased greens, fairways were totally burnt out...Nothing but awful, tight lies on the fairway. Place SUCKS !!

Conditions Poor
Value Poor
Layout Good
Friendliness Poor
Pace Average
Amenities Poor
Played On
Skill Advanced
Plays A few times a week
2.0
Previously Played

Course is neglected by management company

Municipal course that is totally neglected by the overseeing management company that puts bare minimum effort into maintaining the course. Greens are often uncut,or poorly cut,slow and diseased/burned out. Fairways are in equally poor shape. Sand traps are never raked and full of rocks. You will find ZERO water coolers on the entire course during the summer. It is very sad considering it is a challenging layout ,with some holes designed by Donald Ross. On top of the poor conditions..they offer no twilight rates at all, almost $60 to ride this course ..I can't say enough BAD things about how Johnson Management takes care of this course.

Conditions Poor
Value Poor
Layout Good
Friendliness Average
Pace Average
Amenities Poor
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Commented on 09/30/2016

I have played many courses in the Southcoast area and I have never been so disappointed as I was after "playing" Whaling City.
I was truly embarrassed with everything from the circa 1965 clubhouse and amenities to the lack of attention to golfer needs.
I inquired about food and was given the response: "well it is the end of the year and there is not any food most of the time".
The bar was an experience.
The female bartender was surly and acted as if she was doing ME a favor!
Her language was filthy as was her demeanor.
AWFUL. The management should be reevaluated.

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