How Many Holes Are There in a Round of Golf?

By Chris Moore •  Updated on 02/15/22

Wondering how many holes there are in a round of golf?

Maybe you know the answer already but you’re curious about the history and how it came about?

In this blog post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about the number of holes in golf.

So, exactly how many holes are there in a round of golf?

As we previously stated, in a normal round of golf, each player has to finish 18 holes to complete the round.

However, there are some variations of the game which can have more or less than that number; for example, a nine-hole round, which is common for casual golfers, only requires players to complete half as many rounds (nine).

In addition, if you’re playing alone with no other golfers around then it might be possible to finish 27 or 36 holes in one day without stopping for lunch or dinner breaks.

Why does a golf course have 18 holes?

So now that we know how many holes there are in a golf course, let’s take a look at why that number was chosen.

It started with the Old Course at St. Andrews in Scotland, which had 22 holes when it opened up back in 1552 up until 1764 when golfers unanimously decided that some of the holes were too short.

So, they combined a few of the holes to create fewer, but longer holes to play!

After making these changes, the course had eighteen holes and invented would eventually become the standard round of golf.

But, it wasn’t until the early 1900s that these standards were used around the world.

Nowadays, most golf courses have standard 18 hole rates that they charge per round!

Why do some golf courses have 27 or 36 holes?

While certain golf courses have 27 or 36 holes, the standard is still 18 holes across the entire world.

Certain courses have more holes so they can have more golfers on the course at once, without making the wait time too long.

For example, 36-hole golf courses are popular in Asia because of the high population density and it’s a way to get more people onto the course!

It’s also nice for club members since there is more variety to choose from instead of playing the exact same 18 holes each time they’re golfing.

Final thoughts

Now, you should have a complete understanding of how many holes there are on a golf course, and the history of how this came to be.

While there are variations of the game that can include more or less than 18 holes, most people play with this number as it’s been done for over a century at this point.

If you’re curious about how long a round of golf will take, this post should help you out!

Chris Moore

Hi, I'm Chris Moore and I'm the guy behind As an avid golfer since 2010, I decided to create this blog to share everything I've learned over the years. Whether it's golf equipment, swing tips, or anything in-between, I want to make sure you have everything you need to become a better golfer.