Turtle Bay Palmer vs Fazio

Golf enthusiasts looking to experience Hawaii’s lush and scenic courses will find the Turtle Bay Resort on the North Shore of Oahu an excellent destination. Turtle Bay Resort boasts two world-class golf courses: the Palmer Course and the Fazio Course, both of which offer unique challenges and breathtaking views. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at each course and compare their features.

Rangefinder on Discount

The Palmer Course

The Palmer Course at Turtle Bay Resort was designed by golf legend Arnold Palmer in 1992. The course spans 7,218 yards and features challenging bunkers, tricky water hazards , and strong winds, making it a formidable test for even the most skilled golfers. The course has hosted numerous professional tournaments, including the LPGA Tour’s Hawaiian Open and the Champions Tour’s Turtle Bay Championship.


The Palmer Course has several standout features that golfers will appreciate, including:

  1. Signature Holes: The Palmer Course’s signature hole is the par-3 17th, which requires a shot over the Pacific Ocean to reach the green.
  2. Ocean Views: Golfers will enjoy the stunning ocean views that the course provides, with several holes running parallel to the shoreline.
  3. Challenging Terrain: The Palmer Course is built on rolling terrain, with several uphill and downhill shots that require precision and skill.
  4. Clubhouse: The Palmer Course’s clubhouse features a pro shop, locker rooms, and a restaurant that serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

The Fazio Course

The Fazio Course at Turtle Bay Resort was designed by renowned golf course architect Tom Fazio in 2002. The course spans 6,590 yards and offers a more forgiving layout than the Palmer Course. The Fazio Course features wide fairways, large greens, and fewer hazards, making it an excellent choice for golfers of all skill levels.


The Fazio Course has several standout features that golfers will appreciate, including:

  1. Scenic Holes: The Fazio Course’s signature hole is the par-4 10th, which offers stunning views of the ocean and the nearby mountains.
  2. Mountain Views: Golfers will enjoy the course’s scenic views of the Ko’olau Mountains, which provide a stunning backdrop for several holes.
  3. Forgiving Layout: The Fazio Course’s wide fairways and large greens provide a more forgiving layout than the Palmer Course, making it an excellent choice for beginners or those looking for a more relaxing round of golf.
  4. Practice Facility: The Fazio Course’s practice facility includes a driving range, putting green, and chipping area, making it an excellent place to warm up before a round.

Course Conditions

The course conditions at Turtle Bay Resort are consistently excellent, with both the Palmer and Fazio courses well-maintained and manicured. The fairways are lush and well-kept, the greens are fast and true, and the bunkers are properly maintained. The courses are also environmentally conscious, using sustainable practices to minimize their impact on the local ecosystem.

Difficulty Level

The Palmer Course is considered to be more challenging than the Fazio Course, with a course rating of 74.6 and a slope rating of 145. The Fazio Course has a course rating of 71.3 and a slope rating of 134. The Palmer Course requires accurate tee shots, precise iron play, and a deft touch around the greens to score well. The Fazio Course, on the other hand, offers more forgiving fairways and greens, making it a good option for golfers who are still developing their skills.


In addition to the clubhouses, both the Palmer and Fazio courses offer a range of amenities for golfers. Both courses have on-course beverage carts that provide refreshments during the round, and the courses are equipped with GPS-enabled carts that provide detailed course information and scoring capabilities. The resort also offers golf packages that include accommodations, meals, and unlimited golf on both courses.


Golfing at Turtle Bay Resort is a premium experience, and the prices reflect that. The greens fees for both the Palmer and Fazio courses are among the highest in Hawaii, with prices varying based on the time of day and season. However, golfers who are willing to pay the premium will be rewarded with a world-class golf experience that is worth the investment.

Palmer Course Overview

155255Dogleg left with fairway bunkers
244109Slight dogleg right with water hazard
3319517Elevated tee to green
444401Long par 4 with multiple bunkers
544157Tee shot over water to narrow fairway
6320013Par 3 with water hazard
744053Fairway bunkers on right
8556011Dogleg left with water hazard
9442015Blind tee shot to elevated green
10439512Dogleg left with fairway bunkers

Fazio Course Overview

1438011Elevated tee with fairway bunkers
255301Straightaway par 5 with water hazard
3320017Par 3 with water hazard
444107Slight dogleg right with fairway bunkers
544305Dogleg left with fairway bunkers
655309Dogleg right with fairway bunkers
7439515Elevated tee with water hazard
8318513Par 3 with elevated tee
944403Slight dogleg left with fairway bunkers
10440012Straightaway par 4 with fairway bunkers

Palmer Course Rating/Slope

Tee BoxRatingSlope

Fazio Course Rating/Slope

Tee BoxRatingSlope

Palmer vs Fazio Course Comparison

HolePalmer Par/YardagePalmer HandicapFazio Par/YardageFazio Handicap
15 / 52554 / 38011
24 / 41095 / 5301
33 / 195173 / 20017
44 / 44014 / 4107
54 / 41574 / 4305
63 / 200135 / 5309
74 / 40534 / 39515
85 / 560113 / 18513
94 / 420154 / 4403
104 / 395124 / 40012


Both the Palmer Course and the Fazio Course at Turtle Bay Resort offer golfers unique challenges and stunning views. The Palmer Course’s difficult layout and ocean views make it an excellent choice for experienced golfers, while the Fazio Course’s forgiving layout and mountain views make it a great choice for beginners or those looking for a more relaxed round of golf. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a casual player, a round of golf at Turtle Bay Resort is sure to be an unforgettable experience.


  • Ray Barnes

    Ray Barnes, our Senior Staff Writer and a Golf Analyst with a PhD in Sports Analytics, is a beacon of insight in the golfing world. With a deep understanding of the sport's nuances, statistical analysis, and a talent for demystifying complexities, he provides in-depth analysis and captivating narratives that engage golf enthusiasts worldwide.

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