Barnsley Resort

by | Sep 21, 2023 | Where to Play

Located in the rolling hills of Northwest Georgia, Barnsley Resort Golf Course is a hidden gem that seamlessly blends natural beauty, historic charm, and world-class golf. This picturesque destination has earned a reputation as one of the finest golf courses in the Southeastern United States, attracting golfers and travelers from nearby.

The story of Barnsley Resort begins in the mid-19th century when Godfrey Barnsley, an Englishman, purchased the land with dreams of creating a grand estate for his beloved wife, Julia. Originally known as Woodlands, the centerpiece of his vision was an Italianate mansion surrounded by breathtaking gardens. However, before the mansion was completed, Julia fell ill and died, and Barnsley temporarily suspended the construction. Later, he said he felt her presence at the site telling him to finish the house.

Woodlands estate and gardens were finished in 1848. The gardens were designed after Andrew Jackson Downing’s architectural designs, while the manor house featured modern plumbing, Italian and French marble, and furnishings from all over the world.

Union soldiers on Sherman’s March to the Sea caused irreparable damage to the estate during the Civil War. However, the estate remained occupied by Barnsley’s descendants until its auction in 1942, when the gardens and manor house fell into disrepair.

Barnsley Gardens Resort

Abandoned Manor House at Barnsley Resort

In 1988, Prince Hubertus Fugger purchased the estate and began a major project to stabilize the ruins and rescue and restore the gardens. The restoration effort brought the historic gardens and mansion back to life, and a golf course designed by Jim Fazio emerged as a part of a grand restoration project.

The golf course is not just a golf course but a journey through lush forests, tranquil lakes, and vibrant gardens. Each hole presents a unique challenge, with strategically placed bunkers and undulating greens that will test players’ skills of all levels. The fairways are immaculate, the greens are fast and true, and the attention to detail is evident in every aspect of the course maintenance.

The course’s unique charm lies in its ability to transport golfers to a time when elegance and nature coexisted harmoniously, making each round played here a game and a journey through the annals of Southern history and the beauty of the Georgia landscape. Known as “The General,” the course is one of the most desirable and highly sought-after courses to play in the Southeast and is always found near the top of the list of best courses to play in Georgia. Its stunning views, impeccable greens, and exceptional collection of par 3’s make it an unforgettable experience. The sounds of the Georgia outdoors and the occasional train horn in the distance provide a peaceful golfing experience.

Barnsley Gardens Resort


Today, as players tee off on the Barnsley Gardens Resort Golf Course, they enjoy a round of golf and participate in a living piece of history that beautifully combines the past and the present.

A Relaxing Escape

Barnsley Resort is a serene retreat in the beautiful Georgia countryside, providing a tranquil escape for all who visit. The lodging seamlessly combines modern luxury with historic charm, ensuring a memorable stay for guests. Accommodations at Barnsley Resort range from cozy cottages to elegant suites, each thoughtfully designed to provide the utmost comfort and relaxation. Visitors can unwind in the rustic-chic cottages, complete with fireplaces, private porches, and scenic garden views. For those looking for a touch of opulence, the resort’s suites offer spacious living areas, plush furnishings, and spa-inspired bathrooms, creating an oasis of indulgence.

Dining at Barnsley Resort

Dining at Barnsley Resort isn’t just a meal; it’s a culinary journey that celebrates the flavors of the South while allowing guests to savor the beauty of their natural surroundings. Whether it’s a romantic dinner for two or a gathering with friends, the resort’s dining options offer a perfect conclusion to a day spent on the golf course or exploring the estate’s historic gardens.

The Woodlands Grill, the resort’s main dining venue, offers a warm and inviting atmosphere. Here, patrons can savor a diverse menu that features Southern-inspired cuisine prepared with locally sourced ingredients. From mouthwatering steaks to fresh seafood and farm-to-table vegetables, the culinary offerings reflect the essence of Georgia’s rich food culture.

For those looking for a more casual and alfresco dining experience, the Beer Garden is a delightful choice. It is situated near the golf course and provides a laid-back setting to enjoy craft beers, sandwiches, and classic pub fare. As guests dine, they can soak in the scenic views of the course and the surrounding woodlands.

Plan Your Visit

Barnsley Resort is more than just a golfing destination; it’s a place to escape, relax, and immerse yourself in history and nature. Whether you’re an avid golfer looking for a challenging round or a traveler seeking a tranquil getaway, this resort has something to offer. It’s a place where the past and present come together to create an unforgettable experience for all who visit.

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About the Author

<a href="" target="_self">Alan Darty</a>

Alan Darty

Alan is the founder and publisher of Golf One Media and the former publisher of eSouthernGOLF—a second-generation Florida native who loves all things Florida. You can usually find him with his wife, watching their two daughters coaching volleyball at Oviedo (FL) High School or Mississippi State University when he's not golfing, hunting, or fishing.