Even though I now live in North Carolina, as a previous long time Georgia resident, fall is one of my favorite times of the year in the Garden City. The Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club is one of four annual major championships. The Masters is normally played during the first full week of April.
Travels with Bibi has its own special connection to the Masters Tournament that even our most loyal readers might not know. Two of Bibi’s children were born into the golf mecca and claim Augusta, Georgia as their hometown!
Visiting the Augusta Area
This year, we’re pleased to be attending the Par 3 practice round and taking a tour of Columbia County, courtesy of Columbia County Convention & Visitors Bureau. We’re looking forward to seeing the great things Columbia County has going on and sharing advice on making visits to Augusta the ultimate Masters experience!
Fun Fact: Local legend has it that the groundskeepers at Augusta National ice down the famous azaleas that frame many areas along the course. This is thought to occur during too-warm weather in an effort to delay early blooming of the colorful floral display. Since there have been years where the azaleas have bloomed prior to the tournament, only the groundskeepers know for sure!
10 Tips to Visiting the Masters Tournament
Note: We may earn money if you click on a link and make a purchase, with zero extra cost to you.
Snap a Photo In Front of the Club House
Most people believe you cannot take a photo at The Masters, but that’s not entirely true. There is a semi-secret photo spot near the first hole where you will find a line where the club photographer will snap your photo with the Masters logo, magnolias, and clubhouse in the background.
Not many visitors know about this photo opportunity because it’s not advertised. After your picture is taken, you’ll receive a card that gives instructions to retrieve your photo online. There tends to be a line, so go early in the morning!
Ditch Large Purses and Backpacks
Purses larger than 10″W x 10″H x 12″D are strictly prohibited and so are backpacks of any size. We recommend a small cross-body style purse as an easy way to carry your belongings.
Additionally, you may want to clean out your purse before you go to the Masters and avoid taking unnecessary items. Keep it simple. All you really need is sunscreen, lip balm or gloss with SPF, bug-spray, and other small necessities.
Pro Tip: Shopping for Masters merchandise is part of the fun! Augusta National has a check stand as well as UPS and Fed Ex shipping centers located near the exits of the merchandise areas. Ship your purchases home and never worry about lugging your new Masters gear around with you!
Bring a Chair
An 18-hole professional golf course covers a lot of territory and you will get tired. Each person is allowed to bring in one lightweight, armless collapsible chair. If you don’t feel like carrying one in, you can purchase one at the merchandise tent for $29. That’s what we’re going to do!
Pro Tip: Some favorite viewing points include the top of hole 16, Amen corner, the grandstand at 15, and halfway down 13. Or, simply place your chair next to any green and walk around to view other vantage points. The patrons at the Masters are quite polite and no one will touch or move your chair.
Leave Your Cell Phone Behind
Sadly, this one of the few times in life that you must part ways with your phone. Cell phones are strictly prohibited on the grounds at all times and will get you ejected from the tournament if you are found in possession of one.
If you want to take photos, you can do so on the practice round days (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday). Those are the only days when cameras are permitted, a policy that is strictly enforced.
Pro Tip: Make sure you bring an actual camera on practice round days and don’t try and sneak your phone in. Trust us, they’re very strict on the no cell phone rule.
Dress to Casually Impress
To avoid dressing inappropriately for the Masters, leave clothing that’s low-cut or too tight-fitting for another day.
For women, longer shorts or capris paired with a nice top are fine. If you are worried about rain, a skirt made by RipSkirt Hawaii is the perfect choice. It’s a water shedding, quick wrap, all sports cover-up that multi-tasks as the ideal spring and summer skirt. You will fit in with the crowd, but still be trendy and look your best! The skirt comes in three lengths which helps make it perfect for women of all ages.
The men in attendance usually wear khaki pants or long shorts paired with polo shirts or lightweight button down shirts with sleeves rolled up. Jeans are not recommended, especially if rain is in the forecast.
Pack a Hat and Wear Sunscreen
Even in November, the sun in Augusta can be brutal and it’s easy to get sunburned being outside all day. You don’t want to forget sunscreen when you go to the Masters! Our favorite sunscreen is EltaMD UV Sport Broad-Spectrum SPF 50. It can be applied to wet or dry skin and blends in quickly with no white residue.
In addition to your SPF, a hat is a really good idea. The hat that I’ll be wearing at the Masters this year is an adorable wide brim Safari made by Tenth Street. It’s hand woven and features three distinct straw patterns and a classic grosgrain bow that will be in style for years to come.
Other hat options include baseball caps for men and visors can work well for women not wearing more traditional hat styles.
Say No to High Heels
Comfortable shoes are essential because you’re going to be doing a lot of walking. It’s not unheard of for golf spectators to walk up to 7 miles if following a particular group of competitors. Plus, besides being uncomfortable for all-day wear, high heels might dig into the ground. For all around comfort, we recommend a pair of sneakers like Keen Elsa IV or the super supportive Taos Moc Star.
Pro Tip: The Augusta National is a hilly course and the ground can be slippery early in the morning or after it rains. Be sure to take that into consideration when making your footwear choice.
Dress in Layers
Every year is different but typical weather in November means that early mornings and late afternoons could be chilly! The average temperature is a high of 69° F and a low of 49° so be prepared for a range of temps.
We recommend the Dalle Piane cashmere blend poncho (comes in 16 colors) which rolls to conveniently fit in your purse and is ready-to-wear!
Pro Tip: Be sure to roll it to avoid wrinkling rather than folding it in half. This is also a space-saver so it will fit inside your Masters permitted-size purse.
Bug Spray is Essential
One of the must haves in your golf bag is bug spray, and it’s also a necessity to have when walking the grounds at a golf tournament. Insects such as mosquitoes, biting flies, and gnats are an unfortunate reality.
According to GolfDigest, one of the best insect repellents for golfers is Natrapel 8-Hour DEET Free, $8, three-ounce spray.
Pro Tip: If you don’t feel like carrying a potentially leaky pump bottle in your purse, place a Bounce dryer sheet in your back pocket — it doubles as an inset repellent! You could also dab some lavender essential oil on your wrists and neck to help ward off pesky insects.
Nosh on a Pimento Cheese Sandwich
Lunch or snack time is one of the best parts about The Masters. Everything is affordable and quite delicious! Augusta’s soft pimento cheese sandwiches are legendary and will only set you back about $1.50.
Pro Tip: The main concessions area is near the first fairway. Picnic grounds are near Gate 10 and at the end of the patrons’ corridor, near the main entrance. You’re not permitted to bring in any alcoholic beverages or coolers.
Visit Augusta and Enjoy the Masters
In a normal year, the Masters Golf Tournament takes place each year in early April. The 2020 Masters begins with the first practice round on Monday, November 9 and concludes with the fourth round on Sunday, November 15, 2020.
Do you have plans to attend the Masters Golf Tournament? Have you attended before and have other helpful tips to share? If so, let us know in a comment below.
If you liked this article, please share it and don’t forget to subscribe and get emailed article updates send right to your inbox.