What’s Fairway in Golf – Tee Box, Rough, Greenside Sand Bunker Explained

If you are a beginning golfer, it is useful to understand the basic layouts of the golf course. The major components of a typical golf course include the tee box, the golf fairway, rough, fairway and greenside sand bunkers, “hazard” areas, and finally, the golf putting green that contains a flagstick inserted into the cup. This cup is the target destination for the golf ball on a particular hole.

This article defines the tee box and the golf fairway.

The first section of every hole contains the tee box or teeing area. A particular hole can contain as many as five tee boxes that golfers access to place their ball (or “tee up their ball”) to hit the very first golf shot for that hole. There are multiple tee boxes that golfers access depending on skill level.

tee box

For example, on a typical course, there are the “back” tees that are furthest from the hole and used by more advanced players (often designated as championship tees and black in color). The second and third sets of tee boxes are closer to the hole than the back tees and designated for beginner to intermediate players (often designated in white or blue colors).

The next set of tee boxes is usually designated for female and junior golfers.

The golfers can choose to play their golf shot out of the tee box either off the ground or place the golf ball on a small manufactured device called a golf tee, usually made out of wood or plastic, which can make hitting the first golf shot easier than hitting the ball directly off the ground.

golf tee

The golf fairway is the area of grass between the tee box and the golf putting green. On longer holes (greater than a par 3), it is the golfer’s goal to land the ball safely within the golf fairway when he or she hits the tee shot. If the ball lands safely in the golf fairway, then the golfer will be in a position to hit the next golf shot toward the golf putting green.

It should be noted that on “par 3” holes (where the golfer is expected to put the ball in the cup within three strokes), the golfer is expected to drive the ball directly to the golf putting green on their first shot from the tee box. Holes longer than par 3’s usually require at least one extra shot to be made, with the second golf shot ideally hit from the golf fairway.