Forbes Ranks Branson (Missouri) No. 4 in its ‘Top 10 Best Places to Travel Now During the Pandemic’

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Destination’s 10 Golf Courses and Other Activities Enable Safe Recreation and Social Distancing

Both the golf industry and Explore Branson – the Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) for the town and surrounding area in the southwest Missouri Ozarks – reported better than expected numbers in 2020, a trend that has continued into 2021. Now Forbes is doing the same.

It recently published its “Top Ten Best Places In America To Travel Right Now And Avoid The Pandemic,” and Branson is ranked No. 4 in the country. To compile this list, Forbes overlaid more than half a dozen maps and criteria like the CDC COVID Data Tracker, the Harvard-Brown COVID Risk Level Map, and TripAdvisor reviews, including current case counts, population density, average weather, public health guidance, proximity to outdoor activities, and drive times from at least two major American metropolises. It also looked at new cases per 100,000 people, 7-day rolling averages, total cases, and total deaths to assess the current coronavirus infection risk relative to historical trends dating back to the beginning of the pandemic.

That Branson fared so well in the Forbes’ compilation was an inspiring reinforcement, given that the study results mirrored state and regional trends and case numbers. The destination is known for its lakes, live entertainment theaters, family friendly atmosphere, and increasingly its rising-star golf destination. Golf plays a key role in Branson’s safe Forbes’ rating, given there are 10 courses, all of which provide inherently safe havens simultaneously enjoying recreation with friends whilst practicing social distancing.

“This list of best places to safely travel couldn’t come at a better time for Branson,” said Lynn Berry, Director of Communications, Branson Convention & Visitors Bureau. “With the weather becoming more pleasant by the week, our world-class golf destination, incredible hotels, resorts, restaurants and many other attractions are well-suited to provide guests with fun, safe, and memorable experiences.”

Branson has a variety of exceptional golf courses that are close to one another, hold critical acclaim, and offer great restaurants, lodging, and after-golf diversions. The newest – Payne’s Valley by Tiger Woods – is brand new and just recently opened for its first full season. Four other Branson courses are rated among the top 10 in Missouri – Ozarks National (No. 1), Buffalo Ridge (No. 2), Branson Hills (No. 3), and LedgeStone (No. 7). Additionally, Ozarks National and Buffalo Ridge were honored as “Top 100 Courses You Can Play in America,” ranking nos. 64 and 83, respectively (out of roughly 13,500 U.S. playing venues).

Thousand Hills (Bob Cupp design), The Pointe, and Holiday Hills complete Branson Golf’s roster of 10 courses, and each has earned appreciation for their playability and value.

For more information about Branson Golf, visit www.explorebranson.com/golf or www.facebook.com/bransongolf

About Explore Branson Golf

Ozarks National, 800.225.6343

Mountain Top, 800.225.6343

The Pointe, 417.334.4477

Thousand Hills, 800.487.0769, 417.334.4553

Buffalo Ridge, 800.225.6343

LedgeStone, 417.335.8187

Top of the Rock, 800.225.6343

Branson Hills, 417.337.2963

Payne’s Valley, 800.225.6343

Holiday Hills, 417.334.4838

About Explore Branson

Branson is a one-of-a-kind family vacation destination nestled in the lakeside beauty of the Ozark Mountains — and an incredible value — with dozens of live performance theaters, three pristine lakes, an international award-winning theme park, dozens of attractions and museums, a Historic Downtown district, a Town Center-style shopping complex, a full range of dining options, and a host of hotels, motels, resorts, RV parks, campgrounds, sports venues, and meeting and conference facilities. Branson is less than one day’s drive for one-third of America’s residents. With low-cost flights to the Branson Airport (BKG www.flybranson.com) and nearby Springfield-Branson National Airport (SGF), it has never been easier to access Branson. Call 1-800-296-0463 for help planning your next vacation, convention, sports event or reunion. See more at: www.explorebranson.com

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Glen Turk is a Wisconsin native who has been the Senior Writer/Editor of Midwest Golfing Magazine since 2006. Besides being an avid golfer, Glen enjoys traveling, music, and cheering on the finest professional sports team of all-time, the Green Bay Packers. Glen’s ultimate golf goal is to play in all fifty states and currently he is more than half way there. His other dream, albeit far-fetched, it to record an ace in all seven states of our distribution area. Thanks to an ace in Illinois in 2015, and one in Michigan in 2016, he has three down, four to go!

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