Playing golf with your siblings. That's easy. Playing golf with your city's siblings. Not so easy. Seven Idaho cities have a total of 11 sister-city relationships on four different continents. Some of those cities even have an abundance of golf courses.
But getting there—the Alps or Japan—can be one challenge. And planning a golf trip—how do you say "birdie" in Japanese?—can be frustrating, but seems worth it.
We dug through the sister cities and came up with your best bets for playing golf while spreading good will.
Idaho cities have relationships with Tokai-Mura (Idaho Falls), Iwamizawa (Pocatello) and Yamanouchi (Sun Valley).
And the Japanese love golf. The country has 2,344 facilities with at least 18 holes—so many courses in such a small area that it's impossible to narrow the list.
But one website has been designed to give English-speaking residents and visitors a chance to navigate the Japanese golf landscape. Go to www.golf-in-japan.com and find the course that looks right for you.
Cranbrook, BC, Canada
Coeur d'Alene's sister city is the closest to home. It doesn't require airfare or a translator. And the golf options are solid.
St. Eugene Golf Course features a barn clubhouse and spectacular views of the Kootenay Rockies and St. Mary River.
The course boasts forest and meadows, creating the combination of gorgeous, sweeping views on some holes and peaceful, wooded bliss on others. The course opened in 2000 and was honored by Golf Digest as one of the three best new courses in Canada. Check it out at www.steugene.ca/golf.
Cranbrook Golf Club, which claims the "most sunshine hours in B.C.," is carved out of a forest of towering evergreen trees for a parkland setting. It has hosted five major British Columbia Golf Association events. The website is www.golfcranbrook.com/home.php.
The area also has a par-3 course and an executive layout. Golf season begins in April.
Lignano Sabbiadoro, Italy
Golf Club Lignano wraps around a large, reed-lined pond. The city in northern Italy, which is near the Adriatic Sea, has a relationship with Ketchum.
The area south of Münich has a nice collection of golf courses and is connected with Ketchum. It's not quite as spectacular as Austria, but the valley that surrounds the Tegernsee lake is quite beautiful.
One course that stands out is Tegernseer Golf-Club Bad Wiessee, which was founded in 1958 and sits on the lake's shore.
You can't beat the Alps for scenery, and there's at least a dozen courses within a 20-mile radius of the famed skiing town, the sister city of Sun Valley.
The most eye-catching is Golfclub Eichenheim-Kitzbühel, which was founded in 1999. The course is surrounded by colorful forest, with towering, snow-capped peaks in the distance.
Other sister cities include Chita, Russia, and Gernika, Spain (Boise); Villa Carlos Fonseca, Nicaragua (Moscow); and Kwaremenguel, Burkina Faso (Pocatello).
Photography by Ben Galloway, Courtesy of Cranbrook Golf Club & Kitzbuhol Tourismus
Text Chadd Cripe