The courses were closed for improperly using groundwater, arable land or protected land within nature reserves, the state-run Xinhua News Agency said on Sunday.
The agency said authorities have imposed restrictions on 65 more courses.
China banned the development of new golf courses in 2004, when it had fewer than 200. Since that time, the number of courses has more than tripled.
Developers build courses under the guise of parks or other projects, often with the tacit approval of local officials.
In one example chronicled by state media, an illegal golf course boasting 58 villas was originally built as a “public sports park,” only to be secretly converted later. Many of China’s cities, meanwhile, face severe land shortages and skyrocketing real estate prices.
Golf has also come under scrutiny by way of the sweeping anti-corruption campaign launched under Chinese president Xi Jinping.
The ruling Communist Party warned its 88 million members in 2015 not to play golf, likening it to “extravagant eating and drinking” and other bad habits that were at odds with the party’s stated principles.
An editorial in the China Daily newspaper the following spring clarified that party cadres were not to take free memberships or rounds.
China has veered over the years between rejecting and supporting golf. Amid a spirit of austerity and attacks on the country’s former elites, Mao Zedong banned golf after the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949. One Shanghai golf course was turned into the city zoo. Golf began to take off in the 1980s under Deng Xiaoping, the Chinese leader who instituted sweeping economic reforms and courted foreign investment.
By the 1990s, a course designed by Jack Nicklaus opened at Mission Hills in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen. Mission Hills now has 12 courses and is the largest golf resort in the world.
As in football and basketball, the government has invested in developing homegrown golf talent by importing coaches and promoting the sport.
Australian golfer Greg Norman served for a time as an adviser to China’s national team. And there are as many as 10,000 youth golfers and more than 300 international-standard competitions each year, said Wang Liwei, secretary-general of the China Golf Association.