Taking a holiday at one of the worlds most famous and sought after resorts is a lifetime ambition for most golfing enthusiasts. Most will never make it thanks to financial and family constraints, but that doesn’t mean we can’t spend some time checking out the coolest locations, right? I’ve spent time on the greens occasionally over the last ten years, and I honestly wish I could find a viable way of visiting these places listed below, but unfortunately, they’re not ideal for anyone with a partner and children in tow. Still, I can dream can’t I?
If you were single or had a very understanding partner, all you’d need to do is pack up your best checked trousers and your Mizuno MP-54 Irons, book a flight and away you’d go. Admittedly, you’d probably also need a lot of money to pay for accommodation and game-time, but if you stay within the complex (as most of the places listed are full resorts with hotels and apartments), the cost might not be so bad.
Banff Springs Resort – Alberta, Canada
Situated in the middle of the Canadian Rockies, with stunning panoramic views of snow-capped mountains at every turn, this resort and the course within it has been incredibly popular with golfing tourists for decades. There has been a recent renovation which added a fresh new course for beginners, so don’t worry if your skills aren’t quite up to scratch, you won’t get embarrassed by the professionals.
Golf National (Albatros Course) – Paris, France
Although most people don’t really consider France to be on the cutting edge of golf course design, this fantastic resort just outside of Paris is proving very popular of late with UK tourists looking to experience something a little different. Still, you probably want to avoid this place if you’re a beginner, as even the pros claim it’s one of the toughest courses on the planet, with an opening par-4 that’s surrounded by water,
Penha Longa (Atlantic Course) – Lisbon, Portugal
If you like the hot weather and don’t like the idea of paying thousands for your trip, this quaint and tranquil course in Portugal could be perfect. Located in the Sintra hills, within the grounds of an ancient monastery, many visitors claim to be impressed with the level of different terrains on this single course. Many of the holes are open and exposed, meaning prevailing winds make play a little more tricky, but that’s just all part of the fun.
Ria Bintan (Ocean Course) – Batam, Indonesia
Okay, so, if you want to visit this resort you’d better start saving soon, because from what I’ve heard, the cheapest hotel rooms cost around £500 per night, but if money isn’t a problem and you’re seeking true luxury, it’s idea. With a small 9-hole forest course also within the grounds, the selection is brilliant, and as the main 18-hole wonder gained world-class status a few years ago, it’s unlikely you’ll be disappointed. Just remember to bring your sun cream!
Like I said, most of us will never be able to visit these courses, but at least now we’ve all got something to aim for…
See you next time my friends!