Being an avid golfer can inspire countless magical adventures. Such is the worldwide popularity of the sport, you’ll be able to find courses almost anywhere on Earth. And on top of that, golf courses are often spectacularly pristine. Fairways are seemingly chiselled to perfection, while greens almost look as though they’ve been painstakingly carved on some futuristic computer software. Even if you’re more likely to hit a triple bogey than a birdie, many golf courses are worth taking in just for the glorious scenery. Besides, there could be worse places to improve your game than somewhere dominated by grand surroundings! With that in mind, we’ve got a few suggestions should you opt to take your golfing passion abroad.
Pebble Beach, California, United States
Few courses rival Pebble Beach in terms of fame and sheer allure. Not only can it boast about hosting the US Open five times (and will do so again in 2019), but its location also makes it desirable. Gripping America’s West Coast, much of the course allows fine views out over the Bay of Carmel and the Pacific Ocean further afield. Playing the course doesn’t come cheap, however, as you might expect. It’ll cost $495 (£382) per person, per round.
Wade Hampton, North Carolina, United States
Nestled amongst mountainous Nantahala National Forest in western North Carolina, Wade Hampton is a sight to behold. The surrounding woodland is particularly attractive, as it closes around almost every hole and combines with the nearby mountains to produce a striking claustrophobic, but cosy, feel. The crowding foliage means there’s little forgiveness from the course for rookies, but either way it’ll be a round to remember if you get a chance to play it. You’ll have to get friendly with a member if you’re lucky enough to tee off here.
Fairmont Banff Springs, Alberta, Canada
Canada is well known for its remarkable countryside landscapes, so it’s only natural that they’d have an impressive golf course amongst it somewhere. Located between Cascade Mountain and Mt Rundle in the Bow Valley Provincial Park, Fairmont Banff Springs is carved into the woodland and boasts immense views of the surrounding peaks. The crystalline Bow River runs right past it, while the world-renowned par 3, “Devil’s Cauldron”, requires a tee shot over a glacial lake which is a piercing blue in colour. There’s charm all over the course and you could play it from $182 (£140) in May and October, or from $239 (£184) between June and September.
Pinnacle Point, Mossel Bay, South Africa
Few golf courses can boast sitting above caves which provide evidence of Stone Age life up to 165,000 years ago, but Pinnacle Point in South Africa can. Meanwhile, above ground, there are uninterrupted 180-degree views of the course’s only water hazard, the Indian Ocean. In 2016, Pinnacle Point was voted South Africa’s Best Golf Course at the Annual World Golf Awards, with its breathtaking scenery and spectacular holes drawing welcome comparisons with Pebble Beach. It’s great to look at, meticulously designed and home to a significant archaeological site – an impressive repertoire! And at ZAR 495 (£29) per round, the prices are astonishingly good value.
Bay Course, Costa Navarino, Greece
When it comes to golfing hotspots, Greece might not immediately spring to mind. But the Bay Course is one of two championship courses on the Costa Navarino and is located within Ormos Navarinou, or Navarino Bay. Scenery wise, it has fine views out across the bay to the town Pilos, while the course itself boasts a variety of natural landscapes, with canyon and grove holes in addition to the seaside ones. Par is 71, highlighting how much of a challenge it can be, regardless of your ability. And with green fees starting from €120 (£105) for non-resort residents, pricing is reasonable.
For many keen golfers, tying in a few rounds while on holiday makes for the perfect trip, whether you’re just nipping across to France or heading to California specifically to fulfil your Pebble Beach dream. Either way, at The Insurance Emporium we offer up to 90 days of Worldwide Cover on the Portrush cover level, potentially keeping your adventure on course should something go awry. Would that suit you to a tee? Then visit The Insurance Emporium for more information!
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