As the world cautiously opens up to travellers in the coming months, people are more likely to venture into wide open spaces far from the madding crowd. And what better way to enjoy vast expanses of land than on a golf course where you are usually separated from the next team of golfers by at least a few hundred metres?
Here are eight golf courses on the network where you can enjoy a beautiful game.
The host of the South African Open in 2018 and 2020, this historic golf club offers a unique experience with its two distinctive courses as well as a separate mashie course. Windsor Park, now known as Bushwillow, is a classic parkland course with tree-lined fairways and various water hazards. The second and younger course, Firethorn, was recently given a facelift and has been graced by golf champions including Shaun Norris,Charl Schwartzel and Zander Lombard.
Best for… Golfers of varying abilities looking to take a swing at a championship golf course
2. Rainbow Hills, Bogor, Indonesia
Named the best golf course in Indonesia at the Asian Golf Awards 2019, this picturesque club offers a challenging layout across its three courses (27 holes), with the infamous hole 13 being the toughest. Framed by the stunning backdrop of Bogor’s mountains, theundulating course follows the natural contours of the landscape and is ideal for golfers looking to up their game.
Best for… Weekend golfers looking for a quick getaway from Jakarta, located an hour away.
3. Hamilton Golf Club, Queensland, Australia
Located on the paradisiacal Dent Island – adjacent to Hamilton Island – this is the only championship course in Australia on its own island. Despite the laid-back setting, it’s no walk in the park. Designed by five-time British Open winner Peter Thomson, the 18-hole course is spread out across broad ridges and steep valleys, with obstacles such as strong winds and thick bushland to contend with. After a grueling day on the course, unwind in the well-appointed Clubhouse surrounded by serene views of the Whitsunday Islands and the Coral Sea.
Best for… Serious golfers looking to take their game to the next level.
Sun, sand, sea… and golf? You can have it all with this nine-hole course spread out on the southern end of Villingili Island. Part of the Shangri-La resort, it’s the first and only one of its kind in the island nation, and features a series of challenges strung out across its 7.5 hectares. As you navigate the course, drink in the tropical scenery of powdery white beaches, crystal-clear lagoons and swaying coconut palms.
Best for… Recreational golfers looking for a quick game on their beach holiday
This championship golf course, the brainchild of Scottish golfing icon Colin Montgomerie, features strategically placed bunkers and wind-blown dunes alongside existing native vegetation for an exciting and challenging game. Backed by an impressive view of Marble Mountains, the course – close to the gorgeous Ha My Beach, midway between Danang and Hoi An – also has a lot more water holes than most links courses and is dotted with lakes and streams.
Best for… Golfers looking to tee off while on holiday
Recently awarded Thailand’s Best Golf Course 2019 at the 6th annual World Golf Awards held in Abu Dhabi, this 18-hole championship course offers breathtaking sea views and undulating fairways. Located on the scenic west coast of Phuket, the luxury golf resort offers two distinctive experiences – lush tropical foliage on the front nine, and a medley of coconut groves and sand bunkers across the back holes.
Best for… Golfers looking for a secluded hideaway
Designed by four-time major champion Ernie Els, this spectacular golf course is one of the country’s most well known, with the course incorporating as much of the natural environment as possible. With a dramatic backdrop of mountains and virgin rainforest, the course wends its way around native flora – tropical hardwoods, bougainvillea, palms, ferns and broad-leafed plants – as well as various natural streams. Wildlife such as macaques and tropical birds are also known to make an appearance. The course is composed of rolling greens and fairways, offering a variety with uphill and downhill holes, and is ideal for both beginners and advanced golfers alike.
Best for… Golfers looking to take a swing in one of the country’s most beautiful golf courses
Bagging awards for Best Public Golf Course in Asia Pacific and Best Value for Money Experience in Asia Pacific at the abovementioned Asian Golf Awards, this 18-hole course offers both variety and challenge in the heart of the city. The course is made up of 85 pot bunkers of varying sizes and depths, and undulations across huge swathes of green. The course is also lighted for night play, perfect for those looking to get a game in after work.
Best for… Urban golfers looking for an invigorating game in the city