Home of many great golfers, we take a look at some of the best courses in South Africa.
The Best Golf Courses In South Africa
South Africa is a country that has had a long relationship with the game of golf. Not only has it produced some of the best golfers ever in Gary Player, Ernie Els, Bobby Locke and countless others, but the country also has some world class golf courses too.
Here we have taken a look at some of the best.
On South Africa’s south coast, midway between Cape Town and Port Elizabeth, Fancourt is at the heart of South Africa’s famed ‘garden route’. It’s a supremely beautiful stretch of coastline with a moderate climate and incredible array of flora and fauna. Fancourt has three courses, all designed by nine-time Major Champion Gary Player.
The premier track is the Links, venue for the 2003 Presidents Cup and the 2012 Volvo Golf Champions event won by Branden Grace. It’s an incredible design inspired by the great links tracks of Scotland and Ireland and is generally regarded as one of the very best courses in South Africa.
Leopard Creek offers safari golf with the course located on the southern edge of Kruger National Park, about 200 miles east of Johannesburg.
There are numerous water features and even if you are not enjoying the golf, which would be very hard to do, there is a good chance of spotting crocodile, hippo, antelope, buffalo, or even a lion. The course is also an excellent test of golf.
Durban Country Club
The course is one of the country’s oldest dating back to 1922. It’s little more than a stone’s throw from the Indian Ocean, and laid out over what would once have been sand dunes.
Although it perhaps doesn’t really have the feel of a links in terms of its grasses and firmness, it certainly does in the way many fairways play over rumpled, mounded terrain the like of which you will rarely have experienced, especially the 17th were the rollercoaster fairway drops and rises.
Along the coast of the Eastern Cape in South Africa there stretches mile upon mile of classic links land with towering sand dunes he equal of anything Scotland or Ireland have to offer. And yet despite this fabulous natural resource South Africa can lay claim to only one authentic links golf course.
Humewood, on the outskirts of Port Elizabeth at the eastern end of the famous Garden Route, owns the distinction. It is one of the few truly great links courses that exist outside of the British Isles and inevitably it has strong British connections running through its history.
It was built in 1929 in a stunning location amid low dunes where the land meets the crashing rollers of the Indian Ocean and the wind seems to howl incessantly.
Gary Player and Lost City
Hotel and casino giants Sun International has two fantastic courses in the Sun City resort.
Gary Player County Club was designed by the legend himself as well as the Lost City course which is nearby. The former stretches to almost 8,000 yards off the tips and has hosted the Nedbank Challenge since 1981.
The par-5 9th would be a top candidate for one of the world’s best finishing holes should it not just mark the end of the front nine. Tour players are often tempted to go for the island green in two.
Lost City may well be overshadowed by its famous neighbour, but its a world-class venue in its own right. Beware the crocodile put on the downhill 13th.
It does not have the history of the other courses on this list but for sheer extremity, Legend Golf and Safari Resort is unlike any other course in the world largely thanks to the Extreme 19th which you can see above.
The tee sits on top of Hangklip Mountain and requires a helicopter ride to it before you hit down to a green shaped like the continent of Africa. It sits 1,300 feet below and measures 395 yards.
Notable Mentions: Royal Johannesburg & Kensington, St Francis Links, Glendower, Arabella, Fancourt (Montagu), Simola, Pearl Valley, Pinnacle Point, Royal Cape, Kimberley, Erinvale, Pezula
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