Wanting The Best Golf Courses in Africa?
Africa is well known for its amazing safari experience, rich and beautiful landscapes and multi-cultural flare. What many do not know is that the continent now has over 800 golf courses, making it easy to pair a golf holiday with a safari or a beach holiday.
Africa has an impressive number of golf courses for a reputedly poor continent, with just over half of them, 450, located in South Africa. Egypt, Kenya, Mauritius, Morocco, South Africa, Tunisia and Zimbabwe are all well-known golf destinations.
Many of these courses are comfortably on par with the top courses in Europe and North America. Add exclusive resort accommodation to beautiful courses and it’s hard to find an excuse not to get off in Africa – particularly as links appear to miss palm-lined beaches and exotic birdsong fills the deep.
Playing golf in Africa is a genuinely fantastic experience – the scenery is perfect and the golf courses provide a stunning view of the mountains or the beaches.
Gary Player Country Club, Sun City
The classic course, designed by Gary Player, is host to the annual Nedbank Golf Challenge. The Gary Player Country Club is on the list of ‘must-play courses’ for many casual golfers. The view from every tea is spectacular. However, the course takes concentration as the greens are complicated and the bunkers are well positioned.
Fancourt Links, George, Western Cape
One of the three main golf courses in Africa’s leading golf resort, Fancourt Links, was voted the number one golf digest course in South Africa earlier this year, while Fancourt’s two other courses, Montagu and Outeniqua, placed the top 20 in the “Golf Digest” list of the best courses in South Africa.
With a length of 6,919 yards, par 72 from the club tees, the Links course can be extended to 7,535 yards from the back tees to suit the world’s best players, as has been achieved on many occasions. In 2003 he hosted the Presidents Cup, which ended in a historic tie after a dramatic playoff between Tiger Woods and Ernie Els.
Such major tournaments to be held here include the 2005 Women’s Golf World Cup, the 2006 South African Open and the 2012 Volvo Golf Champions Tour of the European Tour.
Arabella Hotel and Spa, Hermanus
Located below the scenic Kogelberg Mountains, near to the world-famous whale-watching town of Hermanus, you can find the Arabella Hotel and Spa. The golf course is the highest ranking golf course in South Africa. Professionals like Ernie Els and Gary Player have also played this course, designed by Peter Matkovich. The 8th hole was named one of the most beautiful par 5 holes in South Africa; and the 18th hole was ranked as one of the finest holes in the region.
Heritage Golf Club, Mauritius
Heritage Golf Club is home to a stunning golf course nestled in the most beautiful parts of the country. There are currently seven magnificent golf courses on Mauritius, with another planned to be built in the next two years.
It is lined with mango, papaya and palm trees and boasts spectacular views of the Indian Ocean. Set between the luscious mountains and the turquoise lagoon, this multi-award winning course is a perfect place to play for all levels of handicap.
The best course is the Peter Matkovich Heritage Golf Club course, which is more than 7,000 yards long, par 72 from the back tees. Strategically arranged boulders and course signs on rocks further improve the appearance of an already beautiful and demanding course, while a spacious clubhouse awaits golfers after their rounds.
Heritage Golf Course also has a host of realistic amenities, including an outstanding nine-hole, par-three course, a double-ended driving range and a superb short game area. There are two all-inclusive luxury hotels, the Heritage Awali Golf & Spa Resort and the Heritage Le Telfair Golf & Spa Resort, just across the road from the golf course.
Lemuria Golf Course, Seychelles
Lemuria Golf Course is a par-70 golf course designed by Rodney Wright and Marc Ferry. The 5.827-yard, par-70 course at the Lemuria Resort on the island of Praslin in the Seychelles is the only 18-hole course in this archipelago of the Indian Ocean. While the length of the course is comparatively short, it is not short of obstacles.
The first 12 holes are playing along short palm-lined fairways beside the resort itself, with plenty of water and sand waiting for the wayward shots. The remaining six holes climb up into the hills of the island, giving panoramic views over the course, the island and the other islands in the background, whilst the fairways get smaller and the difficulty more challenging.
The stunning scenery and panoramic views of the islands, however, make up the difficulty it offers.
Le Touessrok, Ile Aux Cerfs
Another lovely course on Mauritius is Le Touessrok, found on the island of Ile Aux Cerfs, on the east coast of Mauritius. This course is only accessible by boat or helicopter and has been described as “the work of art.”
This Bernhard Langer-designed course measures 7,115 yards, par 72 (from the back tees) and is a layout that needs to be played to be believed. All 18-holes provide glimpses of the shimmering ocean; white-sand bunkers and deep blue waters are the natural contrast to the abundance of tropical trees and plants.
It’s also an incredibly difficult course, with black volcanic rock outcroppings coming into play on some holes, mangrove swamps on several more, water hazards to test your accuracy on 13 holes and hidden bunkers on several more. It’s open to all levels of players and has been named among the Top 100 Golf Courses in the World.
Muthaiga Golf Course, Nairobi
Muthaiga Golf Course is a wonderful blend of Kenya’s ancient golf heritage and a new 18-hole golf championship. After being redesigned by Peter Matkovich, it became one of the most popular and demanding courses in East Africa. With undulating hills, green woodlands, wetlands and lakes, this is a stunning course.
Windhoek Golf & Country Club, Windhoek
Namibia may not be top-of-the-line golfers in Africa, but this Southern African nation has 15 golf courses and “Golf Digest” has recently voted the best of 18 holes in the Windhoek Golf & Country Club.
On the outskirts of Namibia’s Windhoek, this par 71 course is home to green, twisting fairways, deep bunkers and magnificent trees. Besides the woods and the rugged, wetlands come into play on three holes and a lot of deep bunkers cover most of the greens.
Well worth a visit to golfers who are in Namibia, with a luxurious four-star resort hotel attached to the course. It’s a fantastic club and course for all players.
Lusaka Golf Club
This 18-hole, par-73 golf course combines seamlessly with the nearby Zambian bushveld. Lusaka Golf Course has a fair share of difficulties with its undulating terrain, sand traps and numerous ponds. However, with its large fairways, well tended greens and rows of luscious trees, the elegance and difficulty of the course draws a variety of amateur and top-class golfers every year.
Leopard Rock Golf Resort, Mutare
Another course designed by Peter Matkovich, Leopard Rock, is consistently voted the number one Golf Digest course in Zimbabwe. Measuring 6,724 yards, par 72 Leopard Rock is situated in lush subtropical surroundings some 180 miles southeast of the Zimbabwe capital Harare and has superb bent USGA-standard green grass.
Carved out of thick forest shaded by the Leopard Rock Mountain, the course is full of elevation drops in many of its holes. Teeming bird life, wild orchids, tree ferns and other natural plants make it a beautiful course to play.
Other dangers include picturesque water features that protect some greens, rocks lining several fairways and ravines that must be borne if you’re going to finish the hole. Wild orchids, tree ferns and other species of plants native to the area flourish, while the bush is full of bird life.