Golf holidays in Portugal are thriving. The past two decades have seen a massive increase in the number of course and resorts. Best of all, the quality of regular and championship courses is making this a golfing destination to compete with the British Isles in European golf. For a fuss-free golf holiday Algarve ticks all the boxes with its range of course, year round great weather and accommodation options, but it is worth check out the rest of the country too.
The following five courses are picked for their course design, variety of holes and scenic context. It would be all too easy to select a list just from the Algarve so this list brings together some gems from around the country.
- Praia DÃ¢â‚¬â„¢El Rey: Just a short drive from Lisbon, this tough links course provides challenges on each hole. Some are wide open to the Atlantic Ocean breezes. Others are partly sheltered by forestation. The quality of the greens throughout is consistent and this makes for a great setting on a summers days.
- San Lorenzo Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Quinto do Lago: This course regularly makes the European top-ten course lists. The architecture makes the most of the woodlands through which the course winds and the Bermuda grass fairways are a joy to play from.
- Penha Longa: Home to the 2010 Portugal Open, this course has many surprises over its 18 holes. The sight of old ruins marking out of bounds for one. While the tough par-four 16th will be a challenge to even low handicap players to make par.
- Oceanico Faldo: Located on the western Algarve coast, this course follows a desert-style design by Nick Faldo which makes this course unique and memorable in the region.
- Vale do Lobo: This Royal & Ocean Golf Club are pricey but definitely worth a round. Sometimes more famous for the surrounding scenic views along the 4 kilometer beach that lines some of the holes, it still manages to prove to be a tough course to play if the wind is swirling.
Playing any of these five during a golf holiday in Portugal will prove a memorable days golfing thanks, in no small part, to the improving design and course management on the Portuguese courses.