With the Algarve announced as Golf Destination of the Year 2014 by IAGTO, it’s no wonder that thousands flock here to play a round or ten! The most popular time of year for golfers is often from Autumn to Spring when courses in colder parts of Europe become unplayable. Plenty of sunshine, temperatures of 18 -20 degrees and a light breeze all sway in favour of a golfing break in the Algarve.
The region’s main airport at Faro has arrivals daily and the good news is that it’s only a 2 – 3 hour flight from many of the main European cities. If you don’t fancy checking your golf clubs in, you can always pre-order them for collection in the arrivals hall at Faro airport. Check out www.clubstohire.com for more details.
The first golf course in the Algarve was designed in 1966 by Sir Henry Cotton. His love for golf and the area itself meant that during his 30 years living there he designed 3 golf courses. Nowadays, you will find an abundance of courses dotted along the Southern-most coast of Portugal. Many of the most well-known golfers have followed in Cotton’s footprints, coming to Portugal to aid in the design of courses. Arnold Palmer and Severiano Ballesteros to name a few. Paul Mc Ginley even has a Golf Academy in Quinta do Lago and there is also a driving range where you can practice your swing. Better yet, get a lesson or two in the Academy and beat your buddies on the course!
Quinta do Lago
Quinta do Lago is widely regarded as the regions premier resort. Here you will find several manicured courses including the renowned San Lourenzo course. There is also the North and South courses, Pinheiros Altos golf course and the newest of all, Laranjal.
If you do fancy having a bit of practice before heading out on the courses, Quinta do Lago also has a world class driving range right beside the bistro, Koko Lane. From mouth-watering breakfasts to pizzas cooking in a traditional wood-fired oven, Koko Lane offers something for the whole family and even has a playground for the children while you practice your golf swing….which makes it a favourite destination for all the family.
Vale do Lobo
In the neighbouring resort of Vale do Lobo, you will find the Royal Course and the Ocean Course, the latter of which provides excellent views of the coastline. There are often events held at both courses if you fancy letting your competitive streak show! Head back to the Clubhouse after a tough morning golfing in the sun and tuck into lunch at Spikes Restaurant. You can also avail of some coaching from an on-site pro at the Golf Academy or practice on the golf range and putting green. Head to the on-site Golf Shop if you need to stock up!
A little further afield is the resort of Vilamoura… one of Europe’s largest resort towns! Here you’ll find the Oceanico courses; the Oceanico Victoria where the Masters is held each year, the Old Course, Oceanico Pinhal, the Millenium golf course and the Oceanico Laguna. The Oceanico group also have courses in Silves, which is North West of Vilamoura.
Just west of Vilamoura, the Pines Cliffs and Salgadas golf courses offer amazing views of the ocean. The Pine Cliffs course is 200 meters above the water while Salgadas weaves in and out along the Rio Formoso Nature Reserve.
All of the courses in the area provide a range of top class facilities including electric trollies, golf buggies, clubs, a golf shop, Clubhouse and most provide lessons.
Contact SandyBlue if you need any further information on golf in the Algarve. We would be happy to help you organise your next golfing holiday and can even provide insider tips on reduced fees, transfers to and from the golf courses, club hire and more….