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Five of SA’s most tourist-friendly golf resorts

SA boasts golf courses alongside incredible scenery. We’ve selected some of the best offerings.

Fancourt, George
Fancourt features three courses designed by Gary Player, including The Links, which is one of the top-rated golf courses in the world. The other two courses, Outeniqua and Montagu, are also highly regarded and have been specially designed to factor in the coastal winds that can blow into George and the surrounds. It also features a Golf Academy, offering professional advice and tuition, and two pro shops. The rest of the property includes the 115-room Fancourt Hotel and a boutique hotel called The Manor House with 18 suites. Facilities include a spa, two restaurants, conferencing facilities, and a range of activities including tennis, gym and a kids’ and teens’ club.

Golf rates vary depending on the golf course and whether or not the guest is staying at the hotel. For 2015, these range from 18-holes on Montagu or Outeniqua (as a hotel guest) for R550 per person, to R1 800 for hotel guests to play on The Links.

“In my opinion, Fancourt is a world-class establishment that never fails to deliver,” says Scott Edkins, Director of Ascot Golf Tours. “It has undergone a total transformation over the last five years and is a very easy sell to visiting golfers.” He adds that it has a unique offering that really only competes with a handful of other courses in the country.

 

Hans Merensky, Phalaborwa
This course is known for its ‘bushveld atmosphere’, with giraffe, hippo and crocodile regularly seen in its surrounds. The 18-hole course was designed by Bob Grimsdell and is considered one of the best walking courses in the country. The Halfway House offers meals to golfers and overlooks the ninth and 18th holes. The property includes a 166-room hotel, as well as The Leadwood Restaurant and Lapa, and the Indulgesenses Spa.

Visitors are welcome to play on the course at any time, with 18 holes for hotel guests priced at R150 per person and R400 for non-guests.

“Hans Merensky borders the Kruger National Park and also offers some of the best weather in South Africa,” says Anita Foxcroft, Director of Southern Spoor Marketing.

 

Leopard Creek, Malelane
Built by Gary Player, this course has hosted a number of PGA professional tournaments and is considered one of the most exclusive options in the country.

The course makes use of natural water features, which also attract an array of wildlife including crocodile, hippo, buffalo and even elephant. One of the most famous holes is the 505m par-five 13th, where the green is located 32m above the edge of the Crocodile River, offering impressive views into the neighbouring Kruger National Park.

Visitors are allowed by invitation only, and a limited number of bookings are made available to selected lodges in the proximity of the course. The green fee is R2 750 per person if staying at one of these properties, which includes a cart, and sandwiches, muffins or scones with tea and coffee at the Halfway House.

Edkins says the coverage Leopard Creek gets through its televised events has resulted in a bigger push to play golf in the northern regions such as Limpopo and Kruger. “This is also a result of the quality of the facilities on offer in the area,” he adds.

 

Legend, Waterberg
This is a ‘bucket list’ course that offers golfers the option to play on a number of unique courses, including the Signature Course, designed by 18 of the world’s top golfers, including Trevor Immelman, Sergio Garcia and Retief Goosen.

Legend also features a 10-hole Tribute Course, with each hole chosen from world-famous golf courses including Pine Valley 10th hole, St Andrews Old Course 11th hole and Augusta 12th ‘Golden Bell’. The course also features one self-designed hole – An African Redan.

The Extreme 19th is accessible only by helicopter, with the tee set on the Hanglip Mountain and played to a green the shape of Africa 400m below.

Accommodation is available in the resort’s 204 rooms, or in one of the five lodges in the adjacent Entabeni Safari Conservancy. Facilities include the Signature Course Clubhouse, the Lookout Restaurant, as well as conference rooms and a spa.

 

Sun City, North West Province
Sun City offers two options, the Gary Player Golf Course and the Lost City Golf Course. The Gary Player Golf Course was designed by its namesake and is an 18-hole par-72 walking-only championship course that stretches over 7 000m and is home to the Nedbank Golf Challenge. The 18-hole, par-72 desert-style Lost City Golf Course includes 28 000 sqm of water features and a famous water hazard at hole 13 that is home to 38 Nile crocodiles.

Both courses benefit from the range of accommodation available at Sun City, including the Lost City, the Cascades, the Sun City Hotel and the Cabanas, as well as a variety of restaurants and activity options.

Fees for both courses differ throughout the year and range between R650 and R550 per person.

While Edkins admits that Sun City is a destination that is either loved or hated by the visiting golfers, it is one of the most unique options in SA. 

Source: TourismUpdate






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