Top 10 golfing destinations in the world
Flamenco and fairways in southern Spain
Enjoy fiery flamenco and delicious tapas after a round on one of the region’s 40 challenging golf courses. Sink sangria and putts on San Roque’s Valderrama, where the 1997 Ryder Cup was played.
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Snow-capped mountains in the Austrian Alps
Thin air isn’t the only thing to take your breath away at Zell Am See’s 18-hole Schmitterhohe and Kitzsteinhorn courses. Snow-capped Kitzsteinhorn glacier, pine-clad fairways and sparkling lakes provide a stunning backdrop. Celebrate your game in the clubhouse with a stein of frothy beer.
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Family fun in Orlando
Chip on to the Mickey Mouse-shaped practice green at Disney’s Eagle Pines but beware the silhouetted bunker by Magnolia’s sixth green. With five championship courses, four theme parks and two water parks, there’s plenty at Walt Disney Resorts to amuse all the family.
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Golfing history at St Andrews
Tread in the footsteps of the golfing greats on the 600-year-old Old Course. Admire the 18th fairway from Swilcan Bridge but avoid unforgiving Hell bunker. Tee-off times are awarded by ballot. All 11 championship courses are 10 minutes from the medieval town.
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Pyramids and souks in Cairo
Play in the ghostly company of pharaohs on Dreamland’s 18-hole championship course near the pyramids of Giza. After the golf, there’s haggling to be done for an embroidered jellaba in the souk and unwinding with a bubbling shisha water-pipe in a café.
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Luxury in Dubai
With seven all-grass championship courses, including Tiger Woods’ Al Ruwaya, golf is growing fast in the Gulf state. Play at Ernie Els Club or bag a birdie on Greg Norman’s Earth course, where the Dubai World Championship is held.
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Volcano Vistas in Hawaii
Lava flows at the active Kilauea Volcano ‘just a three iron away’ from the Volcano Golf Club, Big Island’s oldest course. Enjoy views of the Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea volcanoes at every hole. Pine and ohia trees challenge the golfer.
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Affordable luxury in Turkey
Luxury hotels and 11 well-designed golf courses have thrust Belek in south-west Turkey on to the golfing circuit. Carved through pine and eucalyptus forest, the 27-hole Cornelia Faldo course provides a testing game for all handicaps.
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Up and coming in China
With 200 courses including Mission Hills, the world’s largest complex, China is making up for lost time. Tiny pot bunkers and island greens make Mission Hills’ 12 courses in Shenzhen in southern China a challenge for all handicaps.
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Midnight golf in Iceland
Tee off at midnight while the sun still sits above the horizon at the Akureyri Golf Club, 350km north-east of Reykjavík. Inhale pure air and soak up dramatic snow-capped scenery as you drive the fairways of the world’s most northerly 18-hole golf course.
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