Golf is one of those sports that can be learnt and played at any age and can soon become addictive. Golf holidays are particularly popular with retirees and can be taken at any time of the year. Retirees do not need to spend thousands to visit some of the world’s best golf holiday locations as many are located in the UK.
St Andrews Old Course, Scotland
The Old Course in St Andrews is consistently ranked among the top ten world’s best golf courses. Often called the home of golf, the Old Course has hosted 139 Open Championships, a record in itself. The Old Course is one of the world’s oldest golf courses with permission granted to golf on the links in 1553. Golf lovers should play the Old Course at least once in their lifetime. As a holiday location, the scenery and beaches are breathtaking, and St Andrews provides easy access to Scottish cities such as Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Monte Rei Golf Club, Algarve, Portugal
Portugal and the Algarve are awash with first class golf courses that can be played year round thanks to the mild climate. The Monte Rei course was opened in 2007 and is located on the Spanish border boasting a spectacular mountain setting. Monte Rei is a Jack Nicklaus Signature course featuring lakes and huge bunkers. Monte Rei is only one of the many stunning golf courses that attract holidaymakers all year round to the beautiful Algarve.
Adamstal Golf Club, Ramsau, Austria
A quick two hour flight from the UK will bring holidaymakers to one of the most picturesque countries in the world. The setting for the famous Sound of Music film is also home to some stunning golf courses. The Adamstal Golf Club has been described as one of the world’s most beautiful golfing locations. With the Alpine Mountains as a backdrop it may be hard not to be distracted by the stunning vistas. The course was designed by Jeff Howes and is considered to be one of his finest designs.
Half Moon Golf Course, Jamaica
The Caribbean has a long association with golf and has practically become a national sport in Jamaica. The Half Moon golf course is located just outside Montego Bay. Featuring breathtaking views of the coastline, the course has been home to many competitions and tournaments. The Half Moon Resort has been named Best Caribbean Golf Resort 2009 and the World’s Best Golf Resort of 2009. Half Moon Golf Course is only one of the many first class golf courses located in the Caribbean islands.
Royal Birkdale Golf Club, Merseyside, England
The Royal Birkdale Golf Club in Merseyside has been ranked as number seven in the world’s best golf courses. Dating back to 1889 the Royal Birkdale became an 18-hole course in 1897. The course is not a gentle round of golf and more experienced players will gain the most from playing at Birkdale. Royal Birkdale is not cheap, and a round of golf here will set golfers back £175 during the summer months. As one of the world’s best golf courses the Royal Birkdale will definitely satisfy those who decide to pay the hefty fees for a single round.
Valderrama, Cadiz, Spain
Spain has long been a favourite location for British holidaymakers. There are more 300 first class golf courses in Spain and the mild climate means that most are open all year round. Valderrama golf course has been described as magical, and the course has been ranked number one in the top 20 European golf courses. Valderrama has been home to numerous championships including the Ryder Cup. Cadiz is the ideal location to combine a sun drenched Spanish beach holiday with one of Europe’s top golf courses.
Royal County Down, Newcastle, County Down, Ireland
Ireland is less than an hour’s flight from the UK and holds a number of magnificent golf courses. The Royal County Down boasts dramatic scenery including the Mountains of Mourne as its backdrop and the beautiful Bay of Dundrum. The exhilarating course opened in 1889, and the winds that blow across the course can be a challenge to even the most seasoned golfer. The Royal County Down’s 4th hole provides one of the most scenic views of any golf course. This golf course should definitely be on any golfers ‘must play’ itineraries.
Pebble Beach, California, USA
Jack Nicklaus claimed that if he had only one round of golf to play in his life he would play it at Pebble Beach. This oceanside course provides spectacular views along a coastline that drops dramatically to Carmel Bay. At $400 per round this is another expensive course to play but it is open to everyone, unlike many of America’s top golf courses. Not the most inexpensive of holiday locations but this is one of the world’s best golf courses.