Portugal is a golfer’s paradise and it’s easy to see why, with a perfect blend of climate and countryside to create great golfing conditions.
It’s not just great golf, there’s plenty to make Portugal a holiday destination that deserves to be on your bucket list – including amazing villas and hotels where you can relax in between rounds of golf.
So, when you’re in the process of booking your trip, here are four great golf courses to put on your hitlist to build in to your Portugal holiday plan.
Carvoeiro offers luxury golfing spots surrounded by rolling hills. Play on one of the expansive greens at the prestigious Pestana Golf & Resorts. With not one, but five championship golf courses, the Pestana offers a golfing experience that’s one of a kind.
When you’re not on the green, the traditional town could be a relaxing destination you need. The centre of Carvoeiro, about a 45-minute drive from Faro Airport, is full of character, on a cliffside and overlooks a beautiful sandy bay. It offers a range of restaurants in which to relax and refuel before tomorrow’s round of golf.
Bending both city culture and excellent golfing opportunities, the Lisbon area is a surprising, yet fantastic choice for a golfing holiday. About half an hour away from the city is the sophisticated Estoril resort, on the lavish Portuguese Riviera. With an elegant aesthetic, a quaint beachfront and a number of quality restaurants, you can see the appeal. This area is also popular for tennis.
Penha Longa Golf Club consists of 27 holes with areas for all abilities. The Atlantic Championship course is an 18 hole extravagant course. Designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr and three-time home of the Portuguese Open, this course offers the chance to play through the forest and along the sloping valley.
Porto has a rich history and culture that can be enjoyed when you’re not on the golfing greens. Opened in 1890, Oporto Golf Club is the oldest club in Portugal and is great for beginners. Inside the clubhouse, you’ll find a small museum with golfing artifacts – an interesting attraction for true fanatics. With holes along the beach as well as some inland, this charming green offers beautiful backdrops.
Further afield – about an hour and a half away, the Vidago Palace Golf 18 hole course has a championship layout and is packed with challenging holes set against its rolling, valley landscape. Reopened in 2010, enjoy the stunning setting and USGA Standard putting greens.
It isn’t just on mainland Portugal that you’ll find great golf courses. Madeira – an autonomous Portuguese region in the north Atlantic Ocean – has always been a favourite among golfers who look to play in the beautiful conditions of its rocky peninsula. Its capital, Funchal, is brimming with medieval architecture, scenic spots and restaurants stocking locally produced wine. Close by are excellent golfing facilities.
The Palheiro golf course offers 18 holes of excellence set within generous fairways, pine forests and views over Funchal and the glistening coast. With challenging bunkers to navigate, you can work up an appetite before relaxing in the hillside clubhouse with its stunning views.
The mountainous Santo da Serra is a course of legends, with the annual PGA Tour’s Madeira Open taking place here for more than 10 years. Rising 1500 feet above ground level, its 27 holes wind through sloping ravines, waterways and woodland. This is a challenging course with spectacular views over the valleys below.