Is your idea of a perfect summer holiday one that involves playing golf on beautiful, well-kept courses? If so, then the Algarve in Portugal could be the perfect holiday for you.
Having picked up a string of awards last year, including World’s Best Golf Destination at the 2017 World Golf Awards, the Algarve is up there as one of the world’s best places for a mix of golf, scenery, food, drink and weather.
So whether you are new to golfing on those Mediterranean fairways, or a regular visitor, our very own Rob Knox, tells us how to make the most of a golfing holiday in 2018.
Laranjal, Quinta do Lago
Chances are you’ll be keen to hit the course as early as possible, so grab a pastry and espresso from one of the local bakeries (we love Louro Restaurant in Almancil) and you’ll be ready to go.
Nothing beats the challenging greens of Laranjal to start your holiday, so head to this multi-award winning course set among lakes and beautiful orange trees. Test your skill, accuracy and concentration on the 6,480m course – which includes the notable par-5 9th, and the par-3 11th plus water hazards that complement the landscape.
One of our regular guests has compared this course to that of the Masters, Augusta National, because of its impressive combination of challenging nature, greenery and water-edged holes.
Another option in this area is The North Course, a stone’s throw from the luxurious Four Seasons Fairway resort. Perfect for novices and experts alike, the course was completely redesigned in 2014 by world-renowned architect Beau Welling, together with former Ryder Cup winning captain Paul McGinley. Each hole benefits from four sets of tees, suiting all handicaps, along with plenty of recovery options if your shot doesn’t quite go to plan, because why should there be pressure on holiday?
Time for lunch
To complement the stunning golf courses, the Algarve is home to some amazing clubhouses, too. However, if a short day on the course is enough golf for you, then be sure to head into Quinta do Lago. This quirky little town is a stone’s throw from the North Course site, but has the addition of quirky pubs and restaurants to suit any taste.
Already a popular destination for golfers is the Pure Boutique Café. Famed for its homemade desserts and healthy salads that can be enjoyed on the terrace overlooking the golf course; perfect for unwinding at the end of an action-packed day golfing. For those wanting a more relaxed start to the day, Pure also offers breakfast which is served until 11:30am.
Stock up on the latest equipment
Suitably refreshed, it’s time to check out this season’s clothing and equipment, or pick up any essentials you might have forgotten to bring with you. Nevada Bob’s Golf’s reputation as a quality golfing retailer is well-deserved, and the brand now has a strong presence around the region. The main store is just outside Almancil, however you’ll also find outlets in Vale do Lobo and just opposite the Vila Sol Golf Club House at Vilamoura.
Round off your day with drinks and dinner
After a recharge by the pool and a quick refresh, you’ll be ready for some delicious dinner and cocktails to match. Take advantage of the stunning lakeside location, and dine al fresco at the highly recommended Casa do Lago. With fresh seafood bought from the local markets, Casa do Lago is the place to go for authentic Portuguese dining. You won’t have to worry about the colder nights, as this venue even hosts a fire pit, perfect for when the temperature dips slightly.
If you’re looking for somewhere to rest your head after a day on the fairway, take a look at our profile of luxury Algarve villas.