They also serve up an amazing selection of unique opportunities to do something a little different, from playing a round in two different countries to living your very own Ryder Cup challenge. Here are just a few reasons why you have to bring your clubs to Wales.
Walk in the footsteps of Champions at Celtic Manor Resort
Test your mettle against the best in the business with a round on Celtic Manor’s famous Twenty Ten course. The venue for an unforgettable Ryder Cup in (you’ve guessed it) 2010, it measures a daunting 7,493 yards off the back tees with water in play on half of its holes. Make it round in anywhere near the courses par of 71 and we guarantee you’ll feel like a world-beater.
Play the long game at Vale Resort
Weighing in at a hefty 7,433 yards, Vale Resort’s par-73 Wales National course is one of the longest outside the US. Its massive second hole is on a similarly epic scale. Measuring a whopping 607 yards from the back tees, it’s one of the longest par-fives in Wales and a real challenge for anyone who fancies themselves a big hitter. Don’t forget to pack your driver.
Try links with a difference at Llandrindod Wells
Links don’t have to be beside the seaside. At the ‘upland links’ of Harry Vardon-designed Llandrindod Wells, traditional coastal features – such as natural hazards and firm, quick draining turf – sit high on a hill with not a seagull in sight. Instead keep your eyes peeled for the forked tails of red kites – Mid Wales’ iconic bird of prey.
Try a spectacular James Braid classic at Neath
High on a hill overlooking the Dulais Valley, Neath’s location is the perfect spot for a golf course. But don’t take your word for it. Neath’s designer, legendary course architect and five-time Open winner James Braid, was of a similar opinion. ‘The situation is superb for the playing of golf, was his assessment. Strewn with organic features and undulations, Neath’s heathland terrain is the perfect fit for Braid’s naturalistic design style.
Play a cross-border round at Llanymynech
Perched on a cliff-edged hilltop in Mid Wales, Llanymynech’s setting is only one of its striking features. The course is bisected by Offa’s Dyke, the 8th-century earthwork that still marks the boundary between Wales and England, so the 4th hole sees players tee off in the former and putt in the latter. There are a further two holes on foreign soil before travellers are welcomed back to Wales at the 7th.
Go half and half at Porthmadog
Be a high roller at Rolls of Monmouth
Nestled in lush green countryside in South Wales, Rolls of Monmouth’s lake-dotted, wood-lined fairways offers parkland golf at its most refined. It’s hardly surprising that the club offers such a classy experience. From 1767 to 1987, Hendre Hall (now the clubhouse) was home to the Rolls family, including one Charles Stuart Rolls. He teamed up with Frederick Royce to form the Rolls-Royce motor company, the last word in automotive luxury.
Sample our very own Pebble Beach at Cardigan
According to legendary sports writer Furman Bisher: ‘With the exception of Pebble Beach, the view from the top of the Cardigan course is the finest I’ve seen anywhere in golf.’ We think you’ll share his enthusiasm. The club’s blend of links and parkland comes complete with widescreen vistas over Cardigan Bay’s crystal waters. Stiff sea breezes and thick course-side gorse complicate matters, so try not to get too caught up in the scenery.