Are There Any Good Resorts For Golfers In Vilamoura?
Golf tourism has become very important for the economy of the Algarve and Portugal in general. Portugal has the advantage of a pleasant climate with golfers able to play all year round even though summer is the peak season. The airport at Faro has flights from many regions of the UK and other Northern European Countries with flight times never more than 3 hours. The result is that the Algarve is suitable even for a short break because travellers can play the day they arrive as well as the day they depart.
Vilamoura has become one of the places they naturally head for. It is in the centre of a fairly compact Algarve and offers plenty of relaxation away from the golf courses but of course good quality courses for the main purpose of the holiday; golf.
It is one of the largest resorts of its kind in Europe and certainly a match for anything in Portugal. Its marina is a hive of activity with plenty of shops, bars and restaurants and there is accommodation of every type to suit every pocket. There are berths for 1,000 boats in the marina; that is the scale of the place. Those wanting a flutter are more than welcome in the Casino.
When it comes to golf there are several courses on the doorstep and those with a week or more might like to balance out playing a genuine championship course as well as one or two of the less demanding ones.
- Pinhal is a course opened 40 years ago. The fairways are tree-lined so it presents quite a challenge of the white tees and calls for accuracy.
- Oceanico Old has an elevated first tee which presents wonderful views, views that are repeated as the round continues.
- Laguna is not so challenging but golfers need to avoid the water which is a feature of the course.
- Oceanico Millennium is likewise fairly open but close to Pinhal and Old there are pine trees defining the fairways.
- Oceanico Victoria was designed by Arnold Palmer and having recently hosted the World Cup as well as the Portugal Masters cab claim to be the district’s top championship course.
- Vila Sol has twice held the Portuguese Open so be prepared to meet narrow fairways and small greens. It was designed by Donald Steel who has a good reputation for his eye for detail.