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Golf, sun and sea. The perfect combination!
If your first question, when pondering holiday destinations, is "Are there any good golf courses nearby?", you’re probably as well going the whole nine yards – and constructing your break around golf itself. The UK is well placed where the sport is concerned – there are 7,500 courses throughout Scotland, England, Wales and Ireland – but let’s be realistic: a green only becomes immaculate when lavished with a generous covering of sunshine. The UK’s seaside links courses are a joy to play, but it’s difficult to argue in their favour when comparing them to similar greens in the Algarve, or on the spectacular Lisbon coast.
The main season for golf in Portugal falls between late autumn and late spring; the summer months, for most, are too punishingly hot for a golf break, and in any case collide with our own golf season in Britain. There is, however, no shortage of courses from which to experience the country’s breathtaking landscapes, dramatic sea views and, of course, first class golfing. Innumerable European Tour venues are dotted along the coast, but if you wish to sample colourful Porto, or venture to the beguiling island of Madeira, the resorts are second to none.
Golf holidays in Portugal: the best of the bunch
Golf holidays in Portugal: the Algarve
Given the quality of its courses, it’s no surprise the Algarve has become synonymous with golf holidays in recent years. From the luxury all-in-one resort of Vilamoura, with its five championship courses, to the cluster of well-defined greens in Quinta do Lago, the coastline of the Algarve – shaded as it is by cork oaks, orange trees and Algarvian pinewoods – is a genuine golfing Mecca. Wend your way from course to course, or settle on a favourite and work on improving your handicap; suffice to say there are enough beaches and bars in which to unwind when you step off the green.
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Golf holidays in Portugal: Lisbon
Head for Lisbon and you can take your pick of over 30 first-rate golf courses – and more and being built all the time. That’s because, having long been in the shadow of the Algarve, Lisbon decided to make a play for the title of Portugal’s golfing capital, with new projects popping up all over the place. Whether you’re playing the Aroeira, in the south of the city, or the Quinta de Peru, against the backdrop of the Arrabida mountains, you’re certain to enjoy a pleasant game. Golf buffs will recognise the Estoril course as the venue for the Portuguese Open; here, a round of 18 will set you back €59, though most large courses can supply passes, granting you five rounds’ play for around €200.
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Golf holidays in Portugal: Madeira
The glorious island of Madeira, located just off the coast of Africa, is a spectacular place to play a round of golf. You may have already enviously sized up what the island has to offer from watching the European Tour’s Madeira Islands Open, but nothing prepares you for the real thing, whether you hit the fairways of Dom Pedro Baia or the fantastic Casa Velha do Palheiro complex. The latter’s proximity to the capital of Funchal means it’s a popular choice, while the hilly terrain and the contours of the wide fairways make it a challenge even for seasoned players. For a panoramic view of the whole island, don’t forget to play a few holes at the elevated Santo de Serra.
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Golf holidays in Portugal: Porto
Portugal’s second-largest city, Porto is known for many things besides golf – but with over a dozen courses to tick off before you go home, how much of its stunning architecture and storied history you choose to soak up is entirely your choice! There’s a handful of five-star golf resorts in Porto, among them Vidago Palace and the Axis Ponte de Lima Resort, but you don’t have to splash the cash to indulge your passion; the Rilhadas Golf Club, laying alongside the Vizela River, is a challenging 9-hole course that rewards precision, while City Golf, in the heart of the centre, is specially designed for players new to the game.
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Golf holidays in Portugal: the Azores
Situated in the Atlantic Ocean, juxtaposed between Europe and North America, the Portuguese archipelago of the Azores comprises nine islands which benefit from the warming current of the Gulf Stream. And while you don’t have an endless choice of courses on which to play, between Batalha, Furnas and Terceira, we’re sure you’ll be satisfied. Batalha, on the north coast of Sao Miguel, offers 27 holes over 120 hectares and sweeping views of the ocean; Furnas, also on Sao Miguel, boasts 18 holes and is hemmed in by exotic vegetation. Lastly, the Terceira course, founded in 1954, has 18 holes – and while less demanding than the aforementioned pair, with fewer bunkers and wide fairways, it's extremely affordable; you can play a round for just €30 through the week.
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More golf villas in Portugal
Charming and spacious 4 bedroom villa (sleep 8) with 4 en-suite bathrooms, all at one ground floor. Wheelchair accessible. Ideal location for both families and golfers. Central but quiet location, right next to the Golf course (The old course) and...
These luxury self-catering holiday apartments are situated in Encosta da Orada, a beautiful luxury complex completed in 2008, with established lush tropical landscaped gardens, and sparkling blue infinity swimming pools with cascading waterfalls...
Set in heart of Cascais, in a cobbled stone street and within walking distance to everything from beaches to restaurants, bars, museums (Paula Rego's House of Stories Museum), gardens, the marina and the train station to Lisbon, it is perfect for ...
LUXURY 1 and 2 bedroom self-catering apartments in Parque da Corcovada, Albufeira, from PENTHOUSE APARTMENTS in Blocks 38 - 40 to GROUND FLOOR APARTMENTS WITH PRIVATE TERRACES, Algarve Getaways is able to offer guests an excellent range of apartme...
Casa Berlin is a luxury 4 bedroom/4 bathroom (2 en-suite) villa, sleeping 8 (+2), located in an enviable position in Praia da Luz. Located on the quieter side of Luz with sea views and within easy walking distance of the beautiful beach of Praia ...
Solario de Sao Jose is an upmarket holiday complex in the centre of Albufeira, BETWEEN THE STRIP AND THE OLD TOWN.
It is QUIETLY POSITIONED OFF THE MAIN STREET OF ALBUFEIRA, IN A PRIME LOCATION, in close proximity to The Strip, restaurants, nigh...
Accommodates four adults comfortably. Could accommodate an additional 2 children on mats in the single bedrooms. Not suitable for small children.Situated in the best part of the old quarter close to the markets and front and yet quiet.Ground floor...
This 2nd floor one bedroom apartment has recently been re-furbished and offers spacious modern accommodation.
There is a spacious lounge with comfortable sofas, TV, DVD Player and iPod Docking Station, the lounge opens up onto a spacious terrace...
3 bedroom duplex apartment with shared pool. Air conditioned. Within walking distance of beach, restaurants, bars and shops. Wi-fi.
Located near the centre of Carvoeiro, originally a quaint fishing village that has given way to tourism, whilst sti...
Sleeps 12. 6 Large double bedrooms. 5 en suite bathrooms. Huge open plan modern living lounge. Outside dining and sitting areas. Large poolside areas outside living areas. 2400m2 completely private walled plot behind electric gates. Plasma televis...