ARABELLA GOLF COURSE
HOLES/PAR: 18 Holes / 72 Par / 6300 Mts
The Arabella Country Estate is home to one of the top ranked golf courses in South Africa, with pristine grass, tricky sand traps and challenging water hazards on the golf estate. The Arabella golf course was recently voted the 5th best golf course in South Africa.
The golf estate course was designed by Peter Matkovich, a highly acclaimed golf course designer with serious architectural talent.
The Kogelberg mountains and the Bot River Lagoon are the perfect backdrop to the Arabella Golf course, a must play track on the Western Cape. The course design is in tune with the lagoon’s wetland ecosystem and blends harmoniously with the natural surroundings. Waterfowls, flamingos and even wild ponies, if one is lucky, make up the attractions. The main attractions though are the incredible holes in play, the most memorable being the 8th par 5, where it seems the green is part of the lagoon. Among the many golf estate awards and distinctions, is the 18th hole, which was voted the best finishing hole in South Africa. The Arabella is home to the annual Nelson Mandela Invitational hosted by Gary Player.
DISTANCE: Just over an hour’s drive from Cape Town situated near Hermanus on the border of the Bot River and Kogelberg nature reserve.
PINNACLE POINT GOLF CLUB
HOLES/PAR: 18 Holes / 72 Par / 7079 yds
The Pinnacle Point Golf Course is something truly unique for the discerning golfer. This 18 hole championship golf course was designed by well-known South African golf course architect Peter Matkovich who opened the course together with top Irish Tour Golf Professional Darren Clarke in November 2006. This golf course in Louis Oosthuizen’s home town Mossel Bay, would rank amongst the world’s most picturesque ocean side golf courses.
Darren Clarke, who was also involved with many aspects of the Pinnacle Point course design, has said that Pinnacle Point is “… the best golf course on the planet.” Pinnacle Point was selected as one of the Top Ten New Golf Courses of the World by the American publication Travel & Leisure in January 2007.
With 180° sea views from the whole course, the dramatic setting has been accentuated by the clever layout of greens; seven of which are what they call infinity greens that give an impression that if you miss wide or long, you are in the ocean. Spectacular and challenge usually go in hand in golf course layout and Pinnacle Point is absolutely no different – being on the ocean front there is always wind, but watch out when it really starts to blow. The 72 par layout is characterised by 7 majestic holes that line the Indian Ocean rock cliffs, four of which are played over ocean and cliff. All 18 holes have been designed to fit the contours of the land.
Pinnacle Point has received the ultimate accolade and is recognised for its outstanding service standards, having been awarded the Compleat Golfer 5-star Experience Award.
DISTANCE: 45 mins drive from George
SIMOLA GOLF & COUNTRY ESTATE
HOLES/PAR: 18 Holes / 72 Par / 5788 mts
The Jack Nicklaus designed Simola golf course is one that provides variety on a Garden Route golf holiday. Keeping your head down at Simola can be a challenge; simply because the views around the course are awe-enspiring, and with this, it is clear to see why Simola takes its place as one of South Africa’s premier golfing destinations. Everywhere one looks, splendid views abound – over Knysna town and Knysna Heads with the Indian Ocean forming the backdrop , in the verdant valley below with the Knysna river meandering through and of the Outeniqua mountains in the background.
The Simola golf course is also the first Jack Nicklaus Signature course on the Garden Route, reflecting the maestro’s philosophy of attuning the layout and design to the natural lie of the land. With 5 par 3s & 5 par 5s, the course layout takes on a typical Nicklaus signature with natural elements in play. The wind factor is almost absent, possibly a refreshing change after playing the other wild courses on the Garden Route.
DISTANCE: 1 hr drive from George