This week’s blog is a guide to the five best golf courses on the Silver Coast in Portugal. The Silver Coast is also known as the Costa de Prata, and it lines the western coast of Portugal, facing the Atlantic Ocean. Known for its stunning beaches and authentic Portuguese towns as well as some fantastic golf courses, it comes as no surprise that the Silver Coast remains to be one of the most popular destinations in Europe for golf holidays. All five of these golf courses offer a fantastic round of golf that can be enjoyed accompanied by beautiful mountain views and a stunning coastal location.
The Praia d’el Rey is located directly on the Silver Coast, boasting breath-taking sea views throughout. While its coastal location undeniably creates beautiful panorama views, golfers will often find their game vulnerable to the prevailing coastal winds from the Atlantic, adding another dimension to the challenge at hand. This classic links golf course is a consistent favourite among golfers in the Silver Coast, and the very fact that they return year after year is reflective of the fantastic golf that it offers. With a varied layout, stunning views and impeccably maintained greens, it comes as no surprise that the Praia d’el Rey has been awarded 13th place in the Best Golf Courses in Europe by Golf World Magazine.
All of the 18 holes at the Praia d’el Rey were designed by the famous golf course architect Cabell B. Robinson. He created a unique golf course that comprises of a classic links golf course with distinctive elements of parkland and coastal links within it. With a varied layout and some tricky areas, it comes as no surprise that it has been described as “wild and wonderful” by Golf World Magazine. Cabell was certainly successful in creating a fantastic golf course that offers a varied round to all those who play it. The clusters of pine forest create a unique contrast with the lush wide greens and its coastal location.
At the Praia d’el Rey, players must manoeuvre their shot across spacious bunkers, large sand dunes and undulating greens in order to finish with a steady score. This golf course is sure to test every aspect of their game; therefore, club selection must be done carefully. Just to add to the challenge at hand, golfers must focus on their game and try to ignore the stunning scenery of the golf course. Throughout the golf course, players can marvel at the panorama views of the Atlantic Ocean and the neighbouring Berlenga Islands. The back nine holes are widely considered to be the most attractive set; however, the best views of the Berlenga Islands can be enjoyed at the 2nd hole. The 2nd hole is widely considered to be one of the most memorable holes on the golf course due to its fantastic views and unique layout. This par 5 measures out to 463 metres and is full of hazards including a large water feature lining the right side of the fairway, as well as bunkers and rough areas strategically placed throughout.
The West Cliffs Golf Links opened relatively recently in June 2017 as a welcome addition to the fantastic range of golf in the Silver Coast. Despite the golf course opening just a few years ago, it has already established its reputation as one of the best golf courses in the region, and some have even argued it is one of the best in Portugal. This fantastic golf course has managed to steal the limelight from its competitors and its popularity is set to be unprecedented for years and years to come. Here, players can enjoy a varied round of golf across a unique landscape comprising of rolling sand dunes and natural coastal fauna and greenery. The architects of this golf course maintained the natural features of the landscape and integrated them into their vision to create a challenging golf course. The natural landscape was mostly left unscathed during its construction, so the layout has simply been carved into the terrain’s original features which simply adds to the beauty of the course. Throughout the golf course, players can marvel at the unparalleled views of the neighbouring Atlantic Ocean and the Obidos Lagoon; some of the best views of the Silver Coast can be enjoyed here.
The West Cliffs Golf Links was designed by Cynthia Dye, who aimed to create a fantastic golf course that respected the natural environment, and in turn would create a truly idyllic environment for all golfers. No hole here is the same; the golf course comprises of two loops of nine that offer varying difficulty and characteristics. The front nine is widely considered to be the most memorable due to the unique layout of the par five 6th and 7th holes, however golfers must save the best of their game until last with the challenging 17th and 18th holes. The 18th hole challenges its players to no end with a large water hazard lining the right side of the fairway, however if players manage to create the perfect balance of accuracy and length, then they have a solid opportunity of reaching the green in two shots. While the West Cliffs Golf Links offers an undeniably testing round of golf, golfers can succeed well with good golf course management and ball positioning. As advised with many of the golf courses on the Silver Coast; it is important that all players bring plenty of spare balls!
The Guardian Bom Sucesso designed by the world-renowned golf architect Donald Steel, is one of the best-known golf courses around Lisbon. This fantastic golf course has undergone intensive renovations in the recent years to vastly improve its quality. Under new owners, the Guardian Bom Sucesso has increased in popularity and its reputation has been massively improved in turn. Throughout the course, players can enjoy stunning views of the neighbouring Obidos lagoon and the rolling hills of the Silver Coast. With plenty of bunkering and the interesting use of rough areas, the Guardian Bom Sucesso is perfect for those that like a challenge. To do well, golfers must play with both accuracy and length in order to hit past the many strategically placed bunkers and the undulating greens.
The landscape here mimics the classic Mediterranean parkland golf course, with an abundance of natural fauna and greenery. The golf course spans over sixty hectares of beautiful landscape, filled with hundreds of olive trees that have been maintained from the golf course’s natural terrain, prior to its creation. Designed by the famous golf architect Donald Steel, all golfers that attempt this course can anticipate an invigorating challenge. This parkland layout will challenge every aspect of their game with the unique design of the greens which force players to focus on their ball placement in order to manoeuvre their shot around the many bunkers.
Players at the Guardian Bom Sucesso can enjoy a varied round of golf with a clear contrast between the front and the back nine. The back nine are widely considered to be the more challenging set due to the unsteady terrain that is guaranteed to trip even the most experienced player up. Golfers are led into a false sense of security with the front nine holes set across a relatively flat landscape, however at the 9th hole they are thrown into the real challenge. Players can anticipate the best until last with the memorable trio comprising of the 16th, 17th and 18th holes, where they will find every aspect of their game challenged. The 16th hole demands careful ball positioning in order to shoot uphill where they will be met with some of the best views that can be found at the golf course which can be enjoyed best from an elevated position. However, the most unique hole includes the 17th hole, a tricky par five with a sharp dogleg which bends to the left.
The Royal Obidos is widely considered to be the mother of all golf in the Silver Coast. Players can only enjoy views of the neighbouring Atlantic Ocean on approximately half of the holes, however that is not to say that golfers forget they are playing on the Silver Coast. The lack of views of the ocean is compensated for with plenty of views of the Obidos Lagoon which can be appreciated best at the par five 2nd hole in which players must manoeuvre their tee shot to the green whilst narrowly avoiding the lagoon’s peaceful waters; this hole is certainly a highlight of the front nine.
The Royal Obidos offers an unforgettable round of golf on a truly beautiful landscape. Golf legend Severiano Ballesteros carved the fantastic golf course that stands today into the landscape’s natural features to maintain the terrain’s original character. While the golf course measures out to an impressive 6,400 metres, longer than most of the other golf courses in the region, the Royal Obidos still welcomes players of all skillsets and handicaps with a wide range of tee-off options. However, that is not to say that lower handicappers will find the layout to be a walk in the park; with an unsteady undulating terrain throughout, as well as a range of hazards, players are guaranteed to always be kept on their toes during their round. With a great challenge, stunning views and a unique layout, it certainly comes as no surprise that the Royal Obidos was awarded 57th place in the Top 100 Golf Courses in Continental Europe by Golf World Magazine.
The back nine holes at the Royal Obidos feature some of the most distinctive holes in the Silver Coast. One that stands out for many players includes the 10th hole which like many of the holes in the back nine, offers a fantastic challenge characterised by the careful use of water hazards. For this hole, it is heavily advised that all those that attempt it bring a surplus of balls; these water hazards will not hesitate to swallow up any wayward shots that come their way! Another hole on the back nine which is sure to make any confident player question their handicap includes the par four 12th hole, measuring out to 420 metres. At this hole, players must focus on careful club selection as they must manoeuvre their shot across two huge lakes, then a twisting stream.
The Dolce CampoReal Lisboa is not generally considered to be a member of the Silver Coast golf family, however due to its close proximity to the other golf courses in the region and its fantastic quality, it is hardly a golf course that can be ignored. The high quality of this golf course and the challenge it offers is no secret in Portugal, and it is a consistent favourite amongst all golfers that regularly play in Portugal. Golfers can enjoy an invigorating challenge here as the landscape is set across the rolling hills in the surrounding areas of Lisbon, and the layout comprises of slight undulations which are sure to challenge the game of even the most experienced player. Due to the hilly terrain of the CampoReal, the rental of a buggy is advised for all players. However, a perk of the steep terrain includes the fantastic views that can be enjoyed from the several elevated positions across the golf course of the surrounding landscape. With frequent elevation changes, several blind shots are demanded from players, therefore good course management is essential for players to score well.
Just like the Guardian Bom Sucesso, the Dolce CampoReal Lisboa was designed by leading golf architect Donald Steel, therefore a fantastic round of golf and an exciting challenge is guaranteed here. The challenge here is mostly characterised with the golf course’s natural hilly terrain which requires players to shoot a few blind shots, and areas of dense forestry and fauna await to capture any wayward shots. The CampoReal does not let the Silver Coast golf family down in terms of the views and stunning scenery on offer, as the golf course is set in the heart of a wooded valley. The front nine holes here are widely considered to be the most challenging of the pair as water features most commonly here. With elevated tees, golfers may assume that they have an advantage as they can anticipate the upcoming challenge, however the slight elevations are not always obvious at first glance.
We hope that you have enjoyed this week’s blog, and hopefully, you now have sufficient knowledge on the many golfing wonders that the Silver Coast offers. For an unforgettable golf escape in one of Europe’s most sought-after golf destinations, the Silver Coast is an unbeatable option, visit our site for more information – www.golf-escapes.com