5 South African Golf Courses You Have to Play

If you’re a golf fanatic, you’ve probably dreamed of playing some of the world’s best courses, like St Andrews Links. While not every South African will make it to Scotland to visit the Home of Golf, we are lucky that some of the world’s best courses are right here in our own country. Here is our choice of five top golf courses in South Africa in no particular order.

 

Gary Player playing golf and following through with driver after shot.

 

1. Gary Player Country Club

 

North West Province

 

This course is most well known for hosting the annual Nedbank Golf Challenge. The landscaped course is surrounded by the Pilanesberg Mountains and is immaculate, but make no mistake – it is tough; even the world’s top golfers find it challenging.

 

Best Season to Visit

 

Go in summer if you want to visit Sun City and enjoy the Valley of Waves while you’re there, otherwise winter if you want to avoid crowds of holidaymakers.

 

Green Fees

 

R1,200 per person mid-weekR1,500 per person weekend

 

Flights

 

The nearest airport is Pilanesberg.  Return airfares year-round are approximately:  

Departing from Johannesburg: R2,200Departing from Cape Town: R3,000

 

Accommodation

 

The Kingdom Resort (twin room) from R945 per night

Sun City Cabanas from R1,274 per person per night

Cascades Hotel at Sun City (luxury twin room) from R3 369 per night

Palace of the Lost City (luxury twin room) from R4 997 per night

 

2. Durban Country Club

 

Durban Country Club green rolling hills on golf course, two men playing in the middle and city buildings in background.

 

KwaZulu-Natal

 

Durban Country Club is among the top 100 golf courses in the world and is nearly a century old. It has hosted the highest number of South African opens (17 and counting) and overlooks the Blue Lagoon estuary and the Indian Ocean, giving every hole on the course a gorgeous backdrop.

 

Best Season to Visit

 

Winter, when the weather is most pleasant as the African sun is both beautiful but dangerously hot. Playing during the cooler seasons of Winter ensures you get lovely sunshine but a moderate temperature when playing out there.

 

Green Fees

 

From R400 - R525 per person.

 

Flights

 

The nearest airport is King Shaka International. Return flights in winter are approximately:  

Departing from Johannesburg: R1,218

Departing from Cape Town: R1,638

 

Accommodation

 

There is no accommodation at the club, but nearby, you’re looking at anywhere between R500 per night for a budget-friendly room to the luxurious resorts listed at R5,500 per person per night.

 

3. St Francis Links

 

St Francis Links golf course buildings hidden amongst trees in background with golf course in the middle and a body of water in front.

 

Eastern Cape

 

Renowned for its beautiful surroundings, including the dunes of St Francis Bay and a wetland area, St Francis Links is a Jack Nicklaus signature course. The property also offers luxury accommodation and a spa, making it the perfect stop on a golfing holiday.

 

Best Season to Visit

 

End of summer (after tourist season) is a perfect time to visit as accommodation and pricing will be lower due to out-of-season charges and you can expect less queueing and more freedom when roaming around.

 

Green Fees

 

R775 per person

 

Flights

 

The nearest airport is Port Elizabeth International Airport.  End-of-summer return airfares are approximately: 

Departing from Johannesburg: R1,298

Departing from Durban: R2,098

Departing from Cape Town: R2,048

 

Accommodation

 

Prices in summer at the St Francis Golf Lodge start at R1,710 per person per night.

 

4. The Links at Fancourt Country Club

 

Fancourt Links Golf Course hole with red flag, surrounded by trees on the left and small sand dunes and hills on right.

 

Western Cape

 

The Links was inspired by famous courses in the British Isles. It is also one of the most exclusive golf clubs in the country; if you’re not a member of the club, you will need to book into the Fancourt Hotel to play on this prestigious course.

 

Best Season to Visit

 

Summer, between November and February when the weather is warm and dry.

 

Green Fees

 

Between R2,415 per person and R2,685 per person

 

Flights

 

The nearest airport is George Airport. Return airfares in summer are approximately:  

Departing from Johannesburg: R2,868

Departing from Durban: R3,098

Departing from Cape Town: R2,418

 

Accommodation

 

From R2,552 per person per night at the Fancourt Hotel.

 

5. Leopard Creek Golf Course

 

Beautiful image of Leopard Creek Golf Course , thatched-roof club house with white walls and creek in front of club house.

 

Mpumalanga

 

Bordering the Kruger Park, golfers at Leopard Creek Golf Course are likely to see crocodiles, hippo, elephant, and buffalo on the course or in the neighbouring park. The 13th hole stands 32 metres above the Crocodile River with a view into the Kruger Park, making it particularly spectacular.

 

Best Season to Visit

 

Early autumn, when there is little wind or rain and temperatures are moderate.

 

Green Fees

 

R4,000 per person – and you’ll need to stay at one of Leopard Creek’s recommended lodgings.

 

Flights

 

The nearest airport is Kruger Mpumalanga International Airport. Return airfares in autumn are approximately:  

Departing from Johannesburg: R3,288

Departing from Durban: R4,578

Departing from Cape Town: R5,168

 

Accommodation

 

The closest accommodation is 10km away at Buhala Lodge from R2,107 per person per night including breakfast.

 

Sources: Traveller24; The South African; Golf Direct; Pilanesberg Travel;

 

Prices quoted are correct at the time of publishing this article. The information in this article is provided for informational purposes only and should not be construed as financial, legal, or medical advice.


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