Thinking of going on a golf trip? Portugal is a great place to escape the cold winter weather and the Algarve is certainly the country’s top spot when it comes to playing golf. We’ve put together a list of 10 courses that are absolutely worth checking out.
The Algarve is the southernmost region of continental Portugal. It covers an area of 4,997 square kilometers and has about 200 kilometers of coastline. There are 31 golf courses and only one of those courses scores lower than a 7,0 on Leadingcourses.com. This is the top-10 of best golf courses in the Algarve.
This ranking is based on all reviews of golfers on Leadingcourses.com. Updated on January 13th, 2020.
The Algarve’s top-10 golf courses:
The Monte Rei Golf & Country Club has been rated as the best club in Portugal for four years in a row on Leadingcourses.com. Green fee rates start at € 220 in the high season (March 15th – November 14th) and € 170 in the low season (November 15th – March 14th).
It is all about the experience when you visit Monte Rei. The service and hospitality level and the quality of the course are all top notch. The vistas of the Serra do Caldeirão mountains to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the south are mesmerizing and the Portuguese cuisine in the clubhouse will make you never want to leave the place.
The Faldo Course is one of two courses on the Amendoeira Golf Resort. It was Designed by Nick Faldo and it is a challenging course – as you may expect from Sir Nick. In a modern twist of a traditional recipe, cacti and wild herbs replace the role of Sunningdale’s heather, spartan Holm oaks and ancient olive trees take the place of a lush English woodland, and desert scrub bunkers of crushed limestone replace Berkshire’s sandy tracts in a golf course that revels in the classic principles of strategic play.
The Victoria Golf Course – Dom Pedro Golf covers some 90 hectares and is the only Signature project by the legendary Arnold Palmer in Portugal. The course features 5 or 6 tees per hole; wide, undulating fairways; extensive water hazards and cleverly positioned bunkers. The course is located in Vilamoura, only 20 kilometers from Faro Airport.
The Quinta do Lago resort is an exclusive golf and residential estate nestling in nearly 2.000 acres of countryside and pine forests bordering the Atlantic Ocean and the Ria Formosa Natural Park, in Algarve. Since its creation in 1972 The course has won several awards for excellence and is located just 20 minutes by car from Faro International Airport. The golf resort has 3 x 18 hole golf courses: Quinta do Lago North, Quinta do Lago South and Laranjal Golf Course.
Both of Vale do Lobo‘s 18-hole courses take players through umbrella pine and fig tree-lined fairways to the Atlantic – the Royal playing dramatically along the cliff’s edge, while the Ocean sweeps daintily down to the beach. This combination of links and parkland golf provides an enjoyable game for golfers of all standards.
The O’Connor Course Course is the second Amendoeira Golf Resort course that is listed in this top-10 of golf courses in the Algarve. The course is widely regarded as the easier of the two courses, but that does not prejudice the quality of the course. O’Connor’s 18th hole brings the course to a fantastic finish, a gentle climb with the river running along the right hand side. ‘This hole is a humdinger; once you get up here and look down on the golf course, you will feel you have been blessed.’
Located within a nature reserve and just five minutes from Lagos, Espiche Golf is an eco-resort which has been perfectly integrated into the surrounding natural environment and offers a unique and authentic experience in the western Algarve. The 18 hole, par 72 golf course was designed to integrate effortlessly into the surrounding Algarve countryside. The indigenous flora and fauna of the area have been preserved, in keeping with the company’s ethos of nature preservation and conservation.
In the heart of Vilamoura lies the Grande Dame of Algarve courses, The Old Course Golf Club. As one of the first-established layouts in the region, the Frank Pennink-design is well regarded throughout the golfing world. Although it is but a mere 20-minute drive from Faro Airport, the course finds itself situated amongst impressive pine trees and set out over gently undulating terrain. The Old Course adheres to the strict environmental policies followed by all Dom Pedro courses and it makes for a wonderfully peaceful round, even in such a central area.
Situated in the Eastern Coast, Quinta da Ria Resort is a well-known golf attraction in the Algarve. Including two spectacular golf courses, Quinta da Ria and Quinta de Cima, both 18-hole golf courses with unforgettable scenery. Quinta da Ria resort is located just over half an hour from Faro International Airport. Perfectly integrated in the Ria Formosa Nature Reserve, the most significant ecosystem in the Algarve. It is comprised of a line of barrier islands along the coast, making this protected wet-land a rich nature habitat for numerous biological species.
Framed by a valley that meanders through the course creating some undulating fairways, the Golf Santo Antonio course at Parque da Floresta is an impressive arena that has already been the stage for the Europro Tour. The Santo Antonio Golf Course is situated near the fishing village of Salema. This is close to Sagres – one of the most important places in Portuguese and European history – and close to the Costa Vicentina nature reserve.
An undulating course with some sloping fairways, particularly on the front nine. Small well bunkered greens, many near lakes on the back nine, requiring a good degree of accuracy.
Photo credits: All photos uploaded by golfers or golf clubs on Leadingcourses.com.