Portugal is widely regarded as one of the best locations in Europe for golf breaks. While it may not have the same heritage and golfing tradition as the British Isles it still has enough world class courses to make choosing a top 5 list as challenging to compile, as the courses are to play.
This top five list brings together several on-line surveys along with the personal experience of playing some of these courses while on golf holidays in Portugal.
On a hot summer’s day the 6000 yard Estoril course is an enjoyable treat. The course requires skill around the 18 holes to navigate the well placed bunkers and difficult rough.
San Lorenzo is one of the gems of the Algarve region. It regularly features on European top 10 lists of courses and boasts finely manicured greens and fairways with a course design that offers a range of holes.
The south course in Quinta do Lago is the more mature of the two courses available to play at this resort. Some holes prove challenging due to the stark Atlantic Ocean breeze, while other holes are sheltered by lush vegetation and forestry. Given the courses maturity, the greens play exceptionally true and fast as one would expect.
Many day-trippers from Lisbon gravitate to the challenging Praia Del Rey. This is one of the newer links-style courses that provide a combination of forested fairways with ocean views and some holes with unforgiving bunkers and dunes waiting to punish errant shots.
No trip to the Algarve would be complete without playing the Vale da Pinta. This is an interestingly designed course that is embedded within a natural valley. The fairways undulations make for some odd bounces which some would deem unfair but this does aid golfers playing short off the tee.
Given the range of courses in Portugal, and the proliferation of clubs in the Algarve, a top 5 list of courses will always be quite subjective. Hopefully this list gives you food for thought about your next golf break.
Looking for European golfing breaks? For the perfect golf holiday Algarve, Estoril and the other Portuguese regions have it all. Visit the Golf Holidays In Portugal Guide to learn more.