Macau Golf & Country Club, China

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Perched on a small hill in Coloane Island amidst cliffs and flora and fauna with the choppy waters of the South China Sea forming the backdrop, lies Macau’s only golfing sanctuary – Macau Golf and Country Club.

The course was designed by Hiroshi Ikeda, the sculptured fairways lined with cart tracks, picturesque vistas and gentle bunkering that protect the strategically shaped greens characterize this user-friendly yet challenging layout. Playing a little over 6,800 yards from the back tee and 5,700 yards off the resort tees, it requires more brains than brawns from golfers in targeting shots that not many resort courses require – the tenth tee is actually built on the roof of the hotel!

With a slow begining with two relatively tame par 4s sandwiching the reachable par 5 498 yard second hole. Then comes a par 3, one of five in total, making the course a par 71, ranging between 140 and 238 yards, with some unpredictable humps and hollows which will require accuracy and good swings off the tees.

Sharp doglegs and a pair of brutal par 5s – the 12th and 13th – determine the tone of play for the rest of the day. Precision striking is a must when the wind blows, lest the golfers get blown away with high scores. The challenge of the signature 17th so aptly reverberates when you are on the tee that is cut into the side of a cliff with a 140 foot drop to the green.

The holes are both memorable and well designed, with narrow, undulating fairways and well protected greens. Multiple varieties of trees, shrubs and natural vegetation add seasonal colour to the verdant splendour of the golf course, offering a great experience for every golfer regardless of one’s score.