With its tropical climate, lush greenery, and spectacular coast, mountain and lake scenery, it’s hard to imagine a more perfect region for golf than Asia. Asia is now truly on the world golfing map, with several Asian courses making it onto Golf Magazine’s prestigious “100 Best Courses” ranking, and Asian golfers such as KJ Choi, Thaworn Wiratchant and Bae Sang Moon mixing it with the world’s best in the PGA rankings. Here’s our guide to some of the best golfing destinations Asia has to offer, from China’s world-famous Mission Hills complex, to Bhutan’s quirky Yak Open tournament.
Yes, you can play golf in Bhutan, and after playing a round at the Royal Thimphu Golf Club, you will be able to say that you have played at the world’s highest golf course – an amazing 7,382 feet above sea level. The Royal Thimphu also hosts one of the world’s least-known golf tournaments – the annual Yak Open, where successful competitors receive yak parts as prizes.
China is one of world golf’s most rapidly growing territories, and nowhere encapsulates the country’s newfound passion for the sport than Mission Hills. The world’s biggest golfing complex boasts 12 championship courses, designed by luminaries like Nick Faldo, Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman, among others, as well as a range of luxury resorts, hotels and entertainment facilities.
Golf in Indonesia means stunning scenery, with two courses in particular offering an amazing experience – Nirwana Bali Golf Club, nestled idyllically between the crashing waves of the ocean and the beautiful green rice terraces of Bali’s interior; and the spectacular Handara Kosaido Counry Club, also in Bali, which is located inside an extinct volcano!
In Japan, golf isn’t just a sport, it’s an integral part of the country’s business culture. As such, it is Asia’s most developed golf location, with three courses making it onto the Golf Magazine top 100 list – Kobe’s stunning 80-year old Hirono course; Kawanai Fuji, known as Japan’s own Pebble Beach due to its stunning cliff-top location; and the ultra-exclusive, historic Tokyo Golf Club, which opened in 1914.
The Philippines boasts one of Asia’s most remarkable golf locations – the Orchard Golf & Country Club, located in the middle of a teeming nature reserve and featuring two courses designed by golfing legends Arnold Palmer and Gary Player. Our local contacts here enable you to play a round of golf and then enjoy dinner at the home of one of the country’s most famous golfers.
Thailand is increasingly being seen as a paradise for golfers, combining scenic courses with that legendary Thai hospitality and service. One of the country’s finest courses is the Arnold Palmer-designed Bangpoo Country Club, located just outside Bangkok.
Ho Chi Minh may not have approved – he dismissed golf as a “bourgeois sport” and had the country’s courses turned into collective farms – but golf in Vietnam is now back with a vengeance, with several world-class courses already open and many more in the pipeline. The pick of the bunch are the historic Dalat Palace course, a legacy of the French colonial era, and the recently opened award-winning Montgomerie Links course near Hoi An.
This is just a selection of the Asia golfing Remote Lands can incorporate into your Asia luxury holiday. Please contact us today for more information and to begin planning your trip.