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portugal: Accommodations - Golf - Other Activities


Portugal Golf Courses

While the first golf course in Portugal – Oporto Golf Club – was founded in 1890 to cater to visiting British wine merchants, golf had a very limited presence in Portugal until the 1960’s, when resort development got underway. Therefore, the country played no serious role in the history or lore of the game, and the character of the courses is not greatly dissimilar to those found in the United States.

That is not to say that Portugal should not be considered for a golfing vacation. On the contrary – you’ll love it. And a great option for those who would like to extend their golfing season into the late fall, or get a head start on golf in the early spring.
There are two main golfing regions in Portugal, the Algarve on the southern coast, and the Lisbon coast near the capital. While each could easily provide a full golfing vacation on is own, to properly experience Portugal to the fullest, we recommend a trip that include time in both regions.





Quinto do Lago - South
Designed by: William Mitchell
Par 72; 7095 yards

The Quinta do Lago South course has hosted the Portuguese Open eight times. The layout favors the long hitter. Strategic bunkering, occasional water hazards and contoured greens are the main challenge. The signature hole is the beautiful par 3 fifteenth with a long carry over a large lake to the green set among pinetrees.

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quinto do Lago - north
Designed by: William Mitchell
Par 72; 7095 yards

The North course at Quinta do Lago, located adjacent to the Ria Formosa nature reserve, is much the same in style as the South course - scenic and with several testing par 4s and a majestic 520 yard par 5 finishing hole.

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San Lorenzo
Designed by: Joseph Lee, Rocky Roquemore
Par 72; 6821 yards

Golf World magazine voted San Lorenzo continental Europe's second best golf course. (after Spain’s Valderamma). The course, which opened in 1988, it weaves through umbrella pines along the shores of the Ria Formosa estuary. The magnificent course, designed by Joseph Lee and Rocky Roquemore, opened in. It comprises several scenic and testing holes culminating in the memorable 18th, with an exhilarating approach to a well defended green across a lake.

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vale do lobo - royal
Designed by: Sir Henry Cotton
Par 72; 6501 yards

Sitting atop a cliff, Vale do Lobo offers spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and its beaches, as well as the Algarve countryside. The Royal Course is rated #10 in Portugal and its scenic 16th hole is one of the most photographed in Europe. The course is set among rolling pine-covered terrain and incorporates the world-famous par 3 sixteenth which calls for an extensive carry over two chasms in the red sandstone cliffs. Vale do Lobo's second course, the Ocean, is an extremely picturesque 18-hole layout with some interesting holes by the beach where sea breezes demand extra concentration.

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vila sol
Designed by: Donald Steel
Par 72; 6826 yards

Vila Sol is laid out on undulating terrain in a natural woodland of pine, carob and fig. The original course opened in 1991 and hosted the Portuguese Open for the following two years. In September 2000 a third nine-hole loop was added allowing for three different combinations of 18 holes. Large, contoured and often speedy greens, together with several long, testing par 4 holes, provide an excellent challenge for golfers of all abilities.

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vilamoura - old course
Designed by: Frank Pennick
Par 73; 6839 yards

The oldest of the Vilamoura courses, the Old course opened in 1969 and was renovated in 1997. Visually beautiful, it is perfectly maintained with extensive irrigation. The par 3's are deemed the toughest challenge on the course, but the tree-lined longer holes punish errant shots. The small and bunker-protected greens offer little room for error. It is a mature, classic, English-style layout with narrow pinetree-lined fairways.

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penha longa - championship
Designed by: Arthur Hills
Par 72; 6878 yards

Steeply sloping terrain, varying landscape, and high hills, with outstanding views of the surrounding area, mark the championship Penha Longa course. Located west of Lisbon, Penha Longa is noted for its panoramic vistas and excellent maintenance. Having hosted the Portuguese Open, it was voted by touring professionals as one of the finest courses on the European circuit.

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belas
Designed by: Rocky Roquemore
Par 72; 6977 yards

Spread among the hills, Belas Country Club provides an excellent view over the Sintra mountain range as far as Penha Palace and the River Tejo. The course is divided into two very different sections - the first crosses a naturally preserved landscape; the second runs by homes that are part of the development. The overall look has been improved by the planting of one thousand trees, mainly pine. The second hole, named Augusta, pays tribute to the home of the Masters.

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oitavos
Designed by: Arthur Hills
Par 71; 6893 yards

Located in the Sintra-Cascais Natural Park, Oitavos sits along the Lisbon coastline. The routing is a continuous loop of holes, nine out nine in, similar to linksland courses in Scotland. Distant views of the Atlantic Ocean and the nearby Sintra mountains are visible from every hole. Oitavos also has the honor of being the first European and the second worldwide course to be recognized as a Certified Gold Signature Sanctuary by Audubon International for its efforts to preserve the natural ecosystem of the area.

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praia d'el ray
Designed by: Sir Henry Cotton
Par 72; 7113 yards

Just outside of the lovely hilltown of Obidos is Praia d’El Ray Golf & Country Club, a 600-acre beach resort with an 18-hole course, ranked # 6 in Portugal. Located on the Atlantic Coast in Costa de Prata, the par 72 course provides spectacular views of pine forest, sand dunes, and the Berlenga Islands.

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