Gerard and Mark's Golfing Trip to South Africa
I just wanted to update you on my recent trip to South Africa where I was lucky enough to view hotels and play some of the courses we offer on our website. I have just returned from an excellent and very informative trip where I was accompanied by our MD Mark Marais.
South Africa is truly blessed with an array of excellent accommodation, golf courses and wonderful things to see and do. We thoroughly enjoyed staying at as well as visiting some outstanding hotels, resorts and guest houses. And of course purely in the interests of research we also played some spectacular golf courses...
We were met at Johannesburg airport by the excellent Tamara, our representative out there and we were in good hands for the start of our trip. We travelled up north to the Limpopo region where we stayed and played at Zebula Resort, it was bizarre experience in the sweltering heat finding a zebra between my ball and the hole having left an icy Ireland under 24 hours earlier.
That evening we enjoyed a 'few' sundowners and I tried biltong and as promised by Mark it was the perfect accompaniment to cold lager! The following day we travelled onto the new Euphoria resort and played their excellent golf course, Mark taught me a few phrases in the local lingo including 'in die kak' which unfortunately I was to use on numerous occasions due to a rusty swing!
Another fantastic sunny morning found us about to enjoy the truly unique experience of playing the incredible Extreme 19th Par 3 hole.at Legends Resort. The day started with us being met at the club house and then driven to a nearby field, a short time later our next form of transportation arrived...a helicopter!!
After jumping on board we were whisked in exhilarating fashion up to the top of a mountain and led to the tee box precariously perched on the edge of a 400 meter cliff face. A driver is the only club required up there! After taking in the magnificent scenery you then try compose yourself to drive 6 balls from the edge of the mountain to the green around 600 meters away.
My radar was definitely affected by the situation and all I can say is that there are probably a few dazed baboons wandering around the national park that surrounds the green. After all your balls are launched the helicopter returns to transport you to the green so that you can finish out the hole! A truly memorable experience and one which I will never forget!
The rest of the day was spent playing the superb 18-hole course, followed by the fantastic 10-hole par 3 Tribute course. This is another great experience, the holes are all replicas of the worlds best par 3's including the 12th at Augusta, the Postage Stamp and the 17th at Sawgrass.
From the course we went straight out into the reserve and whilst enjoying a few cold beers we saw lion and rhino as well as plenty of other game, the perfect end to an unbelievable day, and definitely one I'd recommend to all.
After our time in Limpopo we caught the flight from Jo'burg to George in the Cape where we began our journey along the Garden Route.
Our first port of call was the luxurious Simola resort at Knysna with it's huge rooms, top quality service and a manicured golf course with picturesque views. World class Pezula was next, rated by many as the best resort in South Africa and one I'll remember for a long time as Mark drained a long putt on the last to stay in the game only for me to sink a 12-footer and claim the bragging rights!
We visited a lot of different hotels and guest houses in Plettenberg and Knysna and I soon understood why Mark had said guest houses in SA are more like boutique hotels, with friendly owners always ready to share their knowledge. Next was Fancourt with its three world class courses, the Links is spectacular but one I'd only recommend to low handicappers (or golfing masochists!), the Montagu would be better for all comers and the Outeniqua suits those wanting a fair but not to tough game. All of these immaculately maintained courses and are only available to residents of the resort.
We visited George Golf Club which was in as good a condition as any course I have been to and one I will definitely make sure is in my itinerary next time I'm in SA. From here we drove west to the Cape Arabella, I would like to mention at this stage that Scott and I took the money from Mark and Adam at Arabella let's just say they were not happy campers! The memorable finishing holes on both nines are as good as it gets!
We spent the next few days in the stunning Winelands and in Cape Town, what a magnificent part of the world. CosmopolitanCape Town is one of the great cities with so much to see and do. We made sure we got full value for money by being amongst the last people to leave an Irish bar on Long Street on our final evening!
The famousGarden Route and Western Cape are awash with super accommodation and magnificent golf courses so you will be well and truly spoilt for choice! All in all this was a superb trip and my customers will certainly benefit from my experiences out in South Africa. Seeing is believing and I have been extremely lucky to experience this wonderful country at its best.
If anyone would like to discuss South Africa or are interested in a trip out there please contact me on email@example.com
I look forward to speaking with you.