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Thailand is a culturally diverse and enlightening destination that has something for everyone. While massages, tuk-tuks, lively nightlife, and muay thai may be the first things that come to mind, the country also has a superior golfing scene. In fact, the famous South-East Asian country has hosted European Tour events since the 1920s.
In 1923, Hua Hin saw the construction of Thailand's first golf course, sanctioned by the king. Since then, the Thailand Golf Association has nurtured aspiring pros and attracted worldwide elites like Tiger Woods.
Thailand is a fantastic place for golfing because it features lovely weather and a lush landscape with unique and demanding terrain. For example, the North is recognized for hillier and undulating topography. All in all, it's a golfer's heaven and one of the best and most picturesque places to play in the world.
And there are 250 golf courses to choose from! That's why we've compiled a list of the most popular ones, so it's easier for you to pick where you'll play next.
The Alpine is a popular international-standard Thai course designed by Ronald M Garl. The Alpine's layout and contoured architecture bellies the flat rice paddy countryside that surrounds it, which is easily accessible, being only 20 minutes north of Don Mueang airport.
The greens are fast, and the fairways are undulating, with trees and other natural landforms interspersed. In addition, water and bunker risks abound. It's a challenging but rewarding course. Tiger Woods won the 2004 Johnnie Walker Classic at Alpine.
Amata Spring is another exclusive private club that hosts high-profile golfing events. It was voted the best Asia Tour course for four consecutive years. The course is only open to members and their visitors.
Amata Spring was founded in 2005 to build a championship golf facility for Thailand. Its climb to prominence has been aided by hosting many professional competitions. The infrastructure was meant to test the world's greatest players.
It's a fast course with ample fairways and many aquatic hazards – including two huge lakes. Every course has bunkers, and the 17th green is an island. The layout is fantastic and demanding, especially when there's a breeze.
Only members and their guests are allowed to play at Ayodhya Links, and you have to be invited to become a member. Even though it lacks the stunning surroundings of the Hua Hin courses, it's still one of the greatest in Southeast Asia. It was named 76th in GOLF Magazine's top 100 courses globally.
The undulating terrain (extraordinary compared to the flat plains of Ayutthaya) and water elements at each hole result from a superb layout and straightforward design. The 79 bunkers and undulating greens test every player's eyesight and skill.
The club is like a second home and yet, a destination unlike any other.
The magnificent Banyan golf club is a favourite championship course for many international and local golfers. It has been named the third most outstanding course in Thailand for three consecutive years and the best clubhouse in the Asia Pacific.
Despite being close to downtown Hua Hin, the course feels private and secluded, with views of the Burmese highlands. Three types of grass and varying terrain challenge your game. However, golfers of all levels use it.
Banyan also features a resort and residences.
The Black Mountain course launched in 2007 and has held several professional tournaments, including the Asian PGA Tour in 2009 and 2010. The course is designed for resort and tournament golfers of all abilities.
The mountain valley setting and Phil Ryan's great layout make this a magnificent course. Waterways and aquatic hazards bring beauty and challenge.
The facility also has a spa, pool, and villas.
Chee Chan Golf Resort is a new Pattaya golf course launched in 2019. Thanks to good linkages between Bangkok and Pattaya, Chee Chan is simple to access. In addition, it's only 40 minutes from Pattaya Beach, so you could play golf and return to the beach quickly.
It's a spectacular sight for a golf course. Khao Chee Chan, the Pattaya skyline, temples, the Gulf of Thailand coastline in the distance, lakes, and mountains are visible from this golf course. In addition, the legendary Chee Chan Mountain (Khao Chee Chan), with the world's most giant Lord Buddha picture depicted on the cliff, can be viewed from every hole of the golf course.
Chee Chan's 18-hole course was developed by Golf Plan's David Dale. Some holes are long, and massive bunkers await errant shots. However, the design's multiple tees allow you to build the course as long as you desire.
Chee Chan Golf Resort features a gorgeous clubhouse outfitted with amenities and world-class services, including well-appointed locker rooms, a pro-shop, and cuisine to delight every appetite. In addition, the hotel offers 5-star international services in a gorgeous environment. Chee Chan Golf Resort is a dream golf destination in Pattaya.
Chiangmai Highlands Golf and Spa Resort boasts pure air and stunning mountain scenery across a challenging 18-hole course. Since 2005, Schmidt Curley's course has tested players' strategy skills. The course harnesses the undulating foothills of Chiang Mai to create natural contours and altitudes.
Chiangmai Highlands also has a premium spa, five-star restaurant, and 19 resort villas. First-class amenities, warm Lanna Thai service, and world-class championship golf in perfect conditions make Chiangmai Highlands Golf and Spa Resort a famous golf destination.
Kanchanaburi, east of Bangkok, has the iconic Bridge over the River Kwai and various golf courses, including the beloved Grand Prix Golf Club. It is the ideal golf course that every golfer fantasizes about because it was founded on affection. The 7,111-yard, 2,400-rai course combines Science and art with nature while providing full amenities for all golfers and VIP guests to ensure a fun and impressive round that touches the soul.
Grand Prix Golf Club is surrounded by greenery, plants, and brilliant flowers, but it also has a unique Malibu beach design with warm, harmonious colours that inspire golfers to tee off.
The course features beautiful vistas of the Burmese mountain ranges and a meandering river. The golf club's prime location attracts visitors. It's a comfortable area to relax before or after a game. We're confident that you'll have a memorable golfing day if you play any of these courses.
The facility's luxury accommodation (Grand Prix Golf Club Hotel) sits in Kanchanaburi's gorgeous mountains. Every room has free WiFi, daily maid service, and a balcony with golf course views.
Everyone appreciates the delight of being near to nature at "Laem Chabang International Country Club," a beautiful and exotic course constructed by legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus.
This world-class golf course features 27 holes spread across 700 acres, with each hole unique to its surroundings. The course is in immaculate condition, with lush fairways, quick and trustworthy putting greens, a spotless clubhouse, and first-rate caddies.
Laem Chabang has been around for over two decades and has managed to preserve its place as one of Thailand's top courses despite the emergence of numerous newer courses. It's a must-play course that you will never forget.
There are three different nines, and each one presents a unique difficulty. The Mountain Nine, as the name implies, has several elevation variations, yet the fairways are relatively generous. With several holes running alongside a big lake, the Valley Nine is many people's favourite of the three layouts. The tight fairways and compact greens necessitate precise shot placement and will put your game to the test. Finally, the Lake Nine is played along vast tree-lined fairways that don't pose too many challenges if you stay clear of the trees.
Night golf is available; however, the lights only illuminate the white tees. Still, visibility is often excellent, making it a nice option if you dislike the heat. Night golf begins at 3.30 pm and is particularly popular among Pattaya players.
The facility has one of the best clubhouses in the area serving a la carte and buffet-style Japanese and European specialities.
Navatanee, in Siam Park City, is one of Bangkok's most superb courses. It was built in 1973 for the 1975 World Cup of Golf. While close to the city, the lovely surroundings feel country club-like. A quick course that you can play in 4 hours.
The exquisite layout was the culmination of Founder Sukum Navapan's vision and world-renowned Architect Robert Trent Jones Jr.'s concept, which was to construct a course demanding for professionals but entertaining for amateurs. He turned paddy fields into a 6,902-yard international championship course, his first in Asia.
Such rich history, combined with the startling beauty of 'Flame of the Forest' and Rosewood trees and vibrant arrays of bougainvillaea, enchants golfers from around the world. The famous 6th hole is a 445-yard par-4 that requires a draw-shaped tee shot. With water guarding the left side of the fairway and the green in a sweeping reverse 'S' shape, so making par on this hole is a feat.
Nikanti Golf Club is unlike most Thai courses. The course has three six-hole layouts instead of two nines, offering flexibility and convenience. You will return to the clubhouse having played the sixth hole, regardless of which six holes you play to start your round.
Piraporn Namatra designed the course. This 6-6-6 theme is inspired by the six senses in Buddhism and is part of Nikanti's brand philosophy.
Nikanti Golf Club's large fairways and elevation variations challenge even top golfers. In addition, undulating greens add to the course's difficulty. Each six-hole set has two par-3s, two par-4s, and two par-5s.
Another thing that makes Nikanti Golf Club unique is its all-inclusive feature, which is something few golf courses provide. One price includes everything, even food and caddie tips.
Nikanti aims to provide a worry-free golfing experience. There is a smooth flow from the time you arrive, check-in at the pro shop, change in the large, well-equipped locker rooms, wait in the staging area, and then head out to the golf course for a fun round. As a result, golfers enjoy smooth, convenient service at every turn.
Red Mountain is often regarded as Phuket's most arduous and visually stunning course. Set in a former tin mine, the course's natural scenery with changing altitudes and landforms is a treat to play on.
Red Mountain is a fun course in a lovely garden of tropical trees, flowers, and shrubs that attract butterflies and birds to Phuket. Ornithological paths showcase the region's most magnificent birds. The Tin Mine was a stunning raw canvas for nature's rebirth and rejuvenation. Exotic ferns, wild orchids, Indian rhododendrons, and nepenthes thrive in the abandoned mine landscapes. In addition, you'll adore the surrounding Phuket virgin forests, where ancient trees reach for the clouds and animals, creating a symphony of tropical jungle sounds.
On-site lodging includes a hotel and villas.
The RG City Golf Club features 63 golf holes as one connected property, making it the world's largest pure golf city. This special project has secured a spectacular piece of land - 1,400 rai (about 560 acres) - the largest in Thailand to accommodate three various forms of golf courses. Every tee-off is flawless on every golf course. Once played, they're unforgettable.
The club is private; however, visitors can play at specific hours. It features a small but good clubhouse, super-luxe locker rooms, and superb practice facilities.
Chiang Rai in the North is home to Santiburi, another 18-hole course that benefits from the natural beauty that surrounds it. The first nine holes are on flat terrain with many water hazards, and the last nine are steep with only two water hazards.
Early winter play is the loveliest, but it's a great course to experience year-round. Light fog blankets the first few holes, making them a dream. Then, as the rising sun melts away the fog, the undulating fairways situated among the Chiangrai hills become clearer.
Other on-site facilities include a hotel, a scenic restaurant, the Atmosphere Beer Garden in the winter festival, luxurious lockers, and a sauna room.
Koh Samui, known for its white-sand beaches and relaxing environment, also has Santiburi Koh Samui, a golf course built to world standards. It is the only championship 18-hole golf course on the island, running along the northern shoreline at altitudes ranging from 25 to 180 meters above sea level. It's a unique and unforgettable golf course, named one of the top five in Thailand.
The fairways are carved into tropical jungle mountains that tower over beautiful coastlines with views of the other islands in the distance. Since they follow mountainous contours, they present challenging play and impediments. You'll need skill and luck to do well on this difficult course, especially the back nine.
Often, you must drive the ball upwards, and the fairways are made difficult by bunkers; the mountain's natural inclination, rock-filled valleys, coconut trees, streams, and waterfalls add to the challenge. And even the most enthusiastic walkers will appreciate the golf cart because it's a tough track to walk.
Santiburi golf club has excellent changing facilities, a well-stocked pro shop, and a restaurant with a gorgeous terrace. The clubhouse has 360-degree views of the course, beaches, and sea and is a great place to watch the sunset with a snack and a refreshing drink. Hotel shuttles to the course are complimentary.
Siam Country Club was built in 1970 and refurbished by Schmidt Curley in 2007. It was the first privately-owned course in Thailand.
The club's 18-hole courses (Plantation and Old Course) are well-regarded, but the Old Course is the favourite. The Old Course boasts spacious, contoured greens, 100 sand traps, and several trees. Since 2007, the LPGA has played there. The well-kept Plantation course is in the hills and windy.
The Thai Country Club is another of Thailand's most fantastic golf courses; however, visitors can play on weekdays only (and weekends at the Peninsula Bangkok). It's a contemporary course tailored to US PGA international standards with expansive fairways that Tiger Woods played in 1997. In fact, he won the 1997 Asian Honda Classic on the 7,097-yard course.
This gorgeous course is known for its immaculate conditions, neo-classic design, variety of holes, and plenty of water, fauna, and flora – delivering a constant challenge and hours of fun. The design adapts from casual to elite play. The course is as challenging as you make it, and players of all abilities and handicaps enjoy it. In addition, the clubhouse is posh.