‘Success in Golf depends less on strength of body and more on strength of mind and character’
- Arnold Palmer
Priyanka Saxena Ray
Golf – to those who take is seriously is a religion. The game requires a lot of discipline as it is one of the rare sports where you are competing with none but yourself. While India secures a prominent place in the list of ‘golfing countries’, one of the leading destinations in the game with outstanding golf courses, special packages and facilities and now a new brand ambassador in Thailand!
There are countries in Asia that boast of numerous golf courses (Japan and Korea, for example), but the vast majority of courses there are private clubs. In Thailand, the best layouts are resort tracks – the very courses that have for decades attracted (Japanese and Korean golfers on holiday. Thailand’s beautiful golf courses in Hua Hin, Chiang Mai, Krabi, Phuket, Khao Yai and Samui, has made the destination a favourite with golf enthusiasts. Spread across various destinations, each with its own set of diversities, the region offers players a vast choice of golf courses along with modern facilities and excellent infrastructure, which play a vital role in upping the golfing trips to Thailand significantly.
From the beach resorts in the south such as Phuket to the mountainous surroundings in the north, or the bustling cities of Bangkok and Pattaya, there are golf courses to suit every preference. All the courses are located in highly accessible areas with fast and convenient door-to-door transfers, possible within several hours’ travel time. This provides visitors with a vast choice while planning a golf holiday.
Every year, a whopping 600,000 golfers criss-cross this golfing paradise to try their hand in some of the 300-odd designer golf courses dotting the landscape in Thailand. Many of the golf courses have been designed by some of the biggest names in the business, such as, Jack Nicklaus, Greg Norman, Peter Thomson and Phil. Thai designers too have taken to the trade in a big way and the Banyan Golf Club in HuaHin, the finest in all of Thailand is designed by a Thai golf architect.
Most of the golf courses are the sheer size and majesty of the club houses. No other country has such elaborately designed and perfectly maintained club houses. The indulgent luxury of some of the locker rooms is breath-taking, besides superbly equipped showers and change rooms. Some even have a few heated and ice-deep pools inside the locker room while some others provide facilities of saunas, massage centres and more. Thailand is renowned as Asia’s most popular golfing destination with a remarkable value that the golfers can obtain as they enjoy the luxury of golf at world class courses at magnificent locations, receive five star services from friendly caddies, and stay in comfortable accommodation at affordable prices.
We cannot talk about golf in Thailand and not mention its special ‘caddies’! Well, there are caddies and caddies, but what makes Thailand special is that the caddies in Thailand are all women!
Talking of women, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) earlier this year announced the appointment of Thailand golf ambassador in India – Vani Kapoor. This association fits perfectly with Thailand being a well known golfing paradise and a favourite destination for women travellers.
Vani at the age of 22 has represented India in many domestic and international golf tournaments. She turned professional golfer in 2012 and her current world ranking is 767. Having recently played golf in Thailand, Vani says, “It is my great honour to be Thailand Golf Ambassador, I would like to thank the Tourism Authority of Thailand who gave me this great opportunity. The amazing Thai food, getting pampered in the spas and great shopping options, is just a cherry on the cake when I visit Thailand.”
Well known Golf Courses in Thailand
Central Region: Bangkok and beyond
KrungthepKreetha Sports Club
President Country Club
Royal Golf & Country Club
Thai Country Club
MuangKaew Golf Club
Lam Lukka Country Club
Suwan Golf & Country Club
Black Mountain Golf Club
Springfield Royal Country Club
Banyan Golf Club
North: Chiang Mai
Chiangmai Highlands Golf and Spa Resort
Chiang Mai Inthanon Golf and Natural Resort
Alpine Golf Resort Chiang Mai
North East: Khao Yai and beyond
Kirimaya Golf Club
Rancho Charnvee Resort & Country Club
East: Chonburi /Pattaya
Bang Phra International Golf Club
Laem Chabang International Country Club
Pattana Golf and Sports Resorts
Pattaya Country Club & Resort
Phoenix Golf & Country Club
Siam Country Club Pattaya Old Course
West and South: Phuket
Mission Hills Phuket Golf Resort and Spa
Phuket Country Club
Blue Canyon Country Club
Red Mountain Golf Club
Loch Palm Golf Club
Santiburi Samui Country Club
Mission Hills Golf Club & Resort Kanchanaburi
Nichigo Resort and Country Club