Here we are....the magic golf road trip! I did it in Scotland while I was 16 years old, and again a year after.....I did short golf road trips years after. But this is the kicking reality...good golf courses when you are not 15 years old are expensive to play...and doing them every day, even twice a day, in some corner of the world like the US and Australia very fast turn into an outrage to your credit card! Then the God of golf created South Africa. The country has over 500 golf courses...and Golf Digest is ranking every two years the top 100....all of them being pretty amazing. As of today, I have play over 40 courses of the current and last 100 top ranking in the country. Bear in mind, 3 of those are ranked in the top 100 golf courses in the world....yes, I admit, I play them also!
As of today, I declare by far South Africa the best golf country in the world. I mean the number of courses, range of courses, access of courses...and obviously, how much you pay to play such courses. South Africa is not only cheap, they are welcoming...and yes,
you can tell me I'm biased....because this is my daily occurrence...but this doesn't exist in Europe, Asia or the States...and not even in Argentina!
This trip will incur over 23 rounds of golf in short of four weeks travel. There will be amazing golf...but also some amazing food and wines. I have to admit, more often than none, we had no camera with us. We are tourists in our own world...but most days, the camera is packed away....so no pictures around. Be warned, such a trip is only feasible because of the hundred of people making sure these courses are a daily reality. But also because beside of all these challenges, South Africa remains a warm and welcoming country. My take on it....once South Africans will stop to do about "race"...and people do start to do politics, the country will be in better hands. Governance is not about your color, is about left or right...hope they will indulge soon!
So we start this trip by driving the Transkai. No golf here, a lot of history here, and yes I did write about this place before. The drive from home to East London is long,
beautiful and full of smiles....but not golf! It takes us a good seven hours to drive to East London. East London golf course is in the new Golf Digest Ranking at the 10th place in the country. Green fee is 30usd. Welcome is warm and amazing! And yes, they have the fastest green by far in the all of South Africa....and that wind!
We are spending the night in East London. No hotel chain with benefits for me, so we are staying in a solid romantic local B&B. In not too late....out for dinner....and next morning, out after breakfast to head South-East. The dinner was super nice, but I may have to check again tripadvisor for the name of the place.
Next morning, another long day on the road. Nearly two hours drive and we are in Port Alfred to play the Royal Port Alfred golf course. Warm welcome and old style golf course...only four of those courses in the country have the "Royal" prefix!
Did shoot a cool score and we were on the nice road to the East, Back to Addo National Park. The national Cricket team in in
town, aka Port Elizabeth, playing Australia. So hotels are heavy booked and not cheap. The plan is to visit Addo and the elephants. So back three years, and we are back at the Addo Orange Backpackers....same room, same price...just a bed, and very close to the gate of the National Park. Last time I did Addo with the kids, it was in the winter....we saw maybe 15 elephants....in two days, we just encountered thousands of them...plus lions, ostriches and a lot more...lot more...but no rhino, and no giraffes....this is Addo!
We slept 3 nights into Port Elizabeth. All of them at the Protea hotel on the beach. Nice hotel and super nice upgrade with a basic kitchen. Therefore...we went out a little...and in a lot. Next, golf courses on the list, Port Elizabeth golf club! next was amazing Humewood and finally Wedgewood. My game is being tasted, but this courses are amazing!
Next, welcome to the Garden Route...we simply love South Africa!
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