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Golf in unexpected destinations

Golfers on transit or short business trips can find time to tee off. AFP PHOTO
Golfers on transit or short business trips can find time to tee off. AFP PHOTO 

This weekend, if you find yourself unexpectedly in Toronto, Canada, or some other exotic destination, these are some of the top golf courses to play. According to the www.seetorontonow.com website, top golf courses in Toronto include the 72-hole Cardinal Golf Club which is home to not one but four 18-hole layouts suitable for players of all skill levels.

The Kettle Creek course is suitable for beginners, while the East and West Wing courses are intermediate and suitable for golfers of all skill levels looking for an easy day on the course. The RedCrest is a challenging course, perhaps best avoided for those of dubious skill levels.

The Don Valley Golf Course is a public municipal course accessible at under Sh4,000, one can hire golf clubs for Sh2,550.

The Jack Nicklaus designed Glen Abbey Golf Club is a must play course for many reasons. Tiger Woods won the Canada Open there back in 2000 and it is currently in danger of disappearing due to residential development. Avoid the Glen Abbey if your dress code is less than stellar or includes a funny white hat!

Other courses in and around the Toronto area include the Lakeview Golf Course, the Turnberry Golf Club, Uplands Golf Course, Osprey Valley Golf and the Angus Glen Golf Club — an elitist public course.

Unexpectedly in South Africa? Then the websites www.lastminutegolf.co.za and www.golfteetimes.co.za enable you to book from over 100 courses across the country at rock bottom green fees. These two sites feature drop down menus that allow golfers looking for last minute games or deals to choose their preferred locations and times for prices as low as Sh3,000.

In Dubai, websites such as www.dubaigolf.com, www.golfscape.com and www.teeoff.com/Dubai offer similar services, making it easier for golfers on transit or short business trips to find available tee times conveniently.

Again, these Dubai websites offer competitive green fees, ranging from Sh8,000 at The Els Club and up to Sh24,000 at Trump International Golf Club.

Golf at the Emirates Golf Club’s Majlis Course, venue of the Dubai Desert Classic, is a cool Sh27,150 —small change for the business traveller with a free afternoon.

Over the years, Portugal has established itself as the most attractive golf tourism destination with the Algarve region proving to be the most popular. The website www.golfinportugal.com allows last minute or unexpected visitors to quickly search for, book and pay for games at reasonable fees. You can book and play at the Laguna Golf Course, a challenging links course that shares a clubhouse with the next door Millenium golf course.

The Ocean Golf Course offers spectacular views of the ocean and although it is a tough course to play, it is good value for money.

In Asia, the website www.golfasian.com aggregates golf from Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and even Myanmar. So whether you fancy a round in Bali, Saigon, Danang, Pattaya or Bangkok, this portal is the place to find and book a golf course.

So, if you do find yourself in an unexpected destination — on a short last minute business trip or exiled for declaring yourself King of Zambunda, finding a golf course and hopefully enjoying a round of golf while there is simple enough.

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