Mauritius is top golfing destination
A recent survey* of UK and Irish golfers revealed that two very famous golf courses were top of most golfer’s bucket list. Neither courses was a surprise: St Andrews is the home of golf and Pebble Beach is America’s most famous seaside venue. But next up in the poll? Mauritius.
If at first that is a little more surprising (the island beat everywhere else in the world), on reflection it makes perfect sense. The survey would suggest that once a golfer has ticked off the iconic courses their mind drifts towards the perfect golfing holiday destination and, whilst Spain and Portugal are the popular choice, Mauritius is clearly the ultimate dream.
The island has everything the golf holiday requires: lavish hotels, great beaches and crucially, golf courses that maintain those high standards.
What's also striking is that when golfers travel abroad they want more than a holiday, they demand an experience and that is exactly what Mauritius provides.
Le Touessrok, Mauritius
When playing at home the routine for many golfers is simple. It involves pulling the clubs from the car boot, a quick change in the locker room, a hasty visit to the pro shop to buy forgotten items and a rush to the first tee.
Forget that here because nowhere does the journey to the first tee like Le Touessrok.
It begins with a friendly shuttle from your hotel to a shady spot by the lagoon. It continues with a leisurely boat trip across to Ile aux Cerfs (‘Deer Island’) and arrival at the beautiful quay there. Another friendly welcome awaits in the relaxing clubhouse and finally you take a buggy to the first. It is relaxing, a little bewildering, very beautiful and completely unique.
It is also the prelude to the shock of coming to terms with a tee shot that calls for iron nerves and a lot of imagination - two qualities that Le Touessrok demands of the golfer time and time again.
A wonderfully fun track, it twists and turns across the island, calling for brave shots across water hazards and insisting that you never lose concentration whilst taking in the stunning views of the crystal blue water that surrounds the course, or the mountains which look down on it.
At the end of the round the clubhouse is a wonderful haven for frazzled golf brains: quiet, calming and cool it’s the perfect end to a luxury golfing experience.
Constance Belle Mare Plage
Further up the coast Constance Belle Mare Plage has not one, but two fantastic golf courses to enjoy, a fact which makes it extra popular with golf tourists who know that there will always be a tee time available.
The Legend golf course is seconds away from the hotel and a wonderful test: tight, tree-lined fairways insist on accurate driving and punish anything off line.
Two excellent holes end the round: the par-three 17th requires a bold hit over a wide lagoon, while the final fairway has lakes left and right which are often a haven for the deer who bathe in the shallow waters.
Minutes away is the Links course which is more open from the tee but also calls for daring shot-making and aggressive putting.
Not many hotels have two courses as fine, or as much fun to play, as these two. They’re layouts you want to play again and again, because every hole tempts you to believe you can make birdie, whilst threatening trouble if you make a mistake.
And if your game needs a few tweaks? The on-site Marc Farry coaching academy can transform your game.
Those golfers were not wrong in the survey. And this week – in the German magazine Golf Aktuell, Readers’ Award 2013 - Mauritius has been voted the world’s best golf travel destination.
Mauritius is firmly placed on the bucket list of golfers in the know the world over.
* Survey conducted by YourGolfTravel.com