The 413-yard, 6th hole, nearly evey hole on the course offers breath taking views
We are in our minibus winding and weaving endlessly up a hill that must have more hairpin-bends than the famous Lombard Street in San Francisco. The golf course sits over 300 metres above the tourist resort of Platja D’Aro on the Costa Brava, and if you make the journey up to the top, you’ll love the views – they truly are spectacular.
The course was designed by Ramon Espinosa and opened for play in 1992. It nestles in the forest-covered Gavarres Mountains, a range that follows the Catalan coast. For, if you come to the Costa Brava it’s a course you have to play. With its mixture of pine, cork and olive trees, not only are the views spectacular but the environment is nature at its best.
The course opens up with a blind dog-leg right of 408 yards and there is a beautiful stone house with a windmill on the 405-yard second hole. The second shot is to a tough green – my advice here is just aim to the right-hand side of the green as all of the trouble – and there is plenty of it – is down the left.
The first par-3 plays from an elevated tee with water protecting the right-hand side of the green and measures 190-yard. It’s a tough little hole, but it’s the views from the fourth tee that will leave you speechless. As the 526-yard fairway dog-legs to the right, the view over the bunker that protects the far side of the landing area is jaw-dropping. You look out across a forest and the bay below to the Mediterranean Sea. It really does stop you in your tracks and I would suggest you have your iphone at the ready.
The stunning views and great golf holes just keep coming, and the run of holes from the seventh get even better, finishing on the tough little ninth. It may only measure 407 yards but the landing area, if you decide to take the driver, is only 10 yards wide with a road on the right and 200ft drop on the left. I think you should keep that club in your bag and take a long iron or hybrid. It’s a great hole and vied for being my favourite, but there are a couple more that beat it on the back nine.
The back nine doesn’t let up and the great views and holes just keep coming. I could go through them all, but after the stunning ninth is the par-3 tenth – it measures 207 yards and plays from an elevated tee. You play over a valley of trees to a raised green with trees on the left and no bail-out on the right. It’s like a black widow spider, enticing and deadly at the same time, and can easily wreck a card. But you know you can’t resist and it’s another hole to get the iphone out!
The 16th takes you to the highest point on the course and there’s not much more I can tell you about the vistas you will enjoy, but please play this hole from the back tee. The fairway sits some 50-plus feet below with water on the left, trees and bunkers down the right. It measures 412 yards and you’ll love every yard of it. Pure golfing pleasure.
The back nine is truly a stunning run of holes. I am playing PGA Catalunya tomorrow and it’s going to take a lot to beat this course – there’s not really a weak hole. Throw in those views and the Spanish sun kissing the fairways and greens, and it’s bliss.
Yes, I think you need to make the trek to this northeastern outpost of Spain. After playing the Club Golf d’Aro you’ll be glad you made the journey.
Stunning views from the 4thThe very tight 9th holeFitting finale to a stunning track