For large numbers of visitors, Spain and Portugal’s golf courses, jointly the clime that makes it a fantastic activity the great majority year round, are their main attractions. And golf is thriving in both areas, with dozens of new golf holiday resorts and building complexes being added to already sacred names like Valderama and Sotogrande.
The golf partisan’s biggest problem in Spain or Portugal is choice – almost too much it. Whereas once the Costa del Sol and the Algarve formed a kinda dual axis around which the residual Iberian golfing world revolved, there are now major golf facilities everyplace. Today, large numbers of golf players really favour other areas, ironically because of the very reason which first made the two southern golf giants well liked – climate. “In July and August,” goes the argument, “it’s just too damn hot to play in the middle of the day,” and there is a lot of truth in that, which happens to be why southern Spanish linksmen choose the early morning and the evening in summer.
Even so, the Costa del Sol is still the place with most golf facilities per square kilometre and per person, so, if a spring or autumn golf break is what you have in mind, there or the Algarve is probably ideal. And although water-hungry golf courses have an undeniable ecological impact, the alternative is often more acres of concrete, as though the Costa del Sol were not already high rise enough. Plus, in some places they act as buffer zones to nature reserves – intrusive buffer zones, perhaps, less than perfect, undoubtedly, but I can not recall a single case of, say, a lynx being killed while trying to get to the other side of a fairway, unlike their all-too-common fate when attempting to cross roads around Doana.