Four of the best golf courses on the Dolphin Coast

Winston Churchill once said golf was the perfect way to ruin a good walk, but with so many picturesque fairways on the North Coast, perhaps your walk could use a little spicing up.

The Dolphin Coast has some of the most stunning golf courses in the country, offering challenging fairways and gorgeous vistas.

For those living on the estates, access to the courses are a part of everyday life but for many holidaymakers some of the North Coast’s excellent golfing opportunities go undiscovered.

Let’s take a look, in no particular order, at four must-visit courses along the coast and what it takes to play a round at each.

Umhlali Country Club

1 Compensation Rd, Umhlali

032 947 1181

Designed by Peter Matkovich, UCC’s beautifully manicured fairways provide for an easy walk for the skilled as well as the not so skilled golfer.

Open from 6am – 5pm Sunday to Thursday and 6am – 6.30pm on Fridays and Saturdays, the course lies just outside Ballito opposite the N2.

Derick Reinke is the resident club pro.

Umhlali Country Club golf course.

UCC also has a driving range, two chipping greens and three putting greens.

Members pay R175 for 18 holes and non-members, R310 Monday – Friday and R405 over the weekends. UCC has clubs for hire for the holidaymaker who couldn’t lug his or hers all the way to Ballito, a set of clubs will cost you R200 for the round.

While on the greens you must wear a collared shirt (for both golf and the driving range) and pants that have a zip, (no cargo shorts, baggies, jeans or slops).

Both takkies and golf shoes are allowed.

Umhlali Country Club.

Simbithi Country Club

Club Cres, Chaka’s Rock, Dolphin Coast

032 946 8360

Simbithi is the green emerald that links Ballito to Salt Rock.

Another Peter Matkovich designed golf course, Simbithi’s course is the first in SA specifically designed along the lines of the popular Executive Courses in the US.

They have fewer par 5’s and more par 3’s giving you the opportunity to play a full – and testing – 18 holes using every club in your bag.

The 16th hole – Umnyuzi Hill (Par 3). Photo: Simbithi Eco Estate.

During the summer the course is open from 6am – 6pm and in winter from 6.30am – 5.30pm

Members play for free at Simbithi while non-members pay R250 for a round of golf and R280 for a golf cart. The dress code is collared golf shirt tucked into trousers or tailored shorts. If you need to hire a set of clubs it will cost you R250.

Simbithi boasts three resident pros in Elbert du Plessis, Ryan Schierhout and Emmanuel Ntshembeni.

Simbithi Eco Estate.

Zimbali Country Club

R627, Zimbali Coastal Estate, Dolphin Coast

032 538 1041

Designed by Tom Weiskopf, Zimbali Country Club’s magnificent 18 holes are open from 7am – 6pm and offer irresistible ocean and forest views, exceptional water and wetland features and an inspiring natural setting.

Kyle Caitano is their resident pro.

The pristine putting greens at Zimbali. Photo: Fairmont Zimbali Lodge

Members pay R210 for 18 holes and R120 for nine while affiliated visitors pay R610 per player including shared golf carts during the week and R645.00 over the weekend. Non-affiliated visitors pay R800 during the week (per player including shared golf carts) and R860 over weekends. A set of clubs for a round of golf will cost you R400.

The dress code includes tucked-in, collared shirts, knee length tailored shorts, or trousers and golf shoes.

Also watch: Unexpected visitor slithers across Zimbali golf course

Zimbali Country Club. Stock image.

Prince’s Grant

1 Babu Bodasing Avenue, New Guelderland, KwaDukuza

032 482 0041

Prince’s Grant has a links/parkland layout, designed and constructed by Peter Matkovich, and is laid out over four ridge lines overlooking the Indian Ocean.

Sweeping, majestic views over the ocean, with spectacular coastal forest makes this one of the most scenic and visually stunning golf courses in South Africa.

Prince’s Grant. Stock image.

Members at Prince’s Grant pay only R15 per round while fees for non-members are between R185 – R475 per round (depending on age,  date and affiliation). If you’re just visiting the Dolphin Coast and are in need of a set of clubs for the day, you can hire them for R250.

On the links you must wear a collared shirt, golf shorts and golf shoes (no t-shirts, vests or cargo shorts).

Prince’s Grant is open from 6am to 5pm and, while they do not currently have a resident pro, they are in the process of interviewing.

>>  Expect to find the latest trends in Health, Wellness and Beauty in Ballito.

>> Meet the top players in the North Coast property industry. See our Property People feature.

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Allan Troskie

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