Pestana Viking Hotel, Algarve
- 3 Nights B&B
2 Rounds of golf
Golf & Nightlife
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Golf Courses at Pestana Viking
Alto Golf & Country Club
The winding fairways and elevated greens are typical of Cotton's architectural philosophy, and ensure that there is a stern challenge for the low handicap players, whilst remaining fair for the average golfer. Set across two rolling hills, visitors will enjoy beautiful views of the Lagos Bay.
The course is just shy of 7,000 yards, but that is mostly thanks to the monstrous 16th, which measures 661 yards and has appropriately been dubbed, ‘Gigante'.
Set amongst the pine, fig, almond and carob trees, and flanked by beautiful villas, Alto is a delightful place for a round of golf during your golf holiday in the Western Algarve.
Vale Da Pinta Course
The Vale da Pinta is a fantastic parkland course, measuring 6,728 yards. Like the resort's further two courses, it was designed by Ron Fream, a highly regarded American golf architect, and features a number of lakes which are as testing as they are beautiful.
Since opening in 1992, the course has established an excellent reputation, culminating with the award of a European Seniors Tour event in November 2007. The Pinta Course, despite not being the oldest when compared with local favourites like Penina, is fast becoming one of the most desirable and admired courses to the west of Vilamoura.gos Bay.
It is one of only a few courses in the world with 18 sets of tees and fairways, but with 27 greens. This means players are able to enjoy the same course time and time again with slightly different challenges. Holes 1 through 4 and 14 through 18 have two greens each, and your approach to each hole will vary depending on which greens are in play.
Even though this course has hosted the Portuguese Ladies Open on a number of occasions, Pestana Gramacho is well-known as a championship course that is playable for all abilities, even those with a very high handicap.
Apart from the fantastic design, Fream and Price managed to incorporate the traditional landscape into the layout by using the natural stone outcrops, historical dry stone walling and existing ancient trees, along with some artfully sculpted lakes and bunkers.
Experienced golfers will certainly know that they have played a superb golf course with its testing par of 71 and a tiger tee length of nearly 6,700 yards.
Silves is the type of course that you can probably only fully appreciate if you're a reasonably accomplished player. That's not to say a beginners can't enjoy a round here. The first-class conditioning, wonderful scenery and panoramic vistas from the high points of this undulating course add a real sense of occasion that players of any ability can appreciate. However, this is a strategic course through and through, and the mind games start from the off.
An aggressive, high quality tee shot that skirts the water encroaching from both sides will leave you with a short, straightforward approach shot to a generous green. The alternative is to play more conservatively from the tee but leave yourself a long uphill shot in that will much harder to judge from back down the fairway. It sets the tone for a course that is set-up to present risks and rewards in equal measure.
The bunkering, in particular, is situated to catch out big hitters, but longer players do not enjoy a massive advantage here. While there are six high quality par-3 holes ranging between 150-220 yards, it is the four par-5s that are, arguably, the most memorable holes. The 13th sums up what this course is all about. A par 5 with an elevated tee, it offers up some stunning views. A tricky second shot leaves the player with the dilemma of going for the green in two or negotiating a dogleg left protected by a large water hazard.
It might be hard to concentrate on such course management issues when the vast majority of holes offer spectacular mountain and valley views overlooking palm trees and olive groves. But if you want to make a score at Silves you'll need to keep your wits about you at all times!