Get into Golf On The Isle of Wight
Golf often brings to mind older gentlemen in plus fours and seems a very closed ‘club’. However, did you know over 1 million adults play golf on a monthly basis? It’s a sport that is accessible to all, good for ladies, gents and kids, and boasts some fabulous health benefits. Not only do you get outdoors and see the beautiful Isle of Wight landscape, you can also burn up to 1000 calories a game, reduce stress and improve your vision.
But if that’s not enough to get out on the course, here’s 3 great reasons why you should definitely golf while on the Island…
When it comes to heritage Golf has it in spades. The UK is after all birthplace of golf and the Island’s very first golf course, the Royal Isle of Wight Golf Club, St Helen’s Duver, was opened in 1882 with the royal patronageof its first president, Prince Edward of Saxe Weimar. With just nine holes, and a men’s only club, this was one of the very first golf courses in England. Back then it came close to challenging the Royal & Ancient (R&A) Golf Club of St Andrews in terms of fame. Now the land is looked after by the National Trust and the clubhouse available to rent as a holiday cottage.
The Island has 8 courses!
So there is a course to suit all skills and abilities, offering fantastic views of the whole Island and also there is a great driving range for inclement weather too. Here’s a quick run down of the clubs.
Westridge, Ryde (9 Holes)
Westridge boasts a fantastic all weather driving range with Toptracer installed so each ball you hit on the driving range will be tracked by a camera to the exact point of landing, giving you information about how far each ball travels and the distance from each target. This is a great course for beginners or those wanting a relatively flat course and also the perfect place for lessons with their PGA qualified instructors.
Osborne, East Cowes (9 Holes)
Set in the grounds of Osborne House, this is a beautiful parkland course with oodles of heritage.
Freshwater Bay (18 Holes)
A stunning cliff top course overlooking some of the Islands most breath taking beaches and coastline. Not for the fainthearted as it’s a full 18 holes set over downland so expect lots of hills!
Sandown & Shanklin (18 Holes)
This one has the strictest dress code, so pack your best golfing wear and golf shoes are a must! This is course has 18 holes set across heathland with gorse bracken and heather.
Ryde (9 Holes)
A tight course due to the righthand out of bounds fence set in parkland near the sea.
Newport (9 Holes)
Quite a tricky course set on top of the downs overlooking the Island’s capital town. Joining a member on a round is advised to get the local insiders knowledge of the course.
Cowes (9 Holes)
Hidden away you’ll almost miss it, this course is fairly flat and offers a gentle round.
Ventnor (12 Holes)
Now the oldest club on the Island founded in 1892, this unusually is a 12 hole course playing 6 of the twelve holes twice. Set above Ventnor it comprises downland and cliff top with great views.
Whether booking a bespoke golfing break or going for an Airbnb and planning in a few rounds, there’s a course and accommodation to suit all. Isle of Wight Golfing Breaks offer fantastic packages with prices based on three rounds of golf, two nights B&B accommodation and ferry crossing. With prices starting from just £189 and rounds at Freshwater Bay GC, Osborne GC and Shanklin & Sandown GC, they can also tailor packages to your requirements and skill – more golf or less if you prefer to explore the Island while here too. Alternatively, the other 5 golf clubs across the Island are happy to welcome visitors, though it’s always best to call in advance and find out how busy they are. Great accommodation and ferry deals can be found here.
Look out for forthcoming blogs on the different courses and how they play!
1 May 2018