Cyprus Golf Holidays & Courses
A perennial water shortage and package-holiday image might not seem the most auspicious foundations for building a reputation as a premiere golfing destination, but Southern Cyprus is having a stab at it anyway. The last two decades have seen a flurry of activity resulting in several courses being built and there's hope that Cyprus will one day be able to compete with Portugal's Algarve as another Mediterranean golfing Mecca. The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus has not yet jumped on this particular bandwagon, so if you're flying into Ercan, you might as well leave your golf clubs behind.
In the South, the first course to be completed was the rather swish Tsada Golf Course near Paphos Cyprus, which was finished in 1994. Set in the rambling grounds of the medieval monastery of Stavros tis Mythos, this 18-hole course is indeed picturesque. Players might like to know that the bishop of Paphos was recently fined for siphoning off sand from the local beaches to make the bunkers. There is also a good chance of running into the gregarious Father Varnavas, sole tenant of the monastery now marooned in the midst of the green. After a round you can swim in the club pool, have a meal or practise your shots at the driving range.
The success of the Tsada led to the construction of the Secret Valley Golf Club close by. This offers a similar set-up with 18 holes, high-class facilities and tuition available. By UK standards prices are reasonable and a round should set you back about £20.00. A further two courses have recently opened near Limassol Cyprus further to the east. The island's most exclusive golf course belongs to the Aphrodite Hills development, which recently hosted the first ever Volvo tournament to be held in Cyprus. Finally there are two British forces courses, but you're unlikely to gain access to them without an invitation.