Our resident golf pro Nigel Burch is back from looking after our golf clients in South Africa over the winter. After a fantastic tour he’s more in love than ever with his favourite golf destination.

“I arrived in Cape Town ahead of our first group of golfing tourists, giving me plenty of time to catch up with friends in the hospitality industry and of course to play a few games of golf on some of my favourite courses in the world.

City base

The Cape Town base for our tours is the beautiful Vineyard Hotel, in Claremont, within easy reach of any golf course in Metropolitan Cape Town. The accommodation here has always impressed me  and I was pleased to see the standard of the rooms had been elevated to an even higher level. I am delighted we are returning here on our 2024 escorted tours.

The hotel has beautiful gardens with a seating area for breakfast on the terrace, offering great views of Table Mountain and, for breakfast, French Toast with fresh fruit to die for!

I was also happy when I reached the golf courses.  I have never seen them in better condition. As well as the usual favourites, I was delighted to see King David Mowbray, Westlake and Metropolitan Golf Clubs had upped their game and are welcome additions to any itinerary.

 Country tour

Outside Cape Town the story was equally positive. Between our groups this winter we played more than 20 courses across the Western and Southern Cape.  As well as our escorted tour, we had couples enjoying the South African sun and golf over the long British winter as well as groups enjoying bespoke tours organised by Golf Planet Holidays. It was an absolute pleasure meeting up with clients in  such convivial surroundings.

Stellenbosch and Somerset West are traditional first stops on leaving the city. The golf courses circling this area, including Erinvale and Stellenbosch, are always in great condition and a visit to Somerset West Golf Club told me this course was one to add to the list too.

South Africa’s well known Garden Route follows the N2 highway between Mossel Bay and Storms River, with scenic stops including George, Wilderness, Knysna and Plettenberg Bay.  For our clients who are exploring the area to the full, a motoring safari on this route is a must, not least because of the excellent golf courses along the way.

The Garden Route is typically accessed from Cape Town, and the 250-mile drive to the starting point can take in the heritage sights in Swellendam or whale-watching in Hermanus.

 Meet the wildlife

This year some clients extended their stays to take in the Gondwana Game Reserve at Mossel Bay.  Here guests enjoy plenty of opportunities to see the wildlife and stay in comfortable lodgings not that far from Cape Town.

Playing golf at Pinnacle Point outside Mossel Bay is a must do, though Mossel Bay itself is not so attractive with a lot of industry around the coast.

Follow the superb roads up to George and Knysna where you will find excellent golf courses, wonderful guest houses and delicious seafood restaurants.

Top this all off by heading to spectacular Plettenberg Bay, finding elephant walks, bird parks and monkey collections along the way.  If you are aiming to tick a bucket list you can bungee jump at Storms River.

I return to South Africa year after year, knowing that every trip will uncover new delights and old favourites will win my heart all over again.”