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Puerto Vallarta is developing a reputation as being a great golf destination in Mexico with its amazing views of the Pacific Ocean and Sierra Madre Occidental mountains. The Puerto Vallarta area boasts seven world-class golf courses, including some designed by pros like Jack Nicklaus, Tom Weiskopf and Robert Van Hagge.
Vista Vallarta Golf Club
Address: Circuito Universidad # 653, Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
Rates: Green fees start at $129
Amenities: Clubhouse, restaurant and bar, food and beverage service, practice facilities and a pro shop with golf equipment rentals
Puerto Vallarta is home to several golf courses with Vista Vallarta Golf Club ranking among the standouts. Designed by Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf, these two courses are distinct and fascinating. Nicklaus' 18-hole course has the highest elevation at the club, allowing for impressive views of Puerto Vallarta below. Grassy rolling hills and numerous palm trees as well as arroyos complete this beautiful course. Weiskopf's par 72 course measures 6,993 yards and is characterized by thick jungle, deep ravines and rapidly flowing creeks. Rental clubs and golf lessons are available.
Flamingos Golf Club
Address: Carretera a Tepic Vallarta #145, Bucerias, Nayarit, Mexico 63730
Rates: Start at $77 (includes taxes, shared cart, balls for the practice range, two bottles of water and club storage)
Amenities: Practice facilities, pro shop, golf lessons, golf equipment rental, caddies, golf club storage, tournaments
The 18-hole, par 72 course designed by Percy Clifford is located north of Puerto Vallarta. Transportation from Puerto Vallarta is available. Flamingos Golf Course is the area's first course, and it's affordable with a nice, friendly staff. It is known for being among the easier courses in the area, making it a great choice for those who have never broken 100. There are lots of trees and some water hazards, and in the afternoons, golfers will play mostly into the wind, surrounded by migrating birds, lush tropical vegetation, natural lagoons and lots of palm trees. This championship course measures 6,853 yards and features 43 bunkers. Amenities include a driving range, putting green, pro shop and open-air restaurant. Flamingos Golf Club has an excellent team of caddies available who will help you shave a stroke or two off your final score -- as they know the course better than anyone. Club rentals are available.
Marina Vallarta Golf Club
Address: Paseo de la Marina 430, Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico 48354
Rates: Start at $83 (includes shared cart and balls)
Amenities: Pro shop, clubhouse, restaurant, practice facilities, on-course beverage service
This older course, which measures 6,452 yards, was designed by Percy Clifford and famous American architect Joe Finger. It has been carved from the ever encroaching jungle, lined with orange, lemon and mango trees and features a variety of birds and lakes. Located in the marina area of Puerto Vallarta, it is a mix of the typical tropical ambience of the Pacific Coast with views of the Sierra Madre Occidental mountains and Banderas Bay. This par 71, 18-hole course is part of the $400 million Marian Vallarta megaresort just north of town. Fairways are dotted with lakes, ponds and lagoons. Water comes into play on 11 holes. It has a spectacular hacienda-style clubhouse. Each December the Marina Vallarta Golf Club hosts the International Pro-Am, one of the largest tournaments in the world.
El Tigre Golf Club at Paradise Village
Address: Paseo Paraiso 800, Nuevo Vallarta, Nayarit, Mexico 63732
Phone: 52-322-297-0773; in the USA: 1-866-843-5951; in Canada: 1-800-214-7758
Rates: Start at $83 (includes shared cart, practice balls, bottled water and cold towels)
Amenities: Clubhouse, practice facilities, pro shop, spa, snack bar, restaurant and bar
This 18-hole, par 72, 7,239-yard course was designed by well-known Texas golf course architect Robert Von Hagge. In designing El Tigre, the Von Hagge group incorporated many special features including five to six tees per hole, extra wide fairways, "beach" bunkers and a large amount of lakes, making the course not only challenging, but also picturesque. Typical of a Von Hagge course, water is the key feature at El Tigre Golf Club. Tons of dirt were also moved to give the fairway a rough character, and there are 144 bunkers, 25 of them on the 14th hole. However, the real magic of the El Tigre design is the manner in which it offers a supreme challenge to the skilled player, yet can easily be played by golfers of all levels.
Nayar Vidanta Golf Course
Address: Paseo de las Moras S/N, Fraccionamiento Náutico Turístico, Nuevo Vallarta, Nayarit, Mexico 63735
Rates: Start at $80 (includes practice facilities and shared cart)
Amenities: Restaurant, snack bar, bag storage, pro shop, practice facilities, caddie service, golf lessons and golf equipment rental
The Nayar Vidanta Golf Course was previously known as the Mayan Palace Golf Course. It was designed by the internationally renowned Jim Lipe. Under new management this golf course, because of its unique redevelopment, currently has nine holes in operation. It is expected to be finished in July of 2010, along with an 18-hole course redesigned by Jack Nicklaus.
Pacifico and Bahía Golf Courses at Four Seasons Punta Mita Resort
Address: Ramal Carretera Federal 200, Km. 19 Cruz de Huanacaxtle, Punta Mita, Nayarit, Mexico
Phone number: 52-329-291-6000
Rates: Starting at $135 (9 holes) and $210 (18 holes)
Amenities: Pro shop, golf lessons, practice facilities and golf equipment rental
The 7,104-yard, par 72 Pacifico Golf Course features eight ocean-side holes and an optional 19th hole with a natural island green, making it the first of its kind in Mexico. In June 2008, the Pacifico Golf Course was named the No. 1 golf course in the world by the readers of Condé Nast Traveler. The Jac Nicklaus-designed course spreads over 200 acres set alongside white sand beaches and the surrounding Sierra Madre Occidental mountains. Eight holes border the Pacific Ocean and offer views of whales. Golf enthusiasts have a second course to choose from at Four Seasons Punta Mita Resort. Also designed by Jack Nicklaus, the 7,035-yard, par 72 Bahía Golf Course offers more undulating fairways and greens, making putting technique an important part of the playing experience. One of the most breathtaking holes has a downhill approach with a panoramic view of Banderas Bay.