Renowned for its exotic cities, scorching sunshine and rich cultural history, Turkey has long been popular with tourists looking for a summer break.
But unbeknown to many, the region is also a fantastic destination for sports lovers. Turkey boasts some spectacular golf courses, with many just waiting to be explored.
Here are our top ten:
1) Lykia Links
Based at the sprawling Lykia estate in Antalya, this fabulous 18-hole course is located directly by the sea, so golfers can enjoy the spectacular views as they tee up. This course will challenge accomplished golfers, but is also perfect for higher handicapped golfers who want to have fun while enjoying the beauty of the surrounding scenery.
Designed by the golf course architecture company founded by world-renowned golfer Peter Thomson, Carya has plenty to offer. Based in Antalya’s Belek region, the par 72 course is a demanding test, thanks to its free flowing holes that run between pine and eucalyptus trees and across a dramatic sand ridge.
Golfing legend Nick Faldo has been quoted as saying that this course, based in Belek, is based on “an exceptional piece of land” – and who are we to argue? Holes are routed through pine trees and across naturally sandy ground, making this an interesting course to play.
4) Sueno (Pines)
The Pines course at Sueno golf club has elevated the Belek region to whole new level of golfing. Employing the wild shaping of the links courses and a natural bunker style this course offers a rugged beauty as well a tough but fair golfing challenge.
5) Antalya (PGA Sultan)
Weaving its way through a forest of eucalyptus and pines, this is one breathtaking course. Water features at many of the holes and there are also a number of pot bunkers needing to be negotiated.
6) National Antalya
Although it is fairly new, we say this course is pretty special. Routed across gently rolling terrain and through pine and eucalyptus trees, there are some breathtaking views to be enjoyed.
7) Montgomerie Maxx Royal
With Colin Montgomerie billed as the course’s designer, you can’t really go wrong. This is the third EGD project in the area and the 18-hole layout is part of a multi-million golf and hotel development.
8) Antalya (Pasha)
Winding through a pine forest, this course complements the Sultan perfectly. This course will test both high and low handicaps with cleverly placed bunkers and sweeping greenery.
9) Gloria (Old)
One of Turkey’s oldest golf courses, this has long been a favourite of many travelling golfers. Designed by French golf course designer Michel Gayon and surrounded by spectacular nature, it will impress even the best of golfers.
10) Gloria (new)
Launched in 2005, this course was also designed by Michel Gayon. The course is lined with trees and has many unforgettable holes, including a cracking 17th hole. The off-course facilities here are also as good as any in Europe.
Experience the luxury of a golf holiday in Turkey at Kusadasi Golf & Spa, a Club La Costa World Resort http://www.kusadasigolfandspa.com/kusadasi_in_turkey With a reputation as one of the most attractive cities of the Aegean, Kusadasi is blessed with more than its fair share of tourist delights and beautiful beaches. It’s a meeting point for European modern and Middle Eastern mystique, with contemporary buildings and influences jostling alongside traditional and ancient.