Philippines is a country made up of over 7,000 islands. The islands have been divided into three main regions and these are Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Across these regions you will find a selection of fantastic golf courses and Philippines has become one of the top destinations in Asia for a golf holiday.
1. Sherwood Hills Golf Club
Created by Nicklaus Design the course features wide fairways and mostly small greens
You are spoilt for choice when it comes to playing golf in Philippines but arguably one of the best golf courses in the country is Sherwood Hills. This golf course is located in the province of Cavite and has been ranked as one of the top golf courses outside the United States. Created by Nicklaus Design, the course plays to 7,265 yards and features wide fairways and mostly small greens.
However, the hard-running fairways and open fronted greens differ a little from the typical Nicklaus design. The greens are well protected by large bunkers and several shots require carries over water and ravines, which all add to the test of a round at Sherwood Hills. The rough is cogon grass and this can prove tough from which to escape, especially if you have a long distance remaining to the green.
The clubhouse features a restaurant, pro shop, locker rooms and showers. If you would like to practice before teeing off, you can use the chipping and putting green which are located beside the driving range.
2. Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club
The Masters Course is considered by many to be the toughest layout of any Nicklaus design in Asia
The Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club is home to two 18-hole golf courses. The Masters Course is arguably the pick of the two and continuing the theme from Sherwood Hills, this championship golf course was designed by Jack Nicklaus.
This golf course is considered by many to be the toughest layout of any Nicklaus design in Asia, so if you want a test while playing in Philippines, the Masters Course at Manila Southwoods is a good choice. Of the 18 holes, 15 of them have a water hazard and this gives you an idea of what awaits. The 1st hole is quite gentle in comparison to what is to come and you should not be fooled by it if you score low.
The Masters Course at Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club is not for the faint-hearted and in addition to the water, the bunkering is significant. The par-4, 6th hole is the toughest on the course and is the perfect example of water and sand combining to produce a brute of a hole. The Masters Course is a genuine challenge, even for the very best golfer and is ranked as one of the best golf courses in Philippines.
3. Orchard Golf and Country Club
This Palmer-designed golf course has played host to the Johnnie Walker Classic
Another golf club in Philippines which is home to two 18-hole golf courses is Orchard Golf and Country Club. One of which, called the Palmer Course, was designed by the legendary Arnold Palmer and can be reached easily to the south of Manila.
The golf course is set on a former mango orchard and it plays to just over 7,000 yards from the back tees although there is a choice of four tee boxes on every hole. This golf course has played host to the Johnnie Walker Classic and water does come into play several times but not as heavily as some of the other best golf courses in Philippines.
You will find at least two or more bunkers guarding each of the greens on the Palmer Course at Orchard Golf and Country Club. Anything wayward on approach is likely to find the sand so get ready to be creative with shots. In addition to the golf course, there are several facilities to enjoy including tennis courts, swimming pools and bowling.
4. Riviera Golf Club
Unusually you will not come across a single water hazard when playing this Langer Course
From one big name in the world of professional golf to another and just a little further south of Manila than Orchard Golf and Country Club you will find Riviera Golf Club. Again, there are two golf courses at this venue but if you only have time to play one, we recommend you book a round on the Bernhard Langer Course.
The Langer Course has a choice of four tee boxes and plays to 7,057 yards from the back tees. One of the most interesting features of this golf course is the lack of water and you will not come across a single water hazard when playing the 18 holes. Instead, there are several narrow tree-lined fairways and the greens are well protected by bunkers.
The fairways are the biggest test on this course and with some very narrow, accuracy off the tee is essential. However, you also need to plan your approach to the green and a solid strategy is required to score low on this course. Each hole has undergone significant improvements over the years and the maintenance is second to none, ensuring a great round of golf every time you play.
5. Anvaya Cove Golf Course
The quality and spectacular location of this course is worth the long drive from Manila.
Travelling away from the capital city of Manila toward the west coast of the country and you will find Anvaya Cove Golf Course. This is located in Morong, Bataan and is very close to a lovely beach and bamboo groove. The golf course is part of a stunning development by Ayala Land Premier and is designed by Kevin Ramsey. Featuring two distinct sets of 9 holes, called Mountain and Seaside, you soon begin to get an idea of what to expect at Anvaya Cove Golf Course.
In truth, the Mountain Course is not mountainous in any way but does feature peaks and ridges throughout. The undulating fairways and greens make for a good test of golf but the standout holes on the course are undoubtedly between 11 and 13 on the Seaside Course.
The 11th hole has a lovely view of Subic Bay, while the 12th plays down towards the beach before reaching the 13th which is a cliff-top par-3 and the signature hole on the golf course. The quality of the course, in addition to the clubhouse and recreation centre make Anvaya Cove Golf Course one of the best golf courses in Philippines and worth making the effort if travelling from Manila.
6. Mount Malarayat Golf & Country Club
This course has the reputation of having some of the toughest greens in the Philippines
Not only are the greens undulating, they are often tiered Just under 2 hours away to the south of Manila, along Laguna Lake you will come to Mount Malarayat Golf & Country Club. This golf course is known for being quieter than some of the other courses located close to the Philippine capital. If you like to have a challenge on the greens, Mount Malarayat Golf & Country Club is the place for you in Philippines as the greens have a tough reputation.
Not only are the greens undulating, they are often tiered. Not just one or two tiers, there are greens which have three tiers and these can from both front to back and right to left. The par-3, 8th hole is a good example and the three tiered green has a middle tier which is below the two either side, making for an interesting putting experience.
There are 27 holes in total at Malarayat Golf & Country Club and you can combine two sets of nine holes to make one complete round. Water comes into play thanks to the lakes and the bunkering is eye-catching, with some interesting designs. The Club Hotel comes complete with a swimming pool and restaurant so you can enjoy an overnight stay if you wish.
7. Eagle Ridge Golf & Country Club
Four fantastic golf courses created by some of the biggest names in course design
Moving back toward Manila, one of the best golfing venues in Philippines is without doubt Eagle Ridge. Here you will find not one but four fantastic golf courses to play, created by some of the biggest names in both professional golf and course design. You have the Aoki Course, Andy Dye Course, Nick Faldo Course and Greg Norman Course. Which you decide to play is up to you but many players believe the Andy Dye Course just edges it.
The Andy Dye Course at Eagle Ridge is long, playing to over 7,300 yards and the greens are protected throughout by water, bunkers and ravines. You need to not only hit the ball long but also accurately as many of the greens are narrow. However, you are not restricted to this golf course and you choose to play any of the four excellent golf course which are available.
Other sports available at Eagle Ridge include basketball, volleyball, table tennis, bowling, lawn tennis, swimming and darts. The choice of golf courses and other sporting activities is what makes Eagle Ridge one of the best golf course in Philippines. The proximity to Manila means if you are based in the city, you can easily travel to Eagle Ridge on a daily basis and enjoy a round of golf.
8. Luisita Golf and Country Club
One of the oldest golf courses in the country designed by Robert Trent Jones Snr.
Travelling in the opposite direction, to the north west of Manila and one of the top golf courses in this region of the country is Luisita Golf and Country Club. This must be one of the oldest golf courses in the country having been designed by Robert Trent Jones Senior and opened for play in 1967. Close to Tarlac City in central Luzon, the land on which Luisita Golf and Country Club sits was formerly owned by the Tabacalera Company and named after the wife of the head of the organisation.
As one would expect from a course created by Robert Trent Jones Senior, water is there in abundance. Several lakes and creeks ensure players are kept on their toes throughout the round and there is no escaping having to hit some shots over the water. In addition to the water, pay attention to the wind because this can pick up strongly at any time and makes a big difference the to club and type of shot you need to play.
The President’s Cup has been staged at is Luisita Golf and Country Club and it is certainly one of the top golf courses in the country.
9. Canlubang Golf & Country Club
Robert Trent Jones Junior course with two 18-hole golf courses to choose from
From a Robert Trent Jones Senior golf course to a Robert Trent Jones Junior course and Canlubang Golf & Country Club is situated in Laguna, just 5 kilometres from Terelay. There are two 18 hole golf courses to choose from, called the South Course and North Course. On what was once a sugar cane plantation, the North Course features man-made lakes and ravines and is considered by many to be the more difficult of the two courses. However, there are three sets of tees on each hole, making it playable for golfers of all abilities.
The South Course at Canlubang Golf & Country Club is regarded as being a little easier, mainly thanks to the wider fairways. The tees boxes and fairways are set up to allow long hitting to the fairway but the greens are protected by the traditional Trent Jones bunkers, so pay attention on approach shots.
With a selection of bars and restaurants in the clubhouse, you can enjoy a lovely round of golf followed by a cool drink and something to eat.
10. Summit Point Golf & Country Club
This course attempts to recreate some of the most famous holes in the world of golf.
We now come to the final course of our best golf courses in Philippines and finally we have Summit Point Golf & Country Club. This one of the latest editions to the golfing scene in Philippines having opened for play in 2006. Another Robert Trent Jones Junior creation, Summit Point Golf & Country Club is just over an hour away from Makati, a city in the Philippines’ Metro Manila region.
The beauty of this golf course is the fact it attempts to recreate some of the most famous holes in the world of golf. We are talking the likes of St. Andrews, Augusta National, Pebble Beach and Cypress Point to name but a few and if you have ever had the pleasure of playing any of these courses, you might recognise some of the holes.
Some of the par-5’s can play very long but there is a choice of tee position on every hole, which can make things a little easier for less experienced players. For example, the 16th hole is a replica of the 14th hole at the Old Course, St Andrews and plays close to 600 yards from the back tee.
With so many of the worlds top golf course represented at Summit Point Golf & Country Club, it is like having a whirlwind tour of the greatest holes on the planet in just one day.