I find when talking to our guests at Hael Farm Cottages that many of them are golfers, yet few are aware of the variety and number of golf clubs in the vicinity and therefore neglect to bring their clubs. There are a variety of golf clubs on or near the Gower, each with different characteristics and some better than others.In alphabetical order they are Clyne, Fairwood, Gower, Langland and Pennard.
Clyne is a moorland type course with large greens and a profusion or colourful gorse to trap anyone who strikes the ball off line.
Fairwood Park to give the course it’s proper title, is just what it suggests, a park with a golf course laid out in it. The largely flat fairways are tree lined and if you do tend to spray the ball do it wildly so you land on the next fairway rather than in the trees!
Gower Golf Club is a golf and wedding venue. The course has plenty of water, but can be a very pleasant golfing experience in the height of summer.
Langland Bay has ocean views from 14 tees, that is if you regard the Bristol Channel as an ocean. The golf course is short with small tricky greens, which can sometimes be faster than they appear.
“Only two or three times in a lifelong pursuit of the best golf this world has to offer, will an unknown course surface that is so superlative it would compel us not simply to cross an ocean but, if necessary to circumnavigate the globe. Such a course is PENNARD.” Quote by James W. Finegan, famous and renowned American golf writer.
The holes are routed over classically undulating and tumbling linksland, full of hummocks, hillocks and hollows and pocked with dunes large and small; in sum, exactly what we might hope to find beside the shore………………………………………………………………………………..
…….yet this exceptional terrain is not beside the shore – it is 200 feet above sea level. No wonder Pennard is known as “the links in the sky”. The fairways and greens are surrounded by gorse and heather with a fabulous layout measuring 6267 yards par 71; 6800 yards off new championship tees. With 5 Par 3s all playing in different directions, Pennard is unique and interesting to play. It is hard to pick a signature hole, but Mark Rolfing, NBC Broadcaster, played Pennard before the Ryder Cup in 2010 and declared the 351 yards par 4 7th hole as magificent, playing out to sea from a high noble tee, the line of flight is between the ruins of a 13th century church and the remains of a castle situated high on the cliff.
James Braid would be proud today that Pennard still has its natural appeal and has a reputation as a visitor friendly club for all to enjoy.
NBC Broadcaster Mark Rolfing describes Pennard as “A superb links course; the best in Wales”.
Not that I’m biased, but which one would you pick?