The Old Course Vilamoura was the first golf course in Vilamoura and opened for play in 1969, designed by the acclaimed golf course designer Frank Pennink. A popular golf course with travelling golfers to Vilamoura, this Championship golf course has received acclaim for its quality, condition, and playability and is a must-play. It frequently features amongst numerous Top 100 golf course listings and is one of the best Algarve golf courses. In 1997 the Old Course Vilamoura received an upgrade with an improved irrigation system, a new golf clubhouse, and putting green.
The course itself is superbly maintained. The gently sloping fairways are always in excellent condition and come lined with pine trees. Nevertheless, the course can be challenging, and straight driving is crucial to success, as anything left and right will be among the trees, as mentioned earlier.
The Vilamoura Old Course is quite rare because it’s a par-73 and plays to 6879 yards. As a result, the first four holes can lull players into a false sense of security. Yes, a wayward drive will result in a difficult second shot, but accurate tee shots will result in a reasonably straightforward start to the round. After that, however, moving into the rest of the front nine and 100% concentration is required, with shot placement and club selection paramount.
In addition to the trees, water and bunkers also play their part on the Old Course, and the latter is a vital feature on the 12th, where they are deep and well placed. The greens around the course are small and can be challenging to hit, but once the putter comes out, they are fast and true, precisely what most players are looking for in a good green.
One of the top golf courses in the Algarve, this golf course has a modern clubhouse, and the staff is always welcoming and helpful. There are also practice facilities, with a driving range and putting green plus a good restaurant, which can provide the perfect end to a memorable golf day.
If there was one word, to sum up, the Old Course Vilamoura, it’s ‘memorable’. So many of the holes live long in the memory due to how they play and how they look. The mix of long and short holes is good, and even having played numerous rounds, golfers still debate where the best place to be on the fairway of each hole actually is.
The course is a short 20-minute drive from Faro, making it very quick and easy to reach from the airport. In addition, anyone flying to the Algarve for a golfing break will be landing in Faro, so even with the flight time in mind, it’s possible to leave the UK and be on the first tee in hours.
Situated in Vilamoura, southern Portugal, it is, as the name suggests, one of the oldest golf courses in the region. However, in an age where new is often seen to be better, The Old Course Golf Club certainly bucks the trend and remains one of the best-golfing experiences the Algarve offers.