Where to stay: The Vale Golf Resort
The Lake Course
The Lake course was the very first piece of design on the ever-popular Vale Golf Resort. Due to celebrate its 25th Anniversary soon, The Vale Resort is truly one of the greatest golf resorts in the UK.
The Lake course was designed with the 20-acre lake the main focal point of the golf course with 12 of the 18 holes having water in play. Having hosted numerous Wales and West PGA professional championships the Lakes course is always a nice challenge. The shorter and older sibling to the Wales National course is certainly no walk in the park, at just over 6,400 yards from the back tees.
Playing the Golf Course
An unconventional start to your round with a pretty straight forward Par 3 playing at 180 yards downhill may give you the illusion that you are in for a straightforward round. Be that at your peril as the challenges will come thick and fast over the next few holes.
The eighth is a stunning hole that looks out over Wales’s largest heron rookery, again a Par 3, but a bit of a brute at over 200 yards.
The real signature hole of the Lakes Course would have to be the 12th, a short 308 yard Par 4, with a Sawgrass style Island green and is often ranked as one of the best holes of golf in the U.K.
A great finishing hole on 18 completes a truly memorable round of golf. A decent length Par 5 stroke index 8, where more water comes into play, completes your round. A warm-up on The Lakes, honing skill levels, and course management is an excellent warm-up for the Wales National Course.
The Lakes Course has had over two decades of embedding itself into the natural landscapes of the Welsh scenery and is a perfect habitat for local wildlife.
It is not hard to see how the Vale is one of our most sought after Wales golf breaks.
The Wales National
The Wales National is unique in design and one of the longest golf courses outside of the USA. Designed by Peter Johnson after a trip to the US, Peter had the idea cemented in his head that Wales needed a tougher golf course designed to stand the test of time and the modern game and the longer hitters on the European Tour. The Wales National is laid out over some stunning Welsh landscape, and Mr. Johnson made the very most of the land’s natural contours and waterways.
What Standard of Golf is Required?
The Wales National is by no means an easy golf course being the UK’s only par 73, with a standard scratch score of 75 and a total length of 7,433 yards from the tips. With a variety of tee positions available, the course is made more user friendly by selecting the correct tees for your skill level. However, it does demand decent length tee shots amongst more accurate play on some fabulous par 3’s.
Most notable the 14th at only 131 yards which still requires you to find the correct level on this double-tiered green and over a beautiful pond.
The Wales National has already hosted several European Challenge Tour and Senior Tour events, as well as the PGA Europro Tour. The real signature hole on this superb Championship layout has to be the Par 4 16th.
Perhaps one of the finest Par 4’s in the Country and a real test and will take complete concentration and correct club choice.
The Wales National is an absolute must for anybody looking to have a golf break at the Vale Golf Resort. With outstanding and impressive practice facilities a 143 room hotel with a world-class Spa, in fact, the largest Spa in Wales on top of the two championship courses and impeccable service. The Vale Resort has to be experienced at least once. You can access some fantastic offers in the down season; however, most golfers will want to enjoy the Vale between May – October.
- Practice Range
- Practice Area
- 2 outdoor Putting Greens
- 4 restaurants
- Late-night Bar
- Sauna & Steam
- Indoor Swimming Pool