China is a world rather than a country. You will need a great deal of time and money to travel thoroughly around this cultural centre of Eastern Asia and the world’s fourth largest country. It is just as well that China is big because it’s home to a great many people – this is the world’s most populous country. We have much more than the Chinese Takeaway for which to thank them. Paper money began here in China, along with gunpowder and credit banking. Where might China be now if it wasn’t for the authoritarianism of Chairman Mao? Perhaps without Mao, China would boast at least as many golf courses as the USA, but the reality is that golf outside Hong Kong is a relatively new sport and the Republic's golfing heritage reaches back only a few decades.
We’re not too sure exactly when the Golf Association of the Republic of China was founded, but the game of golf here in the east is still the preserve of the wealthy. Nevertheless, China has the world’s biggest golf club at Mission Hills, perched high on the Hong Kong border. This 216-hole super club has twelve courses (seven at Shenzhen and five at Dongguan), all of which have been designed by world-renowned architects from five continents. Els, Faldo, Norman, Duval, Ozaki, Leadbetter, Olazábal and Nicklaus have all signed their name indelibly at Mission Hills. But the best layouts in the Mission Hills twenty-two course portfolio are actually located at Haikou on Hainan Island, where the Schmidt-Curley Design team fashioned each of the ten courses.