The government of the Gold Coast – as it was known until 1957 – established the elite Achimota School (originally called the Prince of Wales College) in 1927. Before long, the Scottish Principal, Alexander Fraser, and several of his teachers had created a staff golf section, playing on local 9-hole courses.
By 1934, the golfers had convinced the local anti-malarial authorities that long grass and scrub should be removed from part of the school grounds, enabling a 7-hole course to be laid out for their own use. A further two holes were added before the first Ghana Open was held at Achimota in 1940.
It would take another 30 years before the course was extended to a full 18 holes and these were subsequently re-sequenced in 1984, allowing the final two holes to be played in front of the clubhouse. Unusually, a round at Achimota Golf Club now starts and finishes with a par three hole and there are back-to-back par fives on both the front nine (holes 4 and 5) and back nine (holes 14 and 15).
Peter contacted us on 23rd October 2014 and provided us with the following update on Achimota:
"Paul McGinley redesigned the Achimota course, which re-opened fully in October 2014. This is not a course that will disappoint, with the character you would expect from an 80-year-old course. For an average high teens handicap player the course feels long at 6,400 yards, with a short par four to start followed by two long par fours, two par fives and an uphill par four. The first par three is the 9th. Every hole has a different character, with good shots being rewarded and bad shots sometimes being forgiven but often being punished.
Well-maintained fairways and greens, particularly for West Africa – welcoming and relaxed but with standards expected to be maintained. Good caddies always available and a nice new clubhouse. Closed Mondays and Fridays but can almost always get a tee time with a couple of day’s notice. Good driving range / academy with inexpensive pros on hand for tuition. The course is within greater Accra City so a distinctive atmosphere, particularly on weekends with the music from the many churches surrounding the course."