The Ron Garl-designed course at the Alpine Golf Resort in Chiang Mai is an absorbing experience where forested mountains provide a dramatic backcloth. The snaking par five 4th hole will stick in the memory, at 652 yards it’s one of the longest in Thailand.
The Alpine Golf & Resort in Chiangmai offers three championship nine-hole layouts with five sets of tees starting at 5300 yards extending out to 7500 depending on which combination you choose.
We only played two of them but wished we had more time to finish the trio. From the yellow tees, the A Course starts with three relatively short holes, a 378 yard and a 328-yard par-4 followed by a 150-yard par-3. A perfect way to ease your way into the round.
Then when the fun begins. The 4th hole is a par-5, 560-yarder where your second shot needs to avoid four fairway bunkers.
This is a well forested layout that offers generous fairways. It is relatively flat with not much water until you reach the 7th hole. This 500-yard par-5 features water down the left side that crosses the fairway and continues down the right side until you reach the green.
#9 is a short par-4 where you approach requires a long carry over a large pond that is protected by a huge bunker that circles in front of the green.
The B Course offers very small greens that starts with a drivable par-4 that has bunkers on both sides of the raised postage stamp sized green that I paced out as 17 steps by 14 paces wide.
9B is a par-5 where your third short is to a raised green with a huge swale in front and two large greenside bunkers. Anything short will funnel back into the bunkers.
Alpine recently celebrated its 10th Anniversary but has already won numerous accolades including the #5 Best Golf Course in Thailand in the 2013 and 2014 ‘Asian Golf Awards’.
Green Fees are 5000 baht (approximately US$160 or 135 Euros), power cart is an additional 400 baht and the caddy fee is another 400 (with a suggested tip of 500). You can rent clubs for 1500 baht and I found my Ping 10G 10.5 driver with regular Flex Alta J-50 shaft was perfect for my swing.
Dave Finn is a golf travel writer and photographer from Canada. To read more about his adventures visit www.golftravelandleisure.com