- AddressTore Hjortsvei 389, 8314 Gimsøysand, Norway
The spectacular 18-hole Lofoten Links course opened in the summer of 2015 and it’s situated in a remote spot along the rugged coast of the island of Gimsøya, in the northern reaches of Norway, where golf can be played 24-hours a day during the months of June and July.
The course is set out by the seaside with the ocean as a water hazard on several holes and sandy beaches as natural bunkers on others. The signature hole arrives early at the 140-metre 2nd, where the two-tiered green sits on a little rocky outcrop, fronted by a solitary pot bunker.
On the back nine, the 430-metre 16th is the longest and toughest par four on the course. After a blind tee shot from the back markers, the hole then plays downhill, with the fairway narrowing considerably as it heads towards the inlet where the long, exposed green is sited.
Well-travelled photographer Kevin Murray was recently invited to take some snaps of the course by Troon Golf, the course operator. “It’s one of the most incredible locations I’ve even had the privilege to visit to take photographs,” said Murray.
“It’s not easy to get to – I went via Oslo, took a two-hour internal flight north and then a three-hour drive along some of the most amazing scenery you can imagine, through mountains and waterfalls. It really is out of this world. The course is built on an old Viking burial ground and there’s a spiritual element to Lofoten you simply cannot escape. It is truly, truly, magical.”
Course architect Jeremy Turner commented as follows:
In 1992, I was contacted by Tor Hov, the father of the driving force behind the project, Frode Hov. A visit to Lofoten convinced me that a spectacular links golf course could be created on the islands.
When Tor’s health declined I assured him that I would assist Frode in realizing the dream of making the course. It has been a long and winding road but thanks to Frode’s dedication to the task the 18-hole course stands virtually complete after a period of almost a quarter of a century.
It has taken a series of development phases, the final and most significant phase 2011-2014 being the construction of eleven new golf holes, re-design and construction of four existing golf holes and modifications to the three remaining existing holes.
While some further modifications to three of the previously existing golf holes remain to be done the course is more or less complete.
As I once wrote back in the 1990s about the original 6-hole course: it represented 400 years of golfing tradition encapsulated in a few years work – a piece of Scotland washed up in the wilds of Lofoten!
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