Lykia Links - Turkey

Lykia Links,
Lykia World Antalya,
Denizyaka,
Köprüçay,
Turkey


  • +90 242 744 1900

Perry Dye – son of legendary Pete Dye – has a few well known European designs to his name (Austria’s Klagenfurt-Seltenheim and San Roque (New) in Spain spring to mind) and his latest Turkish delight is right up there with the others in the top bracket.

The Links course lies within the sprawling Lykia Estate in Turkey’s Antalya region and it’s yet another in a line of fabulous 18-hole layouts to emerge from the Belek tourist area, one of Europe’s most vibrant golfing hot spots.

Actually, the course sits a little bit away from the eastern end of the “Belek golf strip”, beside a river estuary that runs into the Mediterranean, and it’s laid out over a classic links landscape, complete with natural sand dunes and rumpled fairways – ideal terrain for the first links course in the country.

The reputation of the architect’s father for designing tough tracks has rubbed off on Perry as he has fashioned a course at Lykia that offers a meaty test (in total contrast to the type of golf found at most other nearby courses) so holiday golfers – you have been warned – don’t expect a stroll in the sun here!

A massive 7,536 yards from the back pegs, Lykia Links is not just about length when it comes to presenting a serious challenge. Green complexes are guarded by deep, railway-sleepered bunkers, fairways are bordered by large waste areas and putting surfaces are generally small and sloping.

Two of the holes on the front nine (7 and 8) play round a fresh water lake but that’s as close to resort golf as you’ll find on this course. On the inward half, holes 13 to 16 are set out in the dunes along the shores of the Med and the round ends in fine style at a home hole where an enormous waste area and mounding flank either side of a fairway that leads to an upturned saucer of a green.

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Description: The Links course lies within the sprawling Lykia Estate in Turkey’s Antalya region and it’s yet another in a line of fabulous 18-hole layouts to emerge from the Belek tourist area... Rating: 7.9 out of 10 Reviews: 24
TaylorMade
Scarlett

Plenty to like about this links set along the Turkish Mediterranean coastline. The only real thing missing for a genuine links is the firm sandy turf, but everything else felt right and to me as an Australian even put me in mind of Barnbougle Dunes on some of the holes (but Lykia with smaller dunes). The holes all run parallel to the coast so with and against the wind when I played rather than any across wind variation. It was a two club breeze and the opening holes were all into it, which sounds like that may not be the norm. Probably too expensive for the course quality (EUR115) at the start of the peak season, but that reflects golf in this Belek area.

I did enjoy the round, but think if I was based in an area with ready access to quality links courses I might give it a miss due to the extra travel time and the quality of other courses in the area. I can also see what Jim was describing in his review below: there are parts that feel unkempt and the clubhouse marketing people are clearly trading on former glories.

Oh, Rob Gibson (below) will be happy, as the 17th was definitely marked as a short par 4 in early May, with total par for the course at 73.

May 15, 2022
7 / 10
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Rob Gibson

Here we are in 2022. This course hasn’t been reviewed in years, and receives a very mixed response.

Strap yourselves in!

First things first, best greens I have putted on in Europe/Britain. As good as the Melbourne Sandbelt. Absolutely unbelievable. The rest of the course condition you can tell it lacks a little bit of money to upkeep certain aspects including the fairways, but that almost added to the layouts charm in my opinion. Nothing is anywhere near as important as the quality of the putting surface.

We picked a shocking March to come to Turkey. Freezing cold. 9 degrees Celsius when I played this course today, with a wind chill of -2 from the North and it wasn’t a light wind, it was 3-4 clubs with gusts up to 50km/h!!

I am a glutton for punishment, I went off the pro tees, all 7500 yards of it. I play off 2, I shot 85, and I played very well!

The par is now 72 (was formerly 73) and it rates at 77.6 off the back tees, and a slope of 140. My daily handicap was 8 off these tees, add the ridiculous cold and wind, and 85 was damn near a par score!

1st 427m P4 - A generous opening tee shot, and was slightly downwind off the left, driver and a wedge later I had 15 foot for birdie, proceeded to putt it off the back of the green and had 35 foot coming back hahahahaha. Fast greens yes, terrible judge of speed also yes. Then 2 putted for bogey. A massive fall off at the back of this green, beware. A great green complex.

2nd 478m P5 - a generous tee shot again, left a 4 iron into a green that downwind with firm greens, was near impossible to hold, luckily long was the miss as the pitch back into the wind resulted in my only birdie of the day. Easiest hole on the course for the day, by a mile!

3rd 435m P4 - This hole is a MONSTER! Even downwind! A driving hole where there is enough room but either side missing spells big trouble, and a second shot over a horse/canyon/waste area to another tricky green. 3 wood 4 iron and an up and down from long right secured a par I was very very happy with!

4th 200m P3 - A beautiful hole, and downwind, unless you hit the front upslope, a near impossible green to hit! A wee pull with a 6 iron and despite a good chip, was unable to prevent a bogey!

5th 422m P4 - First hole back into the wind, and up the hill. I hit the ball in normal temperature no wind conditions around 270m (300y) - I genuinely think if I hit a good drive (I didn’t) I couldn’t have reached in 2! Hacked my way up to a bogey 5! Another awesome green complex.

6th 502m P5 - The 554m tee wasn’t in play. Thank god. Back into the wind that would have been some task. A generous drive and lay up, length is this holes defence, and another really cool green complex, probably my favourite thing about this course. You would need to play it multiple times to know where to miss/use slopes. Managed a solid 5.

7th 336m P4 - a hole I have noticed get very mixed reviews, due to a lake out of nowhere, but I felt it was a nice change of pace, and normally a great birdie chance. Nice driving hole with the dunes up the right and the water left. Today it took a solid driver and a punch 6 iron to get to the green into the breeze. Nasty! The punch 6 iron was just about my career best shot, hit it to 3 foot. Missed the putt didn’t I!! Silly boy!

8th 176m P3 - easiest par 3 on the course by far, but still a mid iron with water short and left. Straight downwind despite a pure 7 iron it wasn’t possible to hold the green, and a bad lie later and a bogey it was.

9th 430m P4 - generous driving area, needed for such a mammoth hole back into the wind, driver 3 iron had me in the front bunker and bogey again. Another great green complex with a cheeky ridge 2/3 up the green

10th 433m P4 - another nice wide fairway, with an incredibly difficult second shot at any time, but downwind to a front left pin, absolutely no way to get it close! Managed an up and down from the deep front right bunker to save a par after an 8 iron from one of the right fairway bunkers.

11th 411m P4 - best hole on the golf course, a brilliant tee shot over the gorse filled canyon. Left is no picnic either, best driving hole on the course, and it found me out #foreright - also a brilliant second shot where I believe you can feed it in from the left, but miss right and you go down a massive slope into a ditch. Great great hole; managed to get up and down for a bogey after an adventure!

12th 396m P4 - a short par 4 hey… haha! A nice blind tee shot, not usually a fan of blind golf but they give you a good marker post and it’s the only blind tee shot you get. I didn’t see much of this hole, after a duck hook 9 years left I hacked my way up the 13th hole until I reached the green, double bogey. Oops! Huge right to left cross wind and the highest point on the course off the tee, that’s obviously why they call it “Whipping Winds”!

13th 541m P5 - a long par 5 but playing downhill for the second shot so if wind assisted it play shorter. After a lovely drive I absolutely butchered this hole and then 3 putted for double - back to back doubles - for a minute I thought sub 80 was on the cards! Not anymore!!

14th 381m P4 - the course guide genuinely says ones of the shortest par 4’s! It’s still 416y!! Going left can cause issues, plenty of room right. This holes defence is its green again, so much can go wrong if you get your chip/putt the wrong side of slopes/ridges! This happened to me as I hit a chipped 3rd that caught the wrong slope and went off the green. Another bogey!

15th 182m P3 - brilliant par 3, very similar to Redan at Berwick. A huge mound at the front of the green can be used to propel your ball down the green to the pin, so you can take less club, finally managed to get off the bogey train, a pure 4 iron just rolled through leaving an easy up and down.

16th 471m P5 - a breather hole even in the crazy conditions, this was just about reachable in two and gave me a look at birdie which I just missed. Plenty of room right and not too many penalty’s to be had here, just a good scoring opportunity. The Par 5’s do let you breathe here, making up for the incredible difficulty of the 4’s and 3’s

17th 240m P3 - Here comes my first real criticism!! This hole was formerly a 270m short par 4. For that, it would be a brilliant risk reward P4. For some bewildering reason, they’ve made it a par 3. A 267y par 3, is not a par 3. No where on tour do you see this. And even more so, missing the green right is a huge penalty, and the green is 2 tiered and perched on a hill. If you’re going to have a long par 3, it shouldn’t be too tricked out, length is enough. Everything about this hole screams exciting short par 4. I genuinely played 4 good shots and then tapped in for double bogey 5. This hole can NOT be a par 3. It’s difficulty is ludicrous.

18th 410m P4 - a nice wide driving hole to finish and then a strong uphill approach into the wind, another good golf hole and another hole where 5 was not a bad score!

Overall, this course without wind would be an incredible test. Add below freezing 3-4 Club winds, and I would liken what I played today to being a windy and freezing cold US Open at Shinnecock, where if he pro’s encountered two rounds in these conditions, the cut would be roughly +10 to +12 and after 2 rounds I genuinely don’t think anyone would have been under par!!

I bloody enjoyed it, and the steak sandwich in the lovely clubhouse afterward was delicious, and only 7 euro!! I’d have happily paid 15! So cheap!

In summer with not as much wind and heat, it would play far far shorter, and there are many tees for all different levels of golfer, so it can be enjoyed by all. And most of the course isn’t too penal and is wide enough to not lose tooo many balls!

I’m honestly very close to giving this 6 stars, I’d go as far to say this is as good as Birkdale. Traditionalists will hate me, but it’s genuinely that good.

Only giving it 5.5 stars due to the 17th hole being a silly par 3, instead of a great short par 4, and the fact the course struggles with lots of weeding issues on and around the fairways. Don’t let that detract you! You still usually get nice enough lies!

This is miles better than PGA National (greens way better at Lykia too). Maybe I am biased to links, but I genuinely found most of this golf course memorable. The Sultan was quite forgettable in parts. This course should be in Europe’s top 100 - EASILY!

On to Carya next!

March 13, 2022
9 / 10
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Ala Islam

Decided to play this course as it was the only links in Turkey and Belek as rest of them are parkland with trees. Drove from my hotel Adalya Elite Lara which was about 50 minutes and 30 mins from Belek. After leaving the D400 its another 10km through local farms and houses which was not an issue. On arrival it looked busy but was able to get a tee time within 30 mins.

Played two other persons, someone staying at the hotel and clubs pro/coach which was an experience. The course was in really good condition but slightly spoiled by variance of speed on the greens. The play was also slow due to the fact it had holiday makers playing, but it wasn't an issue. The views of the course was amazing with the sea and locals fishing. The course is long but it didn't feel as such as the layout was good. As a mid handicapper I did well as I managed to keep fair amount on the fairway.

January 15, 2020
6 / 10
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Frazooch

The report below this looks suspiciously like it has been copied and pasted by a Lykia employee. They have even forgotten to remove the quote marks from what I imagine was an email from Management here.

I have visited this course and yes, the layout is fantastic an not like any other in the Belek area. What I would say is that the condition is nothing short of the worst I have seen on my travels (including some courses that have suffered droughts and hosepipe bans).

I would avoid this course like the plague, until you have spoken to someone you know and trust, that can give you an honest assessment of the condition of the course.

February 21, 2019
2 / 10
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Peltoma

This is a top-notch golf course Most holes are a real brainteaser for the better golfer

“The course really is hard to fault – it is pretty close to perfect.

The condition is amazing, the holes are interesting and varied and the service impeccable. As a golfing experience it beats the socks off everything in the area.”

At Lykia Links Golf , the whole experience from start to finish was exceptional.”

it is worth every cent. A great golf course in perfect condition and it’s so much fun to play.”

August 07, 2017
8 / 10
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Einar Broch Nielsen
March 10, 2018

I totally agree! Fantastic course in a beautiful scenery and a true tester. Very entertaining layout!

Jim McCann

I’ve just had a look at some of the previous reviews for this course and I’m glad to see there are a couple of recent 3-ball marks from golfers who might agree with me when I ask the question “how on earth can this course be ranked number 1 in Turkey?” Having earlier visited Carya the same morning and been suitably impressed, I expected so much more from Lykia in the afternoon but it fell way short of my expectations.

The magazine award certificates that hang in the hallway of the clubhouse are obviously remnants of the club’s glory days, dating back to when it first opened, but they in no way reflect the current status of a course that is sadly showing more than a few signs of neglect. I can overlook poor conditioning during the off season but general scruffiness and widespread dilapidation are genuine concerns.

Lykia Links Golf Course - Photo by reviewer

Having since made a few discreet inquires, I understand the place has gone rapidly downhill since ClubMed pulled out a few years ago, with the owners allowing key members of staff to leave and cutting off relations with the architect. Love grass was meant to grow around the bunkers, off the fairways and in the large waste bunkers to help soften the surroundings but the high maintenance regime required to manage these plantings has been totally abandoned.

I didn’t like the numerous sandy waste areas dotted around the course and the occasional lone trees planted in the middle of several fairway were just a bit too contrived – and the least said about the incongruous water hazard between the 7th and 8th holes the better as it does absolutely nothing (like the trees) to enhance the course’s tenuous links credentials.

On the positive side, carpeting the course with paspalum works well as that particular type of grass seems to provide the most links-like, firm and fast playing conditions that you’ll find in a warm climate. The fairways were nicely routed back and forward along the coastline but the only hole to get my pulse racing was the par four 12th where, after a blind drive, the fairway dips sharply down to a tiny, sand-protected green.

I don’t know if any imminent investment is planned for the course (and the clubhouse looks and feels really run down too) but, without a decent financial outlay, there’s only one way that Lykia Links is heading in future editions of the Turkish (and Continental European) rankings. It doesn’t take a genius to realize you can only rest on your laurels for so long before you’re overtaken by the opposition…

Jim McCann

February 06, 2017
6 / 10
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Rob Gibson
March 13, 2022

Not sure how 11 couldn’t get the pulse racing, a brilliant par 4. As for the water, it’s not like it’s man made, it’s apart of the land, so they’ve utilised it and it offers 2 different holes that standout from the rest of the course. Good news for you, I’ve just played here in 2022 March, and the greens are the best I have putted on in Europe. Unbelievably good, the rest of the courses conditioning is so so I assume due to a lack of money, but the greens were as good as anything on the Melbourne Sandbelt, and that is saying something!

Stuart McLean

I played this on a beautiful November day, with no wind, and it was a joy to experience a course of this quality and uniqueness. Saying that, however, this is not a World Top 100 contender. It might be long for the shorter hitters, yet the fairways are so generous that it's quite hard to put your ball in serious trouble.

The flattish holes closest to the Med, Nos 12 to 16, are probably too wide open, and would benefit from more definition and shaping to make them interesting. While it has a strong links appearance, it is dissimilar from UK and Irish links in that there was virtually no run on the fairways when I played there.

Every drive was creating a pitch mark in the fairways, and leaving mud on the ball. This made the course even longer to play, and I eventually settled for the blue tees (5869 metres). The course, with its paspalum fairways and greens, was in good condition when I played there. The superb turf makes for easy walking.I liked the fact that most golfers were walking the course, and not riding carts.

Best holes? The tenth is a superb par 4, but difficult for the average golfer. I liked the 12th, with something of a blind tee shot, and then walking over a dune to discover a beautifully created green. The seventh is a stunning short par 4 with water guarding the left side of the fairway.

November 05, 2016
8 / 10
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David
Played Lykia Links in May 2015. In my view this is the best course in the Belek area - the lay out is excellent with a variety of long stern holes, shorter sporty par fours and challenging par threes. There are a couple of holes in land around a lake which are out of keeping with the rest of the course but apart from that this is a welcome change from the trees and lakes of the other Belek courses. If you come to the area this should definately be on your list.
March 21, 2016
8 / 10
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James

This is a bold and striking golf course you should probably NOT review after just one visit. However, I’m not going to let that stop me now, am I? It’s a complex and intimidating snake, newly basking by the timeless sea, coiled thrice about itself, sprung and ready to strike, a rumpled ribbon of green between the brown scrub and golden shore. The breeze helped us out on the opening 3 holes, and played from the back tees I was grateful for the assistance.

This is a new Links and it is as long as you want it to be. Take a cart too ifLykia Links Golf Course - Photo by reviewer I were you and a course planner, Don’t come expecting the Northern European style links. This one owes very little to nature on the ground. It is a hard and exhilarating test that is genuinely intimidating from start to finish and those greens are small and well defended. I don’t think I want to know what they are like when they are super fast as they are seriously undulating.

The manufactured dunes have quite a beard on them. You will lose your ball if you go in there so take a few. It can be hard work in places and patience for the first time player is a requirement. Never the less please don’t be put off. You should play it. It is well worth the short trip.

Make sure you play this one early in your trip. It is relentlessly difficult and you will need stamina to get the most out of it. Don’t play it swung out or hung over. I would say the top 5 on here are about right and this one is the best value of the lot.

PGA sultan is underrated they say but I’m going to have to find out on the next trip. There is much to enjoy here but it will not win everyone over. It will divide opinion but bland it isnt. You will all enjoy the situation, the few times you best it or even live with it are intensely rewarding. It was in fine condition and I am sure as the Turkish Season gets underway in a month or so it will be ready for you. Will you be ready for it? JCB LAY

September 09, 2015
8 / 10
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Murat Suslu
October 30, 2015
Dear Sir, Thank You for your kindness feedback and the time you spend to write a cooment in Lycia links Golf courses. We appreciate that you shared with the necessary information how to play superior Golf. Hope to see you again in the new seasons to enjoy the game. Sincerely yours LykiaWorld & LinksGolf Antalya
Peter O'Donnell
Lovely course and far more interesting and fun than all the other courses in Belek. Right by the sea, especially the second 9. The greens were slow, but August is out of season. We teed off at 6pm and played 9 holes - we had the course to ourselves.
August 08, 2015
8 / 10
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Murat Suslu
October 30, 2015
Dear Guest, Thanks for sharing Your comment top100golfcourses. We hope that you visit us during high season to obtain a challenging and interesting game. For more information do not hesitate to contact us on our email: reservation@lykiaworldantalya.com Sincerely yours, LykiaWorld & LinksGolf Antalya