Belarus is landlocked in the middle of Europe. It’s wedged between Russia and Poland but it also shares its border with Lithuania, Latvia and Ukraine.
The country has experienced more than its fair share of troubles down the years. Minsk, the capital city, has been devastated and rebuilt a number of times, most recently after the Second World War, when it was almost completely destroyed. Tragically south-eastern Belarus was affected by the fall-out from the 1986 nuclear disaster at Chernobyl in neighbouring Ukraine.
Despite the troubles and a questionable political landscape, the Belarusian Golf Association (BGA) was formed in 2012, with the express aim of developing the game of golf in this former Soviet republic. In 2013, the exciting Paul Thomas-designed 18-hole Championship course at Minsk Golf Club opened its tees for play.
The return of golf as an Olympic sport at the Rio Games in 2016 – after a 100-year hiatus – provided the incentive for the BGA to declare that it would support the construction of at least one championship golf course in each of the country’s regional centres. In 2017 the BGA became a member of the European Golf Association. One thing is for sure, Belarus will not be a winter golfing destination, the temperature here often drops below minus 20ºC in the depths of winter.