Iceland is different… very different. It’s a country of contrast and contradiction. Not least because it’s icy but also because it has a landscape, which could easily have landed from Mars. Anyway, the county is an ice capped marvel, with the odd glacier, many geysers a few volcanoes and lots of waterfalls. Basically it has a bit of everything, including perhaps the tastiest seafood in the world and perhaps the loveliest people too. But there’s much more to Iceland than that. Factor in 24 hours of summer daylight and what have you got?
Yes, you guessed it… Iceland has 24-hour golf. According to the Icelandic Golf Association there are more than 60 golf courses to choose from and about 40,000 affiliated club members. There is good golf to be played in Iceland and plenty of it. When we say plenty, we mean largely between May and September, before the Arctic chill kicks in.
One Icelandic golf project worth watching is a proposed true links course called Black Sand, which, if it ever happens, will become the most northerly links in the world. According to Sir Nick, “There are some very interesting features here – not least of all the black volcanic sand that will make up the bunkers – and I’m confident that this course will help to put Icelandic golf firmly on the map.” We checked with the office of Faldo Design in October 2019 and sadly the Black Sand project is still on hold.
Akuyeri Golf Club is the second oldest in Iceland (formed in 1935) and it’s reckoned to be the most northerly 18-hole layout in the world, according to the R&A. The club hosts the Arctic Open Golf Championship in June every year, attracting golfers from various parts of the world who want to participate in the 36-hole stableford event, with players permitted to tee off around midnight if they wish.
Golf Club, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2020, had its
9-hole course renovated by architect Edwin Roald, with the new par 35
layout opening for play in 2019. Roald said: “It is short and sweet,
combining entertainment for golfers of all skill levels with the
unparalleled sights and sounds; the mountain amphitheatre, the
perfectly aligned horizon at the fjord’s mouth, the distant roar of
the waterfall and the crashing rapids of the river.”
Our rankings of the Top 25 Golf Courses of Iceland were last updated in March 2022. Click the link to read the story.