The 5 best golf resorts in New Zealand

With awe-inspiring landscapes, warm hospitality and luxurious accommodation, some of New Zealand‘s golf resorts are pretty much unbeatable for a golf vacation. Here’s our choice of the five best.

Cape Kidnappers

Spectacular cliffs, reminiscent of California‘s Torrey Pines, are the signature of this stunning Tom Doak course near Hawkes Bay on the North Island. Some of the holes play 800 feet above the Pacific Ocean with perilous drops on both sides, and the back nine extends along several breathtaking fingers of land separated by deep gullies. We rate Cape Kidnappers as the world’s 17th best course and it has become a bucket-list location for visitors to the southern hemisphere.

The Cape Kidnappers Farm by the course offers spectacular accommodation. It’s made up of a cluster of lodges atop rugged cliffs with amazing sea views. They are tastefully designed and offer sumptuous relaxation and awe-inspiring scenery. There’s an outdoor pool and spa, too.

Kauri Cliffs

The quality of golf is matched by the awesome scenery at Kauri Cliffs, located at the tip of the North Island near Matauri Bay. Comparable to the iconic Pebble Beach, 15 holes have spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean, six of which are played alongside cliffs that plunge to the sea. We rate it as the world’s 66th best course.

The Lodge at Kauri Cliffs offers luxurious accommodation with incredible ocean views, three private beaches and two tennis courts. Guests can stay in private suites or two-bedroom self-contained cottages and enjoy an infinity pool, a fitness centre, a spa and an onsite restaurant.

Jack’s Point

Jack’s Point championship golf course has been respectfully hewn from farmland overlooking Queenstown’s Lake Wakatipu, with the Remarkables mountain range as a backdrop. It’s one of the most spectacular courses you’ll ever play. It weaves through native tussock grasslands, dramatic rocky outcrops, steep bluffs and native bush. It’s an exciting challenge, and with five tee positions to choose from all golfers are provided with an unforgettable experience.

Currently under construction, The Village will be a brand new community near the golf course. It will offer a high-quality mix of homes, hotels, flexible office space, restaurants, cafes and retail space, and will be an exciting place to live, work and visit.

The Hills

The Hills 18-hole course is a world class championship layout which opened in 2007 to host the New Zealand Open. It’s set over 500 acres of land close to Queenstown across a glacial valley and features dramatic elevation changes and rocky outcrops. The scenery is incredible. It provides a serious challenge for accomplished players, but with various tee positions it’s equally enjoyable for golfers of all abilities.

If you want to experience stylish luxury, Lodge at The Hills offers an exclusive experience for up to 12 guests. It has six large suites, extensive living areas, art studio, music and media room, wine cellar, and a large open plan kitchen and dining area. There’s a heated infinity pool, spa pool, sauna, grass tennis court, par 3 golf hole, and numerous outside dining areas.

The Kinloch Club

This naturally beautiful championship course on the North Island south of Auckland was designed by Jack Nicklaus. Set on the shores of Lake Taupo, the Kinloch Club a stunning links layout with natural undulations and compares favourably with the best links courses in Scotland and Ireland.

In terms of accommodation, Kinloch Manor & Villas are the perfect place to relax in luxury. The rooms range from junior suites at the Manor to one and two-bedroom cabin-style villas. All are spacious, with outdoor patios, freestanding baths, and sweeping lake views. There’s a world-class restaurant and the spa offers a wide range of treatments.

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Jochen Zirfas
3 years ago

You forgot to mention Millbrook Golf Resort

Brian Chappel
Brian Chappel
3 years ago

I agree Millbrook should be there.Besides my clients cannot afford the exorbinate cost to play Hills.Last i Heard was over $1000!!…..has to be overated at that price.

Michael Gennet
Michael Gennet
3 years ago

Cape Kidnappers was one of my most memorable golf experiences of my long golfing career. But it was also THE most expensive round of golf I ever played at $850 ten years ago! That included the obligatory caddie + gratuity.

Jack’s Point was much less expensive and nearly as beautiful and memorable. Very much a links-style course overlooking a gorgeous lake on the South Island.

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