La Cala Golf Resort, Costa del Sol
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La Cala Golf Resort, Costa del Sol
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Here’s the second part of our quick golfers’ guide to Fife, known as the ‘cradle of the game’ and home to incredible golf courses, stunning coastal countryside and luxurious hotels.
Just north of the capital Edinburgh on Scotland‘s east coast, Fife is golfing country from the gods with traditional Scottish hotels offering superb hospitality and service, and, of course, the Old Course at St Andrews, ‘The Home of Golf’.
The beautiful town of St Andrews itself is full of superb pubs and restaurants and Fife as a whole has many local attractions such as castles, distilleries and museums. There’s excellent accommodation options from 5-star resorts offering stay & play packages, to country cottages and self-catering apartments.
Just a short drive south of St Andrews, this 5-star resort is one of the best in Scotland, housed in an ancient, simply stunning mansion nestled in over 500 acres of coastal countryside. There’s over 200 stylish guest rooms and open-plan gorgeous manor homes with resort and golf course views. There’s a wonderful spa and the dining options are exceptional. Additionally, there are also two golf courses.
The Torrance course was co-designed by former Team Europe Ryder Cup captain Sam Torrance. Host of The Open Qualifying Championship in 2010, it’s one of Scotland’s most dramatic courses with a clifftop setting and beautiful views of St Andrews Bay.
The Kittocks course is perhaps more challenging and has incredible sea views with several holes enjoying cliff-top locations. With two man-made lakes, it’s a great blend of American-style golf and traditional links.
Set in an historic building dating back to the 1600s and overlooking the Home of Golf, directly adjacent to the 18th hole, this 4-star gorgeous hotel is close to the seven courses on offer at St Andrews.
The rooms are warm and inviting and full of historic charm with some enjoying views over the nearby golf courses and countryside. There’s a superb selection of restaurants and bars offering the best of Scottish produce and a rooftop restaurant and bar with truly breathtaking views of the Old Course.
Only minutes from St Andrews, Dumbarnie Links golf course opened in 2020 and has proved a worthy addition to Fife’s roster of fantastic links courses. The layout has been laid across 350 acres of sandy links land with views over the the Firth of Forth to Edinburgh and was designed by English former Ryder Cup player Clive Clark. At least 14 holes have sea views of Largo Bay and the tees are mostly elevated with some as high as 60 feet above their respective fairway. This opens up breathtaking sea views.
About 10 miles south of St Andrews is The Crail Golfing Society, a Scottish golf club established in 1786 in the Golf Hotel, Fife. To the south-west of Crail are the links of Elie and Anstruther, while Scotscraig, Carnoustie, Monifieth and Panmure and about an hour to the north.
Crail is home to two courses which are very different in character, Balcomie and Craighead. Balcomie, designed by Old Tom Morris in 1895, is a traditional links with many holes bordering the local beaches with beautiful coastal views. Craighead, designed by American architect Gil Hanse, is a modern links, longer with rolling greens, native walls and wildlife typical of the Fife coast.
This is a gorgeous 3-star option with everything you could want for a comfortable stay while on your golf trip to Fife. There’s two restaurants, three bars and superb rooms with awe-inspiring, panoramic views of the local countryside and Largo Bay. It’s just 20 minutes from St Andrews and around half an hour from Scotscraig Golf Club. It’s just seconds away from the historic links at Lundin, an Open Championship qualifying course, and Leven. Dumbarnie Links is also just 3km away.
Only around 10km south of St Andrews is Kingsbarns Golf Links, designed by Kyle Phillips. Opened in 2000 to worldwide acclaim, it now proudly holds its own among Fife’s heralded links courses and co-hosts the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship on the DP World Tour and hosted the AIG Women’s Open in 2017. The course affords fantastic ocean views from every hole on this spectacular piece of land.
In Part One we looked at the brilliant Duke’s Course, the only non-links inland course in St Andrews, as an alternative to links golf. Well, there’s also Ladybank Golf Club about 10km west of St Andrews. It’s one of the finest heathland golf courses in all of Scotland offering golfers an interesting challenge in a beautiful setting with tree and and gorse-lined fairways.