Morocco has really taken off as a go-to golf destination in recent years. Dubbed the ‘Kingdom of Golf’, it offers accessible, affordable and year-round play with a variety of different golf experiences.
From inland courses in the shadows of imperial cities such as Casablanca, Fez, Meknes and capital city, Rabat, to gems on the stunning Atlantic Ocean coastline, with more than 30 layouts to choose from, there really is something for everybody here in the North African country.
Lixus Beach Resort offers a bit of both. Located on the coastline close to the mouth of the River Loukkos and the important harbour town of Larache, it is also in a region that prides itself on its rich cultural and historical past. In fact, numerous archaeological traces attest to the presence of Phoenicians in this area as far back as the eighth century BC.
Designed by Spanish architect Enrique Saenger, the 18-hole links at Lixus – opened in 2010 – is situated in pleasant surroundings offering sensational panoramic vistas over the Atlantic Ocean as well as back towards a luxurious forest.
Like links courses we’re used to back in Scotland, the wind usually proves to be the toughest obstacle, while there are also four large lakes located at the centre, enhancing the need for a strategic approach.
But golf isn’t the only thing that makes the Lixus Beach Resort special. A round at Lixus can be combined with a stay in the first all-inclusive golf resort in Morocco and, given it boasts 256 rooms over two floors, including suites, there’s no shortage of choice when it comes to rooms, with single, double and triple options. They all contain modern furniture, with either a balcony or terrace and views over the Atlantic Ocean or golf course.
Then there are the restaurants: the Blue Lagoon and Zélis. Each has their own style and character and have been described as ‘an exotic voyage’, with the eateries using quality, locally-sourced products.
Heading out of Larache and exploring more that Morocco has to offer from a golfing standpoint, Royal Golf Dar Es Salam is certainly worth a visit. Laid out by Robert Trent Jones Snr in the 1960s, the 45-hole facility is just 15 minutes from Rabat and is located within a cork oak forest. To highlight its reputation, the Red Course is the host venue for the Trophée Hassan II on the European Tour, while the Lalla Meryem Cup on the Ladies European Tour is played the same week on the Blue Course.
Other courses worth checking out include the Gary Player-designed Mazagan near Casablanca and Assoufid near Marrakech.
The market for golf in Morocco is growing some two-and-a-half times faster than the country’s overall tourist market and the only shame is that it has taken European golfers so long to realise its quality.
AVG FLIGHT TIME 5 hours (Glasgow - Rabat, via Paris) CURRENCY Dirham LOCAL LINGO Arabic TIME DIFFERENCE GMT+0 HIGH SEASON April to October (20˚C - 29˚C) PRICE OF PINT 23 Dirham (Average) MORE INFOlixusbeachresort.com
Planning a golf break?
If so, make sure you check out the 2019 Travel Guide from bunkered. Available to read online, it is a 48-page digital lowdown on the best holiday golf destinations on the planet.