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Benamor Golf - Tavira, Portugal

10th hole
14th with the clubhouse in the background
View from the clubhouse

I was in need of some warmer weather, and golf, and decided to go to Portugal with my parents. 82 years old and still golfing. Respect! They have a thing for the charming town of Tavira in the Algarve, so that’s where we went. And we booked with the same agency they had used previously, PT Golf – Algarvespecialisten. Smooth sailing from the get go and well taken care of when problems occurred (just dishwasher issues – nothing serious). Anyhow. The city of Tavira is situated along the flowing Gilao River, has escaped the high rise development of other parts of the Algarve, and has retained its traditional Portuguese charm. However, we lived a few kilometers outside in Cabanas, which was better for us since it was within walking distance of the Benamor Golf course. And a cute place with a nice beach promenade. We did venture into Tavira a few times; my dad has a strong desire for desserts, and apparently there are plentiful cafés in the city… I don’t have a sweet tooth, but I did find a tattoo studio, so I got two new ones while there.

Benamor Golf Course was completed in the spring of 2000, and while playing you will enjoy some pretty sea and mountain views, but best of all, it is a construction free resort! You’ve got to love that! It was originally designed by Henry Cotton, but his plans were taken up and completed by architect Howard Swan. But it is proudly promoted as a Henry Cotton design, for good reasons, I guess.

The course is relatively short from the red tees – 4719 m and par 71. I wasn’t playing very well at all, but later I heard no-one play at their hcp at Benamor – a bit of a comfort, at least. Benamor is for sure walkable (I always walk no matter what anyway) however at times a little challenging but doesn’t beat you up too much. The heat was a whole different ballgame! But again – I like it hot so I just equipped myself with plentiful of water and as short skirts as I dared 🙂 Benamors fairways are surrounded by almond, carob, cork and olive trees and are set out on gently undulating terrain. Bunkers are not yet my thing and there are quite a few of them. Looking on the bright side you don’t loose your balls in a bunker as opposed to water hazards so I returned home with as many as I left with. Unique for being be!

I had three clubs in my bag that I didn’t want to play with: my putter, my driver, and my 5-wood. I just didn’t. And loathing your driver and putter is a bit of a problem, but I performed decently with the driver anyway (and gave it away upon returning home). The putter was a whole different ballgame. My short game left a lot to be desired overall. It’s a horrible feeling not being able to make proper use of a good shot from the tee! In the last couple of days I found a sweet man who was willing to teach me a few tricks one afternoon. We took the car to Quinta da Ria, just for the change of scenery, and for nearly two hours that poor fellow tried to help me as best he could. And it worked! The following day, my short game had stepped up a notch, and playing was pure bliss! I can’t thank him enough! He says it’s never the arrow, it’s the Indian, but I threw away the putter anyway. My mom has kindly agreed to give me one of hers, and with my new skills and new putter, I will practice like you’ve never seen this summer!

So – I’ll go back for sure! And I did like traveling with PT Golf – I enjoyed doing my own thing and seek out the community if I felt like it. Quite a large community of Longstay Swedes by the way 🙂 Friendly and fun. I think I might need to switch my language studies to Portuguese. Obrigada Portugal!