The Victoria Golf & Country Club near Kandy, Sri Lanka

Would you believe it if I told you Sri Lanka has some of the most distinct, sustainable, fun and interesting golf courses to be found anywhere on the globe. These next few days I am touring around the country and will be visiting 4 of the 5 golf courses. Today I started my journey at the Martin Ebert designed Victoria Golf & Country Club. (Note:Martin Ebert designed the golf course whilst working under the Donald Steele banner at the time)

I spoke with Martin very briefly about the golf course a little over a year ago  – in St Andrews – and he was rightly proud of what he and his team accomplished 20 years ago. Victoria is laid out over terrain that could only be deemed grand scale. The holes bobble and meander through valleys, on top of “mountain” ridges and across some of the hill slopes. They could have softened some of the play areas but then this would have lessened the identity of the place and made the course much less characterful and fun. Instead they utilised existing features (like the ground contours and some of the spectacular trees and rock outcrops) to create a fun and engaging golf experience.

It is one of the most natural golf courses around and the only thing that one could distinguish as being man made are the bunkers (well all 11 of them). Thankfully there is little man made interference except for clearing the way, the odd few sand traps, and the level playing areas at the green and tees.

Great golf courses typically have a great routing and I have no hesitation in saying that the route at Victoria is as good as can be. Golfers are taken on a journey of discovery to the most amazing parts of the site (via some magnificent features). Its un-relentlessness but so much fun.  I am glad I made it to Victoria.

See VIDEO of the day here: 

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About an hour from the site you start to get a feel for the topography

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The golf course is about a 45 minute drive from Kandy

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Our Arrival at the club

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The routing takes the golfer to some of the most remarkable spots on the property. In fact the scenery is just about as good as it gets. Apparently they land planes on this lake

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Some more spell bounding scenery. This is the back end of Hole 15

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The site is dominated by some of the largest trees I have ever seen. See the guy for scale

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More trees of course

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Rock formations litter the property and dictate some of the play

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The golf course is in great balance with nature

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There are a lot of wonderful golf holes but the 7th (100m drop to the green) is certainly impressive. It is wider than it looks btw

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Native Cow grass covers a majority of the play areas. Initially the golf course was planted Santana Bermuda but this grass was not local and was quickly absorbed by the native grasses such as cow grass. The greens are tifdwarf bermuda. In many ways the cow grass is ideal given the  severity of many of the slopes. the thick leaf blade and spongy surface…which in turn reduces the roll which is what you want in these conditions.

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