Weekly Travel Feature

Golf in Thailand 2010-2011 : A Guide to The Kingdom's Best Golf Breaks

Prepared by Harold Stephens
Travel Correspondent for Thai Airways International

Royal Orchid Holidays has just published its four travel booklets: DISCOVER THAILAND 2010-2011, DISCOVER THE WORLD 2010-2011, FAMILY GETAWAYS 2010-2011 and GOLF IN THAILAND 20-2911.

I covered the first three over the last few weeks, and now I’d like to introduce the fourth and final one, GOLF IN THAILAND 2010-2011: A GUIDE TO THE KINGDOM’S BEST GOLF BREAKS. Here is the guide to all guides on golfing in Thailand. It’s comprehensive with everything you want to know about the sport in Thailand, including a list of recommended golf courses in Bangkok, Khao Yai, Hua Hin/Cha-Am, Pattaya, Chiang Mai and Phuket.  These publications are free and now available at THAI ticketing offices around the world.

The Kingdom is the perfect place to play golf, either while on vacation with your family or on a golf trip with a group of friends. 365 days a year you'll find sunshine, spectacular scenery, great food and wonderful entertainment.

What's more, with many of the best courses located close to major tourist destinations, you can hit the fairways while your family hit the beaches, the sights and the shopping.

Royal Orchid Holidays will take care of all the arrangements and put you on course for a memorable holiday.

Thailand has some of the most beautiful and challenging courses in Asia, designed by such greats as Jack Nicklaus,
Robert Trent Jones Jr, and Greg Norman. Undulating fairways, blind shots, large bunkers and elevated greens are just some of the obstacles you have to look forward to. Clubhouses are well-designed with first class changing rooms, restaurants and bars. And you don't even need to bring your own equipment, you can hire clubs, shoes, umbrellas and, of course, golf carts.

With courses on the outskirts of major holiday destinations, there's plenty for your family to enjoy while you're taming the greens. Bangkok has wonderful sightseeing, shopping and spas. Hua Hin, Pattaya and Phuket are perfect for daytime fun on the beach. And Chiang Mai offers the adventure of elephant trekking in the hills and visits to colourful hilltribes. In the evening, wherever you are, you can enjoy fine dining and first class entertainment.

Royal Orchid Holidays will take care of all the arrangements for you. All you have to decide is where in the Kingdom you want to go, and which of the courses in this brochure matches your skill levels. Then leave the rest to us. From booking your accommodation and reserving your tee times to even arranging transportation to the greens, we have it covered.

Whatever type of course you prefer, whatever your skill level, however long you plan to stay, you'll find everything you need for great golf, and a great vacation, right here.

While your family chooses from the Kingdom's endless possibilities for relaxation and entertainment, you can choose a course that matches your game. If you're a low handicapper and want a challenge, tee it up like Tiger at the testing Blue Canyon Country Club in Phuket or the Thai Country Club outside
Bangkok. If you're a high handicapper, the beautiful vistas and less demanding fairways of Pattaya Country Club and the Royal Chiang Mai Golf Resort could be more to your liking. Or, you could be one of the first to play some wonderful new courses: The Banyan in Hua Hin or Gassan in Chiang Mai for instance. And remember, every course has caddies, so you'll have someone to guide you round and read your putts, not to mention make the whole day great fun.

Royal Orchid Holidays will handle all the arrangements, so you get to the first tee relaxed and ready to hit the perfect drive. Here's what is included in every full package featured in this brochure:
• Your choice of accommodation, inclusive of a full American breakfast.
• A minimum of 18 holes of golf at your chosen course(s).
• Guaranteed tee times.
• Green and caddy fees (or twin-sharing buggy).
• Airport/hotel/golf course transfers, where applicable.
• Your choice of day on which to play. Most tours operate daily, but please be aware there are a few exceptions.

Note: If you don't have your own equipment, you can rent clubs, shoes and golf umbrellas at most courses.

If want to spend as much time as possible with your family, but still get in a round of golf or two, you can take advantage of Royal Orchid Holidays single day packages. Each one includes a reserved tee time, green and caddy fees, and 18 holes of golf. We can also arrange transport to and from the course, should you need it.

Note: while most tours operate on a daily basis, there are a few exceptions.

Royal Orchid Holidays arranges for golf tours in six destinations around the Kingdom. Listed her are the destination with the gold courses in each destination.

Alpine Golf & Sports Club
Bangkok Golf Club
Green Valley Country Club
Lakewood Country Club
Lam Luk Ka Country Club
Muang Kaew Golf Course
Rose Garden Golf Club
Thai Country Club
Thana City Golf Course
The Legacy Golf Club
The Royal Gems Golf and Sports Club

Kirimaya Golf Resort Spa

Banyan Golf & Spa Resort
Imperial Lake View & Golf Club
Palm Hills Golf Resort & Country Club
Springfield Village Golf & Spa

Burapha Golf Club
Khao Kheow Country Club
Laem Chabang International Country Club
Pattaya Golf Resort & Sport Club
Pattaya Country Club
Plutaluang Golf Club
Siam Country Club Pattaya, Old Course
Siam Country Club Pattaya, Plantation

Alpine Golf Resort
Chiang Mai Highlands Golf & Spa Resort
Gassan Lake City Golf & Resort
Gassan Khuntan Golf & Resort
Royal Chiang Mai Golf Resort
Summit Green Valley Chiang Mai Golf Club

Blue Canyon Country Club
Laguna Phuket Golf Club
Loch Palm Golf Club
Mission Hills Phuket
Phuket Country Club
Red Mountain Golf Club


Dear Mr. Stephens. My husband and I are planning a trip to Thailand and when he asked what I wanted to buy I said a Siamese cat. He laughed and said there are no such cats and that’s it’s only a name, like French fries. Do you know if he might be right? By the way, I do enjoy reading your stories each week. Beatrice Rice, Orlando, Florida

Dear Mrs. Rice. You may tell your husband that Siamese cats are real, and truly a product of Thailand. I have been told they are known for their air of aloofness, brilliant blue eyes, regal bearing, and sharply contrasting colors. Siamese cats make delightful pets, being fastidiously clean, extremely intelligent, and affectionate. The first official reference to the Siamese species occurred in five poems discovered in 1830, but dating back to the days of Ayutthaya. You might want to take your husband to the Rattanakosin Room at the Na¬tional Museum. The nicely illustrated Samut Thai book is on display there. I wanted to take a photo for you but cameras are not permitted. I did check with a Thai friend who has several Siamese cats. She claims they are born pure white, but display their variegated coloration within the first month. She also insists that their movements are graceful like Siamese classical dancers, and that they are born Bud¬dhist and never convert to another religion. There are pet shops around Bangkok that sell Siamese cats, if you are interested, but don’t tell your husband I told you. —HS

Harold Stephens
E-mail: ROH Weekly Travel (booking@inet.co.th)

Note: The article is the personal view of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the view of Thai Airways International Public Company Limited.

Golf in Thailand booklet

Golfing Galore

The setting is tropical

Careful golfers only

There are traps too

Now don’t miss it

Sculptured beauty

The ocean beyond

Putting is fun too

And this can be your accommodation