Marrakech, with its endless blue skies and sunny days, makes for the ideal golfing destination. And with more than 20 golf courses in the city, the choice can seem overwhelming. Each course, beautifully designed and several with views of the Atlas Mountains and shaded by traditional flora from the region including olive and palm trees, are little slices of paradise just minutes from the bustling city centre. We’ve rounded up our five favorite courses in the Red City.
Royal Golf Marrakech
Established in 1927 as envisioned by Pasha of Marrakech El Glaoui, the Royal Golf Marrakech is the city’s oldest golf club, having welcomed international visitors including Winston Churchill and Ike Eisenhower. Today the course is covered in more than 15,000 trees including Aleppo pines, eucalyptus, palm, olive and orange trees that have been around for over a hundred years, towering high to protect golfers from the strong Marrakech sun. The original course features 18 holes with a par of 72, while the Menara course consists of nine holes with a par of 36, and was completed in 2008.
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Assoufid Golf Club
An 18-hole golf course just 20 minutes from central Marrakech, Assoufid was designed by Neil Cameron and named after the village nearby. The World Golf Awards awarded this club Morocco’s Best Golf Course in 2015. The course offers golfers an excitingly diverse challenge across a rolling desert landscape featuring cacti, palm and olive trees. The golf club’s design concept included integrating the development into the existing landscape, meanwhile encouraging the site’s indigenous flora and fauna to thrive, whilst minimizing water consumption.
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The Montgomerie Marrakech
Located within the Marrakech city limits, the views at The Montgomerie Marrakech make this 18-hole, par 71 unique. With the Atlas Mountains towering in the background, along with the Koutoubia Mosque in the forefront, the views throughout make this one of the nicest courses in town. Designed by European Golf Design, the official supplier of the PGA European Tour, in collaboration with Colin Montgomerie and with a variety of greens and water features, the club is ideal for amateur and professional golfers alike. The club is part of the Prestigia Golf network which has partner clubs in Casablanca and Rabat as well.
An ideal destination for a golf holiday, the Royal Palm Golf Club is nestled within the Beachcomber’s Domaine Royal Palm Resort. The course, just 13 kilometres from Marrakech, finely displays the region’s native flora – bougainvilleas, roses and hibiscus shrubs provide a pop of color, and again olive trees provide much-needed shade. The website indicates the course ‘resembles a spectacular garden that changes with the seasons’. The 18-hole, par 72 course was designed by Cabell B. Robinson and is spread over 6,608 meters.
Also nominated in the World Golf Awards in 2015, the Noria Golf Club inside the Domaine de Noria is unique in its design – a central basin separates the ninth and 18th hole. Throughout the 18-hole, par 72 golf course, Steve Forrest from Hills & Forrest International Golf Course Architects has created a traditional Moroccan village that celebrates the architecture and landscapes of southern Morocco. Expect orchards and lavender fields, the desert and even a formal oasis as you would find in Morocco’s southern regions. But the most unique hole award goes to the eighth hole, where a reflecting pool and a biarritz green is topped by a Moroccan bell tower.