Golf Courses in Danang, Central Vietnam
Course-by-Course Introduction to Golf in Danang City, Laguna Lan Co, Ba Na Hills Resort
The Ba Na Hills Golf Course Opened in late 2013, this 18-hole Luke Donald-designed course is set amidst a valley surrounded by native forest. The site is very unique and different from the other courses in Danang which are mainly courses by the sea. It’s built with a great mix of natural topography and vegetation, and because of that it provides quite a different challenge to golfers with certain features although in general it is suitable for players of all levels. The fairways are typically generous and the bunkers are impressively bold. The greens are generally wavy with subtle breaks and therefore encourage a variety of approach shots. About an hour’s drive from the centre of Danang, The Ba Na Golf Club is about 4,500 feet above sea level and the entire Ba Na tourist complex serves as a much welcomed cool hill resort from the very hot weather of downtown Danang. It comes complete with a cable car service to the main entrance of the Fantasy Park which is the main attraction to most other visitors. Needless to say, it offers some spectacular view of the city down below and the vast ocean beyond.
Laguna Lan Co Golf Course If there’s a best combination of all features found in golf courses in Danang, this is it! Being by the sea and sandwiched between the water and the hill, this 18-hole Par-71 6,959-yard Faldo-designed championship course incorporates the open sandy linked-course feature as well as that on hill slopes with exposed rocks that are not only good as effective obstacles on the course but are also naturally a good look-out point for a majestic view of the vast, open sea! The Zoysia-grassed fairways weaves between trees, up and down the hill slopes, going round exposed boulders, being sometimes cut-off by streams and water holes and at points navigate around patches of rice paddies to reach the generally large Tiff Eagle-turfed greens. Each hole on the course is unique, presenting golfers ample opportunities for interesting and memorable play. The 206-yard Par-3 Hole-5 stands out as the Signature Hole with large mounds around the green that reflect a mountain range in the background, it is the only hole with any obvious man-made influence. The 621-yard Par-5 18th. is the longest hole and dog-legged as that, befits one with a good challenge for the finishing! Opened in 2013, this course is incidentally at the very scenic and famous Lan Co Bay of Central Vietnam, about 50 kilometers from Danang on the way to the once Imperial Capital of Hue.
Montgomerie Links Golf Course It’s been said “Scotland comes to Vietnam..” when this link course opened in 2008 not only because of the similarity in landscape to courses in the former, it was also designed by none other than Scot Colin Montgomerie. This 18-hole Par-72 7,089-yard is just off the beach made famous several years ago by the Hollywood movie, China Beach. Typical of a course like this is the wide open fairways over a vast area of mostly tree-less sandy ground with bunkers and natural sand pits aplenty. Being where it is, the course is constantly wind-swept and that poses the major obstacle, good judgement on the strength of the wind often determines how well the score will be. To make up for the excessive sand, the greens are generally large, well maintained and not surprisingly come with many subtle breaks not usually visible without close examinations. Thick rough surrounding the greens limit chipping area thereby demanding accurate shots for landing on the greens.
Dunes Golf Course – Danang Golf Club Not short of accolades, this Norman-designed 18-hole Par-72 7,142-yard course opened in 2010 and was immediately voted one of the top 15 in the world of new courses for the year by some golf publications, and this was to be followed in the following year as the Best New Golf Course in Asia, irionically. Nonetheless, the grand plan has it that the golf club will eventually end up with two 18-hole courses, namely Dunes and Heritage. Not unexpected of the landscape along the long coast line of central Vietnam, The Dunes Course is built on the sandy loam of soil, silt and clay – a combination that gives ground stability and at the same time appearing sandy and loose – and the vast, open tract of land provides a condition not unlike those on which links courses are so famously built as in Scotland. As the name of the course suggests, sand dunes are the main obstacle with Longleaf Pine trees lining some of the borders of the very generous fairways. Strong winds from the sea scowl the entire openness of the course demanding good judgement and club selection for a safe landing. Unique to its openness and flatness of the course, a long iron may often be the best club for a mini stinger of a low and long runner from the fairway to the green which is generally wide with subtle breaks.