Set in the dramatically undulating landscape of an old tin mine amidst thick jungle, picturesque lakes and the red mountainside from which it took its name, Red Mountain Golf Club is quite simply one of the most spectacular courses in the world, let alone Thailand. Thanks to some memorable holes and the stunning views on offer from its high points, this is an essential stop on any Phuket golf holiday.
The range of challenges you will face runs the whole gamut: if you can negotiate the wind, water, sand and slopes you will find greens that range from small and flat to large and contoured. The only consistency is found in the uniform quickness of the putting surface and the pristine condition of the narrow fairways.
With more than its fair share of elevation changes and rocky outcrops, there are plenty of opportunities to take risks in search of rewards, but with a liberal array of water hazards this approach can be harshly punished. You’re best advised to trust the suggestions of the excellent caddies regarding club selection, and to hit straight.
The final six holes are the best, not only some of the most spectacular in Thailand but also some of the toughest. Attempting to hit the postage stamp green of the par-3 17th when you are teeing off from some 70 metres above is great fun, and the standout 18th requires some strategic shot making to make par, despite playing much shorter than its 500-yard length would suggest. As you drive up to the well stocked clubhouse in your compulsory golf cart (you really wouldn't want to walk this course), you will have a smile on your face regardless of the state of your scorecard.
Even though the green fees, the caddie's tip and the post-round beer mean you won't get change from US$150, you’ll feel it was worth every penny as a trip to Red Mountain Golf Club is an experience that will live long in the memory.