Nelspruit Golf Course is a popular place to play when visiting this outstanding tourist area and the busiest golf course in the region. The course has a variety of indigenous Lowveld trees and over 256 different species of birds.

Straddling the sixth and 18th fairways at Nelspruit Golf Club is the biggest fig tree you are likely to ever see. If your ball lands anywhere near it, there is little chance of going for either green in two. Just imagine trying to play over, around or through a five-storey building spanning some 40 metres at its widest point and you'll have an idea what you are up against.

For all its grandeur though, the fig is not the only tree golfers at Nelspruit have to worry about. Many other indigenous trees line the fairways, with more than 50 species having been recorded.

Nelspruit is a Bob Grimsdell design dating back to 1939, but the course has a curious history. It was a 9-holer for nearly 30 years before Grimsdell returned to complete a second nine in 1967-68. The course was left largely untouched until the 1998 upgrade.

With a par of 71 and measuring 6 063 metres it is not long or overly difficult to play, but it has an unusual start to the front nine in that the first is a par 4, the second a par 5, the third a par 3, the fourth a par 5 and the fifth a par 3, before closing off with four straight par 4s. The seven-minute gap between tee times had to be extended to eight minutes to overcome backlogs during peak times because of this.

The dogleg-right first hole is as tough an opening hole as you will find. With houses to the left and right an accurate tee shot is needed to find the fairway. You then face a daunting medium- to long-iron shot into a green surrounded by trees and bunkers to the right. Once you've negotiated the first though, no other hole on the front nine really stands out, with the closing four holes seeming to blend into one another.

The back nine is much the better, with more variety to the holes. The entire nine, save for the two par 3s on 13 and 17, is either played uphill or downhill. The club is currently looking at changing one of the par 4s into a par 5, possibly the uphill 377-metre 12th which is rated stroke two.

The Nelspruit Golf Club is host to the annual Jock of the Bushveld Festival of golf when hundreds of amateurs from far and wide descend on the town. There are no fairway bunkers at Nelspruit but this is compensated by strategic positioning of trees. The club features a Pro-shop, festive bar and clubhouse.

Signature Hole: The hole that stands out is the 498-metre 14th, the only par 5 on the back nine. From an elevated tee, a generous tree-lined fairway runs away gradually to a green surrounded by bunkers. There is the option of going for the green in two, but for high handicappers the safe bet is to lay up.

It is conveniently situated for daily visits to Kruger National Park.

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Nelspruit Golf Course

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Course Information

  • Course Design: Bob Grimsdell
  • Holes: 18
  • Par: 71
  • Championship: 6063m

Course Facilities

  • Pro shop
  • Golf club hire
  • Golf Carts
  • Pull trolleys

Course Availability & Club Rules

  • Visitors welcome everyday