When we think about golf courses on the island of Oahu in Hawaii, we automatically think about the site for the PGA Sony Open, Waialea Country Club, or Arnold Palmer’s Turtle Bay Golf Club on the windward side of the island near the Banzai Pipeline (PGA Seniors tournaments); or perhaps Ko Olina Golf Club where the LPGA used to host one of their tournaments.
For the average tourists, however, you should consider a beautiful golf course on the leeward side of the island in the Makaha Valley. This valley, apparently, was used by the Hawaiian royalty as their recreation area. The Makaha Resort Golf Club is just thirty three miles west of the Honolulu Airport or another few miles farther from the famous Waikiki Beach.
Makaha Resort Golf Club
Designed by William F. Bell, the eighteen-hole course, par 72, plays to 7,077 yards from the long tee. Additional three tee sites are available to accommodate all categories of skill level.
The golf course is nestled along the foot of the imposing cliffs of the Waianae Mountains. In addition, towering in the background, visible from every hole on the golf course, is the 4,000-ft. Mt. Kaala. On many of the holes, looking in the opposite direction, you will see the vast, deep blue Pacific Ocean as though it were higher than the ground you are walking on.
Perhaps the best feature of the golf course itself is the pristine condition of the grasses; manicured fairways and greens, dotted with a few well kept sand traps. The course design tends to lean towards the rigorous and is, therefore, enjoyable to the pros as well as to the average golfer like you and me. Walking alongside a pristine lake, you may catch an occasional plaintiff call of the indigenous peacock, or watch it scurrying into the nearby underbrush. Add to this the majesty of the surrounding mountains, tropical plants and coconut trees, and the distant deep blue ocean, you will have had a unique golf experience not found on too many other courses.
Accommodation and Amenities
The clubhouse and the pro shop will provide you with all your golfing needs; driving range, putting greens, golf club rentals and of course, golf apparel for your personal use as well as for souvenir. There is a snack shop for a quick picker upper during the round.
When we golfed here many years ago, we stayed in one of the many individual cottages strewn around the property. We understand these have now been replaced by eighteen Polynesian-style buildings (lanai’s) that accommodate one hundred and seventy individual units. The main complex contains first-class dining facilities (including luau grounds), swimming pool, and tennis and volleyball courts. Other amenities such as yoga classes, ukulele lessons, etc. are also available.
The resort is just a mile away from the Makaha Beach and the tourists can watch the surfers at the nearby Makana surfing beach. Going back towards Waikiki, you will be passing Pearl City which is a must-stop location. You must plan a day at Pearl Harbor where the USS Arizona Memorial is located. The USS Missouri Battleship is also moored there; all reminiscent of the World War II years. Pearl City itself has restaurants and shopping centers to cater to the discerning tourists. If you were staying at Wakikiki Beach, you will of course, visit the International Market Place and the Ala Moana shopping complex.
Whether you stay at the Makaha Resort, Pearl City, Honolulu or Waikiki Beach, you are never too far from the beautiful sandy beaches of each location. Add to this, the rugged mountain ranges along the Makaha Valley as you gaze inland from the beaches, the pristine lakes on the golf course that you have just played; you will agree that this is golfing in paradise.
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