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Framed by the rugged coastal cliffs of Cape Kaliakra with the Black Sea as a spectacular backdrop, Thracian Cliffs Golf & Beach Resort is one of the most dramatic golf courses in the world.

Thracian Cliffs is a Gary Player Signature Championship course which opened for play in 2011, and has since hosted the Volvo World Matchplay Championships.

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It has an amazing setting with incredible vistas- the course is routed through 164 hectares of wild scenic terrain along a 4.5km stretch of coastline.

The first 8 holes head out along the coast with every tee and every green hugging the cliffs. It is the most spectacular opening stretch to any course in the world. Holes 1 to 5 are perhaps a little reminiscent of Pebble Beach's coastal holes, but holes 6 & 7 introduce a different dynamic- this is thrillseeker golf!

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Hole 6 is a drop shot par 3. From the back tees it measures 211m although most men will play from 191m and ladies from as little as 86m. The tee is from the top of the cliff and you play to a green adjacent to the Black Sea ( sea level ) It is a huge drop and wind off the sea can play havoc...

Your ball will take so long to make the drop, that you can take a few photos in the meantime.

And you will be taking photos!

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Hole 7 is even more of a challenge with an island tee jutting out into the Black Sea your launching pad. The ideal tee shot will carry 202m, but it is a 'Cape' style hole and allows for a shorter shot to be aimed left and still make the fairway. The green is set on a shelf above you, partially hidden behind shrubbery. It is a challenging second shot to say the least- an appropriate way to finish a very difficult but dramatic hole.

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Phew!

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Hole 8 is the last of the outward clifftop holes and is a short par 4 with a very tight tee shot framed by heavy vegetation both sides. Your group may need to walk single file down the fairway it gets so narrow- but if you hit the short grass you will have only a short iron in...

The last 10 holes bring you back to the clubhouse on the high side of the opening holes. Each hole has panoramic views of the cliffs and the ocean, but each is a level away from the clifftops themselves. As such the drama is not quite so intense. There are a couple of wonderful skyline greens- hole 12 in particular is very photogenic, but the course never rises again to the excitement of those opening holes.The back ten is comprised of good golf, and adds some variety with the last two holes set lower and incorporating a lake- but it is the opening 8 holes that gets the heart pumping, and leaves you wanting to return.

 

Thracian Cliffs Golf & Beach Resort is also a suitable place to stay for non golfers. With it's wonderful climate- over 260 sunny days a year- Thracian Cliffs has a couple of private beaches that are very well set up with bars and hammocks etc ready waiting for the sunlover.

There are a number of top end dining options, a luxury spa, and a small shopping mall in the resort as well. The villas are spacious and generously appointed.

Other courses in the immediate area are:

Lighthouse GC

Black Sea Rama GC

Whatever you do don't miss the opportunity to travel to Cape Kaliakra and play Thracian Cliffs.

Thracian Cliffs is a Travelling Golfer 'must play'.

 

Peter Wood

The Travelling Golfer

September 2015

 

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