Travel Tips

Unique Golf Courses Around the World

Locations in this article:  Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates Bangkok, Thailand Hong Kong

Golf has become a 12-month-a-year sport. There are the classic golf courses, the legendary golf courses, and, of course, municipal golf courses. But then there are the golf courses that are truly off the beaten path. How about playing a round on a floating island, in below freezing temperatures, or at a former airport? Here are some of the more unusual courses around the world.

Nirwana Bali Golf Club


Set along the coast and surrounded by the traditional Balinese rice paddies, the Nirwana Bali Golf Club is known for its five ocean-side holes, three cliff-to-cliff tee shots, and eight holes that have been sculpted into rice fields. Its most photographed hole is one that overlooks the popular tourist site of the Tanah Lot temple, a Hindu temple located on a rock formation on the ocean’s shore in the secluded town of Tabanan. The 18-hole course officially opened in 1997 and includes a 27,000-square-foot clubhouse containing a restaurant, lockers, and pro shop facilities for when you need a break.

Abu Dhabi Golf Club


Abu Dhabi is a place that seems to subscribe to the idea of “bigger and better,” and the Abu Dhabi Golf Club is no exception. Set on an Arabian desert landscape, this 27-hole champion golf course was designed by Peter Harradine in 1992. It covers over 7,600 yards, includes a Bose surround sound system, a fairway practice bunker, and six target greens. Night golfing is also an option here, as there is a nine-hole floodlit garden course as well and the infamous clubhouse, which features the unique architectural design of a falcon perched atop a golf ball.

Camp Bonifas, Korean Demilitarized Zone


The term danger is probably something unlikely to come to mind when considering a golf course. However, this one-hole golf course located between North and South Korea may cause you to think differently. Known as the Korean Demilitarized Zone, this peninsula between the divided countries serves as a buffer between North and South Korea. The course is a scarce 192 acres and is surrounded by mine fields, meaning golfers are strongly discouraged from retrieving any balls from the rough.

The Coeur d’Alene Resort, Idaho

cour dalene

Known best for its 14th hole, “the floating green,” this golf course is located on the lakeshore of Lake Coeur d’Alene and Fernan Creek and requires a small wooden boat ride. The floating green hole is a manmade island which few are fortunate enough to experience. It is the only floating green in the world. The course was designed by Scott Miller and encompasses approximately 200 acres. There is also the added bonus of luxury golf carts equipped with heated seats, a beverage cart cooler, and a tee dispenser for your convenience.

Don Mueang Airport Golf Course, Thailand

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons User Dream lada

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons User Dream lada

Though most golfers are seeking a peaceful or serene golfing experience, this 18-hole course at the Don Mueang International Airport in Bangkok, Thailand is unique nonetheless. The course is sandwiched between two runways and golfers are required to wear noise-canceling headphones because of the extreme sonic noise levels. Prior to 2006, this was an international airport, however it is now used for domestic flights and private jets.

Uummannaq Greenland Golf Course

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons User Algkalv

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons User Algkalv

Though the typical landscape of most courses tends to be vast green topography, golfing in Greenland lends an alternative perspective. Known as the home of the World Snow Golf championship since 1997, and located 373 miles north of the Arctic circle, the Uummannaq golf course is the furthest north course in the world. Due to the extreme weather conditions, the course itself is constantly changing and orange balls replace your typical white ones to make them easier to find in the snow. Golf may not be considered an extreme sport under normal circumstances, but it is in this case.

Green Monkey Golf Course, Barbados

sandy lane

Located on the coastline of Barbados in the Sandy Lane Resort, this golf course was designed by Tom Fazio and has been carved out of an old limestone quarry. The walls of the quarry are 90 feet high, and beyond them are views of the Caribbean sea that you can enjoy while golfing this 18-hole course. There’s also a man-made grass bunker island in the shape of a Barbados monkey on the course, and games are exclusive to the resort’s guests. A simple game could cost you about $375.

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By Candice Fox for