Photo credit above: Old Quarry Golf Course
Curacao is a popular cruise and holiday destination. You can make it even better by adding in a round on one of the best courses in the Caribbean – Old Quarry Golf Course in Curacao, on the Santa Barbara Plantation.
The 18-hole course was designed by the legendary golf architect Pete Dye. It’s a par 72 public course suitable for all skill levels. As the name implies, it was named after the nearby old quarries.
The course winds along the Caribbean on one side, the Tafelberg Mountain on the other, with views of the nearby Spanish Bay harbour (Spanish Water) and marina.
The course was named Best Caribbean Golf Course by USA Today in 2018 and 2019. It’s located on the property of the Santa Barbara Golf Resort, but you don’t have to stay there to play.
A few tips for your best game
The first two holes lay along the Caribbean, and can be windy. The rest of the course is more inland and along Spanish Bay, so spectacular views are never far away. But no matter which hole you play, watch out for the Iguana’s – they’re everywhere. If your ball goes into the bush and out of bounds we suggest taking the loss and moving on. Snakes, lizards and other Caribbean creatures are always present.
The day we played, the greens and fairways were in great shape. And they should be for the price. Expect to pay about $200 US a round per person. The price comes down a bit in the afternoon, or if you stay at the Santa Barbara Golf Resort, check for specials. Depending on the time of year, it can get very hot, so dress appropriately and take plenty of water. There are water stations along the course, with bathroom stops near holes 6, 11 and 15. We suggest taking a cart for coverage from the sun. Also, there are a few hills along the way that could put a bit of a damper on your day if you weren’t expecting them.
After your round, we recommend checking out Boca 19, the course’s pub next to the Santa Barbara Resort and hole 18. The restaurant’s pub-style menu offers casual dining overlooking the bay.
All in all, the course is a wonderful addition to all of the other activities on Curacao. As time and budget allows, we will head back to Curacao, and the Old Quarry course will be at the top of our agenda.
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