New Zealand

Stay and play: New Zealand’s best golf resorts

New Zealand is world-famous for two things: stunning scenery and sport - so why not combine the two? Here is our guide to New Zealand’s best golf resorts.

With the second-most golf courses per capita in the world (behind Scotland… of course) Kiwi golfers are spoilt for choice and you can be, too.

These courses are seriously impressive, so impressive that you’ll probably want to play them more than once, so why not make a weekend of it? Pack an overnight bag, throw the clubs in the car, and let us be your guide to New Zealand’s best golf resorts.

Luxury accommodation & world-class golf in Matauri Bay

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Rolling farmland, rugged coastline, and luxury accommodation, Kauri Cliffs ticks all the boxes. With six holes running alongside cliff faces that plunge into the Pacific Ocean, you’re more than likely to lose a few balls.

If you get sick of snap-hooking your drives into the Big Blue, you might want to cool off and take a chopper ride over the stunning Bay of Islands… or just lay up.

After a round on the 49th best course in the world retreat to your private villa where you can put your feet up on the porch, enjoy a drink and take in the stunning views of the golf course. Just try not to think about that four-putt on the 13th…

Kauri Cliffs

Top rated
9.6 Excellent (198 reviews)
Excellent Service 9.4 / 10
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Five-star golf resort with a championship course near Queenstown

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Located just 20 minutes from Queenstown, and surrounded by the Remarkables Mountain Range, Millbrook Resort offers five-star accommodation and a 27-hole championship course.

Accommodation options range from cosy 50-square metre studios perfect for a weekend getaway with that ‘special playing-partner’, to luxurious fairway-side homes big enough for two Ambrose teams.

Named Oceania’s Best Golf Hotel in 2016, Millbrook Resort is not short on facilities. We’re talking three spas, an indoor swimming pool, tennis courts, a sauna and even a chiropractor for that one mate who thinks he can ‘grip it and rip it’ like John Daly…

Millbrook Resort

Top rated
9.6 Excellent (1059 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.6 / 10
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Top-rated golf hotel on Karikari peninsula

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Carrington Estate is the perfect weekend trip from Auckland. Just a four-hour drive will take you down the Karikari peninsula, and onto one of the finest golf hotels in the country.

Located on a large stretch of isolated coastline, the 18-hole course is a gruelling 6.5km in length and includes one of the longest holes in the country at 569 meters – it might be best discovered from the comfort of a golf cart!

Got the Shanks? Lucky for you Peppers Carrington is conveniently located next to the country’s northernmost vineyard. Tee-off with an award-winning Chardonnay, overlooking the North Cape of New Zealand. Don’t be shy about taking a few mulligans either.

Most rooms include a balcony overlooking either the golf course, vineyard, ocean or all three.

Want to check out the best golf resorts in Australia?

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Stay and play: Australia’s best golf resorts

Carrington Estate

Top rated
8.6 Excellent (185 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9 / 10
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Villa-style accommodation in the heart of Canterbury

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Whether you prefer a narrow woodland course or an open links-style, Terrace Downs has you covered, with 9 holes of each. The Par 72 course includes 10 lakes and 60 bunkers… so it might be wise to bring a couple of spare balls.

The four-star accommodation options all include majestic views over the golf course that sits in the shadow of the snowcapped Mt Hutt. Here you can appreciate spectacular walking trails and unparalleled natural beauty.

If hiking is not your thing, the resort also offers Lord of the Rings tours, jet boating, rafting and even on-site clay pigeon shooting – the perfect stress release after failing to break 100.

Terrace Downs

Top rated
8.9 Excellent (192 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.2 / 10
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Spectacular beachside New Zealand golf resort in Matarangi Bay

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Living up to its name, The Dunes is located on the white sandy shores of Matarangi Beach, on the stunning Coromandel Peninsula. Expect striking ocean views from most holes, and lake views from your on-course villa-style accommodation.

After 18 holes around the Sir Bob Charles-designed course, head to The Dunes Restaurant and Bar where the food is likely to be more impressive than your scorecard. Award-winning chef, Scott Corbett, serves up a diverse menu using the best locally sourced ingredients.

Head back to your villa and catch the rugby on your Sky-equipped TV, showing all Warriors, All Black tests and Super 15 games.

The Dunes Golf Resort

8.6 Excellent (106 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 8.9 / 10
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Exceptional New Zealand links course with luxury accommodation

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The Kinloch Club is a serious golf course, designed by none other than Jack Nicklaus. The 6734-meter Par 72 has been created for those with a deep love for golf… and deep pockets to match.

The Kinloch Club is inspired by the great links courses of Scotland, with wide undulating fairways drawing a stark contrast to Lake Taupo and the surrounding rugged bushland.

It is easy to see why The Kinloch Club is ranked one of the best courses in NZ, but the luxury doesn’t end at the course. ‘The Lodge at Kinloch’ offers modern villas with large windows that frame the course outside. Expect oak floors, fireplaces, full kitchens and your own private courtyard.

The Kinloch Club

Taupo, 13.3 km to Huka Falls
Excellent Service 9 / 10
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Feature image courtesy of Luis Villasmil / Unsplash


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