Cancun, which typically conjures images of cookie-cutter beach hotels and sloppy Spring Break shenanigans, used to be a golfing wasteland. No longer. As we saw on our recent visit, new Cancun golf courses, including those located on the stunning Mayan Riviera immediately to the south, are quickly transforming this area into a world-class golf destination.
No place in Mexico — and perhaps in the Western hemisphere — matches the burgeoning construction of Cancun golf courses. Ongoing projects (which began opening in late 2007 and will continue to open through late 2008) include: the Nicklaus Design team’s 36-hole routing at Riviera Cancun, Tom Fazio’s TPC Cancun, a Nick Price 18 at La Roca Country Club, and Tom Weiskopf’s Puerto Cancun.
These exotic Cancun golf courses, carved out of Mayan jungle and mangrove swamps just off the Caribbean Sea, are easily accessible to travelers worldwide, particularly those originating from Canada and the United States, as many of the major airlines serve the Cancun airport.
Once on Mexican soil, driving is a snap. The roads are excellent — smooth, wide, and generally uncongested — and the Cancun golf courses and resorts are right off the major thoroughfares. In fact, it’s so convenient that the PGA Tour decided to stage its first-ever, south-of-the-border event (the Mayakoba Classic) at the Fairmont Resort’s El Camaleon golf course in 2007. (For those who don’t know, spectator logistics play a big part in the Tour’s site selection process).
The other parts of the equation, dreamy resorts and idyllic beaches with baby soft white sand, are well represented, too, and can fulfill anyone’s deepest escapist fantasies. So, if you haven’t yet played any Cancun golf courses, 2008 is shaping up to be great year to do it.
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