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Presenter : Ian Cross

Malaysia

Courses: Kelab Rahman Putra, Mount Kinabalu, Bukit Jambul, The Datai Resort.

image: fifteen-year-old Thilaga Muthi golferMalaysia is often overlooked by travelers, and particularly golfers, but this is set to change. Its great climate, stunning and varied scenery, low travel costs, and friendly multicultural population is being embellished by world class resorts, hotels and courses which makes for an exceptional golfing experience.

Ian Cross 
discovers a vibrant golfing community which is actively trying to make its mark with government support. At the public Kelab Rahman Putra Course near the capital, Kuala Lumpur, he meets his match with fifteen-year-old Thilaga Muthi, who is part of the government sponsored full-time golf schooling programme for girls. She also proves herself more than a match for Ian at Tai Kwon Doh, which she demonstrates painfully on the eighteenth green. The Kelab Rahman Putra is one of the best of many great public courses which are attracting foreign visitors. At around US $20 a round including food and drink, the 36-hole course offers challenging golf and a peaceful atmosphere just outside the city.

image: mount Kinabalu Golf CourseMore remote and exciting is the Mount Kinabalu Golf Course, in the state of Sabah on the island of Borneo. Perched on the side of South-East Asia’s tallest mountain, the 14,000 ft Mount Kinabalu, the course is at a rarified 5,000 ft, which means longer ball travel but less breath to fuel the players. The mountain also has the unusual effect of pushing golf balls away from it, even if they’re rolling uphill. For the adventurous golfer, Kinabalu also offers a great jungle and mountain experience, as Ian discovers on his search for giant frog-eating pitcher plants.

Closer to the Malaysian mainland, Ian visits glorious Penang, with its endless streets of Chinese shop houses, superb street hawker food, and fascinating colonial history. He also visits the well-manicured Bukit Jambul Golf Club, a championship course close to the island’s city, Georgetown.

To finish, Ian finds himself on the tropical island of Langkawi, staying in the jungle-bound super-boutique resort of The Datai and playing its stunning rainforest golf course…once he can get his ball back from the thieving monkeys, that is!

 

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Borneo

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Kuala Lumpur

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Malaysia

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