Thailand Tourism’s Secret Golf Course: Bangpra International Golf Club

Bangpra Golf Club.jpg Did you know that Tourist Thailand (TAT) owns their own golf course? One would think this would be an excellent maneuver as TAT sights golf as one of the seven key areas for Thai tourism promotion and development. Ironically though, Bangpra International Golf Course just outside of Pattaya is hardly promoted to Thai golf holidaymakers, but rather is mostly used for the officials of TAT for their own golf needs.

Set amongst jungle covered hills, the Bangpra International Golf Club may only be located 30 minutes from the hustle and bustle of Pattaya, but sure leaves the golfer really feeling at one with nature. Although originally opened in 1958, this course had its first nine completely redesigned in 1987. This explains why the more interesting holes at Bangpra are to found on the front nine, which is laid out in a very natural domain at the foot of small tree-clad hills.

The par-3 2nd across water and long par-4 3rd are attractive highlights on the outward nine, where excellent bunkering and dangerous water hazards combine to good effect. The relatively tight and well-bunkered short par-4 6th makes a gentle move up the wooded hillside, only for the monstrously long par-5 7th (622 yards from the tips) to bring you gently back down the slope.



The flatter Bangpra International back-nine doesn't quite live up to the expectations created by the excellent front nine. The inward holes are not however without their challenges, even if several good-width fairways bordered by light semi-rough appear generously wide on occasions. The par-3 12th and long par-3 17th both require tee-to-green shots over water, while the testing 12th, 13th and 15th holes, also require approach shots over water to reach the safety of the uniformly circular, slightly elevated and often dome-shaped greens. The par-4 18th is a reminder that not all the fairways look "comfortably wide" from the tee, it also allows you to reflect on what a pleasantly enjoyable and varied parkland course this is.

If you are looking to get in on Tourism Thailand’s secret, then give Bangpra International a try on your next Pattaya golf tour. The course is indeed open to the public and with US$25 green fees it is one of Pattaya golf’s better values.

5 comments

  1. Bangkok Jock

    Mark
    Are you sure about the TAT bit , did they buy out the Japanese TA ?
    It was the first golf course I played in Thailand , and I must admit I love the place , although lately they have been far too influenced by the yardage and long grass brigade.
    The redesign of the (what was a breather hole) 10th is nothing short of horrible.
    A wonderful set of par 3’s , where only one is REALLY over water .
    A favourite hole would be the 1st. , and I would go as far to say , if I was going to list favourite openers , Bangphras would be in my Top 3 .
    The 7th and 11th par5’s prove that long homes can be interesting.
    Overall its such a lovely setting , with loads of wildlife that seem to enjoy the place as much as myself.
    Even with what they did to the 10th, and all the long grass nowadays , its still highly recommended , and a must play , in my book.

  2. Hi Jock,
    Yes I am sure about TAT. My new “friends” told me this and I confirmed it when I was there last month.
    Glad to hear that you like this course. if you were to list 3 “must plays” in Pattaya what would the other 2 be?
    By the way, why don’t you use your real name?
    Mark

  3. Bangkok Jock

    Mark
    I could quite happily play Bangphra , Bumpihol Dam , and Royal Hua Hin for the rest of my life , and never get bored .
    BTW, talking to some Pattaya Golf Groups today , and all are moaning about a lack of tee times , especially for Feb. . Seemingly a large contingent of Korean golfers are arriving to take over the area .
    You heard anymore ?

  4. Jock,
    Why don’t you use your real name? It would be better for you.
    I was at Siam CC yesterday and saw mainly Japanese and Europeans. Where did you run into the Koreans?
    Mark

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