Spanish golfing hotspot Murcia promises variety, quality, sunshine and safety as it begins to welcome back golfers, who are set to flock to the Costa Cálida, or warm coast, after its golf courses were forced to close for months because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Murcia is renowned as a golfers’ haven – with 22 fantastic golf courses all within 35km of one another, beautiful scenery and an average temperature of 19 degrees – and is gearing up to welcome visitors back with safety at the forefront of the tourist board’s plans.
Hacienda del Alamo, El Valle, and La Torre are among the highly regarded courses already open, with the iconic La Manga Club set to reopen on July 1. All offering thrilling golf and delightful sunshine for more than 300 days of the year.
The highly-anticipated reopening of the courses will be welcome news to Spanish golfers, as well as tourists looking to book their golf trips for later in the year and in 2021, after Ryanair, EasyJet and Jet2 recently unveiled plans to recommence their flight schedules, currently still flying to the same destinations at a reduced frequency.
The region’s return to golf is subject to strict safety measures and guidelines established by The Institute of Spanish Tourism Quality (ICTE) in collaboration with the Spanish Golf Federation, the regional golf federations, Spanish Association of Golf Managers (AEGG) and the Spanish Greenkeepers’ Association.
Ahead of reopening, each venue has undergone a thorough risk assessment to ensure the safety of all visitors and staff members. Each club identified the risks and then introduced a plan of action to mitigate them, while also taking into account the recommendations of the health authorities on personal protective equipment (PPE) and social distancing.
Each golf club must be compliant with outlined hygiene and cleaning requirements for the prevention and control of COVID-19 and other possible infections and have all introduced enhanced and thorough cleaning regimes, as well as hand washing and sanitising facilities.
All rounds of golf should be pre-booked online or over the phone and when out on the course, players should continue to observe a safe distance from players outside of their household and avoid physical contact such as handshakes. Rakes will be removed from the bunkers – meaning the sand should be smoothed with the players club – and flags must stay in the hole at all times, with each hole featuring a stop that prevents the ball from descending all the way in.
Buggies will be in use, but must only be shared by players of the same household and must be disinfected after each round.
A spokesperson for the Instituto de Turismo de la Región de Murcia, said: “It’s fantastic news that the golf courses are reopening and we are delighted to be able to welcome back golfers to the region – but their safety is paramount, which is why we are working with each course to make sure that they are stringently adhering to the published guidance.
“Avid golfers can now visit the spectacular region of Murcia, not only excited to play the excellent courses, enjoy the sunshine and take in the breathtaking landscape, but also knowing that they will be safe and can relax and enjoy their time here.”
A list of all 22 golf courses in the region can be found at: www.murciaturistica.es/en/golf/
The full health and safety guidance for golf in Murcia can be viewed here: www.murciaturistica.es/webs/murciaturistica/documentos/1/DOCUMENTOS_1_2453.pdf