The Abaco Club on Winding Bay

Winding Bay, Abaco Island, The Bahamas

Not far from Miami are the Abaco Islands, sprinkled like a string of pearls through the Atlantic. Most of these are uninhabited, but Great Abaco is 100 miles long and is the third largest in the Bahamas. Nestled on a peninsula next to a sandy white beach is the Abaco Club on Winding Bay. The course has been styled in a tropical links layout, unfamiliar to most as typical links courses are found in the colder climates of the British Isles. In appearance it resembles a classic links course dressed with palm trees. The course is laid out on low lying, sandy soil next to the azure coloured Atlantic, creating a hard fast-running surface from tee to green. Cream-white sand fill the pot bunkers dug into the sides of the greens, most of which are elevated and tiered. The fairways are generally broad and lined with thick tropical bush and a wayward drive here will inevitably be rewarded with a lost ball, so most would do well by sacrificing distance for accuracy off the tee. There is pleasant variation in the course with some holes built on the cliffs and others down at beach level. The par four 5th is a sporting short hole with the tee on the beach and the wind in your face, but it’s the 18th that is most likely to be remembered. Following four holes on the cliffs overlooking the sea, this hole is played just meters above sea level, with the waves crashing behind you on the tee. Despite the level of your game, the memory of this course will stay with anyone who has played it.

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