Chiangmai Things to do
not so many courses as Bangkok and Pattaya, but getting busier, two new courses opened in 2004, 2 more in 2005 and one in 2006. There are 9 excellent golfing venues in Chiangmai and one more within range at Lampang. Lanna Golf Club is part of a comprehensive sporting facility. Lanna has 27 holes – 9 of which date back to the early 1900’s. The 3 nines offer different golfing styles, particularly the nine running around and through the racetrack is stunning with scenic mountain backdrops. The Clubhouse and changing facilities are more basic than some of the modern developments, but it’s conveniently near to town and in good shape, a most enjoyable example of Thai style golf. Royal Chiangmai is one of the best-conditioned courses in Thailand and one of the few “pay and plays” – though its standard belies that. No memberships have been sold and it is a golf resort and hotel. Designed in 1995 by Peter Thomson and Michael Wolveridge it really has reached prime condition, this course becomes the favourite of many of our guests. Chiangmai Green Valley is only 20 minutes from town, 10 minutes past Lanna GC. Designed in 1990 by Dennis Griffiths this course is grand and quite photogenic, we use the view from the clubhouse for many of our brochures. The greenkeeping is nearly completely organic. 7,200 yards long this is a test of golf, wide-open fairways but water hazards on every hole, plus plenty of trees and bunkers. The clubhouse is huge and also houses the excellent Angsana Spa. Chiangmai Lamphun Golf Club is quite a way out to the south-east of Chiangmai. Designed in 1990 by Dr Sukapanpotharam it is a tough challenge – with narrow fairways and long water carries. This course is also known as Golden Teak Valley – which aptly describes the location. Home to the Heritage Spa and a hotel this is a pretty comprehensive golf facility. This course is in excellent condition at the moment and really worth a visit. Mae Jo Golf Club opened November 2004 though still young it is in excellent condition and an enjoyable course only about 25 minutes from town, last season (2006-7) Mae Jo has become even more popular with our guests and is the most frequently requested course for extra golf. Mae Jo is highly rated as a golf course. Gassan Khuntan Golf and Resort also opened in November 2005, initially it was owned built and designed by Gassan Construction, who over the past 12 years have built many of the better known courses in Bangkok and Pattaya. Set in a large plot of land adjacent to Khuntan National Park and with a river running through it is a spectacular development. The signature Par 3 has the backdrop of Khuntan Railway Bridge built nearly 100 years ago. Rather uniquely the 18th is also a Par 3, very difficult and long, it is a stunning golf hole. Rated number one by some sources in Thailand, Gassan Khuntan is around 60 minutes from Chiangmai. Gassan Construction opened a second course in 2005 aptly called Gassan Lake City, as its name suggests there is a lot of water, a very difficult course, with superb facilities this is another top course in the making. As we begin 2007 this course has matured and is developing into a top course, very challenging with some excellent holes. The third Gassan course opened late 2006 and is called Gassan Marina, plenty of water as there is at all there courses, still very young, we would not recommended to play this course until autumn 2007. Chiangmai Highlands opened in December 2005, this will become one of the top courses in Thailand, located around 40 minutes from town, this is a stunning golf course, very scenic and it is the flagship course for the designers from the USA. Lastly we have Mae Moh Golf Course in Lampang. This is a really excellent course and well worth the long drive from Chiangmai (about 85 minutes). Owned and managed by EGAT (Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand) this lovely course winds around the open faced lignite mines of Lampang, a unique experience we are beginning to play this course quite frequently it does tend also to be less busy as not many people can find it! EGAT have many courses in Thailand, generally near to their Dams and Power Stations – all are excellently maintained and a pleasure to play. There are several 9 hole courses, the oldest course in Thailand is the 9 hole Gymkhana, a good practice course at Hang Dong GC, and best of all the revived Wing 41 course near to the airport, full length and designed by Lee Schmidt, Star Dome comprises the excellent full length par 36 9 holes plus an excellent modern driving range
TAILORS Thailand is renowned for good value and quality tailoring, though you do need to be careful to pick a reliable one. Chiangmai has many good tailors, our recommended tailor is MAX FASHIONS, and we have had 100% good reports from our guests that have used him. We will be pleased to give you directions to his shop, or one of our drivers can drop you there.
GOLF SHOP – There are several good golf shops in Chiangmai we recommend Songvilai Golf conveniently located opposite Lanna Golf Club and on the return route from 3 of the courses Green Valley, Royal and Mae Jo. We have been buying all our clubs and accessories from this shop for the past 5 years, particularly recommended are his golf shoes.
A Day at the Races
On Saturdays the racetrack nine at Lanna GC is closed for Horse Racing. There are generally 10 races and it is one of only four legal gambling venues in Thailand – the other three racetracks being in Bangkok (2) and Udon Thani. The facility is run by the Army; there is a big Military presence in Chiangmai. Horseracing at Lanna can turn into a fun and maybe profitable afternoon out, the betting is Tote style plus there are daily doubles. It is only 100 baht admittance to the air-conditioned Members Enclosure where food and drink is incredibly good value.