From The Madeira Island Web Site

Palheiro Golf Course
By Jorge Barbosa
Jun 8, 2008 - 10:03:34 AM


The Palheiro Golf course is the only golf course within the confines of the municipality of Funchal. Although it enjoys quite close proximity to the capital the actual road that winds and loops around the steep hill to the course makes it feel a little bit farther than the purported 10 kilometres that some brochures advertise as the distance to Funchal centre (ah, yes, maybe as the crow flies, but we are not birds you know...). Allow yourself more than fifteen to twenty minutes to travel from, say the Lido hotel district, to the golf course. You may prefer to avoid the drive and roll out of bed straight onto the golf course by staying at the comfortable Châteaux hotel Casa Velha do Palheiro on its perimeter instead....

But by whatever means you choose to get there the trip up the hill is worth it! The golf course is ensconced into verdant and lush hills that form part of what used to be a two century old manor estate. One of the most beautiful gardens of Madeira – the Quinta do Palheiro – is its neighbour. The views down to Funchal, like being perched on a the rim of a very large crown staring down at ravines and gullies, is one of a tableau of red-and-white terracotta homes falling beneath you towards a vast blue sea beyond – just breathtakingly beautiful. Some of the best views are held at the club house terrace.

The course opened in 1993 and was designed by Cabell Robinson. In 2003 some changes were made to the course where two holes were replaced and a new 6 hole academy created. Interestingly enough, following the fashion of being environmentally friendly and "green conscious", the golf course now uses electric buggies only.
The Palheiro golf course is characterised as having tight fairways with “well placed bunkers” and relatively fast greens that reward accurate play. Distinguishing it from the norm the golf course has five par-3’s and five par-5’s. The twelfth hole may be rated as stroke index 1 with the eighteenth hole, some 487 metres, a tempting challenge to be rewarded by taking risks via a downhill dog-leg right where some experienced players can reach the green in two.

Course Description

The setting that nearly two-thirds of the course enjoys is that of mature pine forest and botanical woodland. There are remarkable arboreal specimens, shrubs and flowers that are testimony to the 100 years spent by the family of the Quinta Palheiro developing its gardens.

The air quality is excellent – as one would expect of any Atlantic island location.

Palheiro golf is designed as a continuous 18-hole par-72 course with the somewhat unexpected and unusual 5 par-3’s  - lending itself to a more entertaining tour over the customary 4 par-3’s that most golf courses employ. There are 5 par-5’s, the longest measuring 529 metres, and of the par-4s the last two are the longest followed by a par-5 finish.

Players benefit from numerous tees on each hole and ample fairway widths.

Bogey golf or even par golf is quite attainable by the average player

The way the fairways are contoured and the excellent bunker positions require accurate tee shot placement to set up the best approach to the greens. Water hazards, such as ornamental lakes, add further demand on the player’s precision to approach the greens.

Facilities (in a snap shot)
  • 18-hole, par 72 Championship course (6086 metres)
  • 6-hole Golf Academy
  • Driving range
  • Putting green
  • Chipping green with bunkers
  • PGA golf professionals
  • Fully equipped Pro-shop
  • Club hire
  • Electric buggy and trolley hire
  • Halfway house / Tea House
  • Changing rooms

Palheiro Golf Course  
Designed by Cabel Robinson
Holes 18
Length 6,086 metres
Par 72
Address Rua do Balançal, Nr.    29, 9060-414 Funchal, Madeira
Telephone (+ 351)  291 790      120
Fax (+ 351)  291 792    456
Nearest Accommodation(s) Casa Velha do Palheiro

© Copyright 2008 by The Madeira Island Web Site