Jamaica has a reputation for offering a lot of different activities, including a deep love of golf. Jamaica learned the game through its colonial British heritage and, given it's position as one of the premier vacation destinations in the western hemisphere, embraced it. With 12 courses ranging from jungle layouts to all-inclusive resort courses with spectacular ocean views, there's a track for every skill level and budget. Caddies are a tradition in Jamaica, and most courses make them available. Some courses even require them.
One of the most interesting events on Jamaica's golf calendar is the Jamaica Invitational Pro-Am, where foursomes representing various clubs across the US, Canada, and the Caribbean compete on two of Jamaica's most challenging courses while enjoying all the prestigious Rose Hall Plantation development has to offer. The foursomes include the club pro and three amateurs (both male and female) playing a best-ball format over three rounds.
The ocean is a dominant presence at White Witch — Photo courtesy of White Witch Golf Club
As you might imagine, the White Witch course is designed to get in your head. The 6,900-yard layout enjoys ocean views on 16 of its 18 holes to the point of distraction, helping its mountainous terrain challenge even the best ball strikers. This course is reminiscent of some of the best courses in Hawaii and other tropical islands, including the prevalent trade winds and strategic bunkering.
Cinnamon Hill starts by bordering the ocean before moving through the jungle — Photo courtesy of Cinnamon Hill Golf Club
The Cinnamon Hill Golf Club is more reliant on its natural vegetation, especially during a back nine that winds through the Jamaican jungle. It's not as long (6,600 yards) or as difficult as the White Witch, and offers a more American-style experience.
Both of these courses are considered the best in Jamaica, but there are plenty of options sprinkled throughout the island, including courses attached to Jamaica's famous all-inclusive resorts. For a vacation where the only stress you encounter might be on the golf course, Jamaica is worth a look.