Garden Route Top 14
Mossel Bay Golf Club
Mossel Bay - Garden Route
General manager: Steve Basson
Greenkeeper: Gavin Coleman
Club captain: Michal Rehr
President: Martin Smith
CRITERIA SUMMARY: Total points 64.1 out of 100
Conditioning12.8 / 20
Playability13.2 / 20
Aesthetics11.0 / 15
Design Variety10.0 / 15
Shot Values8.4 / 15
Memorability8.7 / 15
Four tees / Par 72
Yellow 5848 metres, CR71.8/130
White 5538 metres, CR70.1/126
Blue 5073 metres, CR67.5/117
Red 4721 metres, CR65.6/116
Women’s blue, CR73.2/129
Women’s red, CR71.2/123
Visitor green fee
Bob Grimsdell 1961,
Danie Obermeyer 1999
044 691 2379
87 (2021) & 74 (2020)
The linksy Mossel Bay course straddles the Cape St Blaize Peninsula, five kilometres from the lighthouse at the point, and from its high position it has glorious views over the Indian Ocean. The club’s slogan for many years has been “You can see the sea from every tee.”
At the turn of the millennium the nearest golf courses were in George, but Mossel Bay now has company on the peninsula with Pinnacle Point just eight kilometres away. They make a compatible pairing for visitors to the town.
The old Bob Grimsdell layout was upgraded in 1999 as part of the development of The Mossel Bay Golf Estate inside and surrounding the property. A new clubhouse was built – currently being extended – and the status of the smallish club was transformed overnight, with an increased membership and more rounds.
It remains a relatively short par 72 layout – three par 4s of 300 metres and less – yet the greens have challenging contours, the terrain is undulating, and the course is exposed to breezes off the sea.
Mossel Bay was the home club of Louis Oosthuizen, who grew up at nearby Albertinia, where he learned to play on the sand greens of the local 9-holer. As a rookie professional, on December 12, 2002 at age 20 he had a dream round of 15-under-par 57 at Mossel Bay with two eagles and 11 birdies. He was out in 29 and back in 28. He finished with a chip-in for an eagle three at 17 and birdie three at 18. He had 11 threes and two 2s on his card. Less than two years later, in September 2004, he scored a 59 with 11 birdies and an eagle two at 18.
Additional Course Facts
64 by Jordan Duminy in 2018 club champs.
Mossel Bay is a comfortable walk and generously wide fairways make it very playable in the roughest of conditions. The front nine has two strong par 4s, the beautiful third played from a high tee towards the ocean, and the ninth, over the crest of a ridge between two bunkers down to a narrow green. The back nine has an interesting variety of holes to finish, a par 3 at 15, uphill short par 4 at 16, followed by possibly the best hole on the course, the downhill par-5 17th with a raised green on a diagonal that is tricky to hold.
Guest houses on the estate; contact golf club reception for information.
Long and spacious range next to clubhouse, with short-game area. Resident teaching pro is Ben du Toit.
2021 Ian Pautz & Shani van Rooyen
2020 Chris van den Berg & Simone Ferreira
2019 Martin Vorster & Ilze Nel
Did You Know
1/ Mossel Bay has one of the world’s mildest climates, said to be the second best in the world behind Hawaii for sunshine (average of 320 days) and low rainfall. The bay is where the Portuguese explorer Bartolumeu Dias put ashore in 1488, the first Europeans to land on SA soil.
2/ The club’s centenary year in 2005 was at the height of the region’s golfing boom. That year the club had more than a thousand members and 45 000 rounds of golf were played. It remains a busy course today.
3/ Louis Oosthuizen’s 57 at Mossel Bay in 2002 inspired him to brand his business interests as Louis57, and the Route57 restaurant in Mossel Bay specialises in SA cuisine, including the King Louis Burger.
4/ Club manager Steve Basson won three times on Sunshine Tour, the Zambian Open twice (2006-07) and the high scoring 2005 Vodacom Origins Tour Final at The Links at Fancourt where Basson was the only player under par for 54 holes. The wind blew and the average score over 54 holes was 79.35.
5/ Mossel Bay members Christo Lamprecht won the 2017 SA Amateur, and Martin Vorster the 2021 SA Strokeplay.
6/ Bobby Gottsell won the men’s club championship 13 times between 1957 and 1972.
Course and Facilities Rating
Great experience to play this well-manicured and scenic course.
08 January 2023
Mossel Bay has become one of the busiest courses in the Western Cape, with rounds growing by the month. Much of that popularity is due to it being a fun, affordable and scenic layout for all types of golfers in excellent overall condition. Another reason is that the golfing population in this part of the world is booming. The club membership is virtually full. There's a shortage of these relatively inexpensive and easily walkable "member" clubs in the populous western part of the Garden Route which could become an issue in the future. Some say the Garden Route has more than enough golf courses, yet possibly not sufficient of the Mossel Bay kind of experience.
27 November 2022
Played Mossel Bay in perfect weather, yet this course plays surprisingly longer than the distances suggest on the scorecard. It's only 5538 metres from the white club tees and seven of the 10 par 4s are under 330 metres. But none of them are pushovers. The back nine is particularly undulating and testing. There's a good mix of holes and Mossel Bay is an excellent test of golfing skills. Hard to believe that Louis Oosthuizen has twice broken 60 here with scores of 57 and 59.
23 November 2022
Mossel Bay rates highly in my book as both a challenging and enjoyable course. Don't be fooled by Louis Oosthuizen having had a 57 here. It's not an easy layout on which to score well if you're unfamiliar with its superbly conditioned greens. Being relatively small, undulating, and often quick, they are the course's chief defence. They add considerable character to the layout. Greens which grab my attention are those on the uphill par-5 fifth hole (this one is a bit extreme on a hole where golfers cannot see what awaits them), the par-4s six and seven, the par-5 11th (fabulous contours), the par-3 12th, the par-4 14th and par-5 17th. The elevated green at 14 sloping from back to front makes this one of the toughest holes to play for the club golfer. It curves gently around thick coastal bush left of the fairway, so the tee shot is crucial to set up a shorter approach. You need to draw it off the right side of the fairway and feed the ball down the slope. As for the green, there's no such thing as an easy pin position!
21 May 2022
Was surprised by a very enjoyable experience. The greens were tricky but true. The scenery overlooking the ocean is breathtaking. Pace of play was good. Cherry on the cake was sitting in the upstairs bar of the clubhouse and being able to view the ocean and bay at more than 180 degrees.
Zacharias van den Berg
20 March 2022
Very pleasing to see Mossel Bay in such fine condition. The greens are superb, and considerable work is being done to improve the quality of the fairways. This is a popular course on a daily basis, and why wouldn't it be with beautiful views from so many holes, and such a playable layout for the average golfer. A one-tee start from the first is proving a good initiative, and the club has recorded 47 000 rounds for the past year..
21 October 2021
Golfers who under-rate this relatively short course do so at their peril. Mossel Bay has some of the most challenging greens complexes in South Africa, which only reward accurate approaches and a good touch on and around the greens. On a Garden Route tour of five courses our group found this the trickiest to play in terms of scoring. If ever invited to Augusta National I would play a few rounds at Mossel Bay beforehand when the greens are at their quickest to get a feel of what I could expect at Augusta. The slopes here mean that you cannot expect to put your ball anywhere on the green and expect to two-putt. And some greens are extreme, notably those on the uphill par-5 fifth, the testing long par-4 14th, and uphill short par-4 16th. It's all part of the character of an enjoyably different experience.
01 June 2021
The course is now in great condition. The new greenkeeper has shown that knowledge and hard work can keep Mossel Bay in the Top 100.
Andre Du Plessis
21 January 2021
The course is in beautiful condition, playing longer than it looks. Don't miss the fairways, as the rough is very thick.
30 October 2020
Unfortunately this is the wrong time of year to play Mossel Bay as they recently did their spring treatment. The greens were slow and unpleasant to putt on. Fortunately the magnificent scenery compensated for this disappointment, plus the sight of whales breaching in the Indian Ocean.
25 October 2020
Catch Mossel Bay on a beautiful day, as I did, and it is a fabulous experience, overlooking as it does the Indian Ocean. From start to finish it's an undulating layout, most of the inclinations gentle, but there are a couple of steep climbs, notably up the short par-4 16th, where you are left with a pitch to a hidden green high above you. Longer hitters can drive the green. Quirky holes like this one are a feature of Mossel Bay, and makes it a fun outing for everyone. The 17th is a terrific downhill par-5, with a sting in the tale, as the approach shot is a tricky one, slightly uphill to a narrow and well-guarded green.
23 October 2020
A quaint very playable course that can bare its teeth in the wind. Fantastic layout with awesome character.
22 April 2020
The Mossel Bay greens are in the best condition they have been for several years. They look perfect and putt superbly. I see they have a new greenkeeper following problems in 2019 which resulted in several fairways being wiped out. The fairways now have plenty of grass again. Mossel Bay is one of the unsung gems of the Garden Route, a good value outing.
04 March 2020
Conditioning has been a problem, with large bare patches all over the course. The situation is being addressed, but may be some time before it gets back to its best. Still a fun course to play with beautiful sea views.
19 February 2020
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Other Top 100 Courses in the Area
The Links at Fancourt
George Golf Club