KwaZulu-Natal Top 23
22

Vulintaba

Near Newcastle, Northern KZN - KwaZulu-Natal

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Activities manager: Hein Currie
Greenkeeper: Arthur Westraad

Four tees / Par 72

Yellow 6629 metres, CR74.2/134
White 6155 metres, CR71.2/130
Blue 5605 metres, CR68.5/124
Red 5254 metres, CR66.6/118
Women’s blue, CR75.1/143
Women’s red, CR72.7/138

Visitor Green Fee

Hotel guest R100 (9), R150 (18)
Affiliated R120 & R200,
non-affiliated R180 & R300

Course designer

Peter Matkovich 2009,
DDV Design 2013

Contact

087 310 4564
www.vulintaba.co.za

This isolated country estate in an amphitheatre of the Northern Drakensberg has a magnificent 9-hole course originally created by Peter Matkovich when the property was first launched under the name of Dunblane. It is in a sublime pristine setting of prairie grasslands with a mountain backdrop.

It is the closest Berg resort to Gauteng (300 kilometres), and this is a hidden gem with an amazing wow factor. The green fees are excellent value. There’s a 69-room hotel on site for visitors, as it is 20 kilometres from Newcastle along a lonely tar road.

The course was originally designed with the intention of becoming an 18-holer, but a change of ownership in 2012 saw that scenario scrapped, as well as a change of name to one from the local Zulu language. The late Douw van der Merwe of DDV Design altered some of the holes and built a variety of alternate tees so that the course plays entirely differently the second time around. These tees are adventurously situated on the fourth and seventh, providing two short par-4s to go alongside two long ones.

The holes are uniformly excellent, varied and challenging, none more so than the uphill par-5 third to the highest point of the layout. The climb sets you up for a thrilling downhill tee shot at the superb fourth. The round ends with a strong 550-metre par 5.

Additional Course Facts

Practice Facility

250-metre range adjoining the first hole; short-game facility at clubhouse.

Did You Know

1/ Golf is just one of several activities available for guests and home owners. There is fishing, and trails for mountain bikers and hikers, and 4×4 enthusiasts. Vulintaba hosts cycle events.

2/ Vulintaba is one of seven courses deep in the heart of the Drakensberg, stretching over a distance of 700 kilometres. They range from Drakensberg Gardens (18) in the south to Highland Gate (18) in the north. In between are Champagne Sports Resort (18), Cathedral Peak (9), Monks Cowl (9) and Amphitheatre (9).

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Halfway House
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Locker Room
19th Hole
Course Etiquette
Course Reviews
Vulintaba has sadly gone backwards in conditioning since re-opening after lockdown. The greens are still good, but the fairways are average at best. It hasn't helped that Vulintaba has had more than 300mm of rain in recent weeks. The course just doesn't look that well tended, but then again resources are limited with so little golfing traffic to bring in revenue. It's a lonely course during the week, I was the only person playing on an overcast Friday. Notwithstanding all that it is still worth the 20-kilometre drive from Newcastle to play there if you are in the area. On a sunny day the setting could not be more splendid.
Stuart McLean
29 November 2020

An excellent "9-hole" layout that makes use of different tees, so that it feels as if you are playing two different nines.

Trevor King
08 March 2020
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