The golf industry in the Algarve region of Portugal has been experiencing significant growth in recent years, with numbers increasing 21% from 2019 and a staggering 73% from 2021. This coastal region, located in the southern part of Portugal, is now considered one of the leading golf destinations in Europe.
According to local reports, the Algarve region has seen an increase in both the number of golf courses and the number of players. In the past decade, several new golf courses have been built and many existing courses have undergone renovations, making them more appealing to players. Most notable of these is Dom Pedro's Laguna Golf Course that recently reopened to guests in 2022. The course has seen a multimillion Euro redevelopment that has seen new bunkers and fairways reseeding to enhance the course condition.
One of the factors contributing to the growth of the golf industry in the Algarve is the excellent weather conditions. With an average of 300 days of sunshine per year and mild temperatures, the region is perfect for playing golf all year round. This has provided tourist operators to provide golf for an extended season, further increasing turnover and profitability.
In addition, the beautiful coastal scenery and the lush green fairways provide a stunning backdrop for golf, with many tourists citing the scenery as one of the major driving factors for them choosing The Algarve as their golfing holiday destination.
The Algarve region continues to increase the number of high-end golf resorts available for potential holidaymakers. Quinta do Lago, traditionally the preferred choice for high-end golf is being challenged by the likes of Monte Rei further East, with plans to develop a second course there in 2024.
These resorts combine luxurious accommodations, as well as access to world-class golf courses and other recreational facilities, something that's in increasing demand for today's ever-demanding golfing clients. The golf courses themselves are designed to international standards, with the likes of Nick Faldo, Arnold Palmer, and Sir Henry Cotton cited as notable course designers. These Algarve golf courses offer a challenging but enjoyable experience for players of all skill levels and is perhaps the reason the area has seen such marked increases in visitors over the last 3 years.
In addition to attracting tourists, the growth of the golf industry in the Algarve has also had a positive impact on the local economy. The increased number of visitors to the region has created jobs in the hospitality and tourism sectors, as well as in the construction and maintenance of golf courses. The UK is still the largest market, attracting 1.1 million golfers to the region in 2021, however, Germany has also seen significant growth with nearly 600,000 holidaymakers descending on The Algarve in the same year. These stats look set to grow as covid restrictions ease and travel becomes more accessible.
Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the golf industry in the Algarve continues to thrive. The region has implemented strict health and safety measures to ensure the well-being of players and staff, and the golf courses have remained open for business. As these Covid restrictions continue to ease, we forecast a potential uplift of 16% in golf tourism for 2024.
In recent years, the growth of the golf industry in the Algarve region has been particularly strong in the eastern part of the region. According to local tourism authorities, golf tourism in the east Algarve has seen a significant increase in the number of visitors in recent years, with an estimated 320,000 more golfers visiting the area compared to just a few years ago.
This increase in golf tourism has been attributed to a number of factors, including the growth of the golf industry in the Algarve as a whole, as well as the expansion of the transportation network in the region, which makes it easier for visitors to reach the eastern part of the Algarve. In addition, the development of new golf courses and resorts in the area has made it a more attractive destination for golfers.
In conclusion, the Algarve region of Portugal is now considered one of the leading golf destinations in Europe, attracting golf enthusiasts from around the world with its excellent weather conditions, beautiful scenery, and high-end golf resorts. The growth of the golf industry in the region has also had a positive impact on the local economy, creating jobs and contributing to the prosperity of the area.