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Golf Australia Express : OTG Express 160
If you haven’t fallen in love with the layout within the first three holes, you will be more than smitten as you stand on the 4th tee – right on the edge of the clear turquoise waters of the Coral Coast. This visually stunning hole measures 190 metres and, with three bunkers surrounding the green, it is regarded as being the hardest par-3 on the course. From the forward tees, most players can use a mid- iron to find the green and avoid the waste bunker that separates the hole from the ocean to the left, and the hazard lining the hole to the right. The tee of the par-5 5th hole offers the last panoramic ocean view for an hour or so as you make a long hill climb back to the clubhouse and onward toward a quartet of inland holes, which are laid out across the most dramatic landscape with large elevation changes coming into play. It is hard to believe you are even on the same course you have been playing for the first five holes as you stand on the tee at the par-5 6th hole, which is elevated about 60 metres (180 feet) above the start of the snaking fairway. The view all the way to the hole, nearly 500 metres away, is amazing with the strip-cut fairway turning right, past a large bunker to the left, before veering back to the left as it climbs gently towards a wide green that lies in a natural amphitheatre created by large deep rough covered hills. Another elevated tee awaits at the par- 4 8th hole. The tee is again perched high above the start of the short grass and from the blue markers a carry of 150 metres is needed to find the fairway that climbs steeply out of a valley. Looking across the landscape from this tee, it is easy to imagine you might be standing in the heart of Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula, not on the coast of a Fijian island. These inland holes are sheltered a little from the wind, which comes back into play after you cross back to the ocean side holes starting at the 10th hole. The land covered by Natadola’s back nine ranges from beautifully undulating to being quite dramatic. CLICK ABOVE TO VIEW NATADOLA BAY'S IMAGE GALLERY
OTG Express 159 - PGA Wrap
OTG Express 161