Treasure island offers good sport - at a price

PUBLISHED : Monday, 01 December, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 01 December, 1997, 12:00am

Tropical temperatures, inspiring sea views and an abundance of outstanding courses combine to make the Pacific island of Guam an attractive holiday destination for golfers.

Situated 2,400 kilometres east of Manila, Guam, just 48 kms long and with a population of only 150,000, is an 'unincorporated territory' of the United States.

The island's golf courses can be divided into three categories - public, private and military. For the latter, you need to have a connection with the military to play.

Elsewhere, you can pay a green fee, although it is not cheap. Prices range from US$110 to $190, depending on which course you go to and the time of year.

The best-known courses in Guam are Hatsuho International Country Club, Mangilao Golf Club, Talofofo Golf Resort and Leo Palace Resort.

As host venue to the Guam Open, which forms part of the Omega Asian PGA Tour and was won by American Gerry Norquist this year, the reputation of Leo Palace has been dramatically enhanced around the region.

Temperatures on the island are warm the year round, with an average of 27 degrees Celsius.

The dry season lasts from November to May with the rainy spell - characterised by sudden downpours rather than steady drizzle - from June to October. A covered golf cart is a necessity in the rainy season.

The busiest and most expensive period for golfing in Guam is January to February.