Cozumel is an island lying just off the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico. It is located in the Caribbean Sea and sits opposite Playa del Carmen, just eleven miles away on the Mayan Riviera. The most direct way to get to Cozumel is to fly into the island’s international airport. Another option is to fly to Cancun, take a short trip to Playa del Carmen, and from there take a short ferry ride across to the island. The final way to get there is to take a cruise which stops at Cozumel, though you’ll probably only get to spend one day there. Cozumel has many attractions, but for golfers the main draw is the Nicklaus design golf course at the Cozumel Country Club. Set amidst dense tropical forest, this 18-hole, par-72, 6,734-yard course is a favorite with golfers of all ages and levels and hosted a major Celebrity Golf Tournament in June 2013.
This user-friendly course incorporates four sets of tees and offers a special short course ‘Fastee’ option for beginners, juniors, and seniors. For more experienced golfers there are plenty of mangroves, wetlands, trees, water hazards, and significant carries to keep you on your toes. In fact one of the main goals of the designers was to create a course adaptable to all levels, and they have succeeded admirably. For being on an island there is a distinct lack of ocean views due to the course being a bit inland and the low-lying terrain being surrounded by dense forest. The upside is that each fairway and green is secluded and peaceful and there is marvelous flora and fauna all around. In fact the club has done such a great job at preserving and respecting the natural environment that in 2006 it became the first course in Mexico to be designated a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary.
The Cozumel Country Club is home to iguanas, crocodiles, raccoons, and blue crabs. One minor complaint many golfers have here is that they lose a lot of balls due to the dense vegetation flanking the fairways, and since crocs live in some of the water features trying to retrieve your ball from anywhere wet is a big no-no. The best way to go is to purchase an all-inclusive option at a nearby hotel, such as the Playa Azul Golf & Beach Hotel, and get all your golf free, except for cart rental. Don’t forget to take a day off the greens to explore this beautiful island or to check out the world-class scuba diving.