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Bournemouth is probably the top English golf tour destination and it’s easy to see why as, in addition to some superb courses, the town offers a seven mile strip of soft, sandy beachfront, numerous accommodation options and a vibrant nightlife.
a heathland setting - gorgeous to look at and testing to negotiate. The likes of Tony Jacklin, Nick Faldo, Greg Norman and Sandy Lyle have all played here. You stroll between corridors of mature trees and on well kept fairways offering almost springy turf. It makes for easy walking, the only real slope coming on the last hole and by then the clubhouse is in sight and refreshments minutes away.
We liked, but couldn’t get the better of, the 16th’s treacherous three tiered green and played the 18th - regarded as one of the best finishing holes in the UK - in driving rain. Despite that, it didn’t dampen our enthusiasm for a gem of a course that we would love to try again.
If you are playing here for the first time it pays to get the nicely produced course guide and, if you’ve had a good round, keep it as a momento.
The next day we took on a very different challenge. For our visit to the picturesque Isle of Purbeck course the sun came out but with it came a stiff breeze. The clear skies enabled us to see
The golf
he photographs shown here
have a taunting quality - when a colleague and I played these courses in late September we mainly did so
under grey clouds and rain rather than
the depicted beautiful sunshine. But while we sometimes wished we could have escaped a soaking there was no disguising the quality and charm of Ferndown, the Isle of Purbeck and Broadstone.
The former is an immaculate course in
 Broadstone’s heathland beauty
Putting other destinations
in the shade?
Is there a better place for holiday golf than Bournemouth and its surrounds? Richard Bryson heads south to find out

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