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The Rise in Popularity of Golf in Turkey

An intriguing mix of East and West, Turkey is the cradle of civilizations and cultures that connect Europe as well as Asia and the capital city of civilizations that have ruled over the over the land of Anatolia for long periods of time. Turkey is an exceptional location with breathtaking landscapes amazing ancient ruins and a rich cultural heritage. Turkey has grown into one of the top world destinations.

In the last two years, Turkey has placed among the top destinations for tourism in the world. According to World Tourism Organization (WTO) figures, Turkey has been ranking as the 6th most traveled country worldwide since 2012 and is expected to maintain its spot in 2014 with a record-breaking 41 million visitors from all across the globe. For Europe, Turkey is the 4th most visited destination.

Ministry of Culture and Tourism has been working on innovative strategies to develop new tourism products to satisfy the need for tourism through various methods. When it comes to alternative tourism, which is known as the “Capital of Golfing in Turkey’, Belek is a niche as well as the upscale resort of Antalya is located along the Mediterranean coast.

Belek is the largest and most sought-after golfing spot and has courses created by the legendary Sir Nick Faldo and Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie. Apart from the stunning golf course, Belek is located near the rich heritage and culture that surrounds Antalya.

In the present, Turkey has nearly 25 international-level golf courses. The year 2008 was the time that Turkey has been awarded “The Country of Golf of the the Year” from the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO). Following the time that Tiger Woods played golf in Turkish Airlines Open in 2013, Turkey has got attraction as a golfing destination throughout the world.

The golf industry has grown rapidly over the last two decades in Mediterranean. It is also an essential aspect of tourism in the EMA region. Turkey is, due to its rapid improvement in its golf game, has competing with the top players of Mediterranean Market in Spain and Portugal. Lagardere the Senior Vice-President Golf Roddy Carr stated at the Turkish Airlines Open 2015 that “Spain required 15 years to accomplish what Turkey accomplished in just 3 year.” In the coming time, Turkey is expected to achieve better.

At the beginning of the the 90s Belek is located in Antalya was chosen by the Turkish Government to develop as a destination for golf breaks in Turkey because of the benefits of the this region:

High-level accessibility. (Antalya International Airport, among the largest Airports of Turkey)
There is a lot of land attached to coast, which is ideal for golf course designs.
The ideal climate conditions allow for playing throughout the year round and provide the best golf conditions during the autumn and spring.
The vast supply of water that is sweet.

Due to these reasons, Belek-Antalya has been deemed the capital for golfing in Turkey. However, Antalya is also one of the most popular “sea and sun” as well as “historical or cultural” tourist destinations of Turkey. With 16 gold-plated resorts that are high-end, Belek offers golfers a “full family holiday”.

In the course’s improvement, Belek has turned out one of the top stars in golfing destinations over the past 10 years.

In addition to Belek-Antalya, Istanbul serves with two golf courses of major importance, and there are three golf courses (2 in Bodrum-Mugla, and one in Kusadasi-Aydin) located along Bodrum-Mugla and Kusadasi-Aydin) along the Aegean coast. The influence of architecture from many cultures, the Sultan’s riches stunning views of Bosphorus draw millions of tourists in Istanbul each year.

In addition to its breathtaking splendor, Istanbul serves golf lovers with two of the oldest clubs in Turkey: Kemer Golf Club and Klassis Golf Club. Both clubs have hosted national as well as international competitions, such as the PGA Seniors Tour, European Club Cup Trophy since 1995.

The town of Kusadasi offers 185 acres of 18-hole course that offers a stunning views of Samos Island. It’s an exciting and challenging adventure in the olive and carob trees. Vita Park Golf Club in Bodrum is the first golf club within Turkey and the third in Europe to make use of the high-cost Paspalum turfgrass that is a green alternative.

Regarding the development of Golf the Turkish Golf Federation’s efforts are necessary to highlight. Turkish Golf Federation was established in 1895 under the name that was “Istanbul Klassis golf Club” but was reconstructed at the early 90s. In 1996, the Turkish Golf Federation was founded and was accepted into with the European Golf Association (EGA) in 1997.

The purpose for the association is to encourage golf and tourism in the golf industry. Turkish Golf Federation owns and manages various golf clubs in Turkey. TGF President Ahmet Agaoglu stated that they are passionate about developing the golf sport for the younger generation of golfers as well as making sure that those who are currently playing receive the support they require to stay involved for the foreseeable future.

Since TGF the year it was founded the passion for golf has helped bring the game of golf within Turkey to where it is now and has become one of the world’s most sought-after golfing destinations. Golfers from all over the globe are aware of the beauty of Turkey and what’s accessible in terms of designer courses, as well as high-end accommodations.

We want to spread the sport with our citizens, so that they will also be part of the worldwide golfing community. Contrary to popular opinion that golf is restricted to the western regions of Turkey There are numerous cities in the east with golfers registered who are active in their communities to improve the sport and travel to participate in tournaments and playing across the country.

According to Agaoglu TGF Federation is working closely with the Turkish Government and the group of public and private investors to find more locations where golf courses as well as training facilities could be built. There are currently at least 35 golf course in development within Turkey and sites have been discovered along the coast and across the country to meet increasing demand locally and internationally.

The Turkish Golf Federation has created its Junior Golf League, in which junior golfers from around the world are competing for the chance to be part of the Turkish nation’s golf squad. Turkish Airlines supports the Turkish National Golf Team which is and there are hopes of sending at least one player to this year’s 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo.

Not just the TGF but as well Turkish Airlines contributes Golf sport in the form of developing new opportunities. It is essential to recognize all the work of our National Flight carrier Turkish Airlines (THY).

At present, there are several amateur and professional tournaments in the Turkish Golf Association’s calendar for 2015. In the list three of the most important professional golf tournaments that are on its calendar are Turkish Airlines Challenge, Turkish Airlines Open and the Turkish Airlines Ladies Open, each of which is being held in Belek.

These three events comprise Turkish Airlines’ title sponsored events that have helped to increase the size of Turkish people’s understanding of golf through the introduction of significant tournaments into Turkey. Particularly Turkish Airlines Open Turkish Airlines Open has helped to raise the profile and create a positive perception regarding Turkey as a destination for golf.

It is the Turkish Airlines Open and Ladies Open which is now the cornerstone in the European Tour’s “Final Series’ and Ladies European Tour – takes place in the month of May. It draws some of the biggest athletes in the world, and with the biggest purses available worldwide. It is held in March. Turkish Airlines Challenge is also an important event that is part of the European Tour.

Additionally, Turkish Airlines continues to help golfers all the way from beginning to end including the last round of the Turkish Airlines World Golf Cup Amateur Series scheduled to take place before opening day of the Turkish Airlines Open. In its third year this Amateur Series continues to cross the globe and leave its mark on the game of golf.

With more than 70 events across 47 nations The Amateur Series begins in Johannesburg and moves across the world, giving an opportunity amateur golfers to compete in the hope of making it to the Grand Finals in Belek. Alongside this competition, Turkish Airlines offers to carry the equipment of one golfer free to golfers who want for golfing in Turkey.

Because of all the benefits mentioned in the preceding paragraphs, golf has become among of the major components of tourism in Turkey. Turkish government is adamant about golf as a way to boost tourism. In the present, there are more than 25 planned courses in Antalya as well as eight additional in other regions of Turkey.

In the end, it is possible to say that golf is expanding rapidly throughout Turkey as well. One of the biggest challenges associated with this expansion is to increase the level of interest local to golf in the near future so that we can keep the game alive in Turkey.