Simbithi Golf Course Layout
Simbithi Country Club is a Peter Matkovich designed golf course that has become one of the most talked about golfing destination in KwaZulu Natal, the reason being clear to all who have ventured onto this pristine layout. The condition of the course is second to none with well paced true greens that hold a well struck approach shot, pristine fairways and a layout that will test your course management at every hole. Simbithi Country Club is the first executive golf course to be built in South Africa. With a par of 60, made up of thirteen par 3’s, four par 4’s and one par 5, you might be forgiven for anticipating this golf course as a lesser challenge, but that will be at your peril!
A large number of tees have been created to allow the very young the opportunity of making par! Simbithi is rated as one of only two golf courses in KZN as the Volvo 5 Star Golf Experience winners (Compleat Golfer). The course makes for an enjoyable round of golf.
1st: VEGETABLE GARDEN (Par 3)
From amadumbe to strawberries, brinjals to carrots, watercress to beans, this was the flourishing kitchen garden which fed the Ladlau family and the farm’s workers. Come up short and you’re in the … raspberry patch.
2ND: FARMYARD (Par 3)
Mannie Ladlau’s business was sugar, but his favourites on this farm were his dairy herd—milk, butter and cream for all who lived here—and his fruit—litchis, avos pineapples, pawpaws, granadillas and guavas. Even a small coffee plantation. On this hole, tee off in the paddock where the cows grazed under the trees; hit over coffee and pineapples; put out in the cowshed.
3RD: SHAD RUN (Par 4)
The fig trees behind this tee mark the original sand road down to the beach at Shaka’s Rock—a public thoroughfare. Traffic… a couple of cars per day and a few fishermen on foot was its peak in shad season.
4TH: WILD ORCHIDS (Par 3)
You will still see them along this hole, “dripping from the trees, wrote the Farmers’ Weekly of this “paradise of a farm”. They’re one of the features of the jungle of indigenous trees, shrubs and creepers which distinguish this part of the course.
5TH: MONKEY HAVEN (Par 3)
All the stuff that monkeys love and need remains in this stretch of pristine forest.
6TH: LEGUAAN’S LAIR (Par 3)
Home of Africa’s largest lizard, the water monitor; still seen slipping into the reeds to avoid errant golf balls.
7TH: UNGODIWODODI (Par 4)
Hole of the dirt with a sea view of Salt Rock beach, used to be the farm’s very scenic rubbish dump.
8TH : SHEBEEN (Par 3)
Here, in a hidden clearing in the middle of the crane-break, was the farm’s informal, illegal and very popular distillery and pub, where potent home-brew was made and sampled.
9TH: AMAKHOWE (Par 3)
A prime spot for the hunter-gatherers of one of the world’s most delicious wild mushrooms. Termitomyces umkowaani, locally know as amaKhowe, which spring up after spring and summer rains.
10TH: TRAMLINE (Par 3)
A narrow—gauge line ran through Zorai and neighbouring Tara, taking cut sugar cane to the loading zone en route to the local mill.
11TH: PANIC STATION (Par 3)
Favoured nesting spot for Potamochoerus porcus, or bush pigs; just a snuffle or a fleeting sighting of these fearsome –looking nocturnal creatures caused major consternation among farm-workers weaving home from the shebeen.
12TH: GOLOVANE (Par 5)
These were the little trucks which ran along the farm track, filled with cut cane.
13TH: LOADING ZONE (Par 3)
Nothing (or so we believe) to do with a locally distilled cane spirit of the same name! This was an early—morning meeting place. Farmers and sirdars met here to supervise the send—off of their cane to the mill, to chat and catch up. Local kids were taught to drive here.
14TH: MHLABATHINI (Par 4)
A very sandy area of the farm—most convenient for the making of the greens on the course.
15TH: BANANA HUT (Par 3)
Here is a hide-out; made of banana leaves, used by farm guards whose job was to protect young cane from marauding monkeys and rooting wild pigs.
16TH: UMNYUZI HILL (Par 3)
On these steep, coastal farms, ridging the cane fields was a job for mule-drawn ploughs.
17TH: ISIQHINGANA (Par 3)
Zulu name for the tiniest island—an islet: unless your pitching is spot on, one of the biggest challenges on this deceptively demanding course.
18TH: CRY BABY (Par 4)
The little loco which ran through the farm would toot in the early hours of the morning—a wake up call for farmers, staff and sleeping Marot girls, Kay and Jen, much to their mother Mary’s dismay.