Last week I traveled to Portugal for some warm weather training before embarking on my 2013 season. It was 17-20 degrees all week, making a change from the recent freezing English weather. It was lovely to play on fast greens and lush fairways in just a t-shirt! I played on four fabulous golf courses during my week away. If you are thinking of booking golfing holiday, have a read of what I thought of Portugal’s finest below. Quinta North was the first golf club I played on, located just 20 minutes from the airport. A beautiful tree lined golf set up, Quinta has held the Portuguese Open eight times and in 2001 it was won by young Irish Padraig Harrington. I found it a great course to work the ball off the tee but one wrong move can make it a struggle. The course is in great condition and has fast greens. Even the houses lining the golf course were impressive! I would definitely play here again. The next golf course on my agenda was Boavista. It was a lot hillier than any of the other golf courses but still held many great qualities. There were two distinctive sections to the golf course; one half set on a hill and the other dropping into a valley. There were amazing views of the Atlantic Ocean and surrounding towns from the top. At the bottom of the valley there was a very American feel, with lots of water and large bunkers. The hole that stood out for me on this course was the par 3 6th, which was 230 yards off the back tee across a large valley. Palmares Golf Club was my favourite of the four courses I played. Designed by Robert Trent Jones, the golf course has 27 challenging holes and I was lucky enough to be able to have a go on all of them. A cross between tree lined golf and links golf, it was something that I had never attempted before. Holes 19-27 are set just 10 yards away from a beautiful white sand beach. A must play if you’re ever in the area. The last golf club I played was Laranjal, an American design course opened just two years ago. The 7300 yards long course was tough with extremely quick greens and a lot of water. I really enjoyed my week away experiencing new challenges and courses. Next time you’re booking a golf holiday, make sure you have a go at this brilliant selection.