The Dunes is located on a sandy peninsula in Matarangi on the Coromandel peninsula. In the height of the summer this area is one of the more popular locations for Aucklanders to holiday, and despite the fact that this course is located a few steps from the beach its design is more parkland in style (pine trees line the fairway) than links.
9 holes of the course were originally designed by Sir Bob Charles with the second 9 added years later (in the early 2000s). At a little over 6600 yards, this course plays at par-73 and will most likely be enjoyed by golfers who are looking for the quiet seclusion and beauty of the Coromanels specifically. The location of this course is not near a major city and most likely will be on an itinerary that includes beach time with the family, sport fishing and day trips to Cathedral Cove.
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1st: 381 yard par-4 plays toward Mercury Bay and is a great starting hole. Make sure to stay away from the pine trees to the left and marvel in that the green is only a few yards from the beach.
2nd: Positioned with hole 1 away from the rest of the course, this hole is on the seaward side and tracks back alongside the initial hole. Being straight is important, and as bunkers guard the green to the front be sure to take plenty of club for the approach.
The next few holes provide a different feel from the first couple. Lacking trees, the fairways are narrow and one will find this part of the course has many water hazards.
3rd: The 3rd is a par-5 that sweeps from left to right and has a small pieces of a lake to the right side in front of the green.
5th, 7th- Par-3s that reward players who can avoid the water hazards, with the 7th featuring a forced carry from the men's tees.
8th: Par-4 slight dogleg left which narrows as one approaches the green. Water borders both sides of the bit of land that is in front of the green, which is backed by trees.
10th: At 480 yards this is one of the better par-5s in the country. The course opens up for the 9th and 10th holes, with the 10th sitting toward the end of the promontory... offering beautiful views of the ocean.
11th: Par-3 which is situated next to the shoreline. This is the longest par-3 on the course and a beast if one is not straight off of the tee due to the cut of the high rough.
13th/14th: Back to back par-5s, with 13 being a dogleg right to a green nestled on the beach. 14 is a long hole which plays up to the ocean but unfortunately has pine trees that line the course - blocking the view of the beach for the entire hole.
15th: Shares what has to be one of the largest bunkers in New Zealand with the 14th.
18th: This course finishes with a par-3. The tee shot needs to account for a large pine tree that guards the left side of the fairway.