Spain vs. Portugal for Budget Golf Holidays: Comparative Analysis 2024

Choosing the perfect destination for a budget-friendly golf holiday can be as tricky as a tough par five. For those looking to combine the love of golf with the charm of European culture, Spain and Portugal offer some of the best options.

Both countries are renowned for their beautiful landscapes, pleasant climates, and excellent golf courses. But when it comes to getting the most value on a golf holiday, differences start to emerge. In this article, we’ll dive into a comparative analysis of Spain and Portugal as destinations for budget golf holidays in 2024.

For those considering Portugal, golf breaks in Portugal offer a variety of options that cater to both seasoned golfers and enthusiastic beginners. We will explore costs, seasonal advantages, course options, and overall experiences to help you decide where your next golfing adventure should be.

Golf Holiday Costs in Spain and Portugal

Golf holiday expenses can vary widely between Spain and Portugal, influenced by the location, quality of the courses, and the timing of the visit. In Portugal, for instance, an affordable golf package might include 3 nights’ accommodation and 2 rounds of golf starting from £149 at places like Pestana Carvoeiro in the West Algarve. If you are thinking of spending a golf holiday in other places, maybe Porto is a good option.

Is Porto Good for Golf?

Although Porto is not as well known for its golf courses as the Algarve, it is quickly growing in popularity. The coastal city might be better known for its rich history, stunning architecture, and fine wines, but it is also a top-class golf holiday destination, thanks to the number of spectacular championship golf courses within a stone’s throw of the city center.

The cost of a golf holiday in Porto can vary depending on several factors, such as the time of year, number of people traveling, type of accommodation, and number of rounds of golf.

On average, a budget option could cost around €500-€700 per person for a week-long trip during low season, a moderate option could cost around €1,000-€1,500 per person for a week-long trip during shoulder season, and a luxury option could cost €2,000 or more per person for a week-long trip during high season. It’s best to check with a travel agent or do some research online to get a more accurate estimate based on your specific needs and preferences.

These packages often attract golfers looking for value without compromising on the quality of the experience. Spain, with its diverse regions, also offers a range of prices, but the cost tends to be slightly higher due to the popularity of regions like Costa del Sol and the historical richness of courses there. Understanding these cost structures is essential for budget-conscious golfers.

Climate and Year-Round Golfing

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The ability to play golf year-round is a significant draw for both Spain and Portugal. Portugal’s climate, which remains mild in winter, ideal in spring and fall, and warm in summer, allows for golfing throughout the year.

This makes Portugal especially appealing for those looking to escape colder winters without sacrificing their golf game. Spain also boasts a favorable climate, particularly in regions like Andalusia, where mild winters allow for golfing all year round. These climatic conditions contribute to the overall appeal of both destinations for holidaying golfers.

January can be temperamental with rains, however. The northern courses suffer more in this regard in winter. In summer, high temperatures across the country are made more bearable by cool sea breezes.

Can You Play Golf in Spain in December?

Throughout December, January, and February in Tenerife, the temperature can reach 20 degrees during the day while the likes of Murcia and Marbella on the Costa Del Sol can reach 18 degrees. This is ideal weather for playing golf and exploring the local area.

Variety and Quality of Golf Courses

Both Spain and Portugal are home to some of Europe’s most acclaimed golf courses. Portugal’s Algarve region, for instance, is famous for its stunning coastal courses like Vilamoura and Vale do Lobo, which offer breathtaking views and challenging plays.

Spain counters with equally impressive options such as Valderrama and La Manga, known worldwide for hosting prestigious tournaments and offering top-tier golfing experiences. The choice between the two may come down to personal preference or specific desires for course amenities and design.

Golfing Culture and Experience

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The golfing experience extends beyond the course itself. It encompasses the culture of the country, the hospitality of its people, and the overall atmosphere of the holiday. Spain offers a vibrant culture with a rich history that can be explored in cities like Seville and Madrid, where golfers can enjoy local cuisine and explore historic sites after a day on the greens.

Portugal, with its relaxed vibe and picturesque settings, particularly in the Algarve, provides a tranquil escape where golfers can unwind and enjoy leisurely days both on and off the course.

Comparing Golf Holiday Packages

When choosing a golf holiday, the packages offered can make a significant difference. In Portugal, the focus often lies on comprehensive deals that bundle golf rounds with hotel stays and sometimes even meals and spa services.

These packages are designed to provide convenience and savings, making it easy for golfers to manage their holidays without the need to plan every detail. Spain’s packages are similar but may vary more significantly from region to region, with some offering luxury experiences that cater to those not strictly on a budget.

Accessibility and Travel Considerations

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Traveling to your golfing holiday is part of the experience. Portugal’s Faro airport, located in the Algarve, is well-connected to most major European cities, making it easily accessible for most travelers.

Spain’s major golfing regions like Costa del Sol are also well-serviced by airports in Malaga and Sevilla, though some of the more exclusive courses can be a bit more challenging to reach. The accessibility of these destinations can influence the overall cost and convenience of the golf holiday.


Deciding between Spain and Portugal for a budget golf holiday involves considering several factors. Cost-wise, Portugal generally offers more comprehensive deals that may appeal to those looking to stretch their euros further.

The climate in both countries supports year-round golfing, making them both attractive options for winter escapes. The quality and variety of the golf courses are exceptional, though the choice may hinge on whether one prefers the lush, scenic courses of Portugal or the historically rich and challenging courses of Spain.

Both destinations provide a unique golfing culture and an enriching travel experience outside of the fairways. Ultimately, the decision might come down to personal preference or specific desires for the holiday experience, but either choice promises a memorable and enjoyable golfing adventure.