Nullarbor Links is an 18-hole par 72 golf course, said to be "the World's Longest Golf course", situated along 1,365 kilometres of the Eyre Highway along the southern coast of Australia in two states (South Australia and Western Australia), notably crossing the Nullarbor Plain at the head of the Great Australian Bight.
|Location||Eyre Highway, Australia|
|Owned by||Various owners|
|Operated by||Eyre Highway Operators Association|
|Events hosted||Chasing the Sun|
|Designed by||Robert Stock (consultant)|
The idea for the course came from Alf Caputo and Bob Bongiorno, both active in the Eyre Highway Operators Association, over a bottle of red wine at the Balladonia Roadhouse. Bongiorno wanted to encourage travellers to stop, spend their money and avoid dangerous driver fatigue.
A feasibility study was completed in September 2006, and public play began in August 2009. The course officially opened on 22 October 2009. As of 2022[update], more than 20,000 travellers had officially played it, and bought a scorecard for stamping at the roadhouses en route. Course officials have estimated that nearly as many travellers had played the course without paying any fee.
The course begins and ends (depending on the direction of crossing) in the goldmining town of Kalgoorlie, Western Australia and the coastal town of Ceduna, South Australia. Professional golfer Robert Stock, from Manchester, England, consulted on the design that incorporates 7 holes from existing courses and 11 holes created at roadhouses and roadside stops.
The purposely constructed holes have tees and greens that use artificial grass, with natural desert land between. The average distance between holes is 66 kilometres (41 mi), with the largest gap being almost 200 kilometres (120 mi).
One of the holes is right in the middle of a sheep station, and has views of the shearing shed as well as the sheep. Other unusual hazards include crows, emus, kangaroos, three species of deadly poisonous snakes, wedge-tailed eagles and wombat holes. A further complication is that the ambient temperatures can reach over 50 °C (122 °F) during the day.
|Hole 1||Oyster Beds||485 metres (530 yd)||5||Graham Hoffrichter||Ceduna Golf Club, Ceduna, South Australia|
|Hole 2||Denial Bay||370 metres (405 yd)||4||William McKenzie||Ceduna Golf Club, Ceduna, South Australia|
|Hole 3||Windmills||260 metres (284 yd)||4||Pioneer Drive||Penong Golf Course, Penong, South Australia|
|Hole 4||Wombat Hole||520 metres (569 yd)||5||Karinkabie||Nundroo Roadhouse, Nundroo, South Australia|
|Hole 5||Dingo's Den||538 metres (588 yd)||5||Coral & Scobie Beattie||Nullarbor Roadhouse, Nullarbor, South Australia|
|Hole 6||Border Kangaroo||160 metres (175 yd)||3||Don Harrington||Border Village Roadhouse, Border Village, South Australia|
|Hole 7||Nullarbor Nymph||315 metres (344 yd)||4||Steve Patupis||Eucla Golf Course, Eucla, Western Australia|
|Hole 8||Watering Hole||330 metres (361 yd)||4||McGill & Kennedy||Mundrabilla Roadhouse, Mundrabilla, Western Australia|
|Hole 9||Brumby's Run||125 metres (137 yd)||3||Barbara and Brian Pike||Madura Roadhouse, Madura, Western Australia|
|Hole 10||Eagles Nest||347 metres (379 yd)||4||Bindy||Cocklebiddy Roadhouse, Cocklebiddy, Western Australia|
|Hole 11||90 Mile Straight||310 metres (339 yd)||4||Edward John Eyre & John Baxter||Caiguna Roadhouse, Caiguna, Western Australia|
|Hole 12||Skylab||175 metres (191 yd)||3||Pat Prendiville||Balladonia Roadhouse, Balladonia, Western Australia|
|Hole 13||Sheep's Back||141 metres (154 yd)||3||John and Heather Cambell||Fraser Range Sheep Station, Fraser Range, Western Australia|
|Hole 14||Golden Horse||385 metres (421 yd)||4||Laurie Sinclair||Norseman Golf Club, Norseman, Western Australia|
|Hole 15||Ngadju||463 metres (506 yd)||5||Mort Harslett||Norseman Golf Club, Norseman, Western Australia|
|Hole 16||Silver Lake||392 metres (429 yd)||4||Kevin Higgins||Kambalda Golf Club, Kambalda, Western Australia|
|Hole 17||Golden Mile||502 metres (549 yd)||5||Bob Bongiorno||Kalgoorlie Golf Course, Kalgoorlie, Western Australia|
|Hole 18||CY O'Connor||356 metres (389 yd)||4||Alf Caputo||Kalgoorlie Golf Course, Kalgoorlie, Western Australia|
Playing the courseEdit
The course can be played in either direction. A score card can be purchased in Ceduna or Kalgoorlie for A$70 (as of June 2013). Players can either provide their own clubs, or hire them at each hole for a fee. To preserve the nature of the Nullarbor, players are required to tee their balls up on the course's fairways and are discouraged from driving vehicles on the fairways. On presenting the completed card they can claim a Nullarbor Links Certificate for playing "the World’s Longest Golf course".
The course is the host of the Chasing the Sun golf tournament, which was inaugurated in 2009. The tournament has been held every September since its inception, other than in 2020 and 2021, when it was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- McInerney, Sarah (10 September 2009). "Golfing heads to the outback". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- Collerton, Sarah (13 October 2009). "Don't let Aussie outback putt you off". ABC News. Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- Hamilton, Jodie (2 October 2022). "Australia's roughest golf course comes with wombat holes and ball-stealing crows, but these golfers love it". ABC News. Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- "The World's Longest Golf Course: Nullarbor Links". Nullarbor Roadhouse. 20 August 2015. Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- McInerney, Sarah (10 September 2009). "Golfing heads to the outback". Traveller. Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- "Golfers tee off on world's longest golf course". ABC News. 22 October 2009. Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- Riviera, Gloria (22 October 2009). "World's Longest Golf Course Open for Play". ABC News (USA). Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- Lucas, Jarrod (4 May 2019). "World's longest golf course — all 1,365km of it — has just turned 10". ABC News. Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- Hart, Jeremy (29 November 2009). "Gone to play golf at Nullarbor Links. I may be some time". The Guardian. Retrieved 2 October 2022.
- "Course Information" (PDF). Nullarbor Links. Retrieved 24 March 2019.
- Monck, Carwyn (13 June 2022). "Chasing the Sun tournament returns to Nullarbor Links". Kalgoorlie Miner. Retrieved 2 October 2022.