Mayakoba Classic Golf Course

El Camaleon Golf Course Overview

The Mayakoba Classic El Camaleon Golf Course in Mexico, designed by Australian golfing great, Greg Norman, has some pretty unique hazards to overcome. The signature hole is the first – a long-par five with a wide landing area surrounded by jungle. In the middle of the fairway is the notorious “Devils Mouth”, an underground cave of mystical significance to the Mayan people.

El Camaleon is said to be a real “shark bite”. PGA players see it as a serious challenge, with its tightened fairways, slick putting greens and strong ocean winds. Previous Mayakoba Golf Classic winner, Fred Funk, rated the condition of the course as a “9 or 10” and its design as an “8 or 9”. “It rewards good shots and penalizes bad shots, and that’s all you can ask”, he said.

The clubhouse, reflecting Mayan architecture, overlooks the 18th hole. The adjoining practice facilities and driving range are said to be 5-star.

Mayakoba has a unique system of lagoons and canals. Golfers can step out of their nearby hotel rooms into “lanchas” – or covered boats, which will drop them off at the tee box.

Mayakoba Classic Golf Course Front Nine

The course starts strongly with four of the best holes – the opener, the short par three second and the long third and fourth. The course then moves into the mangrove swamps, where the real fun begins!

Water is the tricky bit on the fifth and sixth holes. The seventh, a short par three overlooking the Ocean, is challenging because of wind.

El Camaleon Golf Course Back Nine

The 10th hole is said to be the best par three on the course. It is slightly more than 200 yards and has a deep canal running along the right side. It takes a heroic tee shot over the canal to get to the short 11th, before heading on to the difficult long 12th – which is surrounded by limestone walls.

The course heads back to the mangrove swamps. The 18th is a good long closer with strategic bunkers on both the fairway and the green.

Mayakoba Classic Course Specifics

  • 18 Holes
  • Par 72
  • Over 7 000 yards from the professional tee
  • 100% Paspalum grass, a new hybrid turf which thrives on brackish water
  • Four sets of tees
  • Four underground caves
  • Water hazards on all but three holes
  • Two beachfront holes
  • Pitching green and driving range
  • Golf carts equipped with GPS yardage