Day 188 on the Road
Playing New Zealand’s Most Popular Sport
Believe it or not, golf is the highest participation sport in New Zealand. We’re going to try it out at the Cromwell Golf Club. If you like this video then check out more of our 365 Days: 365 Activities at our YouTube Channel!
Today we’re going to take part in New Zealand’s biggest sport and they may come as a surprise to you, it’s golf.
This morning in the Alexandra Holiday Park we are mingling with the locals there is a bunch of quails grazing on the grass right in front of our campervan it’s pretty cool this quail right here is not native to New Zealand it was introduced by some settlers in the 1900s. The early settlers to New Zealand also introduced rabbits they first introduced rabbits for hunting but they quickly became a pest endangering many of the ecosystem in New Zealand but they are so cute who can be mad at them.
We then head out to the Court House Cafe which is located in the middle of the Alexandra Town in the beautiful heritage building.
Look at that. Welcome to Alexandra.
Once fuelled up for the day we then hit the road to our destination which is Cromwell and the road between Alexandra and Cromwell absolutely stunning as we make our way along the Clutha River which is lovely with milky blue waters along the Cromwell Gorge. And our activity of the day is to do some golfing in Cromwell which might not seem like your classic backpacker activity but actually golfing is the highest participation sport in New Zealand so we just have to try it out. And not only that it’s relatively cheap activity to as well golf courses have a green fee of between 10 to 40 bucks so it’s pretty affordable too.
Golf-wise Laura and I have absolutely zero experience aside from a few drunken evenings going mini golfing in cities like Auckland there is absolutely no way we are able to transfer any of our skill sinto golfing and it shows really early on. We are still hole number one believe it or not we haven’t even seen the flagpole just yet and Laura and I are already over 10 shots it’s quite incredible how bad we are and we actually have to be really polite and let many of the locals pass in front of us because we simply don’t have the skills and we’ll be holding them back for hours on.
But admittedly Laura and I don’t mind being so bad at golfing because we get to spend heaps of time outdoors in the beautiful scenery and who can complain about that? Golfing is a great way to spend and extended period of time outdoors and still have fun and compete a little bit with your friends. I actually really enjoy it.
As for being ranked well Laura and I are going to leave that to other people because there is absolutely no way we will be able to do any good score anywhere. Although our score card is actually starting to amount to quite huge number I don’t think that’s the concept in golf.
It’s only about after 30 minutes that Laura and I reach the first hole but we’ll blame that on the wind.
The wind is being a bit of a pain in the arse. As I was saying.
Despite it being pretty windy today the Cromwell Golf Club actually receives quite a lot of sunshine hours in this area of New Zealand so it means that course is dry underfoot it’s not too squelchy which is pretty ideal. It also means that the Cromwell golf course is open year-round cos it’s never usually affected by the weather.
As we’re making our only to the second hole we’ll make sure to skip the rest of the holes pretty quickly in this video or else you’ll be literally watching this video for about two days straight.
But the Cromwell Golf Course does have 18 holes but for Robin and I today we’re gonna just being doing 9 which is a good amount and actually a good amount of time to spend outside in this beautiful environment.
As with every guy golfing for the first time I love driving the golf caddy it is so much fun. it is definitely my favourite part of the day. That and trying to find my golf balls scattered all around the green.
Admittedly I’m having a really hard time aiming with my club and getting the ball to go where I want it to go so almost every single time that I shoot at the ball I have to figure out where the hell did it end up.
But like with everything practice makes better and as we progressing through the 9 holes that we’re doing today we are seeing ourselves getting better and better as we are going and our number of tries to get into the hole are getting lower and lower and lower.
When picking up the clubs at the golf club we also got a little bit of an introduction to all the different clubs that we would be using today and also what they are all used for. Each different club has a different purpose and thanks to the explanation that we got early one we are able to choose the best one for each of the occasions that we are encountering.
As we said before, golfing is the highest participation sport in New Zealand with approximately 7 million rounds played per year and with golf courses like this one we can definitely see why. And the Cromwell Golf Course is actually considered one of the best inland golf courses in New Zealand it’s actually the most inland golf course.
Cromwell is a town built of the fruit industry there are heaps. There are heaps of orchards all around the area and especially around this golf course making it look super unique. And as a good tip for any backpackers on a working holiday visa, Cromwell is one of the best places to score a job as a fruit picker.
The season here is really long and they really need heaps of workers.
And it’s after a couple more failing shots that we are rounding up our golf experience right here in Cromwell. We really had a blast Laura and I tallying up the score is actually quite a hard task because we went sky high with 22 points scored by each of us on the first hole alone. That’s crazy bad.
Well. I win. Good game.