As a traveler and golfer, I enjoy exploring golf courses all around the world as well as in my backyard. Mexico boasts a few unique courses that are challenging and unique, but also capture the area’s natural beauty. Below are three golf courses that I think are the best in Mexico.

Riviera Cancun Golf Club

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Riviera Cancun Golf Club was designed and built by retired American professional golfer Jack Nicklaus and his international golf course design firm in 2008. The 18-hole, par-72 course is filled with ocean views, lush landscaping, and heavily contoured greens. And it will come as a surprise to you when I say that the golf course does not feature any homes or other distractions that have become commonplace on golf courses today!

When you pay for a round of golf at Riviera Cancun Golf Club, you will get the chance to indulge in an all-inclusive lunch before or after you tee off. Not only that, but the dining area is nestled among the beautiful scenery of the 18th hole. After an all-inclusive lunch and a day of golfing, feel free to explore the restaurants and hotels that populate the area. The golf course is located in the Hotel Zone, so there is plenty of nightlife to explore afterwards!

Mayakoba, Riviera Maya

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The Mayakoba golf course made history when it became home to the first PGA TOUR event, the OHL Classic, held outside of the United States or Canada. The OHL Classic has been held annually at Mayakoba since 2007. The tournament is considered one of the finest among professionals, and as such, the tournament is held at one of the finest golf clubs in Mexico.

As you’re making your way through the Greg Norman-designed course, you’ll get to marvel at its ecologically diverse beauty and while pondering about the professional golfers who have walked the greens before you. The par-71 luxury golf course spans 7,039-yards that highlights three diverse landscapes of the area: tropical jungle, dense mangroves, and oceanfront stretches of sand. Although the course may be difficult for the average Joe to play, Norman designed the course with all levels of player in mind. Each hole on the course is fitted with five different tee blocks, so players of all skill levels will have the chance to play this internationally acclaimed course.

Pacifico at Punta Mita Golf Club

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Also designed by Jack Nicklaus and his design firm, the Pacifico Golf Course offers views of white-sand beaches along the Pacific Ocean and the Sierra Madre Mountains. The 7,104-yard, par-72 course features eight ocean-side holes, but that’s not what the course is most famous for.

The “Tail of the Whale” hole, a “19th par-3 hole” is notorious for being the only golf course in the world with a natural island green. Not only that, but the hole was engineered to be extra challenging by having an oceanside tee on the beach and shaping the green to reflect the shape of a whale’s tale. Speaking of whales, the course also offers golfers the chance to watch whales during their seasonal migration!

Have you played any of these holes? Let me know in the comments!