Today, we will continue to explore the next golf course in the north of Vietnam with Bill Healey, it's is Heron lake golf course (Also call by name is Dam Vac Golf Course), with only 1 hours driver from Hanoi center, this golf course is ideal destination for golfer living in Hanoi city.
Laid out along the pristine landscape of Heron Lake is the Heron Lake Golf Course Resort, a place where nature and golf coexist in harmony.
A stunning rural property with an abundance of wildlife, golfers of all levels regularly rave about the course's unique natural design. With the heron birds, native palm and fir trees maintained within this natural habitat, the course feels as if it has always been there.
A masterpiece designed by Pacific Coast Design (Australia), they used Heron Lake's intrinsic features to determine what goes where. The course makes use of water on most holes, along with extensive greenside bunkering. This effort created a unique golfing experience in a beautiful natural setting. It has proven to be a test for low-handicap golfer but is also enjoyable for the average golfer.
Located near the airport and just 50 km from Hanoi, it took us about an hour to reach the Heron Lake clubhouse. Greeted by friendly and smiling caddies, we were efficiently processed and prepared for our round .. lockers assigned, caddies assigned and golf kits taken to our carts.
Covering some 90 hectares, we found the course blends well with the lake on almost every hole. (The lake was created with the completion of the Dam Vac Reservoir in Vinh Phuc Province). The turf is Paspalum grass importuned from Australia, which made hitting from either the fairway or rough not too demanding.
True to form, the 14th was one of the top par-4 holes we played. (in our last polling, this was the #1 par-4 in the country). At 405 metres, the hole was challenging in length, with the bunkers protecting the green, and water hazards threatening those of us who strayed too far off the fairway.
The well-trained and courteous caddies ensured I was selecting the proper club and aiming for the proper safe landing spot. With water coming into play on most holes, I had to rely on my caddie’s input often.
Completing the 18th, we made our way up to Heron Lake’s contemporary clubhouse for a nice dinner with General Manager Mr. Thanh Vu Duy and course superintendent Gerard Delancey. Casual conversation throughout the evening focused on the good playing condition of the course and the efforts they make to maintain high ecological standards to protect the surrounding natural habitat. As with the original design, the maintenance team has maintained a standard of working with nature, not against it.
Though not too far from Hanoi, Heron Lakes is convenient any day of the week. It provides a welcomed break from city life. I’d recommend it for golfers of any experience level, and am looking to make my way back there with any opportunity.
Bill Healey | vietnamgolfmagazine