Karnataka aims to become golf hub


Sean Dudley

The Indian state of Karnataka hopes to become a major destination for Asian golf tourists, and is making ambitious plans to encourage the development of golf.

“Golf can become a great tourist attraction. Thailand has 400,000 tourists to play golf. We have a better climate in Karnataka, and this potential should be tapped,” said K Jothiramalingam, the state’s principal secretary, tourism, in an interview with The Hindu, India’s second biggest English language newspaper.

There has already been significant investment in golf in Karnataka in recent years, with the Swan Golf Designs-led rebuild of the KGA course in Bangalore, plus new developments planned at Mysore (Skytop Golf Village) and elsewhere in the state.

Jothiramalingam told The Hindu there are plans to build an eighteen hole course ‘of international standards’ in Belgaum, Karnataka’s fourth-largest city. Another course is planned for Mangalore, with views of the Arabian Sea. “We have a golf course in Mysore and four nine-hole courses in Kodagu. The Mangalore project will involve public and private participation as well,” Jothiramalingam told the newspaper.