Shoot for the stars at Jack Nicklaus' Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort in Cancun, Mexico

CANCUN, Quintana Roo, Mexico -- The Golden Bear rules the jungles of the Riviera Maya. Despite competition from designs by Greg Norman, Nick Price, Tom Weiskopf and a member of the Dye family, Jack Nicklaus' 27 holes at the Moon Palace Golf & Spa Resort remain the most popular place to play, attracting roughly 35 percent of all rounds in this growing golf destination between Cancun and Playa Del Carmen.

The versatility of 27 holes, the all-inclusive food and drinks and the commitment to quality conditions and service draws golfers in droves. Moon Palace's Dunes nine, built in 2003 one year after the original Lakes and Jungle nines, reigns as the best loop in the entire destination, although it's quite demanding. If you want to beat the Golden Bear's Dunes nine, you better play like a Tiger. Driver is the play to reach the green of the 229-yard par-3 third hole. The par-4 fourth and par-5 fifth holes wrap around a shared pond.

Feb 11, 2014

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Jason Scott Deegan

Senior Staff Writer

Jason Scott Deegan has reviewed more than 700 courses and golf destinations for some of the industry's biggest publications. His work has been honored by the Golf Writer's Association of America and the Michigan Press Association. Follow him on Twitter at @WorldGolfer.