Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 2
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 2
Water lurks up the entire right side of the second hole at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate in South Africa. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Images
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 1
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 1
The starting hole at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate is gentle except for the front bunker. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 4
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 4
A stream zigzags through the par-5 fourth hole at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate in Western Cape, South Africa. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 6
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 6
The proper miss on the par-3 sixth hole at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate is up the right side. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 7
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 7
The mountains and bunkers distract golfers on the par-4 seventh hole at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate in Western Cape, South Africa. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 8
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 8
It's hard not to rinse one on the par-4 eighth hole at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate in Western Cape, South Africa. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 9
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 9
The par-5 ninth hole finishes near the clubhouse at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 13
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 13
It's an all-carry adventure to the par-3 13th green at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate in Western Cape, South Africa. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 14
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 14
A tree in the middle of the fairway is one of the many obstacles to reaching the par-5 14th green at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 17
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 17
The 17th hole is the longest par 3 at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor
Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 18
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Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate - hole 18
A golfer walks toward the 18th green at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate in Western Cape, South Africa. Jason Scott Deegan/Golf Advisor

Play away in an idyllic setting at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate near Cape Town, South Africa

WESTERN CAPE, South Africa -- Close your eyes and say the words "Pearl Valley." What do you see? Probably exactly what Jack Nicklaus laid out at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate in 2003 -- a pristine course of babbling brooks and peaceful ponds surrounded by mountains.

Located less than an hour's drive northeast of Cape Town, Pearl Valley is generally considered one of the best "golf estates" in South Africa. The 6,749-meter course hosted three consecutive South African Opens from 2007-09. Golf Digest South Africa ranked Pearl Valley seventh among the country's best courses in 2014.

Nicklaus kept the homes from intruding on the round. Water on eight holes is the real worry. It's a full carry over ponds to reach the third and 13th greens, two scary par 3s. A stream zigzags across Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate's fourth fairway twice, forming one of the country's great par 5s. A pond separates difficult par 4s at the seventh and eighth holes that run in opposite directions.

A slew of bunkers, not water, protect the short par 4s on each nine, the fifth and 15th holes. No matter how good or bad you play, the view of the Drakenstein Mountains never gets old.

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.
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Play away in an idyllic setting at the Pearl Valley Golf & Country Estate near Cape Town, South Africa
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