Golf is becoming a popular sport amongst the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) members. Anar Mammadov − the President of Azerbaijan Golf Federation − stated that golf not only serves as an important sport for the country, but also as an avenue of fostering Azerbaijan’s tourism sector.
Mr Mammadov said, “Azerbaijan is behindhand to take up this club and ball sport (golf) standing comparison with its neighboring countries. However, we have recognized the sport’s significance as a major boost to tourism in Azerbaijan.”
“Now we are putting efforts to progress in this direction, presenting Azerbaijan as a premium golf destination and potential prime contender in international golf tournaments,” he further added.
Commenting on how golf can foster tourism in Azerbaijan, Anar Mammadov explained, “Golf is widely perceived as an elite sport. If golf enthusiasts congregate in Azerbaijan to explore the country’s well-appointed golf courses, they will be overwhelmed by the picturesque beauty, which Mother Nature has bestowed upon our country.”
Mr Mammadov’s claims regarding Azerbaijan’s fascinating beauty are not unsubstantiated. The country indeed is blessed with nature’s bounty and beautiful mineral springs. Furthermore, Azeris are said to be the most courteous people. Azerbaijan’s rich historical and cultural heritage can leave the tourists spellbound.
In the last few years, the emergence of Azerbaijan as a golfing and tourist destination has been noteworthy. In 2016, over 156 golfers from across 72 countries contended for the PGA European Challenge Tour, for the €350,000 prize money.
In the tour’s record till date, the tournament was held for the first time in Azerbaijan, and telecasted worldwide, offering the first ray of the country’s hope for a powerful golfing future. The tour was significant not only for Azerbaijan’s golf, but also for the country’s tourism, which received a major raise during this time.
“Both Azerbaijan’s golf clubs – National Azerbaijan Golf Club and the Dreamland Golf Club are gaining popularity across the world,as the facilities offered here meet the international golfing standards. The Azerbaijan Golf Federation (AGF) intends to establish more golf clubs in the country to attract golf enthusiasts from all around the world,” said Anar Mammadov.