Tagaytay Highlands Golf Club

Course Date
Location Manila, Philippines
Yardage 6119 yards Par 70
Course Rating 69.7
Playing Date October 26, 2018
Designer Richard Bigler
Opened 1994
Caddie Yes
Golf Cart Yes (can drive on FW)
Overall Rating
Course Layout
Difficulty Level
Greens Condition
Fairways Condition
Landscaping & Views
Level of Satisfaction

Tagaytay Highlands GC is a very hilly resort course with severe elevations changes. Located 700 meter (2300 ft) above sea level, it is cooler than courses around Manila. The courses can be quite fun with some unusual courses and lots of elevation changes. Although the overall distance is short, many holes are narrow, and five man-made ponds, some bunkers, numerous valleys & hills will come into play. So accuracy, not distance, is the key to success at Tagaytay Highlands.

A view of Lake Taal from clubhouse

A view from 1st hole

a vew from 4th tee

After playing good par-4 First and par-3 Second, par 4 Third and par 5 Fourth are stunning downhills. The two holes drops as much as 120 meters (400 ft). The remaining 5 holes in the front nine are fairly straightforward. The back 9 also has a lot of ups and downs and features two tough back-to-back par-5s, Fourteenth & Fifteenth. The routing is not that great as there are too many downhill holes, the difference in elevation between last and first holes of each nine is so huge, a gandora of a cable car will ferry players from 9th green to 10th tee. When the cable car is out of order, a big bus is a substitute. Tagaytay Highlands is not the course you would want to play every day, but sometimes you would like to play this hilly course to enjoy 360-degree panoramic views including Lake Taal in the cool air.

Hole 1 Par 4 341 yards

Hole 1 Par 4 341 yards (2)

Hole 1 Par 4 341 yards (1)
A slight dogleg to the left & an uphill, short par four. On the tee shot, there are a downhill rough on the left and a valley on the right. The green is guarded by a bunker to the front left, a pond to the left, and a valley to the right.
Hole 2 Par 3 197 yards 

Hole 2 Par 3 197 yards (2)

Hole 2 Par 3 197 yards (1)
An uphill par three. The hole is built on a narrow ridge with valleys on the left and right. The green has drop-offs on both sides and an errant shot has a possibility of rolling down to the valley beyond. Hiding in the forest in front, you can't see the left side of the green off the tee sloping from back to front. The actual distance is much longer because of the uphill.
Hole 3 Par 4 357 yards

Hole 3 Par 4 357 yards (2)

Hole 3 Par 4 357 yards (1)
A slight dogleg to the left & a strongly downhill shortish par four. The tee shot is blind. When a long hitter uses a driver, the ball rolls downs to a small pond in front of the green. When you lay up safely with an iron off the tee, due to slightly narrow fairway with valleys left and right, you can still aim the green with a wedge or short iron. However, the downhill approach makes it hard to stop the ball on the shallow green protected by water in the front and a bunker and a drop-off at the rear.
Hole4 Par 5 533 yards
A slight dogleg with the very demanding tee shot. The green drops nearly 100 meters from the teeing ground where the fairway looks very narrow with the hazards both sides. In fact, the landing area off the tee is tight and the tee shot has an option anything from a driver to a seven iron. With the long & accurate tee shot, you can hit the green in two shots probably with an iron. When you decide to lay up, the landing area is tight as with trees and bushes on both sides. The green is wide and protected by two bunkers in the front.

Hole4 Par 5 533 yards (3)

Hole4 Par 5 533 yards (2)

Hole4 Par 5 533 yards (1)
Hole 8 Par 4 366 yards

Hole 8 Par 4 366 yards (2)

Hole 8 Par 4 366 yards (1)
A downhill & slight dogleg to the left. A valley on the left comes into play off the tee, and the fairway is narrow. The approach shot is over a creek onto the green sloping form back to front.
Hole 10 Par 4 368 yards 

Hole 10 Par 4 368 yards (2)

Hole 10 Par 4 368 yards (1)
An uphill & dogleg to the left. There is a valley along the left off the tee. The approach shot is sharply uphill onto the tree-tiered, deep and narrow green with a strong drop-off on its apron. The green is protected by three rock on the left and a long bunker on the right, and valleys on both sides.
Hole 12 Par 3 190 yards

Hole 12 Par 3 190 yards (2)

Hole 12 Par 3 190 yards (1)
A strongly downhill, over a valley par three. The green is surrounded by trees, with a bunker on the right and two bunkers in the back. There is a valley just in front of the green, so it is necessary to select the right club that will surely reach the green surface, taking the downhill and the wind factor into consideration. The bailout area is from the left front to the left side of the green, and it is an easy approach from there.
Hole 14 Par 5 490 yards 

Hole 14 Par 5 490 yards (2)

Hole 14 Par 5 490 yards (1)
A dogleg to the left & an uphill, difficult par five. The fairways are tight with a hazard area on the left on both the tee and second shots. The green is strongly elevated and slops from back to front.
Hole 15 Par 5 541 yards
The tee shot is straight and downhill, followed by a sharp dogleg to the left on the second shot. Although it is possible to hit the green in two shots, it will be a blind second shot. The green is horizontally long and two-tiered, with two bunkers in the front and hazards on the left and the back.

Hole 15 Par 5 541 yards (3)

Hole 15 Par 5 541 yards (2)

Hole 15 Par 5 541 yards (1)
19th hole

It is a one hour 15 minutes’ drive south of both Makati and Manila Airport. Since it is a private club, it is necessary to be accompany by a member, but the golf reservation agency will perhaps arrange the member. Tagaytay Midlands GC is a 10-minute drive away. The two golf courses are also connected by a cable car.




The top 100 golf courses (top100golfcourses.com) ranked 27th in Philippines Top 30 courses in 2020. There are about 100 courses in the Philippines.

Richard Bigler, an American, has designed five or six courses in the United States, but none are so famous. In the Philippines, he also designed Tagaytay Midlands GC.

City Garden Grand Hotel

City Garden Grand Hotel

A view from the room

On the previous day, I stayed at the City Garden Grand Hotel in Makati.