The Volvo World Matchplay Championships kicked off yesterday at Thracian Cliffs, Bulgaria – making golfing history in the process as the first ever Tour event to be hosted in this Eastern European country, which was even named the undiscovered golf destination of 2012 by the International Golf Travel Market!

Bulgaria has a population of 7.3 million, but there are just six courses and about 600 golfers in the country! Meaning there are just 100 local golfers for every track or 1,216,666 individuals for every golf course. It’s safe to say that the game of golf isn’t the most popular of sports in Bulgaria.

Surely this will change if the country continues to produce stunning golf courses like Thracian Cliffs?!

The Bulgarian resort, designed by Gary Player, is considered the ‘Pebble Beach of Europe’

The Gary Player designed Thracian Cliffs was described as the “Pebble Beach of Europe” when it was first unveiled – a reference to the spectacular championship links in California. Graeme McDowell also voiced his opinion on the course referring to it as “Pebble Beach on steroids”.

“You will not find another golf course like this anywhere on the planet” – is what Player had to say about his creation. You would be forgiven for thinking the South African is perhaps being a bit big-headed in this statement – but then again you would only be having these thoughts if you had yet to lay you eyes on it.

“You will not find another golf course like this anywhere on the planet” – Gary Player

Framed by rugged coastal cliffs and the vast blue of the Black Sea, it is without doubt one of the most epic golf courses in the world – which has (and will continue to) provide some terrific television viewing for the keen golf fans who have been watching events at The Volvo World Match Play Championships unfold.

The tournament had been staged in Andalucia in Spain for the past few years, but there was always a plan in place to move the tournament to the stunning Black Sea Resort.

The World Match Play Championships, which has been in operation since 1964, has seen some of the biggest names in golf take the title – Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player, Greg Norman, the late Seve Ballesteros, Nick Faldo and Ernie Els have all lifted the trophy over the years.

However don’t think that Thracian Cliffs should just be left for the big boys to play. It’s also easily accessible for us mere mortals as well. There is a good selection of tees on each hole, allowing golfers of all abilities to be both challenged in their play and stimulated by the unbelievable views.

The course covers 164 hectares of wild scenic terrain and stretches 4.5 kilometres along the coast bestowing a truly thrilling golf experience.

There’s no doubt that this course should be added to any golfers bucket list, and with that in mind our friends at offer a superb range of packages to stay and play at Thracian Cliffs from just £435! This includes five nights at the 5* hotel and three rounds of golf! So what are you waiting for?