Vidanta Golf Nayar Course Review

Texas Outside Rating: 9.0

Golf - Resort Public Course · 18 Holes · Par 70
Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico
· Stay & Play

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Vidanta Golf Nayar Course Review

Vidanta Golf Nayar Course Review & Rating  Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico 

The Vidanta Golf Nayar Course is one of the amenities of the huge Vidanta Resort and it was originally designed by Jim Lipe in 2001 and remodeled by Jack Nicklaus in 2011.  Nayar is a fun, par 70, 6542 yard, 18 hole course that is surrounded by jungle flora and framed by the majestic Sierra Madre mountains and home to a refreshing breeze (at times they are strong crosswinds) from the Pacific Ocean, seven lakes, 49 bunkers, beautiful landscaping, a few crocodiles, lots of birds, and plenty of huge iguanas.  The course is well maintained and beautifully landscaped.

Nayar is also home to some fun and challenging holes, for example:

  • #10 is a 381 yard par 4 with a good risk-reward shot to carry more of the lake and shorten the hole plus it's has a big bunker in the middle of the fairway and 5 multi-fingered bunkers, a pot bunker, and a big tree to avoid on the way to the back to front sloping green
  • #12 is a beautiful and fun 478-yard par 4 with an elevated tee box and a carry over a lake followed by a slight dog right leading to a small green with 2 big back bunkers
  • #13 is a great 528 par 5 with a huge multi-fingered bunker on the right side of your landing zone, then a slight left and back right past a string of 5 bunkers leading to a green with a pond on the right

When we played Nayar the fairways were in near perfect condition.  They had minor contour and were very firm which resulted in lots of extra roll, if you could keep the ball in the fairway.  Miss the fairway and we found the rough to be very playable and you really need to spray the ball to lose it - unless you hit the water.

The greens at Nayar were also in excellent condition, ran at a good speed of nine or so, and ranged in size and shape from relatively small to some huge putting surfaces.  All of the greens have some combination of slope, contour, tiers, and ridges.  Some are raised but most are perfect for a bump and run.  All are well guarded putting a premium on the approach shots.

The Nayar bunkers, called La Playa by our forecaddie, range from small pot bunkers to huge multi-fingered monsters - and they seemed fairly easy to find.  The faces range from shallow to steep but you're unlikely to hit in and roll out.  The sand is heavy and gritty and shallow.

Forecaddies are required at Nayar and you quickly appreciate that they are there.  Their first goal is to direct you on the long drive to the first hole which I know I would never be able to find on my own - it twists and turns through dense jungle and across a long one way suspension bridge over the river.  Our caddie was excellent at reading the greens and telling us where to aim, offered great advice on where to place the ball off the tee box, and gave us a few swing and putting tips.  Plus he was friendly, outgoing, and funny.

Nayar is also home to the Jack Nicklaus Academy of Golf. with the latest training technologies and state-of-the-art facilities and expert instructors.

The Lakes 10 hole par 3 and the Greg Norman course share a common proshop and great restaurant with the Nayar Course.  Read our review of the Vidanta Golf Greg Norman Course.

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Course Slope & Ratings

Tee Box Yardage Rating Slope
Blue 6,153 69.8 126
White 5,681 68.1 120
Gold 6,542 71.7 133
Red 4,715 69.3 119

Course Information

Course Architect:
Jack Nicklaus redesign
Greens Type:
Champion Bermuda
Greens Condition
Greens Difficulty
Fairway Condition
Bunker Condition
Beware of water on 14 holes and the 49 sand traps.

Texas Outside Rating

Overall Rating:
9.0 out of 10
Fun to Play:
Front Nine Rating:
Back Nine Rating:


Approximate Weekend
$125.00 to $195.00

Service is very good and the staff is friendly and helpful. The pro shop is well stocked. The restaurant is excellent. The practice facilities are adequate.



Here's How Texas Outside Determines the Scorecard Rating

The Texas Outside rating scale ranges from 1 to 10 – a perfect 10 course would be something like this:  links along a cliff overlooking the Pacific ocean and bordered by tall trees; lush fairways on rolling hills with lots of natural hazards; water (which is crystal clear) on most of the holes; immaculate greens (but they are undulating and tough); lots of variety and character (each hole is completely different and includes blind shots, elevation changes, doglegs, and significant challenges); perfectly manicured traps with the whitest and prettiest sand you’ve ever seen; a nice club house with great food and a 19th hole; a GPS; plenty of beverage carts or your own cooler and ice; and it only costs $40 bucks! What this means is that you probably won’t find any 10s in Texas – try Cabo San Lucas, Pebble Beach, or some of the Hawaii courses! 
Texas Outside rates courses on the following:

  • Beauty – tall trees, rolling hills, beautiful houses, waterfalls, and similar stuff would score high; a 1 would be flat, bushes or cactus instead of trees, and some grass but mostly weeds
  • Difficulty – a straight, 300 yard par 4 with no traps or hazards, no out of bounds or water would probably get a 1; if it is a 460 yard par 4 over two ravines, with water along one side, natural hazards on the other, strategically placed traps or that dreaded tree right in the middle of the fairway, we are talking a 10. 
  • Variety – what would you give a course where all the holes looked and played exactly the same (“I thought we just played that hole!”); were side-by-side, which is good for finding or dodging other people’s balls, but not much fun; and you can see the flag from every tee box?  That’s right, it gets a 1.
  • Fun Scale – a 10 is where you walk off the course and say “now that was fun” and you can’t wait to get back, or you immediately turn around and play another 18 holes
  • Value – a 5 is $50 to $60, a 10 is $20 to $30, and 1 is $200 or so – of course all of this is dependent upon how you liked the course.  For example, if a run down, boring municipal course, with six players on each hole was only $10; it would still get a value rating of 1.
  • Condition – this one’s pretty easy – what condition are the fairways. A 10 commands very lush perfectly manicured fairways, compared to a 1, which has fire ants, weeds, and more dirt than grass!
  • Condition of Greens and Difficulty – very hard to read greens with lots of undulation and tough pin placement, rate very high on the difficulty scale.  Condition is self-explanatory.  

All of the above determines the overall score for the golf course.  In other words, we like courses that are pretty, fun, very challenging with a lot of variety, and fairways and greens in excellent condition – all for $40.  We also tend to play the courses that are affordable for the masses, which means in the $30 to $80 range. We rate hard and we haven’t found a 10 in Texas yet – don’t worry we haven’t given up and we’re still looking.