As Japan's northnernmost island, Hokkaido offers suitable conditions for golf only from around the beginning of May until mid-December, and the courses there are at their best only in the late summer and fall, when they afford players a respite from the scorching summers that the rest of the country experiences. Jack Nicklaus designed the course for Hokkaido Classic Golf Club in 1991, transforming the somewhat featureless terrain in his own inimitable fashion. The site itself is heavily wooded and features abundant native flora and fauna, so players may encounter deer, fox and squirrels or lush flowers depending on the time of year. Nicklaus' layout makes excellent use of the water on the site and of strategically positioned bunkers to ensure that precision is a premium, but these hazards are all out in the open, so play isn't tricky. A spacious and luxurious clubhouse completes the experience.