it doesn’t receive the fanfare like the southwest of Ireland, the northwest
region of the country is a wonderland of world-class links layouts, high-energy
pubs with traditional Irish music and friendly B & B’s and hotels.
|The County Sligo Golf Club at Rosses Point|
spectacular coastal terrain in northwest Ireland is ideal for great links golf.
Massive dune mounds, tall grasses framing the fairways and stunning ocean
panoramas dominate the total golf experience.
still, the courses are located relatively close to each other so you’ll spend
more time on the fairways and less time in your coach or rental car.
golfers who venture to this region, here are six places you absolutely,
positively must play:
Golf Club—Expansive views of lush, green countryside and ocean coastline
justify snapping a few pictures along the way at this beautiful 36-hole complex
in the County of Donegal. The Old Links layout (6,910 yards) is shorter than
the Glashedy (7,217 yards), but both are challenging. There are lots of small
mounds on the undulating fairways so you rarely have a flat lie. They’re both
easy walking courses as the tees and greens are situated in close proximity. Don’t
miss the engaging display in the clubhouse dedicated to the European Ryder Cup
Golf Links—Pure and wild, Carne is uncontrived as the course weaves through
amazing large mounds and terrain giving the golfer a fantastic natural golf
experience. Isolated somewhat on the Atlantic edge of County Mayo, you feel as
though you’re hundreds of miles away from city life even though the village of
Belmullet is just a few minutes away. The holes snake up and down through the
large dunes with a generous share of elevated tee boxes where you can watch
your drives soar into the sky towards the fairways and greens down below. Carne
recently added an additional 9-hole course designed by Ally McIntosh.
Sligo Golf Club at Rosses Point—Widely regarded as one of the world’s great
championship links courses, the course was originally founded in 1894 as a
nine-hole layout. Today it’s a 27-hole complex. Awesome mountain, ocean and
countryside panoramas dominate the golf experience at this legendary layout
located in the picturesque seaside village of Rosses Point. After the round,
take a stroll through the clubhouse, which is dotted with photos of Rory McIlroy,
Padraig Harrington and others who've competed at County Sligo G.C.
Golf Club—Set just outside the historic village of Donegal, this course is
currently ranked 18th in Golf Digest’s 100 Top Golf Courses in Ireland.
Originally designed by Eddie Hackett and later upgraded by Pat Ruddy, the
course has the Atlantic Ocean on three sides and the Bluestack Mountains as a
backdrop. Because of its unique configuration (the front nine runs
anti-clockwise and the back nine runs clockwise, sitting inside the outward
nine), Donegal is often referred to as “The Muirfield of Ireland.”
Golf Club—Sitting on a promontory that juts into Killala Bay, Enniscrone is a
naturally beautiful layout with some of the largest dunes in Ireland. There’s
lots of variety in hole designs and settings ranging from seaside to flat
farmland. There are 27 holes of golf highlighted by the 7,033-yard, par 73
Dunes Course, which was originally designed by Eddie Hackett and later enhanced
by Donald Steel. The course reaches a magnificent crescendo on the last four
holes, which border the Atlantic Ocean.
You need lots of shot imagination and the ability to execute “bump and
run” shots to be successful at Enniscrone.
Hotel & Golf Resort—The original course at this four-star, family operated
resort hotel was laid out by Old Tom Morris in 1891 with some enhancing by
Harry Vardon and James Braid in the early 1900s. The Old Tom Morris course
hasn’t changed much in more than a century and the layout oozes with history
and design genius. A second course, the Sandy Hills Links, opened in 2003, is a
Pat Ruddy design with phenomenal views of the ocean and the Old Tom Morris
course. Many of the holes on the Ruddy layout have elevated tees and greens
with tee shots into natural bowls on the fairways.
To enjoy a fabulous golf vacation to Northwest Ireland or other fantastic destinations around the world, click to Premier Golf to start your trip planning or call 866-260-4409 to speak with one of our experienced golf travel specialists.
Labels: Carne Golf Links, Donegal Golf Club, Enniscrone, Ireland, Ireland golf, Northwest Ireland golf, Rosapenna Golf Resort, Sligo