Best Golf Courses in Northern Ireland
So, you’ve decided to come to Ireland for a golfing trip but remain undecided on where to stay or what courses to play.
There a few ways you can do this. Firstly you can travel around Ireland and play many of the famous big name golf courses, which involves moving hotels on your non golf days and gives little time for relaxing and enjoying the many sites Ireland has to offer.
The second option is to base yourself along the west coast and travel to the Atlantic Coast courses which can involve journey times of up to two hours each way and again is not ideal if you want to relax and experience Ireland.
The third option is to base yourself in Dublin, and enjoy everything that the city has to offer, such as historical sites, world class nightlife and entertainment, fine dining and of course The Guinness Storehouse. Basing yourself in Dublin not only allows you to enjoy the city but to play some amazing golf courses located within an hour’s drive of the city centre.
To help you decide we’ve put together a list of the top 5 golf courses near Dublin so you can enjoy the best of Irish golf combined with a fun and vibrant Dublin city break. Test yourself on world famous links courses and on some of the best parklands courses in Europe.
Portmarnock Golf Club
If you’re flying into Dublin, chances are you’ll fly over Portmarnock on your approach to Dublin Airport. Situated in a coastal town, this famous golf course was the long standing home of The Irish Open and saw victories from Ben Crenshaw, Jose Maria Olazabel and of course the legendary Seve Ballesteros who won one of his three Irish Opens here in 1996. Founded in 1894 the 27 hole course is just a 15 minute drive from Dublin Airport. Tiger Woods has often used Portmarnock Golf Club to practice for The British Open.
The Island Golf Club
Established in 1890 this classic links golf course is located 15 minutes from Dublin Airport and just 40 minutes from downtown Dublin in the estuary of Donabate and Malahide. As the name suggests the club was originally on an island and playing here involved travelling by boat from the village of Malahide across the estuary. This challenging course is a firm favourite amongst golf fans from all over the world and is certainly worth a mention on any list of top golf courses in the Dublin area.
The K Club
The Kildare Hotel & Country Club or The K Club as it’s commonly referred to is a luxury resort with two championship parkland courses located close to the village of Straffan, about 45 minutes south of Dublin. Stunningly located in the heart of Ireland’s horse breeding region it was the location for the 2006 Ryder Cup which was played on The Palmer Ryder Course. The K Club also hosted The European Open for several years and is a must play course for those wishing to test themselves on a Ryder Cup course. After golf, why not relax in the River Room Restaurant and watch the river Liffey as it journeys towards Dublin.
Royal Dublin Golf Course
Royal Dublin is one of two golf courses located on Bull Island. The 5 km long island was created when a barrier wall was constructed to solve the problem of silting in Dublin harbour at the mouth of the river Liffey. It’s hard to believe that this tranquil and beautiful course is located not much more than a long par 5 from Dublin city. Founded in 1885 by Sir John Lumsden the club is steeped in golfing history, hosting many major events including The Irish Open with winners including future Ryder Cup captains Seve Ballesteros and Bernhard Langer. Legendary Irish golfer Christy O’Connor was the club professional for an amazing 57 years.
Portmarnock Golf Links
The newer of the two Portmarnock golf courses, this resort opened in 1995 and was the first links golf course designed by Bernhard Langer. Situated on the site of the old Jameson Estate (yes the whiskey people!) this is an ideal base for those wishing to be based closer to the golf courses along Dublin’s coast and yet close enough to enjoy everything the city of Dublin has to offer.
We hope we have given you some tips and ideas for planning your next golf trip to Ireland. Whichever courses you decide to play, we are here to help arrange all your transportation requirements from picking you up at Dublin Airport, transportation to and from your chosen courses, excursions, dinner transfers and finally your departure back to Dublin Airport for your best golf courses experience in Dublin.