Rated by All Square as the world’s 64th best course, Waterville is a classics links course surrounded by the sea and one of the oldest golf clubs in Ireland. Combining sand dunes, firm fairways and subtle putting surfaces, it has in the past drawn the praise Tiger Woods and Mark O’Meara. It’s a wonderfully secluded and natural dunescape that was improved in 2006 by legendary American architect Tom Fazio. Its great closing stretch will leave you clamouring to come back for more. The terrain on the right-to-left dogleg 16th pushes you towards the water; the 17th is a stunning par-3; and the 18th is a long par-5 where the beach remains a constant threat. A mystical, historic course that will live long in your memory.
Waterville House: This elegant 18th century Georgian manor house sits on a narrow pice of land facing the wild Atlantic with beautiful Lough Currane on its eastern perimeter. A four star residence, it has 12 bedrooms, en-suite, sauna, steam room and a health facility with a massage room. Guests are free to use the private Tom Fazio designed practice facility. Room prices start at €260 per night.
Sea Lodge at Waterville: This luxurious boutique hotel, located in the picturesque village of Waterville, is the ideal venue for your special trip. The luxurious bedrooms have a seaside, nautical theme, five of which boast balconies with sea views across Ballinskelligs Bay. Room prices start at €140 per night.
The course was designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr to seamlessly weave together the unique and special beauty of the landscape with golf holes that flow naturally with a links feel. It’s not a links set among sand and dunes, instead it’s placed atop 100-foot cliffs over the Atlantic Ocean. Hogs Head definitely lives up to its club motto: “Built by friends, for friends, for fun.” The views over Ballinskelligs Bay, framed by mountainous MacGillycuddy’s Reeks in the background, are simply stunning. The Finglas River, which flows through the course, makes it even more beautiful. Opened in 2018, the five par 3s, naturally spectacular and diverse, are worth the visit alone. This is a private course, but we can help All Square users gain access here.
Visitors can play this course without moving from the accommodation suggested for Waterville Golf Links, as it’s only a few minutes away.
3. Old Head Golf Links
Old Head Links, in County Cork, is less than a three hours drive east of Hogs Head Golf Club.
The golf course
Rated as the 7th best course in Ireland and the world’s 46th best, Old Head Links is located on a spectacular narrow peninsula jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean. The course plays out among the cliffs and caves along the coastline, and while a good score is definitely possible when the wind dies down, errant balls tend to be lost forever to the sea. Nearly every hole along this remarkable course makes excellent use of the landscape; of particular note is the par 5 17th, set in the shadow of a lighthouse. This natural headland’s championship course is definitely one of the most exhilarating places to play golf anywhere in the world. Comprising of five par 5s, five par 3s and eight par 4s, all eighteen holes provide stunning ocean views. Arguably Ireland’s most dramatic course.
Old Head Golf Links Clubhouse: The Clubhouse features 15 Luxurious Members’ Suites which complement the magnificent beauty and setting of the site.There are 14 Seaview Suites and 1 Presidential Suite. There’s also a luxury spa. Prices start at around €300 per night.
Kinsale Hotel and Spa: If The Clubhouse is too expensive, this is a great option and just a few minutes drive north from the golf course and less than 25 minutes from Cork Airport. Set in pretty woodland, it has 70 bedrooms and a luxury spa. Prices start at around €120 per night.
The three golf courses at Killarney are true Irish gems. The flagship course is Killeen. The final three holes there are breathtaking as you play towards the lake with the 18th described as “one of the most memorable holes in golf”. It’s a par 3 of nearly 200 yards that requires a huge carry across the corner of a lake. You can discover for yourself why this hole is one of the most photographed in the world and has become known as ‘Heaven’s Reflex’.
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