10 of the best courses to play when visiting the south west of Ireland…

John Dooley PGA, Concierge Golf

I have picked 10 of the best courses to play in the South-West of Ireland excluding the main courses that are known through out golfing circles in the world. These courses are my choices based on what I consider to be an enjoyable round for golf, playability and course presentation.

On this occasion; I have focused on lesser known golf courses and left out the top destination golf courses, but theses golf courses are equally as good to play and certainly can be enjoyed on your next Irish Golf Tour.

The challenge to golfers as per usual, can you play to your handicap at these golf courses?

1. Fota Island Golf Resort - 27 holes and home of the Irish Open for 2014. Fota Island is the premium Parkland course in Cork, they have the best practice facility in Cork and the 27 holes are what you would expect from any championship golf course. 

Fota Island Golf Resort

2. Cork Golf Club - 18 holes designed by Alister Mackenzie and is truly one of the best traditional Parkland Golf courses in Ireland. Smaller green that you might be use too, with supple breaks and your good iron shots can reward you with good birdie opportunities. 

!0th Tee at Cork Golf Club

3. Tralee Golf Club 18 holes; designed by Mr Arnold Palmer, great views and great holes on both nines. Its just a great golf course to play and its tough! 

18th green at Tralee Golf Club

4. Dooks Golf Club 18 holes; what I like about Dooks is that the course is both challenging and very enjoyable to play. I typically recommend playing this course in between the harder links courses such as Waterville, Ballybunion and Lahinch. This course will keep a smile back to your face after playing the tougher courses.  

Killeen Course, Killarney Golf & Fishing Club

5. Killarney Golf & Fishing Club 36 holes; the Killeen Course. This course has some of the greatest views of the Killarney lakes and also a very enjoyable Parkland course. There is plenty of hitting from the tee to the fairways, the greens are long and deceptive but I do like the variety of different tee shots and the range of iron shots that are available to play.    

6. Castletroy Golf Club - redesigned their greens in recent years and the club are continuously working on better drainage. Very enjoyable and strategy off the tee to position your second shots is key. The idea of beat the ball as far as you can and cut every corner is not really the way to play this course. However this is just my Golf Professional opinion!  

7. Killarney Golf & Fishing Club, Mahony's Point Course, This course is a little shorter in length that the Killeen course and it does not share the same amount of holes on the lake as its sister course. But I find Mahony's point a good test for your driving accuracy. Hit it off line and your second or third shots are difficult. 

17th Hole at the Mahonys Point course at Killarney Golf & Fishing Club  

8. Dromoland Castle Golf Club – is a nice blend of short and long holes with some very nice views of the lake and the castle. There are a couple of par 4s that if the wind is blowing favourably, it can be worth taking a chance with a tee shot… 

9. Castlemaytr Golf Resort - A very enjoyable course and I am not saying this is an easy course at all! The par 3s are long and tough with a number of long par 4s to test your distance control.  

Dooks Golf Club 

10. Lee Valley Golf Club – is tight off the tee with a range of nice undulating greens and some wind decisions that will make your club selection tricky. The course is situated on the hills overlooking some beautiful most beautiful parts of the Cork countryside.  

Let me explain a little to you about my thoughts on why I have selected each course in the 1 to 10 position. I like golf courses that are kept in good condition relative to the budget they have at their disposal. I like to picture golf shots or a range of different golf shots that I find interesting and challenging. The golf shots that I like are a range of mid iron shots that I can hit high, low, half shots, left to right or right to left, bounce and run the shot and hit the shot where the wind is your friend. 

I like to play what is in front of me as a result of hitting the ball into the widest part of the fairway. Please note my opinions are that of a PGA professional that I prefer to play a golf course that is enjoyable, clean, understands pace of play and the course does not have to be the toughest golf course to be the best.  

Your opinion is important and I would like to know your comments on my selections. So please feel free to post! 
7th Hole at Cork Golf Club
If you need to book a golf tour to Ireland? Please contact John Dooley at Concierge Golf. 
Email: info@conciergegolf.ie 
Tel: +353212409110

Concierge Golf Ireland | Irish Golf Tours | John Dooley PGA | Golf Travel Expert


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