Old Course at Ballybunion Golf Club

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4.1
9
5 Stars
7
4 Stars
1
3 Stars
0
2 Stars
0
1 Stars
1
Conditions
4.2
Value
4.0
Layout
5.0
Friendliness
4.9
Pace
4.1
Amenities
4.2
96.4%
Recommend this course
8 out of 9 reviews
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0
5 Stars
0
4 Stars
0
3 Stars
0
2 Stars
0
1 Stars
0
Conditions
0
Value
0
Layout
0
Friendliness
0
Pace
0
Amenities
0
0%
Recommend this course
Average Rating
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5 Stars
0
4 Stars
0
3 Stars
0
2 Stars
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0
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0
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0
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0
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0
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0%
Recommend this course

About

Holes 18
Par 71
Length 6802
Slope 0
Rating 0.0
Type Private
Tee Par Length Rating Slope
Blue 71 6802 yards
White 71 6350 yards
Green 71 6060 yards
Red (W) 74 5459 yards
Scorecard for Old Course
Metrics:
Hole 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Out 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 In Total
Blue M: 72.0/139 405 439 218 527 554 383 425 157 462 3570 356 471 209 498 130 209 513 399 383 3168 6738
White M: 70.0/136 386 402 209 504 524 371 416 138 440 3390 334 398 193 492 127 200 495 386 370 2995 6385
Green M: 68.0/132 348 381 194 488 481 346 404 121 429 3192 318 380 171 487 125 184 469 358 367 2859 6051
Red W: 73.0/128 344 358 181 475 421 314 360 103 408 2964 255 349 163 432 123 180 386 332 302 2522 5486
Handicap 11 1 9 17 13 7 5 15 3 12 2 8 18 14 4 16 6 10
Par 4 4 3 5 5 4 4 3 4 36 4 4 3 5 3 3 5 4 4 35 71
Handicap (W) 11 1 9 17 15 7 5 13 3 10 2 8 16 18 4 14 6 12

Course Details

Year Built 1893
Golf Season Year round. High Season: 4/16 - 10/5
Architect Tom Simpson (1936)

Rentals/Services

Carts No
Clubs Yes
Pull-carts No

Practice/Instruction

Driving Range Yes
Bunker Yes
Caddies Yes
Teaching Pro Yes
Pitching/Chipping Area Yes
Putting Green Yes

Policies

Credit Cards Accepted Yes
Metal Spikes Allowed No
Walking Allowed Yes
Dress code Proper attire is required.

Reviews

4.1
9

What Golfers Are Saying

The 19th Hole is Great For:
Drinks 6
Course Challenges Include:
Thick Rough 6
This course/club is great for:
A Bucket list/Top 100 Pick 6
Advanced Filters
Overall Rating
Recommended
Handicap
Age
Type of Golfer
Gender
Played On
Handicap 10-14
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
4.0
Alberta Advisor
Top 10 Contributor
Previously Played
Windy weather

Ballybunion Old Course

Recognized worldwide as an exacting test of golf the Old Course at Ballybunion has long frustrated fans of the game. Extremely challenging at the best of times the Old Course bares it's teeth when the wind comes up. During my round the weather added another element to factor in, with gusting winds, at times the rain came in sideways and eventually the sun broke through the overcast skies. I absolutely loved it. An historic course that is as visually stunning as it is mentally challenging.

Conditions Good
Value Good
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Good
Played On
Handicap 5-9
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Good weather

Nothing but awesome!!!

What a treat to play this golf course! Walking made the experience even better! Very different design as to what you see in the States. Thick, high rough so bring plenty of golf balls. #11 is one of the best par 4's you'll every play! Well worth the trip!!!!

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Handicap 15-19
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Poor weather

The Best Course in Ireland

When this trip was first put together it was Ballybunion that was my holy grail. I'd read about it, I'd spoken with people about it and I had rehearsed it. The website flyovers, the testimonials, even down to gauging yardages from the scorecard and course guide. The danger of course is in disappointment because you have built it up too much but that didn't eventuate.

There is so much of Ballybunion that differs from what we see as "normal" golf from the graveyard on the first, back to back par 3's and blind shots but it's great. Driving is at a premium as keeping your ball on the short stuff is imperative. The green speed is just average but has to be because of the winds that can be encountered.

Holes don't run parallel with each other so it's always a challenge to gauge wind strength and direction. You are thinking on every shot.

Ballybunion is rightly ranked up there with the great links, nay great courses, of the world. The front nine may be seen as good but not great, but the back nine is fabulous. It was actually a delight to be able to play her in a strong wind and rain for 4-6 holes. It was what we had signed up for when we organised the trip and despite the difficulties it was a real buzz to have played her in these conditions.

The par 3's are as hard a collection as anywhere in the world while still retaining a facade of fairness. From the first which hugs the graveyard off to the right through to all the holes that run parallel with the beach, this course reeks quality and once will never be enough. We shall return.

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Layout Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Handicap 5-9
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Good weather

Majestic

The course was all and more of what I was led to believe from reading the on-line hype. I can say that it was the highlight of my trip to Ireland. The excitement felt on the first lasted the entire day, there wasn't a hole that disappointed. It was in great shape and the caddy (Gerald) made the day. The old course required all sorts of shots and demanded a solid putter.

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Good
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Handicap 5-9
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
1.0
First Time Playing
Fair weather

A real disappointment

A weeks golf in Co. Kerry and Ballybunnion old was the only disappointment... How is that possible? They have forgotten that golfers may blindly pay for our passion but we can see when we are paying over the odds for something! Preferred the Cashen course but the greens were very slow and represented the lack of attention to detail. Two hackers were let out in front of us on the 10th tee and they managed to hold up a pretty slow 4 ball..... This was indicative of money grabbing ethos. Think the clubhouse inside is pretty good except for some pretty basic design flaws outside it is hideous.

Conditions Fair
Value Poor
Friendliness Good
Pace Average
Amenities Excellent
Played On
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Average weather

Best Course in Ireland, maybe the world

I have to thank Golf Advisor Jason for putting up this list of great golf holes and courses, but I have to wonder what he was thinking about on the first six holes. "Architecturally but not aesthetically" pleasing? So the Road Hole failed his test until they took out the railroad barn? And we all love the maintenance shacks all over Pebble Beach. And while #11 is a great hole, it's only the third best at Ballybunion. #2 starts with what appears to be an easy drive. Then you realize you have to find a perfect lie and line because you are next faced with a devilish short iron to a narrow green surrounded by towering sand dunes on either side. The back of the green actually extends beyond the dunes and that is you target. Leave it short left or right and you will be chopping it down the dune with one foot a yard above the other. You will see the hole reprised at the US Open at Chambers Bay this year. It is the inspiration for CB's #10. But the best hole, maybe the best hole anywhere, is #15. I say so despite my unpleasant introduction to it. You play from an elevated tee to a fairway again between dunes running diagonally away from you uphill and to the left. The real key is judging how far left you can drive it while ending up in the short grass not the heather coated dunes. While my drive was still in the air, my dour caddy, mute until then, bellowed, "Thot's the sime line Tiger Wuuuds tuuk on this hole." Needless to say I came up 50 yards short of grass. It took two hacks to get it out of the heather and another to reach the green. It was only as I stepped on the putting surface I realized we were one dune away from the sea. The view is of a cresent beach, sun breaking through the overcast and a yet more purple heather tumbling down the hill. All was forgiven and yes, the worst day on the golf course is better than any day anywhere else, especially when you are on Ballybunion.

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Friendliness Average
Pace Excellent
Amenities Average
Played On
Handicap 5-9
Skill Advanced
Plays Once a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Golf Advisor
Previously Played
Excellent weather

The best links in Ireland? Not in my book

I'm always surprised at the world rankings of The Old course at Ballybunion. Don't get me wrong. It's as magical as they say -- from the sixth hole on. But it's not even my favorite links in southwest Ireland, let alone the world. Ballybunion gets a lot of attention for the cemetery on its first hole. Unfortunately, those first five holes, while strong architecturally, aren't great aesthetically. Several run along the road and view the mobile home park across the street. People talk about the "mediocre" holes of Pebble Beach. The same critique applies here. When it comes to the back nine, however, few courses compare. The dunes are majestic. I love the contrast of the back-to-back par-3s, the easy wedge on the 14th hole followed by the tough 3-wood or driver on No. 15. The finishing three holes leave a lasting impression that helps everybody forget the opening stretch.

Conditions Excellent
Value Average
Friendliness Good
Pace Good
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Handicap 5-9
Skill Intermediate
Plays A few times a week
I Recommend This Course
5.0
First Time Playing
Average weather

Must play!

Played the course while on vacation, it was a real treat! Very different from what you find in the States. Very thick, unforgiving rough. Course conditions were very good, carpet fairways and true rolling greens. Design features you don't see everyday, you must use your imagination on some short game shots. Overall, go play if you ever get the chance, truly a great golf course!

Conditions Excellent
Value Excellent
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
Played On
Handicap 15-19
Skill Intermediate
Plays Once a month
I Recommend This Course
5.0
Top 500 Contributor
Previously Played
Used cart

Unbelievable

It was incredible to play such an iconic course. If you are a high handicapper, you might struggle a bit in the rough (if you find your ball). The condition of the course is top class.

Conditions Excellent
Value Good
Friendliness Excellent
Pace Excellent
Amenities Excellent
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Commented On 02/23/2018

Best course I ever played, followed by Bethpage Black and Carnoustie! Also, just down the road from Ballybunion, Tralee, fabulous! I was lucky with the weather, threatening skies and a shower on the front nine finished with perfect weather on the back. Every hole a challenge, risk and reward. Caddie was great!

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