Out & about: Dublin
From the fantastic array of golf courses to the traditional Irish hotels and spectacular nightlife, discover everything Dublin has to offer...
One of the great cities of the world, the Irish Republic’s capital is also one of the best bases for a golf package in Ireland, with a great variety of classic links, pristine parklands and magnificent five-star resorts to enjoy.
And after playing, there’s always the lively nightlife of the world-famous Temple Bar for a few pints of the black stuff. However, Dublin offers more than great golf and pubs, there is plenty of sightseeing, museums and the famous Trinity College to visit, meaning you'll have plenty to do on your golf package in Dublin.
Where to stay
Portmarnock Hotel and Golf Links is situated in the perfect location to get to and from all the main courses around the Dublin area, and not to mention it is only about 20 minutes from the Dublin City Centre. The 4* Portmarnock Hotel and Golf Links has a fantastic 18-hole course on-site, a brand new spa and three great restaurants onsite to choose from. Now that’s all great stuff to have at your standard Irish hotel, but The Portmarnock Hotel has quite a bit more history amongst its walls.
The original family house of John Jameson (Jameson Irish Whiskey) is still part of this beautiful venue. Today, this part of the hotel has been transformed into the Jameson Bar, where pints of Guinness are poured, great food is served and of course, plenty of Jameson Whiskey to go around. With that said, the golf course isn’t missing any history either with 9 of this now 18-hole course being part of the Jameson family beachside estate.
The Links Course at Portmarnock Hotel isn’t going to beat you up like some of the championship courses around Dublin but isn’t a simple walk in the park either. This course is a great intro round to links style golf, especially if it is your first trip across the pond.
Where to play around Dublin
Topping our list of courses to play around Dublin would have to be The Island Golf Club. During the club's early years in Ireland, The Island Club was only accessible by boat, or you could walk if the tide was out. If the tide was in and a storm was rolling through, golfers had no choice but to spend their night at the clubhouse bar until the weather cleared up. Moving to present day, this intricate golf course starts you off with 8 straight par 4’s, ends the front 9 with a par 3 and doesn’t offer a par 5 until the 10th hole. The historic Island Club should be included on every golfer’s itinerary when playing in Ireland.
The Island Golf Club
Founded in 1894, the Portmarnock Old Course is one of the most famous courses around Ireland, and for good reason. From the moment you step into the clubhouse you can see its decorated history along every wall, feeling as if you are walking with all the greats of the past.
Once you start your round and get to the first tee box you will find a tough yet beautiful first shot ahead of you. To your right, you have the ocean that runs all the way down to the green, and on the left the fairway is lined with multiple bunkers and tall fescue grass. Make sure to hit that first one straight to start of a spectacular round at Portmarnock Old Golf Club.
Dublin has so many amazing links and parkland courses to offer. From the 2006 Ryder Cup host, the Palmer North Course at The K Club to Rory McIlroy's favourite links course The European Club, you can’t go wrong. Whether you are a scratch golfer looking to play 36 holes of rugged links golf every day, or a 30-handicap sneaking in one round, you will find what you are looking for in Dublin.
Things to see & do
If you have only had Guinness here in the States, then you have never truly tasted a Guinness. An absolute must while visiting Dublin is taking a tour of the Guinness Storehouse. Nothing quite compares to having a fresh Irish Guinness directly from the source, and you will find that even when you are not in the mood for a drink you will still be craving a tall pint of Guinness.
Temple Bar, Dublin
For an unbeatable night out, simply make your way down to the Temple Bar area in the Dublin city center. This area has countless pubs, clubs, restaurants and bars all within walking distance of each other. While deciding where your group is going to eat, you can enjoy live bands along the side walk. This area of Dublin has so much to offer, each night will give you a different experience than the last while in Ireland.
A tip from the locals
Links style golf can be quite a different game if you haven’t played it before. Sometimes you need to grab a 7 iron and bump your chip onto the green because if the wind is blowing hard, your wedge shot will probably end up behind you.
Lastly, if your driver isn’t overly consistent, irons are typically a safe bet off the tee box on a windy day in Ireland to keep your score low.
Senior Golf Vacation Specialist
Senior Golf Vacation Specialist, I advise clients on golf courses and accommodation options across the US, Mexico, and Caribbean