Ireland – South West – Doonbeg – 6818 yds – Par 72
Doonbeg Golf Club may be the last true links course to be built in either Ireland or Britain. The site is along 1½ miles 0f crescent-shaped beach and dunes. The ocean is visible from the green, fairway, or tee of 16 of the 18 holes. The dunes, centuries old, reach almost 100 feet.
Greg Norman’s design follows a course designed by nature — 12 of Doonbeg’s fairways were simply mowed, and the putting green undulations generally follow the lie of the land. The fairways and greens consist of native grasses, including fine fescues, bent grass, and ryegrass. The par-72 layout features a single loop of nine holes out and nine back. It plays 6,848 yards from the back tees. The most natural routing within the existing dunes resulted in an uncommon combination of five par-3s and five par-5s. Variations in wind speed and direction ensure the course plays differently almost every day. For example, the average golfer will play from a sand wedge to a 5-iron on the 111-yard 14th. To allow for a range of conditions and abilities, most holes feature five or more tee locations. Doonbeg Golf Club is situated in the parish of Doonbeg on Ireland’s southwest coast in County Clare. Located on the main coastal road between Ballybunion and Lahinch — both ranked in Ireland’s top-10 courses — Doonbeg Golf Club is an ideally situated destination for links golf.