When deciding where to play on a Dublin, Ireland golf vacation, the name Portmarnock will undoubtedly arise. What many people don’t know, however, is that there are two worthy courses in the Dublin area which carry that name, and it’s important to know the difference.
The Portmarnock Golf Club was established in 1894 and its course has hosted more important golf competitions than any other in Ireland. Despite being virtually flat (the overall elevation change is no more than 12 feet) it’s length, wind, bunkers, forced carries, and overall demand on accuracy also make it one of the country’s most difficult.
The Portmarnock Golf Links, part of the very nice Portmarnock Hotel, opened nearly 100 years later and, despite it’s engagingly natural look, it is largely man made (by accomplished German tour player Bernhard Langer). Considerable earth was bulldozed to give the fairways a lot of movement, and while the overall elevation change is still less than 20 feet, there are some dramatic ups and downs that you don’t find at its older neighbor.
So, if you’re looking for history and the ultimate challenge on your Dublin, Ireland golf vacation, play at Portmarnock Golf Club. If it’s a visually dramatic course you’re after, play Portmarnock Golf Links.
Given that the courses are separated by a little more than a five-wood, our best advice, however, would be to play them both.
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