Tralee Golf Course Review

Par 72, 6,975 yards, links

This was the first course in Europe to be designed by Arnold Palmer. Some of the holes may seem familiar - for instance, the beach which runs at the back of the 1st and 2nd holes was the location for several scenes from the 1970 movie Ryan's Daughter, which won an Oscar for best cinematography.  

The 1st hole measures 404 yards and is a fairly gentle opener, with a wide fairway leading to a green that lies above the beach. The 4th is a terrific par 4, measuring 426 yards, with an ancient burial mound close to the tee. The drive is blind, to a fairway that slopes from right to left and an approach to a green that slopes the same way.  

The 8th hole is breathtaking - a par 4 measuring 399 yards. The fairway runs alongside the Atlantic Ocean - go slightly left and you will be on the beach below.  

The 12th is a 461-yard par 4 with lots of bracken, thick rough on the right and a wall to the left, so the drive needs to be hit to the right of the fairway from where it will find its way to the center. Try to ignore - and avoid - a huge chasm on the left.  

The 16th, a par 3 measuring 199 yards, is played from an elevated tee to a green sitting beside the beach. A shot that hits the bank to the left of the putting surface will end up on the green, which is protected by three bunkers.  

The 18th hole is a 486-yard par 5, where you should be looking for a birdie - as long as you avoid the bunkers, and there are plenty to avoid - especially the five that run diagonally across the fairway. The approach is played to a relatively flat green in front of the clubhouse - miss the greenside bunkers and you should be finishing with a birdie.

tralee golf course


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Dereck clements

Derek Clements is a golf journalist - he has covered many Open Championships and European Tour events, as well as The Masters. Born in Glasgow, he writes for The Sunday Times and Golfshake, and has also written for Today's Golfer, the Daily Mail, Swing by Swing and many other golf websites, magazines and newspapers. He has played golf all over the world and numbers Gleneagles, Kingsbarns and Aldeburgh as his three favourite golf courses in the United Kingdom. He lives in Suffolk, is a member of Waldringfield Golf Club and has a handicap of nine. He had lessons from the late Bob Torrance and has worked with Jean-Jacques Rivet, one of the world's leading golf biomechanists.