Ballyliffin Golf Club
From 9 holes to 45, Ballyliffin Golf Club has great golf in spades. The Old Links began as 9 holes, was extended to 18, and modernised by a golfing legend. It was so good a relief course was needed. That too was so good, another approaching course was built!
Tom Doak says the fairways on the Old Links are the most wrinkled he has ever seen!
Golf Course Review
The Ballyliffin Golf Club sports 45 holes. 18 on the Old Links, 18 on the Glashedy, and 9 on the Pollan – all of which are worth a go. With Rosapenna an hour or so away, you have two destinations in the Northwest of Ireland that can anchor a proper golf break for a week or two without any tire or boredom.
Ballyliffin Golf Club Old Links
Nick Faldo is to Ballyliffin Golf Club Old Links what Tom Watson is to Ballybunion Golf Club. Both world-renowned players helped put it on the map and we are all better for it.
The acclaim Nick Faldo brought to the links also won him some design work. Nick Faldo would add 32 peat revetted bunkers in addition to 1000 extra yards in length in 2006. This was the third major alteration to the design. The original course was a modest 9 hole laid out in 1947 and the course was further extended to 18 holes in 1973. The Ballyliffin Golf Club Old Links may not be as ‘old’ as many others but it certainly has all the charm of an old-world classic.
Golf Course Architects Charles Lawrie, Frank Pennink, and Eddie Hackett laid the foundation for Sir Nick Faldo, Pat Ruddy, and Tom Craddock’s more recent work.
Ballyliffin Golf Club Glashedy
The spark for a second 18 golf course at Ballyliffin Golf Club, now known as the Glashedy, was ignited in 1991. A long-term plan was drawn up to ensure the Ballyliffin Golf Club could continue to cater to its members and visitors as there was a need for extra holes in order to alleviate the pressure on the Old Course. The original plan was to add a relief course of just 9 holes…
With the terrain on offer, it was soon obvious that nothing less than 18 golf holes of a championship calibre would do. Pat Ruddy & Tom Craddock won the work and in May 1993, construction began. Shaping was complete by September 1993 and seeding and grow in began immediately. The course was opened on 3 August 1995.
Once viewed as the relief course for The Old Links, The Ballyliffin Golf Club Glashedy Links has matured into a championship links in its own rights, playing host to the 2018 Irish Open.
The more modern of the two, the dunes are bigger but the wrinkles in the fairways have largely been lost due to the equipment used in construction.
How good are the Old Links and Glashedy? The Glashedy was meant to be the relief course to the Old Links and now the relief course (Glashedy) needs its own relief course! Hence, a new approach course, the Pollan, was built over the winter of 2019-2020 at Ballyliffin Golf Club. The new short course is a bit of fun accenting the two championship courses on offer with holes ranging from 90-147 yards in length.
Not a ‘championship’ links, the bunkers and greens on this short course are every bit as good as you’ll find on the Glashedy or Old Links. The Pollan Links may not require length but the greens and bunkers will provide plenty of drama, built to be peers to the other 36 on the big boy’s courses.
Ballyliffin Golf Club Synopsis
The Glashedy and the Old Links at Ballyliffin Golf Club make up one of the best 36 hole venues in Ireland and even the UK. Add to it the Pollan and you have a destination alongside Rosapenna to anchor a world-class holiday in Ireland.
Ballyliffin Golf Club - Videos
See Ballyliffin Golf Club's Promo Video
Don't Watch This Unless You Can Book Tickets
See Golfing World's Take on Ballyliffin GC
Watch The Average Golfers Visit
Featured Architect: MacKenzie, Alister
As taken from his book, Golf Architecture, Alister MacKenzie felt the following were essential: The course, where possible, should be arranged in two loops of nine holes. There should be a large proportion of good two-shot holes and at least four one-shot holes. There should be little walking between...