Ballyliffin Golf Club, Ireland

Ballyliffin club, founded in the year 1947 is Ireland’s most ‘northerly’ golf club. Located in the extreme north-east of the Republic of Ireland close to the Inishowen Peninsula, Ballyliffin comprises of 365 acres of spectacular dune land which is surrounded by hills and mountains with the only borderline being the Atlantic Ocean.

Two outstanding and distinct 18 holes link – the classic Old Links and the wonderful new Glashedy Links, a world-class club house, and an unprecedented panoramic view of mountains and coastline make up Ballyliffin Golf Club a stunning and an amazing destination to sport. The Old acreage is designed by Mother Nature herself with little succor from Eddie Hackett and English architects – Lawrie and Pennick, who offered a final touch to the course.

The Old Links undulate in a natural setting that provides a sense of tranquility, presenting an immensely enjoyable challenge to every golfer. Running across 6,937 yards from the championship tee and a par of 71 with sweeping ocean views, the old links offer many fantastic holes with challenging fairways riding dangers at every turn. Upon his first visit to Ballyliffin in the 1990s, Faldo reportedly fell so in love with the Old Links that he stayed overnight to finish playing all 18 holes and attempted to buy the club which was later turned down. But nevertheless his work at the Old Links clearly showcases his attachment to the place. Faldo renovated all the bunkers and repositioned several tees, allowing for more awe-inspiring views of the Glashedy Rock off the coast.

The Old Course at Ballyliffin is the most natural course I have ever played.”

Nick Faldo

Glashedy measures over 7,000 yards from the Championship tees with large undulating greens, deep bunkers and fairways that twist and roll between towering dunes. The challenges presented by the Glashedy Links are almost as intimidating as exciting. Many regard the Old Course as ‘better’ than the newer Glashedy course and this is because, without doubt, Glashedy is a severely punishing golf test that demands you to be on top of your game from start to finish. But nevertheless both these wonderful courses  guarantees a lifetime experience for any golf lover, especially to a keen golfer who appreciates beautiful views and challenging courses.

Northern Ireland – A Golfing Wonderland

Northern Ireland has a population of less than two million people – roughtly the same number of people as Nebraska – and covers the same amount of land as Connecticut. But this tiny place has produced three major champions in the past 13 months. With Darren Clarke’s recent victory at Royal St. George, Northern Ireland has garnered the attention of the golfing world. So, how does Northern Ireland do it?

When McIlroy tweeted his congratulations to Clarke, he added: “Northern Ireland…Golf Capital of the world!!” The credit goes not just to the golfers but also to the links they play. The courses at Newcastle and Portrush are listed two of the best in the world. Throw in Royal County Down, and a number of others and you easily have a golf trip that will be remembered for a long time. With the win at Royal St. George, Clarke has moved to No. 30 in the world rankings (ranked 111th before championship) giving Northern Ireland three of the top-30 players in the world..

We have fantastic golf courses, we have fantastic facilities. But to have three major champions from a little small place in a short period of time, it’s just incredible

– Graeme McDowell (2010 U.S. Open Champion)

After Darren Clarke’s astounding Open win and Rory McIlroy’s mesmerizing triumph at the US Open, Tourism Ireland has pumped in £1.8m promotional campaign to bring thousands of golf fans to Northern Ireland. “The time is now right to bring a major international golf tournament to Northern Ireland,” Arlene Foster, the NI tourism minister said. “Golfers spend more money than normal visitors,” Clair Balmer from Tourism Ireland said. “They spend an average of £400 per day, whereas a normal visitor spends about £37 per day. It’s that high end which would be really great for us to have.” If the campaign goes well, it is believed to bring an astonishing £ 80M to the North Ireland Economy.