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Ring of Kerry

Founded: 1998
Designer: Eddie Hackett
Championship Length: 6,807 yards
PAR: 71
Type: Seaside Parkland
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Who this course is best for:

A golfer who would enjoy a scenic, seaside parkland golf course that should prove enjoyable to all levels of players.


One of the late Eddie Hackett’s last design projects, the Ring of Kerry Golf & Country Club, is, without doubt, the most spectacular parkland golf course in Ireland and is acclaimed by many as the finest new course in the country. The Killarney courses are beautiful, but Ring of Kerry is simply majestic. Overlooking beautiful Kenmare Bay, the golf course nestles between the towering MacGillycuddy Reeks and the Caha Mountains. Majesty alone, of course, does not make a great golf course. The scenery helps, but it’s the layout, stiff challenge and excellent greens that make Ring of Kerry Golf Club one of the finest new golf courses in Ireland.

Given the depth of the golf courses in southwest Ireland, it takes a special development to ensure inclusion in any list of top courses. The Ring of Kerry Course is special and, like Adare and Killarney, is the perfect complement to some of the region’s rugged links courses. Testing holes abound at Ring of Kerry but one of the best on the outward nine is the 6th hole, called “Ladies View” due to its scenic splendor. The tee shot on this short par 4 is surely the most breathtaking in Ireland. From a raised tee, the best shot here is a feathered long iron with an emphasis on position given that the landing area is quite narrow, with water lying right and a stream and ditch to the left.

Some of the best holes on the homeward journey include the two par 3’s and the par 4, 14th, which requires an accurate tee shot as close as possible to the bunkers. The second shot is through an avenue of trees and requires much thought: big, and it’s hit another; left, and it’s out of bounds: short, and it’s certain bogey! Just before this, is the long par 3, 13th hole measuring over 200 yards from a raised tee to a well protected green. This is an excellent hole and requires the tee shot to be exact; anything short is in trouble, while from anything long, it’s very difficult to save par. The closing hole is another par 3 over a stretch of water. The sloping green is bunkered to the left, while a shot to the right is likely to lodge on the bank, requiring a delicate approach chip.

Course review content courtesy of Golf Publisher Syndications

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“The weather was challenging most days, but I only had to wear my rain suit on Monday on the Jubilee course.  The weather for the Old Course, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns actually had some sun with Kingsbarns on the last day the best of all.”

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