Ireland’s oldest links, The Royal Dublin


DG IRELAND TOP150 – 2023

Editor, Kevin Markham

Founded in 1885, Royal Dublin is Ireland’s oldest links. Its clubhouse sums up the quality and history embraced by the traditional out-and-back routing on Bull Island.

There are no big dunes here – this is about the natural twists and turns that make bump-and-run links golf a joy to play. Low, subtle and often narrow fairways lead into exceptional greens…but be warned: the bunkers may prove your undoing.

Those bunkers are undergoing a full rebuild under designer Frank Pont (Clayton, Devries & Pont), and their number will soon fall from 93 to 55.

You can expect a full-frontal assault when you reach the turn as the prevailing winds that made the front nine play benignly can hit you hard all the way home. Low struck shots may be the only way to play this back nine. Take inspiration from the plaque beside the 16th tee where Christy O’Connor Senior started one of the greatest finishes in golf. He played the last three holes in five
under par to win the Carrolls International in 1966.


Favourite Hole
The short par four 16th offers a do-or-die drive that
could see you putting for eagle… or floundering in the
swathe of bunkers.
What’s in the Bag?
Links golf as it is meant to be played… low, cunning
and relentlessly searching your golfing genius.

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