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Capital Gains – First Class Golf Breaks in Irelands First City

The approach to landing in Dublin airport is familiar to most of us. On a clear day, you approach the city and those sitting in a window seat can pick out the sights of Croke Park, the Poolbeg chimbeys and Lansdowne Road. If you are a golfer, it will be the manicured fairways of Portmarnock, the Island and Royal Dublin that will catch your attention.

Ireland’s capital city is a long established tourism hub. For decades now, Temple Bar, the Guinness Storehouse and Trinity College have been hugely popular attractions. For those looking for a trip that keeps you out of the famous Dublin licenced premises for most of the day, have a look at our 3 most popular types of Dublin golf break.

The River Liffey Dublin City

Lads in the City

There is no doubt about it, Dublin is one of the best cities in the world for a group holiday. You could travel to Ireland’s capital on 100 separate occasions and still not sample every pub and restaurant the city has to offer.

For your Ireland golf society getaway, there can be no better option. Flights into Dublin airport are cheap and easy to come by and once you arrive, you have a plethora of public gems at your disposal.

Staying in a city centre hotel, you will find the delights of Temple Bar, Whelans or the Bernard Shaw within walking distance. To make sure that your trip includes at least some fresh air and exercise, courses such as Corballis, Siloge Park and Howth will gladly welcome visiting groups and the green fees at these fantastic courses will not hit the drinking kitty too hard!

Enquire Now

A Night Out in Temple Bar

Links Heaven

Some of the finest links golf courses in the world can be found just a short drive from Dublin airport. A fantastic option or the group looking for a resort links experience, the Portmarnock Hotel and golf links. If you prefer to stay in the city, within an hour you can play at any one of St Annes, Portmarnock, Royal Dublin, the Island, the European Club or Laytown and Bettystown.

These links courses are a match for any in the world with the likes of Portmarnock regularly ranking at the top of both Ireland and world lists of the best courses. The Island is an absolute links gem and often welcomes the worlds top pros the week before the British Open for some links golf practice. If you travel a little further south, you will find the Pat Ruddy Masterpiece the European Club. Regularly ranked in the top 20 courses in the UK and Ireland, many see this as one of the best links courses in Ireland and this is among some stiff competition.

Portmarnock Links 10th Green

A links break in Dublin is a bucket list tour. Due to the huge demand for these courses from international visitors, green fees are on the top end of the scale. If you are looking to organise the once in a lifetime golf trip where budget is not the deciding factor, spend a week in the capital and play some of the best links in the world while spending evenings in one of the liveliest cities in the world!

Sample Package: 2 Nights B&B at Portmarnock Hotel and Links and 2 Rounds at Portmarnock Links – From €299 per person (Low Season)

Enquire Now

Escape to the Country

The joy of a trip to Ireland is that you are never far from peace and quiet. Take a drive in any direction from the city centre and you will find some of the finest golf resorts in Europe. Head south and you will enter Wicklow, the ‘Garden of Ireland’ and home to Druids Glen. The location of this resort could not be more apt. The floral nature of this famous 18 holes has drawn comparison with the one and only Augusta National on many occasions. With a luxury 5* hotel as well as a fantastic second course at Druids Heath, this is a resort of the highest quality.

To the East of Dublin you will find none other than multiple European Tour event host course, the K Club. As well as the Irish Open and European Open, the famous 2005 Ryder Cup was played here and the course still attracts swathes of international golfers. As with Druids Glen, the second course (Smurfit Course) and the luxurious 5* hotel make this a resort that lives long in the memory.

The K Club Resort Co Kildare

For the golfer looking for even further variety, you can visit Carton House which has hosted the Irish Open on multiple occasions. This luxury hotel has played host to training camps for multiple professional sports teams including the Irish rugby team before the recent six nations. With a luxury hotel, two championship courses and a short drive to the airport, this fantastic resort is ideal for a weekend break in the vicinity of Ireland’s capital..

Sample Package: 2 Nights at B&B at Carton House + 2 Rounds of Golf (1 x O’Meara, 1 x Montgomery) – From €230 per person (Low Season)

Enquire Now

Carton House Montgomery Course

To book your golf getaway in the Dublin area contact green golf travel today on +353 74 91 16660 or email info@greengolftravel.com

My Favourite 5 – The Best Courses in Sunny Portugal

The approach to landing in Dublin airport is familiar to most of us. On a clear day, you approach the city and those sitting in a window seat can pick out the sights of Croke Park, the Poolbeg chimbeys and Lansdowne Road. If you are a golfer, it will be the manicured fairways of Portmarnock, the Island and Royal Dublin that will catch your attention.

Ireland’s capital city is a long established tourism hub. For decades now, Temple Bar, the Guinness Storehouse and Trinity College have been hugely popular attractions. For those looking for a trip that keeps you out of the famous Dublin licenced premises for most of the day, have a look at our 3 most popular types of Dublin golf break.

 

 

Lads in the City

There is no doubt about it, Dublin is one of the best cities in the world for a group holiday. You could travel to Ireland’s capital on 100 separate occasions and still not sample every pub and restaurant the city has to offer.

For your Ireland golf society getaway, there can be no better option. Flights into Dublin airport are cheap and easy to come by and once you arrive, you have a plethora of public gems at your disposal.

Staying in a city centre hotel, you will find the delights of Temple Bar, Whelans or the Bernard Shaw within walking distance. To make sure that your trip includes at least some fresh air and exercise, courses such as Corballis, Siloge Park and Howth will gladly welcome visiting groups and the green fees at these fantastic courses will not hit the drinking kitty too hard!

Tip:  Take your tee shot on 16 before taking images. The tee shot becomes more daunting the longer you look at it!

How to play here: Visitors are welcome here so add a round here to any Vilamoura package.

Sample Package: 3 Nights B&B at Vila Gale Marina and 2 Rounds (1 x Millennium and 1 x Vale Do Lobo Royal) – From €299 per person (Low Season)

 

Enquire Now

Links Heaven

Some of the finest links golf courses in the world can be found just a short drive from Dublin airport. A fantastic option or the group looking for a resort links experience, the Portmarnock Hotel and golf links. If you prefer to stay in the city, within an hour you can play at any one of St Annes, Portmarnock, Royal Dublin, the Island, the European Club or Laytown and Bettystown.

These links courses are a match for any in the world with the likes of Portmarnock regularly ranking at the top of both Ireland and world lists of the best courses. The Island is an absolute links gem and often welcomes the worlds top pros the week before the British Open for some links golf practice. If you travel a little further south, you will find the Pat Ruddy Masterpiece a the European Club. Regularly ranked in the top 20 courses in the UK and Ireland, many see this as one of the best links courses in Ireland and this is among some stiff competition.

A links break in Dublin is a bucket list tour. Due to the huge demand for these courses from international visitors, green fees are on the top end of the scale. If you are looking to organise the once in a lifetime golf trip where budget is not the deciding factor, spend a week in the capital and play some of the best links in the world while spending evenings in one of the liveliest cities in the world!

 

Tip:  Take your tee shot on 16 before taking images. The tee shot becomes more daunting the longer you look at it!

How to play here: Visitors are welcome here so add a round here to any Vilamoura package.

Sample Package: 3 Nights B&B at Vila Gale Marina and 2 Rounds (1 x Millennium and 1 x Vale Do Lobo Royal) – From €299 per person (Low Season)

Enquire Now

Escape to the Country

 

The joy of a trip to Ireland is that you are never far from peace and quiet. Take a drive in any direction from the city centre and you will find some of the finest golf resorts in Europe. Head south and you will enter Wicklow, the ‘Garden of Ireland’ and home to Druids Glen. The location of this resort could not be more apt with the floral nature of this famous 18 holes has drawn comparison with the one and only Augusta National on many occasions. With a luxury 5* hotel as well as a fantastic second course at Druids Heath, this is a resort of the highest quality.

To the East of Dublin you will find none other than multiple European Tour event host course, the K Club. As well as the Irish Open and European Open, the famous 2005 Ryder Cup was played here and the course still attracts swathes of international golfers. As with Druids Glen, the second course (Smurfit Course) and the luxurious 5* hotel make this a resort that lives long in the memory.

For the golfer looking for even further variety, you can visit Carton House which has hosted the Irish Open on multiple occasions. This luxury hotel has played host to training camps for multiple professional sports teams including the Irish rugby team before the recent six nations. With a luxury hotel, two championship courses and a short drive to the airport, this fantastic resort is ideal for a weekend break in the vicinity of Ireland’s capital.

Tip:  Leave the driver in the bag. This course is all about accuracy and strategy.

How to play here: Add to any Vilamoura Tour

Sample Package: 3 Nights B&B at Vila Gale Marina and 2 Rounds (1 x Millennium and 1 x Vilamoura Old) – From €349 per person (Low Season)

Enquire Now

Old Course Vilamoura

To book your links golf getaway in Ireland contact green golf travel today on +353 74 91 16660 or email info@greengolftravel.com

Top Tips For a Memorable Golf Break in Donegal

So the plan is made and after all of these years your bucket list trip is going to be a reality. A week or two in Donegal with your golfing pals is on the cards and you need to get planning. Once your dates are confirmed and you have booked your flights, have a look at our top tips for your trip to Ireland’s best kept golfing secret and save yourself a lot of time and hassle!

Prepare your game

You may fancy yourself as a bit of a golf guru but if you have never played links golf, you may be in for a surprise. Get ready for howling winds, pot bunkers, knee high rough and 100 foot putts. Before you visit Ireland we recommend a trip to your local pro to get some advice on low punch shots and chip and runs with a 7 iron! This will save a lot of heartache on the challenging links layouts of Donegal.

Visit the Gaeltacht

The Gaeltacht regions of Ireland are like a step into a simpler time. The west coast of Donegal is predominantly Gaeltacht and these villages demonstrate everything that there is to love about Irish culture. From the natural scenic beauty of Kilcar to the bustling pubs of Ardara you will not be short of a welcome in the Gaeltacht. Add to this the mystique of the locals talking in the native Irish tongue and a trip to the Gaeltacht in Donegal will ensure a memorable experience.

Ardara Thatched Cottage

Buy Donegal Tweed

There is no need to introduce the quality or reputation of Donegal tweed. And where better to get your hands on it than from the manufacturer themselves! In Donegal Town you will find numerous authentic tweed suppliers including Magee who have been dressing royalty and celebrities alike for generations. Whether you need a flat cap or a 3-piece suit, make sure you get some of the worlds best tweed while here in Donegal.

Donegal Tweed

Sample Donegal Whiskey 

For the first time in 170 years, Donegal is set to have a distillery based near the imperious cliffs at Sliabh Liag. In the early 1800’s Donegal was thought to have more illegal stills than the rest of the country put together. Since 1841 however, the county has lacked a legitimate distillery but that has now changed. Opening in 2018 the Sliabh Liag distillery will be a welcome opportunity for golfers to take a day away from the fairways. Their Silkie whiskey is already in production and we will be happy to arrange whiskey tastings at your hotel on request.

Play a nine-hole course (Cruit Island)

When a golf course is named as one of the best 9 hole courses in the world by Golf Digest, you need to take notice. Described as ‘One of the most memorable, scenic and quirky 9 holers you will ever play,’ Cruit has a well-earned reputation. Battered by the Atlantic Ocean this 9 holer will offer views that will take the breath away and you can play here for the price of a round of pints at the local!

Cruit Island

Ask The Locals

Ireland is a country where relationships are nurtured over generations and local knowledge is everything. A trip to Ireland without the input of a local expert will certainly be enjoyable but you are likely to miss the deeper experience. Whether it is a detour post golf to a tiny thatched pub up a country lane or an evening meal arranged in the family home of a local host, taking time to chat with a local while here will open doors that are not visible to most outsiders.

Visit the Highest Sea Cliffs in Europe

Another experience that we are lucky to have on our doorstep is the beautiful Sliabh Liag cliffs. Surrounded by history and tradition, these cliffs tower over the Cliffs of Moher at a staggering 609 metres. The cliffs have huge local historical significance and have been the sight of pilgrimages for centuries. The views are quite spectacular, the story is enchanting and the entry is free! What more could you want?

Sliabh League Cliffs 

Experience a Lock In

OK so this part of your trip to Ireland generally comes without any planning. Our recommendation is that if you feel like you are in the middle of nowhere and pass a quiet looking pub, it is worth taking a pit stop! The legend of visitors serving their own pints of Guinness at 4am or leading the ceili at dawn in the local are common in this part of the world. Just make sure you have a designated driver and a friendly local guard!

Late Night Lockin

Hire a caddy

There is nothing quite like local knowledge and a game of golf is always better when banter is free flowing. Visit local courses such as Donegal Golf Club or Ballyliffin and your experience will be greatly enhanced with a local on your bag. Whether they have tales of late nights in the clubhouse, stories of shenanigans from unnamed members or hints on where to find the lock in we just mentioned, 18 holes with a local caddy is a must.

The Caddy Knows!

Book With Green Golf Travel!

OK so we are slightly biased on this one. Having said that, most golfers you speak to that has travelled to Ireland are likely to tell you that using a golf tour operator in this country is a worthwhile option. As well as creating an immersive experience, we can help you navigate local clubs and providers that may not have the most up to date systems or processes.

We ensure that you don’t need to worry about pro shops being closed, tee times being mixed up or arriving at a course to find most holes are closed for maintenance! Our sales team are in touch with every local club regularly and are kept up to date with issues that may affect your trip.  

Overall, your trip to Ireland will be made smoother, cheaper and more immersive by booking with Green Golf Travel. You can build a relationship of trust with your sales agent and share a pint with them before the end of your trip. If you would like to contact Green Golf Travel to arrange your trip you can reach us at info@greengolftravel.com .

5 Golf Travel Tips to Avoid a Double Bogey Holiday

We have all been there, months of anticipation leading up to a holiday and when we arrive, we get that sinking feeling. Creative photography, misleading brochures and wishful websites can make the most average hotel or course look spectacular. Once you have landed, there is no turning back and often the only solution is to fork out and fix the mistakes that have already been made. Thankfully websites such as Trip Advisor are turning the tide but we still need to be careful.

We are here to make sure that the sinking feeling is one that you never have to feel again. Here are our top 5 methods to ensure that your golf getaway is serene rather than stressful!

1) Take Impartial Advice

There are two types of recommendation when it comes to a golf travel break, one with a vested interest and one without! If your mate of 20 years tells you a course is a cracker, chances are it is! If a website for the same course sings its own praises, take it with a pinch of salt.

The beauty of using a golf tour operator is that as soon as a venue drops below standard, we find out. Green Golf Travel have visited every venue that we sell and many that we don’t! If a venue does not cut it, we won’t send our clients there. There are hundreds of hidden gems out there that quietly ooze class. These venues will ensure the trip of a lifetime but don’t take their word for it, take ours!

As well as offering impartial advice, a golf tour operator will save you cost and hassle and will look after you, year after year. Build a relationship of trust with your golf tour operator and you need never have that sinking feeling again.

It Looked So Good in the Brochure…

2) Hotel Value is Key

When it comes to choosing a hotel, cost and value are two very different things. If you are going on a golf travel break, you are not going to be spending 14 hours a day in your bedroom! For this reason, value in your hotel comes in the form of cleanliness, access to amenities, good food and a bed. Don’t spend 80% of your golf holiday budget on a room that you will only use to sleep in.

Value has different meaning for us all but if the choice is between a top notch course and a top notch bedroom, make sure you choose the former. Golf travel memories are made on the course so save the premium 5* suite for your family holiday and share a 4* twin with a mate on your golf break.

Don’t End Up Here!

3) Avoid Mid-Morning Tee Times

Have you heard the one about the guy who teed off in Spain as a teenager and had a Zimmer frame by the 18th? The 6 hour round might like a distant nightmare, but it is a reality in many golf resorts on the continent. Unless you are a cross between Jason Day and Terry Griffiths, this type of golf will strike fear into most golfers.

There is a solution! We all like the idea of a leisurely breakfast and a 11.30 tee time but this is where the peril lies. By this time of day the course is already clogged and you will wait on every shot. Plan your night out, get to bed at a semi reasonable hour and get out on the course by 9am. As well as a 4.5 hour round, temperatures will be pleasant and the day is still young by the time you finish.

Did Someone Say 6 Hour Round??

4) Beware of Hidden Costs

Always read the small print! If a deal seems too good to be true then often it is. Areas that most first time golf travel groups fall, are transport and buggies. At Green Golf Travel we will ask you for EVERY DETAIL of what you require. This may include car hire, private transfers, evening meals, buggies or all inclusive. We are realistic about your price to avoid any hidden surprises.

Our packages will always offer the best value for what you require. A no frills golf break may seem attractive but when you end up getting stung with hidden costs on arrival, your mates will only look to one person to blame!

5) Remember to Relax!    

This one applies to group organisers more than the lucky lot who just turn up and play. If you are organising a golf holiday, don’t let it take over your life! A simple way to make sure of this is to pass on the work to an expert. Booking courses, organising transfers, booking hotels, making meal arrangements, taking payments and dealing with the whims of your group are what we are here for! If you need a golf break and want to relax, you need to enquire with Green Golf Travel.

Golf is Meant to be Relaxing!