The Island gets off to a flier with a superb opener and never lets up, with major changes to the front nine further enhancing its reputation

The Island Golf Club Course Review

Top 100 Ranking 2021/22 – 72

Previous Rankings
2019/20 – 75
2017/18 – 72
2015/16 – 75
2013/14 – 79
2011/12 – 92
2009/10 – 95

Summer Green Fees

Round: €165 Mon-Thu, €185 Fri-Sun; Day €240 Mon-Thu

Visitor Times: Welcome every day. Check for availability.

Medal Tee: Par 72 – 6,715 Yards

Website: www.theislandgolfclub.ie

Changes since previous ranking

There have been significant changes to the front 9. The 3rd hole has been extended into a par 5, while the 4th is now a fantastic new par 3 with views across the Irish Sea. The par-4 5th has a new tee box and the 9th is another new hole, a 409-yard par 4 playing back towards the clubhouse.

The Island Golf Club Course Review

For some reason, The Island is perhaps less well-known than it deserves to be given its location just ten miles from the centre of Dublin and its idyllic setting, surrounded on three sides by water and marshland with holes that weave through some of the tallest and most awe-inspiring dunes of any older links course.

The Island is surrounded by water on three sides

Related: Top 100 Courses UK and Ireland

Word of its quality is spreading rapidly, though, and that looks set to continue apace following extensive recent work to remodel the opening half to take fuller advantage of the terrain.

Word of its quality is rapidly spreading, though, and that looks set to continue apace following extensive recent work to remodel the opening half to take fuller advantage of the terrain. This work has added greater balance to a front nine that used to comprise eight consecutive par 4s and a short par 3 back to the clubhouse, and therefore greater balance to the overall course as well. The club was born in 1890 out of the desire of certain Royal Dublin members to have somewhere they were allowed to play golf on the Sabbath. They would take a ferry over the estuary to a links that was originally routed from the seaward end of the promontory. The ferry was still in use for arriving golfers until the clubhouse was re-sited in 1973, and the latest course revisions follow a number of other substantial improvements through the years at the hands of Martin Hawtree and others. More drama coming home After that newly rebalanced front nine, the back nine features two further par 5s, the intimidating par-4 14th, with its fearsomely narrow fairway, and a stirring approach on 15, where the spectacular amphitheatre green is reminiscent of Doonbeg’s 1st or Carne’s 10th. The 13th is one of two great par 3s coming home, a classic one-shotter at the southern end of the promontory that could require literally any club in the bag depending on wind strength and direction, and is devoid of sand, with a cavernous pit and OOB all the way along the right-hand side deemed testing enough. The Island’s climb up the rankings this time is testament to its ongoing quest for improvement. Assessor Feedback This is a good test of golf demanding a variety of shot-making skills. The new holes certainly elevate the appearance of the course, but the standout hole for me is still the par-4 14th with its narrow fairway and wasteland estuary edge waiting on the right to catch any errant tee shots. GM Verdict The Island gets off to a flier with a superb opener and never lets up, with major changes to the front nine further enhancing its reputation.

The Island gets off to a great start on the 1st

This work has added greater balance to a front nine that used to comprise eight consecutive par 4s and a short par 3 back to the clubhouse, and therefore greater balance to the overall course as well.

The club was born in 1890 out of the desire of certain Royal Dublin members to have somewhere they were allowed to play golf on the Sabbath. They would take a ferry over the estuary to a links that was originally routed from the seaward end of the promontory.

Members crossed on a ferry to the original clubhouse

The ferry was still in use for arriving golfers until the clubhouse was re-sited in 1973, and the latest course revisions follow a number of other substantial improvements through the years at the hands of Martin Hawtree and others.

More drama coming home

After that newly rebalanced front nine, the back nine features two further par 5s, the intimidating par-4 14th, with its fearsomely narrow fairway, and a stirring approach on 15, where the spectacular amphitheatre green is reminiscent of Doonbeg’s 1st or Carne’s 10th.

The stirring amphitheatre green on 15

The 13th is one of two great par 3s coming home, a classic one-shotter at the southern end of the promontory that could require literally any club in the bag depending on wind strength and direction, and is devoid of sand, with a cavernous pit and OOB all the way along the right-hand side deemed testing enough.

Assessor Feedback

This is a good test of golf demanding a variety of shot-making skills.

The new holes certainly elevate the appearance of the course, but the standout hole for me is still the par-4 14th with its narrow fairway and wasteland estuary edge waiting on the right to catch any errant tee shots.

GM Verdict

The Island gets off to a flier with a superb opener and never lets up, with major changes to the front nine further enhancing its reputation.