Domburgsche Golf Club was founded in 1914 and the 9-hole pure links course was commandeered by the Germans during WWII and subsequently bombed by the Allies. The craters now form wonderful revetted bunkers.
Those who know me know that I really like links golf. However, I must put a little question mark on the ranking of this course. Is really the consensus of informed opinion that there are only 21 better courses in the whole of the Netherlands? Or, does the justified reputation of country’s top three links courses (Haagsche, Noordwijk, Kennemer) drag this little, rugged jewel further up the ranking lists than what is actually warranted? I have not played enough courses in the Netherlands to do more than ask these perhaps impertinent questions .
Among the few I have played, however, is the Domburgsche. The reason I went out of my way to play it some years ago was not its ranking (not aware of it at the time) but because I had read the story about the links being bombed by the Allies during WWII and wanted to experience what grass bunkers made by the RAF looked and played like.
Crazy, sure, but I think you should approach a visit to the Domburgsche as the experience it represents. The actual golf course, taken out of its historical context, is quite basic, but I respect that the overall uniqueness of the experience might rank among the top 25 in the Netherlands for some.
Said to be the the only links course in Holland, presumably because you can see, hear, and feel the sea from a few of the tees. Domburg starts promising with a run of links-style holes that go out along the coast - a lovely view of a rumpled fairway on the opening tee shot, a blind shot on the second where you have the anticipation of where you might find your ball, and a fourth to a slightly angled fairway that reminded me of Gullane. The sixth starts coming back in and this is where my playing partner sliced it into the road and straight into the bonnet of a car speeding along the adjacent road.
The quality of the holes from here drops off a bit, although the par 3 eighth has a nice green and you have another blind drive on the 8th. Didn't like the drive on the 7th with water on the right, it felt a bit out of place on the course.
Domburg suffers for me because it's just 9 holes - never as interesting as 18 varied holes of the same quality - and because I think it could do with a few more bunkers to provide strategy and define a few of the holes. Having said this, it's pretty, windy, has punishing rough, leaves you with some fun shots, and the opportunity to play a running game.
If you are looking for something linksy in Holland and have already played The Haagsche, Noordwijk, and The Kennemer, then perhaps try Domburg. BB