Porthmadog - North Wales - Wales

Porthmadog Golf Club,
Morfa Bychan,
Porthmadog,
Gwynedd,
LL49 9UU,
Wales


  • +44 (0)1766 512037

  • Golf Club Website

  • 2 miles S of Porthmadog near Black Rock Sands

  • Welcome - Contact in advance


Visit Golfbreaks.com for a golf holiday at Porthmadog

The course at Porthmadog Golf Club has a split personality. The front nine is really parkland (and this is where a score can be made) but it’s the back nine that makes you want to re-visit as it has some super links holes.

As you tee off the 2nd, the large hills beyond will stay with you whilst you go ‘out-and-back’ on the flat parkland side. Make your score on the three par fives, as the testing 4th hole is a tough par four. The 9th is a lovely par three down the hill with the clubhouse acting as a backdrop.

Now cross the road to start the back nine and you’ll soon appreciate why we all visit Porthmadog. It really is a case of ‘where are we going’ when you stand on the 10th tee, but yes, do aim for the marker posts as they really are there to be followed. The trip around Samson’s Bay is lovely as you will puzzle over how to play the par four 12th. But after the climb up to the 13th tee take in the views across to the castles of Harlech and Criccieth, but also focus on the dunes, as shortly you will be facing the ‘Himalayas’… two huge mounds that you must drive between on the par four 14th stroke index 1 – a super golf hole.

As you close your round look into the gardens behind the 16th green as the old clubhouse still stands to the right of the modern house and please be aware of the tiny hidden brook that ‘zigzags’ across the front of the green on the par five 17th as it could spoil your card if you’re attempting reach the green in two.

We always enjoy our winter trip to Porthmadog and it is nice to see the course being updated year after year (humps added to the 3rd to create a better featured hole as well as the water on the 5th being dug out more into the fairway to create a bit more thought for the tee shot). The clubhouse is spacious and relaxed and also note there is a snooker room.

Please give Porthmadog Golf Club a go because the back nine is worth the trip alone, especially for those lovers of links golf. Enjoy!

The above article was written by Alex and was added to the website in December 2006.

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Reviews for Porthmadog

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Description: Porthmadog Golf Club was founded in 1905 and James Braid designed it. The course is an exciting hybrid mix of parkland and links holes. Rating: 6.5 out of 10 Reviews: 24
TaylorMade
J Sorrenti
So our tee time for Porthmadog was at 830AM. We arrived at 8AM, and except for the house cat, it was completely deserted. By 825AM, there were 20 players congregating outside of the locked pro shop door. The head pro arrives at 831AM, and we were promptly off at 835AM. The front nine is disappointing and not very memorable. The back nine has 7 interesting holes, and then 17 and 18 revert back to the front nine environment---very parkland. But those 7 holes are really worth seeing, and probably why people play here. If they could find a way to change the other 11 holes to something like holes 10-16, they would have quite an amazing golf course. For now, just interesting to see (and dont get there too early if playing in the AM!)
September 17, 2010
6 / 10
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Ben Burkill
February 08, 2011
The 17th is a quality par 5, what are you talking about?
Nick Kjelgaard
February 12, 2011
I played here in June 2010, and have to agree in main with the comments, although holes 1-2 are okay as are 17 and 18. I believe the holes that let the course down are 3 through 9, although I believe this is because 10 through 16 are so good. I would recommend the whole area to anyone your won't be disappointed.
Stuart Bendoris
February 28, 2015
The 17th is a strong hole imho. Good drive required (how much of the dogleg and bushes to carry?) and then a scary approach if you go for it in two over gorse and a burn. I certainly didn't feel it was parkland although I'd agree the 18th feels that way.
Andy
There are many references that this course has two distinct halves, with most saying parkland for the front 9 and a links back 9. This is partially true but my feeling is that the two nines can be described as not very good and not too bad! Porthmadog - Photo by AndyThe land that has been used for the first nine holes is not very inspiring at all and there really is not a lot of quality to any of the holes to be honest; possibly the par-3 6th over water is the best of a poor bunch. The best holes on the course are certainly at the beginning of the back nine; the par-4 10th is nice to play and the par-3 11th at 200 yards with the green at the coast is a classical seaside short-hole. The view from the 12th tee takes in Samson's Bay which is fantastic on the eye but the hole (although fun to play) is a little strange; a par-4 that ideally needs two shots of around 140 yards (that was the advice from the pro-shop). Holes 13-17 are decent links holes although nothing too special but 18th that runs parallel to the opening hole is back on the poor land, so this leaves a disappointing end. As a rating I give the front-9 a 2-ball rating and the back-9 a 4-ball, therefore a 3-ball overall. To finish on a little bit of a high note, the club has a great atmosphere and a healthy friendly membership...I just think that visitors to the course will be a touch under-whelmed as this is not really one of the decent courses in Wales.
August 25, 2010
4 / 10
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Phil B
This is a very good golf course that has two distinct halves.The front nine is away from the sea and is a mix of links and parkland (the first 2 holes before you cross the road are links) although it was that dry that all the holes played like a links course.A nice touch as you cross back over the road towards the clubhouse where a rear serving door allows you to buy refreshments (just what was needed on a baking hot day).As others have said this is where it then gets interesting!A superb 9 holes of links golf that would test players of any ability. This first time I have played a blind tee shot to a par 3 on the 11th and then a great golf hole, a par 4 of 290 yards tucked into a corner running alongside a stretch of beach. A real risk or reward shot with stunning views. The famous 14th, the Himalayas lived up to its name, especially on such a dry, hard running surface as it currently is.The 17th is a lovely dogleg par 5 running between two expanses of gorse with a ditch at the front of the green.The clubhouse and pro shop was very friendly, which always helps.This is a goodl golf course. It is easy to criticise the front 9 but that is because the back 9 is so good and really is links golf at its best.
July 06, 2010
8 / 10
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Baer
Having not played a links course before and spent many hours pouring through the reviews of various courses on this website and others everthing was pointing at Porthmadog being a must play course, especially for those of us on a more modest budget, and one that would provide a great introduction to the links experience. The course's well documented split personality also carried the appeal of an opportunity to get my swing "in the zone" over the opening parkland holes in time for my first exposure to links golf. The fact that this would be on a course laid out by the much celebrated James Braid promised to be the icing on the cake. Unfortunately our group found the course to be a big disappointment, perhaps our expectations were too high based on the reviews. In the afternoon we played Aberdovey which we all found to be an absolutely fantastic experience by contrast and yet both courses share a 5-ball rating. As a reviewer of this course I would be the first to admit that I obviously don't have anything like the depth of links experience or knowledge of many of the reviewers who post their reviews on this website, and clearly my experience of Porthmadog is at odds with the opinions of others here. Perhaps I should return to Porthmadog after I have played more links courses armed with more knowledge and a better appreciation for what I have perhaps missed as part of my first experience here, however, for the benefit of those who are seeking a first links experience I would recommend that you cut your teeth elsewhere.
May 16, 2010
4 / 10
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sleats
May 17, 2010
If you looking for a cheap links course in that area I would recommend Royal St David's. Its a great links course with splendid backdrop of the castle. The closing holes particularly challenge you very well. The greens are also fab.
Nick Kjelgaard
June 22, 2010
I played there just last week and would recommend the whole area (although all courses we played seem to have better back nines than front). Porthmadog has a fair and tricky front nine with a few holes that you need to have played before to know how to play but the course comes alight on the back nine. Every hole askes something of you and although 11 through 14 are fantastic, 10 is so different to the front nine that your game will intesify and the approach on 15 is just great. If you are up there make sure you play Nefyn (the 8 on the old back are awsome) and Royal St David's the 15th there is simply something else.
John Mawer
Having played in excess of 30 championship courses, there is no doubt in my mind that the Porthmadog back 9 holes are the best of them all. Unbelievably, 1 of our party didn’t enjoy it, but then he didn’t recognise Tom Watson playing the 18th during our visit to the 2008 Open and was more looking forward to watching an England football match later that evening! He now plays at Celtic Manor and the like, whilst the rest of us enjoy gems like Porthmadog, P&K and RWN.
October 13, 2009
8 / 10
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Kevan Voce
It really is a game of two halves. The back nine is fantastic though. Like Portrush the 17th and 18th are ok but a bit of an anti-climax given holes through 10 to 16 which I don't think could be bettered anywhere. Holes 12 and 15 are in my all-time top 18 holes. A real gem and the staff were really welcoming - if only the Scottish were as friendly as the Welsh!!
October 13, 2009
8 / 10
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Brian Donaldson
October 13, 2009
I must schedule a visit to Wales to play some of the great courses there. I have just returned from my second trip to Scotland and enjoyed both the golf and the hospitality. The Scots I have met were friendly, engaging, witty and fine company. If the Welsh operate on an even higher plane, then I certainly look forward to sharing pints with them too.
Donald Currie
Front nine is OK, Back nine is wonderful. Greens not at their best when we played in mid May, having been heavily dressed.Friendly staff in the club - Best bacon and egg roll I've ever eaten!Recommend you play the back nine twice and forget the front nine.
June 23, 2009
6 / 10
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simon smith
Personally found the Pro & staff very friendly so no problems here. Interesting course - a tale of 2 different nines as many have said before. Thoroughly enjoyed the back nine (9 out of 10) and wish all back nines were this interesting. Wasn't too fussed about the front nine even though there are some good holes on it. Definately worth playing and we thought good value for money. Enjoy !!
May 24, 2009
6 / 10
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Alex Sherratt
played the course over the winter period and as always it was a joy to play (even tho it was quite forsty which made it hard and bouncy). the only slight problem was that we all felt the staff did not really make us feel that welcome ? (shame really), do not let this report put you off though as it really is worth the effort to play and enjoy porthmadog gc !
January 09, 2009
6 / 10
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Ben B
January 09, 2009
Agreed the pro is a bit moody but never had a problem with the bar staff, they were all very pleasant
Ben
What a course! This is my second favourite ever at the moment to Royal St David's, a little easier but a charming and fair course but will bite your arm off in bad weather. We played 27 holes here at the beginning of October, £36 for a day ticket and the course immaculate, the greens amazing. The club house is polished, changing rooms comfortable and I would recommend the home made soup for lunch plus the scampi! This is the third year running I have played at Porthmadog after being introduced to it by a long time family friend who was a member as a junior for about 10 years and I have fallen in love with it. Every year we take a week off and play the great courses of Mid/North Wales. As you would have read above, the course is renowned for its split personality of front 9 parkland and back 9 links but I don't think the front 9 gets enough credit, it is a good 9 by itself. Okay it has 3 easy par 5s but 1 has a links feel to it with the undulating fairway and stream in front of the green, 4 is an extremely tough par 4 - hardly reachable in two. 5 is a trickly 90 degree dogleg right par 4 and 9 is a tough downhill par 3 and SI 18, so you need to make par. When you walk back across the road and get to the 10th tee you just cannot believe the transformation, it is jaw dropping stuff. The back 9 is not particularly long but it is blind and the greens are undulating, you have to play smart golf. 10 and 15 are short but have mogul fairways and tight amphitheatre banked greens, 11 and 13 are long blind par 3s, 12 is short - you hit a 5 iron down to the landing area and a PW up to the green - but you would never take driver because you'll end up in the beach or in Samson bay with the fish, 14 is the toughest hole on the course, a beast of a par 4 with a 200 yard carry over 60 feet of sand dunes into the wind, both sides of the fairway are banked and you still have about 180 yards into a narrow green even if you nail your drive, 16 is a short par 4 but a small and tricky green well protected by bunkers in front of the old clubhouse, 17 is one of my favourite holes - a 3 shot par 5 because of the stream in front with the fairway lined by gorse and the green tucked in on the left - watch out for the Apache helicopters flying over head! 18 is a longish par 4 dogleg right with a lightning green sloped back to front. Magic.
October 14, 2008
8 / 10
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