Wicklow golfers first played here on a 9-hole course over a hundred years ago (in 1904 to be exact) and it took another ninety years before the club finally extended the layout to a full eighteen holes. Having sorted out the course, a new clubhouse followed in 2002, just in time for members to celebrate the centenary of Wicklow Golf Club in style.
Measuring a touch under 6,000 yards (with a par of 71), this scenic parkland course is laid out on cliffs overlooking the Irish Sea, with stunning views from many vantage points as it follows the coastline contours and undulations. Many of the hole names are taken from natural features just offshore – “Hens & Chickens” refers to a formation of rocks, “Churn” describes the state of the tides at the 4th tee and “Codling” is the name of a dangerous sandbank just out to sea.
The 406-yard, par four, 6th is the feature hole on the outward half. Its name – “Pebble Beach” – compares this stretch of coast to that of the Monterey Peninsula, California and with a carry from the tee to the fairway over the Irish Sea in excess of 175 yards, you have to ask yourself one question, as posed by former Carmel Mayor Clint Eastwood in his “Dirty Harry” cinematic role, “Do you feel lucky, punk?”
The four par three holes on the card are all very good but the best is kept until last. “The Glen” is hole number 17 and it has a forced carry of nearly 150 yards over a ravine with two ponds in front and one bunker behind the putting surface. Like the 6th hole, this is a real test of nerve near the end of the round.
How fit are you?! A bit Mickey Mouse- hills everywhere and have to aim 50 yards off target for the ball to come back to the fairway.
A stunning golf course that photographs do not do justice to. Just returned from a golf tour of this area and I have to say that I would return at the earliest opportunity. The clubhouse is superb, set on the cliff tops just south of the town with amazing views out over the course and into the Irish Sea. Staff were extremely pleasant and could not do enough to make our day more memorable. The course is not the longest and there is a little clutter of a few holes around the clubhouse in the middle of the round. That said, the tees, fairways and greens are in superb condition with the greens running I would estimate, at around a knee trembling 11 on the stimp. I noticed that most members walk this course, but I would suggest that paying for a buggy is well worth the investment as there is little flat ground here. The day we played, it was totally benign of wind or rain, however beware, I would imagine that this course would have teeth of a shark in windy weather. I have played in many countries and would say that the value for money offered by this course (£34 green fee inc. buggy) was one of the best I have ever encountered.