The Island Golf Club

Corballis, Donabate, Co. Dublin, Ireland

There are few courses more fittingly named than The Island Golf Club. This links course, located on the east coast of Ireland in Fingal, is bordered by the sea on three sides. It used to be on an actual island that could only be reached by rowboat until a few decades ago.

Alas, today’s journey to The Island Golf Club feels less momentous, consisting of a 30-minute drive around the peninsula on which the course now resides. The quality of golf there however, has suffered no lack in quality. This natural, no-frills links still plays as well as it did when it was founded back in 1890.

During a visit to The Island Golf Club, expect robust terrain dominated by large swaths of sand dunes. The course is made even more difficult to traverse by the ever-present swirls of wind coming off of the water.

Thankfully, things get off to an easy start. The course’s first hole, “Partridge Hollow” is a merciful one that’s more beautiful than it is difficult. It features a fairway shielded by towering 25-foot dunes on booths sides, and players catch a glimpse of the sea on their walk up towards the green.

“Broadmeadow,” the course’ signature 13th hole, is a bit less forgiving. This hole presents players with a choice: They can either play it safe by laying up over the bunker that guards the green, or they can take a risk by trying to reach the green in one shot and possibly end up on the beach beyond it. It’s a par three, so choose wisely!