Northern Ireland is a country synonymous with golf. Legends like Rory McIlroy, Graeme McDowell, and Darren Clarke are among some of the names that have been raised on the greens of Northern Ireland. Finn Valley Cottages is ideally placed for those wishing to indulge in the occasional game of golf or a golfing holiday. Only an hour and ten minutes from the Royal Portrush, the home of The Open in 2019, it is also in close proximity to other stellar courses such as Lough Erne Resort, Ballyliffen, Portstewart, Rosapenna, Murvagh, and Castlerock. With an array of courses in the surrounding area, make Finn Valley Cottages the place you lay your head.
Local Golfing Experiences:
Golf is one of Northern Ireland’s revered sports, with golfers revered in local communities. The activity has golf enthusiasts travelling from all over the world to stay in Finn Valley Cottages. Due to the vicinity of the cottages to the best of Northern Irish Golf, Finn Valley Cottages are the ultimate destination for an array of courses. Some of these courses include:
The home of Darren Clarke and Graeme McDowell, the Royal Portrush Golf Club is a private club located in County Antrim. The two links courses that reside in the 36-hole club are the Dunluce Links and the Valley Links. It is the Valley Links that was on the rota for the Open Championship, hosted by the club in 2019.
Donegal Golf Club:
Donegal Golf Club, known affectionately as Murvagh to the locals, is located on the Murvagh peninsula in South Donegal. The sublime course was originally designed by Eddie Hackett, the foremost designer of Irish golf course architecture. Known as the Muirfield of Ireland, it has been re-moulded by the ‘Master of Links design’ Pat Ruddy. Surrounded by the wild Atlantic Ocean, falling into Donegal Bay, the area has been designated a special area of conservation. It is one of the longest golf courses in Europe, measuring a massive 7,453 yards from the championship tees. Darren Clarke considers it one of his favourite golf courses in the world, which is unsurprising considering the immense beauty it resides in.
Lough Erne Resort:
A course adored by Rory McIlroy, Lough Erne resort plays host to The Faldo Course, designed by the Major winner Sir Nick Faldo. The links-like fairways and true greens are surrounded by the divine Fermanagh Lakelands. One of Ireland’s top golf resorts, it provides superb all year round playing conditions for keen golfers visiting. Utilising the stunning backdrop, eleven of the eighteen holes feature the waters of the Lough. It is a top 100 course in the United Kingdom and Ireland, measuring 7,071 yards from the tips. Rory McIlroy is indeed the course legend as he set the record of 68 during his touring professional between 2009 and 2011, and it still remains. Only an hour away from Finn Valley Cottages, it’s ideally placed for a round of golf.
Ballyliffin Golf Club:
Ballyliffin Golf Club is revered for its two outstanding, contrasting links course. Considered of the finest golf courses on the island of Ireland, it boasts spectacular panoramic views of the countryside and coastline. The Old Links course has recently had work undertaken by Sir Nick Faldo and has received acclaim from locals and visitors alike. The Glashedy Links course was conceived by Pat Ruddy and Tom Craddock, fashioned around the gorgeous dunes.
Rosapenna Golf Course:
Renowned since the late 19th Century, Rosapenna has been attracting visitors for its Old Tom Morris Links. It was ranked 3rd in the British Isles only behind St. Andrews and The Royal County Down Golf Club. Opening its second course in 2003, Sandy Hills Links was designed by Pat Ruddy of the European Club fame. Stunning and historical, Rosapenna is a must-see for golfers.
Cruit Island Golf Club:
A course that shouldn’t be overlooked, Cruit Island Golf club is set on the edge of the Wild Atlantic Way. Sensational panoramic views are on display for those playing the true natural 9-hole links course. If you are into technical golf, this is the place for you as, at a par of 68, every shot must be methodically thought out.
Portnoo Golf Club:
Portnoo Golf Club, also known as Narin and Portnoo Links stands on the incredible Wild Atlantic Way, with the course boasting sensational sea views over the Atlantic. A historical course, golf has been plated on these links since 1905. Nestled in the heart of Donegal, the courses are of elegant appearance but with a technical design to enjoy.
Portstewart Golf Club:
Founded in 1894, Portstewart Golf Club boasts three, true links golf courses. The outstanding Championship Strand Course was the host for the 2017 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open. The Riverside, Strand, and Old course all have exemplary views of the Atlantic Ocean. Located in the idyllic town of Portstewart, it is worth a visit for the stunning scenery.
Castlerock Golf Club:
Another course with sensational views of the Atlantic Ocean, Castlerock Golf Club is a fantastic course with two lovely courses to play: Mussenden Course and Bann Course. Located not far from the Mussenden Temple, a National Trust Heritage site, its views alone
are worth playing the course for.
Golf Close to Home:
For those who want to stay closer to the cottages, the local courses of Strabane and Newtownstewart are warm and open clubs. Newtownstewart is a course for nature lovers as it is home to Seika deer, pheasants, and a truly rustic feel. Just watch out the squirrels don’t steal your tees! For those who enjoy a scenic view, Strabane is a golf course that provides stunning views over the River Mourne – a challenge to enjoy is navigating your golf balls around the River Mourne!
The owner of Finn Valley Cottages, Anne, is a keen golfer with a thorough knowledge of the courses of the area and can help advise on a course that suits your level, and can assist in the booking of tee times directly with the courses – all you have to do is swing your club. Not everyone has the love of the green and if you’re with family, they can be kept entertained by the variety of activities in the area, while you enjoy your round of golf!