Tralee Golf Club

Tralee Golf Club | NCG Top 100s: GB&I Golf Courses

The great Arnold Palmer was the man to design the course on Tralee's new location, and it was the American's first venture into golf course design on European soil.

The original course opened prior to the turn of the 20th Century, and was around for 85 years before Tralee made the move to its current location.

Palmer's design sees the 18-hole lay-out sit on the rugged Atlantic coastline. Tralee is located in the south-west portion of the Republic of Ireland, with a number of holes playing alongside the beach and the waves of the Atlantic Ocean.

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A Brief History of Tralee Golf Club

Tralee Golf Club was founded in the latter part of the 19th Century. It was only a 9-hole course when it first opened in 1896 and was situated on a different piece of land, slightly down the road from its current location. 

Only a year later, another 9-hole course was opened in Fenit, after the initial course faced challenges and was ultimately abandoned. 

The current course was designed by the great Arnold Palmer, in what was his first golf course design in Europe. Palmer's design used the existing terrain and surroundings, and added stunning golf course features to the area.

The golf club has been the venue for a range of golfing events over the years, including a number of amateur championships and international competitions.

Tralee Golf Club Review | NCG Top 100s: GB&I Golf Courses

Arnold Palmer's design is not the longest course in the world, at 6,870 yards long, but it certainly has its challenges. It is a tough course on a still day, but if you add that stiff Atlantic breeze into the mix, then playing to your handicap is a very good score indeed.

No fewer than six of the 18 holes on the lay-out play with the coastline at their side, starting off with the 2nd. That follows the opening par-4, which is just shy of 400 yards. 2 is the first par-5 at Tralee, which is a sharp dog-leg right around the beach. At 578 yards, it is a true three-shot par-5. The 3rd is the signature hole, and reminiscent of the infamous Vale do Lobo par-3. Palmer's design sees golfers hit over the sea to the green which is almost 200 yards away. Anything right and you're hitting another!

The next three holes are all long par-4s, with the 6th being a dog-leg to the right. The front nine then finishes par-3, par-4, par-5. 7 is only 155 yards, while the 8th is a short par-4 that plays with the coastline down its left side. The closing hole on the front nine is the par-5 9th which is a double dog-leg, first to the left and then right. Bigger hitters could reach the 9th green in two.

10 is the toughest hole on the course, a 480-yarder from the back tees, with the longest hole on the course shortly following. The 11th is a 590-yard par-5, and another double dog-leg, in the same form as the 9th. Though in this case, big hitters will still struggle to be putting for eagle. After another long par-4, the 13th is the shortest hole on the course at 150 yards, but club selection is vital with plenty of trouble both short and long of the green.

14 and 15 are both birdie opportunities, with the 15th being a driveable par-4 at just 305 yards long. 16 sees golfers play back towards the ocean, and at 194 it is the longest par-3 at Tralee. 17 and 18 then also provide opportunities to get back a couple of shots, both short for their pars (4 and 5), with 18 winding its way back to the clubhouse.

What is the green fee for playing at Tralee Golf Club?

In the high season (1st May - 6th October), the price to play at Tralee is €275/£235.50 and in the mid season (April), the price is €180/£154.

Are there practice facilities and a clubhouse for golfers at Tralee Golf Club?

Yes, there is a designated practice area at Tralee Golf Club with yardage markers. The club also has a 9-hole putting green so golfers can warm up before a round. Furthermore, the golf club offers a 300 yard driving range with strategic targets.

Can non-members play at Tralee Golf Club, or is it exclusive to members?

Although Tralee is a members club, they welcome visitors to play on their course. Visitors are expected to follow the terms of the club, as are members.

Visit Tralee's website here.
Go back to the NCG Top 100s Homepage.