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Ballybunion Golf Club

Home to two fantastic links golf courses Ballybunion is a world-renowned golf links. Known to many thanks to a visit in 1998 by Former US President Bill Clinton (he would later return in 2001 for another visit). The opening tee shot of the Old Course is one of the more daunting in all of golf but probably not for the reasons you would expect. The elevated tee box sits just off the balcony of the clubhouse which makes it intimidating enough, but more off-putting than that you'll find the graveyard that is within striking distance of even the most modest of hitters to be the real knee-knocker when it comes to getting your first tee shot away. I can tell you from personal experience the first tee shot on the Old Course in Ballybunion is as nervous as I've felt anywhere. The fact that there were visitors to said graveyard at the time only added to my nervousness. Needless to say, I duff-snapped one way left and went on to make a dogged bogey.

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No. 1 Favourite Course: ….My choice is the Old Course at Ballybunion Golf Club in Ireland. I’m with Tom Watson on this one. I’m totally smitten with the wild contouring, ocean views, towering dunes and remarkable variety – no matter what the weather.

Joe Passov

Senior Editor (Course/Rankings)

Ballybunion is a course on which many golf architects should live and play before they build courses.

Tom Watson

In golf there are certain places that send emotional charges through the bodies of avid golfers … St Andrews, Augusta, Winged Foot, Muirfield. Yet even among the select, few courses boast the romance and awesome power of Ballybunion. Carved out of towering dunes along the Atlantic Ocean by God and the elements, it is considered by many to be the greatest course in the world.

Joe DeGarmo

Author of “The Road to Ballybunion”

I love Ballybunion. It’s perfectly Irish: beautiful, rough, and a lot like life — you get breaks you don’t deserve both ways. You just have to keep swinging and know it will all even out.

Bill Clinton