Location:- Killarney, Co Kerry.
All known superlatives are inadequate to the task of describing Killarney with its mountains, lakes, trees and two magnificent golf courses, each of which has hosted major championships, and where spectacular golf matches have been filmed for television.
Here, the friendliest golfers in the world extend the warmest of welcomes to all who wish to visit them in their golfing home which is quite without comparison in the golfing universe.
Three Championship golf courses.
- Mahony’s Point Course. 6164 metres. Course Architects: Sir Guy Campbell and Henry Longhurst. Hosted: Irish Amateur Open Championship 1949,1953. Professional Tournaments: 1955 and 1966.
- Killeen Course. 6474 metres. Course Architects: DR Wm. O’Sullivan and Ed Hackett. Hosted: Irish Amateur Close championship 1983. Carroll’s Irish Open Championship 1991 and 1992, winner both years Nick Faldo, Curtis Cup 1996.
- Lackabane Course. 6410 metres. Course Architects: Donald Steel. Hosted: Ladies Irish Open.
The three superb golf courses offer firm fairways and perfect greens in a sylvan setting on the shores of Lough Leane with the mountain range known as the MacGillicuddy Reeks towering majestically beyond the water. When the wind blows in across the lake the trees that line the Killarney fairways setup a subtle, warning symphony. You will need to be careful today!
Gene Sarazen was much impressed by Killarney on the occasion of a visit to produce an episode of the Shell Wonderful World of Golf series for television: “When the wind blows in off the lake even the best player in the world will be hard-pressed to break 80, ” he said.
And he added: “The eighteenth hole, in particular, is one of the most memorable holes in golf”.
The golf at Killarney is of the most unforgettable nature. It moves easily, in soul-soothing isolation, through timeless and beautiful parklands with well cultured fairways and greens beckoning you onwards to still greater golfing thrills.
Here, if you stray from the straight and narrow path you could be forgiven for getting the feeling that you are the first person to lift a divot from that spot since the Almighty finished his work knowing that golfers, one day, would relish this place.
Killarney is the only Irish venue to have acted host to the European Amateur Team Championships. That was in 1975 when the Irish post office paid a great tribute to both the lovely venue and the big event by issuing a special series of postage stamps featuring the Killarney courses and lake. This remains one of the very few occasions on which any country used golf as a theme for its postage stamps!
All the Irish amateur championships, for men and for women, have been played at Killarney, and a number of golf matches for international television have been filmed in these magnificent settings.
The professionals have played here, too. Indeed, Gary Player made his first professional appearance outside South Africa at Killarney in 1955 and was full of praise for the place. You do not have to be as good a golfer as Gary Player to enjoy Killarney or to command a warm welcome when you visit.
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