World Ranking

Top 100 Golf Courses in the World (Architects’ Choice)

In July 2013, Golf Course Architecture published the Architects’ Choice Top 100 Golf Courses in the World as voted by almost 250 golf course architects from 28 countries across the globe. The Island was ranked 7th in Ireland and 78th in the World.

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Top 100 Golf Courses in Ireland

The Island Golf Club has been ranked 9th in the Top 100 Golf Courses in Ireland by “Top 100 Golf Courses”

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The Confidential Guide to Golf Courses

Tom Doak describes The Island as having wonderful terrain and representing big golf with quirky charm, making it one of the few courses that has managed to pull off that combination. He describes the finish as rousing with the 15th one of the best par five holes in Ireland.

Emerald Fairways and Foam-Flecked Seas

James Finegan writes that, like the Old Course at St. Andrews, The Island places the emphasis heavily on the two-shotter with thirteen par fours. Finegan describes the first and last holes as classics and wonderful two-shotters. He describes the holes in between these as ranging from delightful to splendid and great. “The Island is a great course. Seaside golf at its best. The world should be beating a path to its door.”

Links of Heaven

Richard Phinney describes The Island as raw and stirring with a number of golf holes that burn into the memory. “The Island is like some long-neglected but lovingly renovated old building. It has quite suddenly blossomed into one of Ireland’s golfing treasures.”

Great Golf Courses of Ireland

John Redmond describes The Island as a quaint old-fashioned links. He describes the club as having a great sense of values where you can’t help being touched by nostalgia. “A club with a respectful appreciation of times past preserved. A virtue that underlines why the Island stands alone.”

Golf Digest

David Owen writes “One of my favourite courses anywhere is The Island in Donabate, Ireland, a few miles north of Dublin. It’s fourteenth hole, which may be the world’s most intimidating short par 4, is called Old Clubhouse because the old clubhouse use to stand where the tee box does today. In fact, the teeing ground is framed by the old foundation. And the club is called The Island because that’s what it looked like to the original members who got to it by rowing across the estuary of the River Broadmeadow from Malahide where golfing on Sundays was forbidden.”


Kevin Markham writes that The Island, situated on a little peninsula of links heaven, has the electricity of wild genius. “The golf is superb. Everything you could ask for.”

Golf Digest

Ron Clairborne writes“Although we teed off into the teeth of a driving downpour, it felt atmospheric instead of miserable. The Island turned out to be a delight, and we had it all to ourselves. It’s laid out atop an expanse of rolling seaside dunes.”


Along with Portmarnock and Dollymount, “mention should also be made of the Island where the golf may legitimately be called sporting in the best sense of the word.” Bernard Darwin, The Golf Courses of the British Isles (Published 1910)

“The Island is one of the genuine true links courses. A pleasure to play, with a great variety of shots.” The Legendary Christy O’Connor Senior

“A classic links.” Padraig Harrington (British Open Champion 2007 and 2008, USPGA Champion 2008)

“One of the finest links courses, very challenging, especially in the wind.” Philip Walton, member (Walker Cup 1981 and 1983, Ryder Cup 1995).

“A fantastic links which tests every club in the bag.” Darren Clarke (British Open Champion 2011)


  • 7th in Ireland and 78th in World (Architects’ Choice 2013)
  • 9th in Ireland (Top 100 Golf Courses)
  • 13th in Ireland’s Top 100 (Golf Digest Ireland 2016)
  • 41st in UK and Ireland (Golf World Magazine 2016)
  • Hosts Regional Qualifying for the British Open Championship