Royal County Down Golf Club
Newcastle, Down BT33 0AN
Tel : +44 (0)13967 23314 Fax : +44 (0)13967 26281

Welcome to Newcastle and welcome to Royal County Down, one of the worlds great golfing destinations. Situated thirty mile south of Belfast and fringed by the impressive sweep of Dundrum Bay.

Newcastle is where, in the immortal words if Percy French, 'the Mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea'. Royal County Down has two links courses, the world famous Championship Course, designed by Mother Nature with a little help from Old tom Morris, and the Second Course, also fashioned by Mother nature and recently remodelled and upgraded by Donald Steel.

Newcastle, 30 miles south of Belfast via the A24; 90 miles north of Dublin via the N1 to Newry, and 25 miles east of Newry via the A25.

Further Information
Information herein provided by the club 11 March 1999.
Club, caddie and trolley (powered) hire available.
Practice, bar and restaurant facilities. Club, trolley and caddie hire available.
Full catering facilities.

Course Details

Course Name: Championship Holes: 18 Yardage: 7037 SSS: 71
The Championship Course is consistently rated among the world's top ten courses. Laid out beneath the imperious gaze of the Mountains of Mourne, the course enjoys a magnificent stage-like setting as it stretches out along the shores of Dundrum Bay. As well as it being one of the worlds most beautiful courses, it is also one of the most challenging, with great swathes of heather and gorse lining fairways that tumble beneath vast sand hills, and wild 'tussocky' faced bunkers defending mall subtly contoured green. It is spectacular to look at even more thrilling to play.

For an appreciation and independent view of this course please see golfer reviews.

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Course Name: Annesley Holes: 18 Yardage: 4681 SSS: 63
Royal County down's Annesley Course complements the Championship links by offering a less formidable, yet extremely character-full game played against the same, incomparable backcloth. Recently substantially revised under the direction of Donald Steel, the course begins quite benignly before charging headlong into the dunes. Several charming - and one or two teasing - holes have been carved out mid the gorse, heather and bracken. Occasionally there is splendid isolation; at other times, glorious panoramic views of the sea, the bay and the mountains.
press here for Royal County Down Golf Club course reviews

Reader Comments / Reviews Leave a comment
  • Golf cart

    William J. Connors wrote on: Apr 26, 2005

    Can I get a golf cart if I have a letter from my doctor?
    Many Thanks
    Bill Connors


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Dan Wickman, Canyon Country, California. 05/01

    Dan Wickman, Canyon Country, California. wrote on: Apr 30, 2001

    I have played a lot of golf in the US and been lucky enough to play several times in the UK. There is only on Royal County Down. The combination of challenge and natural beauty is like nothing else on earth. When you tee off on 13 and make your way home, the view back at the Slieve Donnard is second to none. Royal County Down: play all The Open courses, then play the best in all the UK. For those who say that there are too many blind shots and it is not far, I counter with one of the universal truths of life. Who said life or golf was fair? Is it challenging? Is it fun? Does the course inspire you? Does it call you back to play again? If I could play just one course my remaining years, Royal County Down would be the one. The Bushmill's isn't half-bad either!


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Jenna Hath 05/01

    Jenna Hath wrote on: Apr 30, 2001

    I have played this holy land five times in the 1990's. There is no finer in my opinion any where in the world ! Have played Pine Valleys, Pebbles, Teeth of the dog they just do not compare to the skill needed to play each hole at down. To go to Ireland North or South and not play here is a big mistake. This course has the ability to humble you on any shot, any hole. You don't feel safe til the clubs are stored for the day and your enjoying a pint in the club house. Awesome experience


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Michael Hughes 09/00

    Michael Hughes wrote on: Aug 31, 2000

    I have played Royal County Down twice (so far) and consider it the best course I have ever played, both for the scenery and the layout. Admittedly, the last few holes are not as good as the rest, but the first 14 holes are as good a test of golf as you will get.
    I played it the first time in summer and the weather was excellent, which allowed us to view the mountains and the Irish Sea. The second time I played it was in a November, with a 50 mph wind and poor visibility, but it was still an incredible experience. I will definitely be back one day....


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Joe Buege - 2/99

    Joe Buege wrote on: Nov 30, 1998

    When experiencing something supposedly great for the first time there is often a fragile anticipation that is chipped or tarnished. This usually results in a reduction in value. There is no such loss in the treading over these historic links, only the enrichment of the senses from the fragrant, heather-covered dunes and the exhilarating morning air off the adjacent Irish Sea. This is not just a collection of great golf holes, it is an operatic blend of sport and nature. Reducing Royal County Down to descriptive passages is just not possible.


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Steve LeRoy 11/98

    Steve LeRoy wrote on: Oct 31, 1998

    Arguably the greatest course in Ireland--certainly one of the most difficult. Large number of blind shots--difficult approaches and devilish putting--the fastest greens in Ireland bar none. Is extremely difficult to putt these greens in high winds. Scenery is gorgeous--especially on number 9. Bring your camera--but be prepared for a very, very difficult test of golf. Long accurate drives are a necessity. Bring a caddy it is worth the money. Nice pro shop but a bit pricey for my taste. Last two holes here are not as good as the rest of the loop. Water on 17 is out of place in my mind.


  • Europe Golf courses reviews The Grahams 11/98

    The Grahams wrote on: Oct 31, 1998

    Having been fortunate to play the top Scottish and most of the top Irish courses, this was no. 1. Best bunkering of any course I ever played. Spectacular views. A must play!!!!!


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Charles J. Wallace, Jr 11/98

    Charles J. Wallace, Jr wrote on: Oct 31, 1998

    Our group has played Ireland or Scotland every other year for last 12 years-last 5 trips to Ireland and last 4 have had received on itinerary. Best course plus hotel (slieve) as a package. Nothing more lovely (or imposing) than the yellow gorse lining fairways. A beautiful spot!


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Bill Jasso 11/98

    Bill Jasso wrote on: Oct 31, 1998

    One of the most beautiful, most challenging golf experiences ever had. I spent two weeks - one in Ireland, one in Scotland, and made the 'Grand Tour' of all the great courses.
    Played Royal County Down in a light mist. Bunkers that looked like they've been there for centuries, greens as true and fast as anything in the States, and a layout that makes you stop and think on every shot.
    The atmosphere was as close to St. Andrews as anyplace I've been. A 'must play' for anyone lucky enough to be in Ireland for golf. Worth the drive from Dublin- just a few hours. Do it - the memory will last forever. It was a pleasure to play the course, and it is to have my writing read by others.


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Shannon Soupiset 11/98

    Shannon Soupiset wrote on: Oct 31, 1998

    I think that I have now played almost every famous course in Great Britain (Scotland, Ireland, England). I've played every course that's ever hosted a British Open plus Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Ballybunion, Portmarnock, plus many others. Royal County Down is the best of ALL of them. I love to share an experience like this with all golfers.


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Roche Rooney 11/98

    Roche Rooney wrote on: Oct 31, 1998

    RCD does have blind tee shots and a couple of funky holes near the end of the back 9. It also has spectacular views (some of the best you'll find on earth!); fast, firm fairways; rolling, true, rounded greens (you'll appreciate Donald Ross' humpback greens all the more); competent, enthusiastic caddies; and the golfing experience of a lifetime! DO IT and enjoy. (If you can connect with a member for their Saturday ' drinks' game, it is a ball--as my host said, 'The golf may be a bit ragged but you'll meet some wonderful people and have lots of good craic[cameraderie]).


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Herb Brown 11/98

    Herb Brown wrote on: Oct 31, 1998

    Without any false modesty, after 100 year of glowing reviews from many who know much more about golf than I do, I don't think I can add much to what has already been said and written. Had the pleasure to play Royal County Down once, from the tips. Simply put, this is golf. In addition, the staff is the most pleasant in Ireland. If you got the game, they got the course.


  • Europe Golf courses reviews Don Thacker 9/98

    Don Thacker wrote on: Aug 31, 1998

    I played this course in September 1997. It was pouring down rain and the wind was blowing 50 mph. I thought the first 12 holes or so were as good as anything I had ever seen, but the last half of the second nine was disappointing. For that reason I think the course is overrated, although it is certainly one to be played. I just can't see it being one of the 10-15 best courses in the world. I played several other courses that I felt , on balance, were better.


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