Golfing at Mulranny Co. Mayo
Golfing at Mulranny Co. Mayo

The 10 Best Affordable Golf Courses in Ireland

Updated December 2023–The Emerald Isle is known for its great golf courses but let’s be honest, golf is an expensive hobby.

So, if you’re going to Ireland and you’re hoping to squeeze in a few rounds of golf, you might want to know about some of the best affordable golf courses in Ireland to play on and how much it will set you back.

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The green fees listed in this post apply to visitors only.

Prices are given in the local currency (the Euro).

However, it is best to check the individual golf club websites for additional information.

Some, in fact, are such good value that you might even get a few rounds of golf for the price of a more expensive course.

You’ll also find additional information on nearby accommodation if you’re looking to stay overnight in and around the golf course of your choice.

When to Go

Most golf courses in Ireland, including links courses, are open year-round.

A links course is the oldest type of golf course, which was first developed in Scotland.
A links course in Ireland. Photo: ImagineGolf for Getty Images Signature.

“Links” refers to areas of coastal sand and dunes, which are characteristic of many courses on Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way, for example.

If you’re looking to play the best affordable golf courses in Ireland, it’s best to go anywhere from April through October.

However, due to Ireland’s temperate climate, you could get some fine days in November when an invigorating game of golf is all that is needed to get the body moving and to enjoy the beautiful Irish scenery that is a big part of the golf experience in Ireland.

No matter the season, it’s always a good idea to dress in layers. During the summer months, a light jacket is all that is needed.

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The courses listed below are among the best affordable golf courses in Ireland.

1. Achill Island Golf Course, Keel, Achill Island, Co. Mayo

9-Hole, Par 70Green Fees: €15 per person (9 Holes)
How to Book: Call +353 98-43456

While this gem on Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way is only a 9-hole, the stunning scenery more than makes up for it.

The course is located next to the Blue-flag Keel Strand. As you play the course, you’ll get fantastic views of the nearby Slievemore mountain, Blacksod Bay as well as the Nephin mountain range.

cliffs affordable golf courses to play in Ireland
The Achill Island Cliffs. Photo: Mathias Mazzetti.

You can get to the course, which is located about 15 minutes by car from Mulranny and an hour and a quarter from Westport, by driving over the Michael Davitt Bridge, which connects the island to the mainland.

At €15 for green fees, you really can’t go wrong.

This is, by far, one of the best affordable golf courses in Ireland.

Don’t think that this Par 70 course is easy, though. The signature hole at 361 yards is the most difficult.

Accommodation close to the course includes B&Bs as well as accommodation at the affordable self-catering, dog-friendly Mulranny Suites & Lodges, which includes fully-equipped kitchens, sitting rooms, dining areas, smart TVs with access to a variety of satellite channels, as well as free WiFi.

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2. Athlone Golf Course, Hodson Bay, Athlone, Co. Roscommon

18-Hole, Par 78
Green Fees: Between €35 and €40 per person
How to Book: On the Club Website

The midlands region of Ireland is often overlooked by tourists who instead go to courses on the Wild Atlantic Way or Ireland's east coast.

However, this course is quite the beauty, with Lough Rea surrounding it on three sides. You won’t see the lake the entire time, but you will experience its natural beauty at the 11th and 16th holes.

ocean and fields
A view of the Athlone Golf Club from the air. Photo courtesy of Lakelands, Flickr.

It is easy to get to the course, which is about a 10-minute drive from the town of Athlone off the N61.
A room at the Hodson Bay Hotel in Athlone. Photo courtesy of the Hodson Bay Hotel.

If you feel like treating yourself, the 4-star Hodson Bay Hotel is worth it.

The hotel includes a leisure center, equipped with a gym and pool, as well as a spa. The average price of a hotel for two per night is €112/$114, although that depends on the availability and season.

The 3-star Shamrock Lodge Hotel is a more affordable option. Rates there are from €95/$96.33 per night.

The family-run accommodation has won numerous awards over the years, including a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for 2017, 2018, and 2019, all based on customer reviews.

The lodge has 40 deluxe and superior rooms, many with balconies. There is also a spa on-site.

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3. Ballyheigue Castle Golf Club, Ballyheigue, Tralee, Co. Kerry

9-Hole/18-Hole, Par 72
Green Fees: €25 for 9 holes; €35 for 18 holes
How to Book: Email [email protected] or call +353 66-7133555

Great views of the Ballyheigue Castle ruins and the Atlantic Ocean beyond make for a satisfying game of golf on this course, which I consider one of the best affordable courses in Ireland.

It is located about 8 miles from the more expensive Tralee Golf Club and 10 miles from the famous Ballybunion Golf Club.

The castle once belonged to the Crosbie family courtesy of Elizabeth I.

The IRA burned much of it during the Irish War of Independence, and some say it is haunted. Nevertheless, it creates a beautiful backdrop for golfers who take on the 9- or 18-hole parklands-style course.
The course at Ballyheigue Co. Kerry. Photo courtesy of Ballyheigue Golf Club Facebook.

You’ll get the best views of the ocean at the eighth hole, and on the ninth, you’ll find yourself playing on the doorstep of the castle.

Nearby accommodation can be found in the town of Tralee or in a few B&Bs near the course. You can’t go wrong with O’Neills Bed and Breakfast. The owners also offer self-catering accommodation.

The property overlooks Ballyheigue beach, the bay, and the nearby mountains.

Guests can use the large terrace outside as well as the sun chairs that are provided. Prices per night for two people are between €80 and €90/ $81.46 and $91.64.

The one-bed apartment during the high season will cost you €550/$560 a week. Rates are lower at other times of the year.

4. Corbalis Golf Links, Donabate, Dublin

18-Hole, Par 66
Green Fees: €25, weekday; €35 weekends
How to Book: On the Club Website

You’ll get great value for money at this pay and play facility, which is owned by the local Fingal County Council and operated by Carr Golf.

Located in North County Dublin, about a 30-minute drive from the heart of Dublin, the course frequently attracts top players from across Europe, with many of them using it as a training ground.

As you work the course, you’ll get plenty of opportunities to take in the beautiful scenery, including views of Lambay Island in the distance.

The course shares the same stretch of land as the much more expensive Island Golf Club course but at a much more affordable price.

Accommodation can be found at the nearby Shoreline Hotel in Donabate.

You’ll see views of Howth Island and Lambay Island in the distance as well as the Corbalis Golf Links fairways. A standard double or twin room with sea views is approximately €221/$225 per night.

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5. Cruit Island Golf Club, Toratrave, Cruit Island, Kincasslagh, Co. Donegal

9-Hole, Par 68
Green Fees: From €60
How to Book: Email [email protected]

The course at the Cruit Island Golf Club in County Donegal is located close to Kincasslagh in what is known as The Rosses.

This beautiful 9-hole course, which is surrounded by the Arranmore and Owey Islands, with Mount Errigal as a backdrop, more than deserves to be on the list as one of the best affordable golf courses in Ireland.

Getting to the island is easy thanks to its close proximity to all major roads and Donegal Airport. Daily flights from Dublin to Carrickfinn make this a convenient option for many.

affordable golf courses to play in Ireland
The Cruit Island golf course is 2,809 yards long with seven par fours and two par threes. Its 6th hole is the most spectacular, located along a cliff edge.

Two local celebrities host their own golf competitions each year at the Cruit Island Golf Course.

Packie Bonner, the former goalkeeper for the Ireland soccer team, hosts an Open in July, while entertainer Daniel O’Donnell hosts one in August.

There are several B&Bs in nearby Kincasslagh to choose from.

6. Enniscrone Golf Course, Enniscrone, Co. Sligo

9-Holes (Scurmore), Par 36; 18-Holes (The Dunes), Par 73
Green Fees: €145 (winter rate through March 17th); €195 (summer rate from March-October)
How to Book: Visit the Club Website

The reputation of the Enniscrone Golf Club in West Sligo was elevated some years ago when Irish golf designer Eddie Hackett upgraded it from a modest 9-hole to an 18-hole links course.

The County Sligo golf course now boasts 27 holes, thanks to an additional extension in the early 2000s, and out of all the golf courses listed here, it is the most expensive one.

The additional 9-hole, known as Scurmore, is the more affordable course to play.

The 18-hole Dunes course is one of Ireland’s top-ranked championship links courses and was voted “Best in Connacht” by the Golfers Guide to Ireland.
The old Cliff Baths in Enniscrone. You'll see Nephin peaking out from behind the clouds in the distance. Photo: Alison Crummy, Failte Ireland.

Whatever your golf swing, you’ll find the accompanying scenery divine.

The course is situated on a headland that juts into Killala Bay, with Nephin, located in nearby County Mayo, in the distance.

If you really want to splurge, a play on the Dunes will set you back €145 on green fees if you pay online. But if you’re truly on a budget, playing the Scurmore will give you a taste of what the entire course has to offer.

And because of that, I've included it on the best affordable golf courses in the Ireland on a Budget line-up.

a dining room in a hotel best affordable golf courses in Ireland
The newly renovated restaurant at the Diamond Coast Hotel in Enniscrone, Co. Sligo.

There is plenty of accommodation to choose from in Enniscrone.

The Diamond Coast Hotel is the nearest hotel to the course, offering state-of-the-art facilities as well as good food.

Other recommendations include the Ocean Sands Hotel and Waterfront House and Restaurant, all providing fabulous views of the beach and County Sligo coastline.

irelandonabudget.comRead More: County Sligo: The Ultimate Road Trip

7. Farnham Estate Golf Course, Coras Point, Cavan

18-Hole, Par 72
Green Fees: From €50
How to Book: Visit the Resort's Website

You don’t have to stay at the Farnham Estate Spa & Golf Resort to avail of its excellent 18-hole parkland course spread over 500 acres of rolling countryside and woodland.

There’s no real signature hole that has been defined among the course’s regular golfers as of yet, but apparently, Jeff Howes, the designer, favors the fourth.

While this course has a different feel to it from say, Enniscrone, it has some unique qualities, including a lovely meandering stream, several lakes, ancient trees, a fairy fort, a wishing well, and plenty of wildlife to enjoy.

The Farnham Estate golf course ranked No. 77 in Golf Digest Ireland’s 2018 round-up of great courses.

The dress code on the course is neat and casual. No denim is allowed.

Prices at the estate house hotel are expensive, so you might want to look elsewhere.

The Farnham Arms Hotel in Cavan is a good option.

Rooms are an average of €99/$100 per night for two adults depending on the season. Other hotels in the Cavan area can be found here.

Read More: Cavan: Ireland's Lake County

8. Foyle Golf Centre, Derry/Londonderry

18-hole, Par 71;
Green Fees: Earhart Course – £20 midweek; £25 weekends
How to Book: Email [email protected]

Did you know that on May 21st, 1932, Amelia Earhart, the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, landed on a farm in Culmore, north of Derry City instead of her intended destination, which was Paris?

a lake in a golf course best affordable golf courses in Ireland
The Foyle Centre Golf Course outside Derry. Photo: Tourism Northern Ireland.

Today, the site where she landed is described as “Amelia’s Landing” the 6th hole of the championship 18-hole Foyle Golf Centre course in the beautiful Derry countryside, not far from Derry’s city center.

The land where the course is situated once belonged to the Gallagher family. Designed by Frank Ainsworth, the 17th hole is dedicated to the memory of the late Bert Gallagher, who was a boy the day that Earhart landed on his family's farm.

There is a museum dedicated to her nearby.

The 4th hole of this beautiful course presents the most challenge.

The course is open year-round.

a bridge over a river near a city at night best affordable golf courses in Ireland
A view of Derry, also known as Londonderry. Photo courtesy of Tourism Ireland.

Accommodation can be found in several hotels and B&Bs in Derry city.

If you're looking for quality accommodation at a good price, try the Bishop's Gate Hotel in Derry which was voted Best Place to Stay by TripAdvisor reviewers.

9. Lee Valley Golf & Country Club, Clashanure, Ovens, Co. Cork

18-Hole, Par 72
Green Fees: €40 midweek; €50 weekends
How to Book: Email [email protected]

This 18-hole championship golf course, which opened in 1993, was designed by Ryder Cup star Christy O’Connor, Jr. It is included in the Top 100 Irish Golf Courses in Golf Digest.

Perhaps the most difficult part of the course is at the 12th hole near a pond that requires players to hit at least 150 yards to reach the green on the other side.

A 25-minute drive from the golf course will take you to the Cannaway House B&B, a Georgian-style country home located in Macroom. There is also self-catering accommodation available on the property.

You might also want to avail of the special offer for players at The Oriel Hotel where you can stay and play for €179 (valid until April 2023).

Cork City is about a 20-minute drive from the course, where you'll find plenty of accommodation.

10. Scrabo Golf Course, Scrabo Road, Newtonards, Co. Down

18-Hole, Par 71
Green Fees: From £44
How to Book: Visit the Club Website

Playing this hilltop course in Co. Down will give you commanding views of Strangford Lough and the Mourne Mountains.

The links/parkland course is known for its narrow, gorse-bordered fairways, which means that an accurate drive is needed.

Christy O’Connor Sr. once described the first hole as one of the best opening holes on any course in Ireland.

a tower in the middle of a golf course best affordable golf courses in Ireland
The Scrabo Tower overlooking the course has been described as a 19th-century folly that was built as a memorial to Charles Vane, the 3rd Marquess of Londonderry. It was originally known as the Londonderry Monument.

A very enjoyable course to play at a great price.

The Strangford Arms Hotel in Newtownards is the nearest hotel to the golf course. Recent renovations have turned what was already an exceptional Victorian hotel into a contemporary facility. Rates for a double room start at £95/$115 per night.

The town has other accommodation to choose from too.

Are you an avid golfer? If so, have you played on any of Ireland’s golf courses? Let me know if you enjoyed the experience and in particular if you’ve tried any of the courses mentioned above.

As always, feel free to subscribe to my e-newsletter where you'll more helpful information on getting to Ireland on a budget.


Colette is a County Sligo native who created Ireland on a Budget to provide her readers with money-saving tips on how to get to Ireland and then save even more when they're there. She's a professional copywriter who lives in the New York area with her husband and two children.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Avatar for Anonymous

    Hey guys , coming over to catch up with friends , in cork , but would love to play golf on the West Coast , with accomodation as well nearby cheers guys Gary

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