Throw in the promise of stunning scenery of locations like the famous Snowdonia National Park, and charming local pubs and you’ve got a pretty awesome recipe for a golfing road trip.
To give you guys a better idea of exactly what’s on offer in this charming corner of Wales, we sent YGT Staffers Tom and Rory off on a road trip. Armed with a camera-toting gun for hire, they set out and completed the itineraries of two of our most popular Welsh Golf Tours.
Our cameraman from Short Form Films had a busy few days thanks to the stunning scenery in North Wales!
Watch how they got on and see which parts of the tours they liked best…
Stay at the 3* Kinmel Hotel or 4* Quay Hotel, with golf at: Prestatyn, North Wales and Conwy Golf Club
The 3* Kinmel Hotel is situated in the centre of Llandudno and offers free parking so it is the perfect base for any tour along the north coast. What’s more, if you are looking for a touch of luxury, the 4* Quay Hotel Conwy is also within close proximity of the courses.
Prestatyn Golf Club to Llandudno/Conwy Golf Club 45 minutes
Llandudno Golf Club to North Wales Golf Club 5 minutes
Llandudno Golf Club to Conwy Golf Club 5 minutes
Number of lost balls: 7
North Wales was a real hidden gem, the scenery was outstanding and there was a great variety of holes, with all the elements of links golf present that makes this form of the game so enjoyable…and difficult at times!
Views of the sea from certain spots at North Wales GC are stunning.
North Wales was a real surprise as I’ll admit I’d not heard of it but Conwy was the one for me. The setting is spectacular and with the yellow gorse in full bloom, it’s every bit the classic links course. The front nine eases you in and lets you drink in the spectacular surroundings then the back nine really tests your game. I’m pretty sure Conwy would tick all the boxes for any lover of links golf.
Conwy Golf Club
The stretch from the 9th to 11th stretches along the coastline. It’s easy to get distracted by the views across the bay and hit your tee shot in the Irish Sea!
There were lots of really nice holes at Conwy, especially the par 3s, but my favourite was the par 5 9th. For all but the longest hitters, this is a real three-shotter but it makes you work for your par. There are bunkers in play off the tee, and again there are a few in the landing area where most would choose to lay up. Once safely in position, you then face a blind approach up over a hump and when you get close to the green, you’re presented with a cracking view!
There was a nice sense of accomplishment coming off the golf course and into the bar at the Quay Hotel, their Vista Terrace has a good setting to enjoy a couple of locally brewed beers.
The Quay Hotel boasts a picturesque location.
I guess it doesn’t really count as a 19th hole but like Tom, I really enjoyed chilling out with a couple of beers at the Quay Hotel. It’s set in an amazing location and the food’s pretty tasty too.
When taking this tour you must…
Pack a camera and get some snaps of Conwy Bay! Prepare for the worst too…like any links tour you’ve just got to pack for dodgy weather as even on the sunniest of summer days, the weather can change in a heartbeat and you can really get caught out. You might get all four seasons in one day out on the links!
Stay at the 3* Lion Hotel Criccieth, with golf at: Abersoch, Porthmadog & Nefyn & District
The 3* Lion Hotel is situated in the centre of Criccieth where there are plenty of local pubs and a variety of restaurants on offer.
Nefyn & District – Criccieth 30 minutes
Criccieth – Abersoch 30 minutes
Criccieth – Porthmadog 15 minutes
Number of lost balls: 12
While Abersoch and Porthmadog certainly exceeded expectations, you can’t look past Nefyn & District as the highlight to this tour. The new turf has bedded in very well out on the point and seeing is believing out on this part of the course. You just feel like you’re surrounded by the sea on every shot you hit!
Nefyn & District Golf Club
I was really impressed by Porthmadog on this tour. I’d seen a couple of lovely photos of the course but in person, parts of the course are even more impressive. Nefyn & District has to take the biscuit here though. The course’s setting is unique and while not all of the holes are world beaters, the drama of the few that straddle the famous peninsula can’t be beaten. Of course, having the Ty Coch Inn as a halfway house is a pretty awesome addition to the overall experience too!
Signature Hole Series – Porthmadog Golf Club
The signature hole 13th takes some beating! With the sea over your left shoulder it’s hard not to hit an anti-left shot.
The 5th Hole on the Old nine (holes 10-18) is a really fun hole and kind of the climax of the stretch on the peninsula. You tee off from a mat on an elevated tee and play downhill towards a green that seems perched on the edge of the world. The views from this tee are spectacular and you’re only one hole away from a well deserved beer in the Ty Coch Inn!
The Ty Coch Inn serves as a half way house while out on the course and we didn’t realise it was voted the third best beach bar in the world so we had to go back for a beer after our game too.
I knew all about the Ty Coch Inn…well at least I thought I did until I 1st stood inside the door. I thought it might just be somewhere that sells itself off its amazing location but it’s actually been voted the 3rd best beach bar in the world and you can see why. It’s really quirky and the food is excellent…a quick drink in here before tackling the final three holes is an absolute must!
The Ty Coch Inn – What a location!
When taking this tour you must…
Head to the Ty Coch Inn for a halfway beer or a spot of lunch. We’re willing to bet that plenty of golfers take the walk down to this awesome beach bar, get settled by the fire with a beer and a nice warming bowl of chilli and don’t bother finishing off their rounds! We were certainlt tempted to stay there for the afternoon as there were plenty of local beers to sample…the golf course was too much fun not to go back out though!
Stay at Aberdovey’s Dormy Bungalow, with golf at Aberdovey, Royal St. David’s & Borth & Ynyslas
The Dormy Bungalow is the perfect base for this three round tour, within walking distance to the first tee at Aberdovey and just over an hour to the furthest course – Royal St. David’s.
Aberdovey – Royal St David’s Golf Club 1 hour 15 minutes
Aberdovey – Borth & Ynyslas Golf Club 45 minutes
Number of lost balls: 6
Voted 44th in the UK Top 100 Royal St. David’s will not disappoint. Although it’s not the longest course, once the wind whips up you are guaranteed to face a stern test of links golf. The scenery is pretty amazing too and, as with most championship courses, the conditioning here was 1st class. This place ticks all the boxes for top links golf.
Signature Hole Series – Royal St David’s
Royal St David’s has undoubted star quality so it comes as no surprise to see it ranked as Wales’ second best course behind the mighty Royal Porthcawl in the South, but I really enjoyed Aberdovey and would say it was my favourite stop on this tour. Aberdovey is every bit your classic links layout, with a nine out and nine back routing that runs alongside the massive dunes that separate the course from a pretty spectacular beach. We were lucky to have a perfect sunny day on which to play this one so that might have factored in to my enjoyment but there’s no doubting this is a cracking golf course.
Signature Hole Series – Aberdovey Golf Club
The 15th is a monster of a par four. Although there are no bunkers you still need to be accurate from the tee to stand a chance of reaching the green in two.
It’s a close call here between the 3rd and the 12th at Aberdovey. Both are cracking par 3s and totally different in character. The 3rd features a totally blind tee shot into a huge punchbowl created by the dunes. I know blind shots aren’t everyone’s cup of tea but I think they’re a fun change from the norm and this one’s a great one. The 12th probably just shades it though as it’s one of the best looking par 3s I’ve seen where you play to a green perched atop to dunes with virtually no bail out option. It’s an uncomplicated hole. Miss left and only your inner Seve will save you from a dropped shot or two; miss right and you’ll require a little trip to the beach to retrieve your ball. Hit the green though and you’ll have a good look at birdie. A proper par 3.
Aberdovey Golf Club
The clubhouse bar at Aberdovey looks out over the dunes and onto the nearby beach. After an evening round it’s a good spot to enjoy a local ale and heckle your mates coming down the last.
I really liked Aberdovey’s clubhouse. It was a bit “new” feeling but what a location! There’s a nice balcony so if it’s a nice day you can sip on a cold beer and watch golfers making their way up the final couple of holes.
When taking this tour you must…
Pack your swimwear, the beach at Aberdovey is incredible! Really think about where’s safest to miss when you’re at Championship Courses like Royal St David’s too. On a lot of holes, there’s usually a spot around the green where you’ll be left with a manageable up and down. Identify this spot before you hit your approach and err on the side of caution. Missing greens in the wrong place around a course like this just makes scoring well seriously difficult…manage your misses!
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.