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Great Courses of Britain & Ireland: Waterville

By: Tom Coyne

A favorite of traveling Americans, this classic links in southwestern Ireland is most remarkable for its memorability

Ireland’s southwest has become a standard on any wandering golfer’s bucket list, thanks to courses like Ballybunion, Tralee, Lahinch, Old Head, and Doonbeg. (The most thorough travelers add Dooks and Ceann Sibeal to their lists.) But rarely do Americans recall any more fondly than Waterville on the Ring of Kerry. Maybe it’s the way the long sunset kindles Waterville’s sands, or the wind finds your back more often than you would expect. Maybe it’s that they arrive on a course with distinct and generous fairways that remind them of home, with a soft opening hole (called “Last Easy,” in case you thought you wouldn’t need the rest of the balls in your bag), and a statue of a relaxed and smiling Payne Stewart. Or maybe it’s a Yankee favorite because there is genuine American love and sweat in the Waterville dunes.

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