Rosapenna Hotel & Golf Resort


Letterkenny, Co. Donegal

  • Office

    +353 (0)74 915 5301
  • Pro shop

    +353 (0)74 915 5000
  • Fax

    +353 (0)74 915 5899
  • Golf pro

    Frank Casey Jnr (Director of Golf).

About the course

  • The Course:

    18 holes. Seaside links. Undulating terrain - a few slopes to climb (mainly on the back-nine)

  • Surroundings:

    Coastal duneland.

  • Designer:

    Front-nine (Strand-nine) designed by Pat Ruddy (2009). Back-nine (Valley-nine) originally designed by Old Tom Morris (1893), with later modifications by Harry Vardon & James Braid (1906), and Harry Colt (1911).

SSS or slope

At the same location:

The three 18-hole championship courses at Rosapenna are: Old Tom Morris Links (par-71, 6915 yards from back tees); Sandy Hills Links (par-72, 7183 yards), St Patrick's Links (par-71, 6930 yds, rating 73.2; located 4.5 km S of the main resort centre).






How to get there:

1.5 km S of Downings / 60 km NW of Derry (Londonderry).

From Letterkenny, take the N56 direction Dunfanaghy. After 24 km turn right onto the R245 direction Carrickart (aka Carrigart or Carraig Airt). After 10.2 km, just before Carrickart village and its church, turn left onto the R248 direction Rosapenna. After 2.5 km Rosapenna Hotel and Golf Pavilion is on your left.

Rosapenna Hotel & Golf Resort (Old Tom Morris Links)

4-star: Above average course - well worth a visit.

Est. 1893

Rosapenna Hotel & Golf Resort (Old Tom Morris Links): Rosapenna underwent something of a transformation in the early-2000s when the original Old Tom Morris Links (aka the Old Links) was joined by the newer Sandy Hills Links. Another transformation occurred in 2009, when Old Tom's original back-nine, which took you up and around "Coastguard Hill", was replaced with nine new "true-links" holes alongside the Sandy Hills layout.

Running to just under 7,000 yards off the championship tees, the Old Tom Morris Links now comprises two nine-hole loops, which both head out and come back to Rosapenna's impressive Golf Pavilion. On their way both nines sidle past the opening and closing holes of Sandy Links, with Old Tom's new holes (Strand-nine) following a slightly more inland route, while the original holes (Valley-nine) still flank magnificent Tramore Beach and Sheepshaven Bay. "Old Tom" now represents a testing fusion of traditional and modern links holes, which bridge a century of golf design influences.

The original outward holes now form the inward nine, the Valley-nine as it's called. This is as natural a set of links golf holes as you'll find anywhere ... the seemingly flattish greens, as is the case on many great links courses, are a mystery unto themselves! The sea and beach views are fabulous, although many holes hunker down from the wind behind a row of dunes and bushes. The layout's much newer front-nine (Strand-nine) also contains many delightfully challenging links holes, ensuring the overall layout remains a big favourite with visiting golfers ... as it was in the days of Old Tom Morris himself.

The original back-nine of the Old Links were known as the "Coastguard Holes". They are now played as a separate nine-hole course (the Coastguard course) beginning and finishing at Rosapenna's practice ground.

Stay&Play at Rosapenna: luxury onsite accommodation available, see Where2Stay section below.

List of courses: Ireland - North


Who can play and when?

Visitors welcome on weekdays and weekends.

Must book in advance. Proof of handicap may be requested.

Green fees

Visitor fee, 18-holes in high season (mid-April thru' late-Oct): St Patrick's Links €200. Old Tom Morris and Sandy Hills (April thru' Oct): €150.

Contact club for full details, online rates, discounts, Stay&Play packages, 3-course combination tickets, etc. [Last updated: 2023].

Other information

Non-metal spike facility. Players generally walk this course. Golf carts available for hire. Caddies available (if pre-booked).

Practice facilities


Did you know?

It was in 1891 that the 4th Earl of Leitrim invited Old Tom Morris of St Andrews to come and design a golf course on links land close to the village of Rosapenna. Once built (or in those days, once the grass was cut and the course made ready for play), Old Tom was quick to tell others of his new layout in this stunning location on Ireland's north coast. The Rosapenna course quickly became a place of pilgrimage for golfers at the turn of the century.

Amongst those to follow were two other great golfing champions Harry Vardon and James Braid (in 1906) who won 11 Open Championship titles between them. They added length and more detailed bunkering to Rosapenna, but were wise enough to leave the wonderfully natural greens untouched. Further changes were made by the great Harry Colt in 1911.

When the Old Tom Morris course was reconfigured in 2009 (bringing its back-nine alongside the Sandy Hills Links), Old Tom's original back-nine became a nine-hole layout, known as the Coastguard course (par-32, 2497 yards). This course, which looped up and around "Coastguard Hill", no longer appears to be in operation.

Published ranking

Old Tom Morris Links:
Ireland's 27th best course (Golf World, 2023).
Britain & Ireland's 160th best course (Golf World, 2022).


  • Rosapenna Hotel & Golf Resort4-star

    Sheephaven Bay, Downings, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal F92 PN73.

    +353 (0)74 915 5301

    Visit website

    Located on the edge of the picturesque Sheephaven Bay, Rosapenna Hotel & Golf Resort offers an onsite luxury hotel, three great championship courses (Old Tom Morris, Sandy Hills and St Patrick's Links), excellent practice facilities, a stunning bayview restaurant and much more.

    Rosapenna is an excellent venue for a golfing break or just a quiet getaway in this beautiful corner of Donegal. The very efficient and friendly staff ensure that golfers and non-golfers alike will enjoy their time at Rosapenna - an excellently run hotel in one of Ireland's most up and coming golf and holiday destinations.

    • Golf at this hotel:

      Rosapenna (Old Tom Morris, Sandy Hills and St Patrick's Links).

    • Golf within 10 km:


    • Golf within 30 km:


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