The first 12 holes can be classed as pure links whilst the final six holes are positively parkland and were added a few decades ago. The course was originally laid out as nine holes back in 1908 by Harry Vardon.
It is not uncommon for golf courses in this area to have newer holes added to their existing nine hole layout. Pwllheli and Porthmadog are two that immediately spring to mind.
I am very much in the camp that less is more and these courses would be so much better if they had just be left as they were rather than chasing an 18 hole course. It doesn’t seem to do 12-hole Shiskine any harm.
The stretch from the 5th to the 10th is absolutely magical at Abersoch: sea views, tumbling fairways, blind shots, marker posts and dell greens are all things you will find on the this joyous run along the coast.
You know you are going to be in for treat from the moment you walk up and stand on the glorious 5th tee. You can see a long line of dunes with narrow, snaking fairways ahead of you with just the tops of the flags visible for what must be well over a thousand yards.
This follows a modest start, although the view from the 3rd tee is a highlight, and comes before two more links holes which are also very good at the 10th and 11th.
We must then endure a long walk to play five detached holes in a meadow which are run-of-the-mill parkland holes but bring nothing to the party except for logistics in terms of having 18 holes and other practicalities of running a members golf club I suppose. But in terms of the golf course they add nothing. The 18th is back on the links side and is a bit of a hybrid – links turf with a marshy water hazard down the left.
The bunkering is very good at Abersoch and is currently being renovated to provide a rustic look. The par is 69 and maximum yardage 5,873.
Abersoch was omitted from the “True Links” book but if you are including Pwllheli, Porthmadog, Swansea Bay, Seahouses and Newburgh-on-Ythan then it should absolutely be included because it has two-thirds links holes whereas the others have fifty percent at best.