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Coleraine, Northern Ireland

Ulster University Arboretum

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3.675(based on 3 reviews)
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Ulster University Arboretum reviews

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11 0
smithinggolfer
Bronze level trusted reviewer
Experience: 1 years 18 played 12 reviews
4.00 star(s)

Ireland Needs More Disc Golf

Reviewed: Updated: Played on:Apr 20, 2024 Played the course:once

Pros:

The island of Ireland doesn't have much disc golf, but the one 18 course they have is actually really good! I really enjoyed my round here and decided that Ireland definitely needs more courses.

THE PROS:

+LAYOUT: The layout is very well done. It plays all around the Arboretum, and most of the holes were very good, if not great. Lots of shot variety, and some risk/reward with a stream on at least one of the holes.

+OPEN AND WOODED HOLES: There's a little bit of everything here. You have short, wooded holes, longer, but still technical holes, and open bomber holes. This is a very complete course.

+DISTANCES: There is a wide variety of distance here, with holes ranging from 160' to 560'. It's not a pitch and putt.

+HOLE 8: Hole 8 is the signature hole here in my opinion. It's a 516' par 4 that starts open and requires a good shot to the front of the wooded portion of the hole, and then plays downhill through the woods the rest of the way.

+NATURAL BEAUTY: This is a really stunning course. As I mentioned earlier, it's in a college Abortorium (which I'm assuming is like a botanical garden). There are all types of plant life, as well as a miniature waterfall running into a stream on hole 12.

+NAVIGATION: There are next tee signs everywhere here, which are a huge help in finding your way around this course.

Cons:

-DISTANCE BETWEEN HOLES: If you play here, expect to do a lot of walking, because the holes are not close together. Not a super huge problem, but it is significant enough to mention.

-TEE PADS: A couple of the turf tee pads could use some help. I'm guessing it's because it rains so much here.

-HOLE 6: The actual hole is very good, but it plays right by a walking trail. Just make sure everything is clear before you throw.

-HOLE 1: This hole feels kind of pointless. The tee points down a tunnel of narrow trees... and the basket is to the right of the tunnel in an open field. If they move the basket just 70 feet to the left, this could be a very good hole.

Other Thoughts:

=When we played this course, it wasn't busy except for the walking path.
=You might want to consider bringing waterproof shoes, since I'd guess this course is usually soggy.
=To sum up, this course is a great one! I'd suggest playing it if you like disc golf and are in Northern Ireland. Can we get some more Mach IV's over to Ireland ASAP?
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15 0
dino2disc
Silver level trusted reviewer
Experience: 24.7 years 79 played 39 reviews
3.00 star(s)

Easy to add to your Causeway Coast tour

Reviewed: Played on:Jul 26, 2022 Played the course:once

Pros:

- Parking is easy, and your round begins and ends right near the parking lot.
- Being on a university campus, the fairways and woods are very well maintained. Only exception to this is the left rough on #3, which looked really dense and treacherous (at least in summer).
- New turf tees have been installed on most of the holes, and the detailed tee signs are both pretty accurate and informative. The new tees are very flat, as they should be.
- There are "next tee" signs posted near the basket when you finish a number of the holes, including a few permanent small blue arrow signs posted on light poles to help guide you from the first basket to the tee for #2 and from the 3rd basket to the tee for #4. Great to see that level of long-term investment by the university.
- Many of the holes have 2 tees, a short and long, which is great for when your party includes players of varied skill levels.
- A new hole (the new #6) has been added: it is a fairly short straight shot through a densely-treed tunnel with a low-hanging ceiling of tree branches. It's ever so slightly uphill too. All those aspects differ from the rest of the course, so it adds nice variety.
- Perhaps the best thing going for it is location: Ulster University DGC is one of only a 3 courses in Northern Ireland (at least I could only find info on 3), and one of only a handful of courses on the entire island of Ireland. That's a major plus in any book!

Cons:

- Navigation: Definitely the only real flaw here. Although there are a number of 'next tee' signs, they are not on every hole, and the routes to get from #1 to #2, from #3 to #4, from #4 to #5, and especially from #7 to the #8 tee are not readily intuitive. A new hole #6 was also added since the course map was created, giving the course 10 holes instead of 9. I therefore quickly updated the course map and uploaded it here (please forgive my lack of time and digital editing skills to make it look better!).
- Navigation hints for you: when you finish #1, walk to your left and follow the little blue signs along the road to find the #2 tee eventually on your left. When you finish #3, walk out to the street to your right, then cross the university entrance road at the traffic light and you'll find the #4 tee on the other side in the grass. When you finish #4, walk to the right to follow the university entrance road around to the #5 tee. And once you finish #7, walk out to the road and turn back up all the way to the tee, then turn left at the Y in the road and you'll find the #8 tee on the right after ~50 yards.
- Pay to play: Didn't really bother my party because the parking rate is so cheap (it only cost us £1.20 total), but there are many out there who think every course should be free, so I place it here as very minor Con.

Other Thoughts:

- I played with my girlfriend while on vacation, and though there's plenty of other things one can do while on vacation, we really enjoyed the hour and a half we spent playing here: many of the holes are long enough to not be 'gimmie' birdies for intermediate and advanced players, yet the obstacles and rough are few and tame enough for the course to simultaneously be beginner friendly.

- There's literally TONS of awesome sights to see in the area if you're passing through on vacation like we were: Giant's Causeway, Dunluce Castle, Carrick a Rede rope bridge, and many more scenic natural wonders and tourist must-stops are within a 30 minute drive from this course.

- When my party played there were signs left behind from a recent tournament held on the course, which apparently had expanded it into a full 18 holes. Although we looked around, we saw no signs of the additional 8 tees or baskets, so I guess the tournament must have used temporary/travel baskets - in other words, it has 10 permanent holes, not 18, but there are tournaments held here you can look out for which expand it into a full 18.
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6 4
Joe Rocket
Experience: 1 played 1 reviews
4.00 star(s)

Hidden Gem! 2+ years drive by

Reviewed: Played on:Jul 19, 2019 Played the course:5+ times

Pros:

The Mach Vs used on course catch really well- great baskets, The course includes some narrow treelined shots with call for shot-making especially if the brezze is blowing, as it does at some holes. Extremely well maintained area by grounds staff on a weekly basis,the setting is a beautiful arboretum that makes for a super relaxing round.

Cons:

Can be damp underfoot occasionally. No tee signage as of July 2019 but installation is due August 2019. Clear maps/scorecards are available in the adjacent Sports Centre building.

Other Thoughts:

Almost certainly room for more holes here. Will be a good competition venue.
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