In golf terms, Barnbougle is young. Whilst the rolling fairways of the courses, set amongst the wild and dramatic landscape, look as though they were established long before we could jump on a plane and fly across Bass Strait to Tasmania, it was in just 2004 that the first course – The Dunes – opened for play.
Designed by renowned modern golf architect Tom Doak and Australia ex-European tour pro and course designer Mike Clayton, Barnbougle Dunes was once a strip of land along the coast of a potato farm on Tasmania’s north east coast.
Meandering through rolling coastal dunes the 18 hole golf course was developed to compliment the natural layout of the coastal dunes and enhance the beautiful surrounding landscape rather than detract from it.
Their design philosophy was embraced by golfers far and wide and the Dunes soon earned a position amongst the world’s top ranked golf courses. Since opening in December 2004, The Dunes has maintained its position as the number one public access course in Australia. Currently rated #4 course in Australia (by Australian Golf Digest), #34 course in the World (U.S. Golf Magazine) and #11 course in the World (U.S. Golf Digest), The Dunes is a regular on ‘must play’ lists around the world.
With the reputation of Barnbougle Dunes continuing to augment, the idea of a second course at Barnbougle was conceived. In December 2010, Lost Farm, the 20 hole sister to The Dunes, opened for play.
Designed and constructed by Coore & Crenshaw on the steeper and more dramatic sand dunes across the river from The Dunes, Lost Farm was developed with similar design principles – that the best links courses compliment the natural topography of the land.
Lost Farm has quickly captured the attention of international golfers of all abilities. Within weeks of opening, Lost Farm was rated the #2 public course in Australia by Golf Australia Magazine, and within 8 months it entered the World Top 100 List (by U.S. Golf Magazine) at #82. Lost Farm now ranks #23 in the World (U.S. Golf Digest).
Despite the close proximity of the courses, they are remarkably different. The topography of the land on which the Dunes lies rolls in and out of the sand dunes along the coast, whilst the sand dunes on which Lost Farm lies are steeper and more dramatic. The Lost Farm plays along the coast and inland and also features 20 holes – 13a, which was built as a substitute hole but was too good to leave out of the route, and 18a – a very short par 3 leading golfers to the bar and clubhouse.
As for the million dollar question – which is better? – that will depend on which way the wind blows, where lies the strength of your game, and to some extent how you play on the day, so we’ll leave that for you to discuss over a few quiet drinks at the clubhouse.