When it comes to summer fun for all ages, it’s tough to beat miniature golf for accessibility and affordability. At the really great courses, there’s enough to see and do to keep most of our littles entertained for at least an hour, especially if your kids enjoy hitting things with clubs then climbing on them. An afternoon of playing a round or two of mini golf games is great because everyone can play at their own pace or all together, giving your group space or togetherness, depending on how the summer, day, or hour is going.
Travelling this summer? Be sure to put some of these great courses on your list. Most are outdoors but sometimes Canadian summers can mean uncooperative weather so look for the * to denote indoor facilities.
Riptide Lagoon, Parksville, B.C.
A beautiful and elaborate course that mimics a quaint little fishing village, complete with monster fish, seaside homes and a lighthouse. Little golfers will enjoy posing for pictures and checking out the plane suspended over the 18th hole. Additional on-site activities include an arcade and laser tag bumper cars. riptidelagoon.com
WhistlePunk Hollow Adventure Golf, Squamish, B.C.
Two waterfalls, a large locomotive and tributes to Squamish’s logging history are the highlights of this multi-level adventure course. Located on the beautiful Sea-to-Sky Corridor, WhistlePunk Hollow is also a family RV Resort within walking distance of local attractions and additional outdoor fun. whistlepunkhollow.com
Family Adventure Zone, Whistler, B.C.
It will be tough to find a more beautiful backdrop for your mini golf experience than stunning Blackcomb. Nestled at the bottom of the mountain, steps from the vibrant Whistler Village, is the Family Adventure Zone featuring mini golf, a bouncy castle, rope zone, bungee trampoline, go karts and more. Who says Whistler is just for skiiers. whistlerblackcomb.com
Dragon’s Tale Blacklight Mini Golf, West Edmonton Mall, Edmonton, AB
Slay the bad guys and save the dragons one putt at a time as you make your way through this 18-hole sensory experience. For something less intense, try the nearby Professor WEM’s Adventure Golf, better for littles who might find Dragon’s Tale too scary. Dragon’s Tale Blacklight Mini Golf
Winsport Canada Olympic Park, Calgary, AB
Location, location, location. That’s what they say about mini golf, right? Another great course with a view, this time of the Rocky Mountains, is at Winsport Olympic Park, home of the Calgary 1988 Winter Olympics. After you put your clubs away, check out the zipline, mountain bike trails, summer bobsleigh, scenic chair lift, waterslide and more, all on the same site. winsport.ca
*Market Mall, Saskatoon, SK
Who needs California when you’ve got Saskatoon? Styled after the famous Pebble Beach golf course, this mini-me is located inside the Market Mall and features lush greens, tropical vegetation, a stream and fish pond. Stock up on trip essentials at Safeway and Shoppers Drug Mart, then play a round before heading back out on the road. saskatoonmarketmall.com
*U-Puttz Amusement Centre, Winnipeg, MB
They say there are plenty of fish in the sea and they’re right when it comes to the front nine holes of this glow-in-the-dark blacklit course. Putt around dolphins and sharks before blasting to the past where the T-Rex and Long Neck Brontosaurus await you on the back nine. Laser Tag, bumper cars and an arcade (sigh) round out the list of activities in this amusement centre. u-puttz.ca
ONTARIO and QUEBEC
Timber Creek Golf and Family Fun Centre, Stouffville, ON
Just 30-minutes north of Toronto you’ll find Timber Creek, located on a beautiful 35-acre nature park. Rushing waterfalls, a picturesque pond, batting cages, huge jumping castles and an air-conditioned clubhouse make this a great spot for family fun. Want to really tire the kids out? Take advantage of its late closing (10:30 p.m. in July and August). timbercreekgolf.ca
Cascades Putting Course, Blue Mountain Resort, Grey County, ON
If you think miniature golf is supposed to be small, this might not be the place for you. The Cascade Putting Course considers itself “as big as mini golf gets.” Situated at the base of the Niagara Escarpment, the course’s best feature is its natural surroundings and panoramic views. bluemountain.ca
Cascades Golf, La Prairie, QC
15 minutes outside Montreal you’ll find picturesque and long-standing Cascades Golf. Known for its beautiful scenery and lack of tacky décor (for a mini putt place), Cascades is not the biggest but it’s definitely one of the prettiest. After your round be sure to pop next door to the legendary Ice Cream Jonathan for some cold, creamy goodness. cascades-golf.com
River of Adventure, Cavendish, PEI
Have you ever asked a giant lobster if he minds if you play through? Well you’re about to at River of Adventure. Known for its interesting selection of hazards (including a musical bridge and potato patch) this one is a PEI selfie-seeker’s dream: heavy on kitsch, fun and photo ops. cavendishbeachpei.com
*Putting Edge. Locations in Halifax, Ottawa, the Greater Toronto Area, Quebec and the U.S.
These dazzling, glow-in-the-dark blacklit courses are a complete sensory experience. Older kids will love the vibe and little ones will probably be more interested in looking around than swinging a club, which isn’t a bad thing when you’re surrounded by other people in the dark! This is a rainy day must-do or teenager drop-off anytime of the year. puttingedge.com