Mini golf has been a staple attraction to American vacations since 1916 when the first commercially produced course ‘Thistle Dhu’ opened its greens Pinehurst, North Carolina. Since then, it’s quite uncommon that you’d ever visit Orlando without passing by one or two signature courses on your way to your destination. But with so many different mini golf courses to choose from, you may be asking which courses are “must-do’s” when visiting Orlando within such a limited amount of time? We’ve put together a quick guide to our 5 favorite mini golf courses in the Orlando area that are both exciting, unique, and conveniently located no matter where you decide to stay in the Orlando-area.
1. Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf
Touted as Orlando’s original adventure Golf, Pirate’s Cove is conveniently located on International Drive, just down the street from Icon Park Orlando (formerly known as I-Drive 360, home to the Orlando Eye.) With 36 holes spread out over two courses this recently renovated mini golf course offers family-friendly entertainment at an affordable price. Whether you decide to embark on the Captain’s Course, Blackbeard’s Challenge, or the 36-Hole Adventure, this 18th-century Buccaneer-themed course brings immersion, excitement, and thrills for all who dare to set foot on this adventurous mini golf course.
2. Winter Summerland Miniature Golf
In addition to its many theme parks and attractions, Walt Disney World offers its fair share of mini golf courses, as well. Located just off of West Buena Vista Drive on Blizzard Beach Drive, this mini golf course offers 2 different courses for the enjoyment of all guests participating in friendly competition. Choose from the Summer, or Winter course, and enjoy the immersion of a mini golf course that only Disney can offer. Explore the 2 camps that Santa and his elves established themselves as you putt-putt your way through 36 holes of Christmas decor and fun, and be sure to grab a photo with Santa’s Sleigh as you leave!
3. Fantasia Gardens and Fairways Miniature Golf
For those still interested in mini golf at Walt Disney World, but who are less interested in a Holiday-inspired mini golf course, be sure to check out Fantasia Gardens and Fairways Miniature Golf. These 2 courses can be found just off of West Buena Vista Drive, on Epcot Resorts Boulevard, and offers spectacular views of one of Disney’s Hollywood Studios Signature attractions: The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Explore 5 scenes from Disney’s classic movie ‘Fantasia’ as you and your party experience with clad hippos, magical broomsticks, and more on the Fantasia Gardens course. For those looking for more of a challenge, we recommend you put your mini golf skills to the test on the Fairways miniature golf course. Resembling a scaled down miniature golf course, these 18 holes will challenge your ability (and your patience) and experience with a mini golf course. Please note that the Fairways Course is rather difficult and can be frustrating for some. If you choose to experience this course, we strongly recommend you go into this course with the understanding that everyone will likely struggle through each and every hole, and that you should take joy in the challenge associated with the fairways course.
4. Hollywood Drive In Mini Golf
Universal Orlando Resort can’t let Walt Disney World have all of the fun, and so they decided to offer their own 36-hole course for guests looking to do something a it different at Universal Citywalk. Appropriately named Hollywood Drive In Golf, this dual-course adventure offers two unique mini golf experiences that include quite the challenge for those up to the task. Located near the very beginning of Universal Citywalk, guests can choose from 2 different 18 hole courses – ‘The Haunting of Ghostly Greens’ or ‘Invaders From Planet Putt’ – and putt their way through ghostly and invasive theming. Whether you decide to mini golf with aliens or ghosts, it’s assured that guests will enjoy the many interactive elements of Universal Orlando Resort’s signature mini golf course.
5. Congo River Mini Golf
Last but certainly not least is a mini golf course that is off the beaten path, but that is also certainly worth the drive if your vacation allows. Congo River Mini Golf – located in Altamonte Springs off of State Road 436 – is a uniquely themed putt-putt golf course that places guests in the middle of an unforgettable African Adventure. From waterfalls to caves, and even a downed plane, there’s an uncommon sense of immersion that makes this miniature golf course feel more like a signature course that Walt Disney World or Universal Orlando Resort would only be able to offer. One of the more interesting offerings from this miniature golf course – the opportunity to feed live alligators!
With so many miniature golf courses to choose from, it’s not a wonder that many guests visiting Orlando struggle with the decision of which miniature golf course they should visit with the limited amount of time offered to them while on vacation. We’ve identified just a few of the many courses available for guests to enjoy, and we hope that regardless of the course that you decide to experience while on vacation, that you have fun!