Miniature Golf Courses for NYC Kids
I admit it: Mini golf is one of those things I endure for the sake of my son. I never enjoyed it as a kid and I don’t love it as an adult, but my kid could play every day. I know that for many families, mini golf is a quintessential warm weather activity that they look forward to every year. And spring is definitely a great season to play before the summer humidity kicks in.
While there are plenty of courses on Long Island and in New Jersey, you don't need to head out of town for putt-putt golf. There are currently 11 places to play mini golf right here in New York City (including one indoor course), complete with spinning windmills, bridges, water features—you know—the works.
Read on to find out where you can play mini golf in NYC and I'll see you on the green!
Alley Pond Golf Center – Douglaston
232-01 Northern Boulevard
In addition to a driving range and a pro shop for grown-ups, this Queens course boasts a nine-hole mini golf course for kids and families.
Brooklyn Crab – Red Hook
24 Reed Street between Conover and Van Brunt Streets
Restaurant is open all year, golf course and backyard open April 19 for the season.
This funky seafood shack has an eight-hole mini golf course in its backyard along with three cornhole games for your amusement before or after dinner.
Brooklyn Golf Center – Marine Park
3200 Flatbush Avenue
This lovely 18-hole putt-putt course is part of a larger complex that features grown-up golf, a driving range and a pro shop.
Figment 2015 Mini Golf Course – Governors Island
Open daily June 6-September 27
This annual Governors Island attraction is always a hit, and not just because it's FREE. The course changes every year and always features wildly innovative holes, all designed by artists and usually fashioned out of recycled materials. "From Here to There" is the theme of the 2015 course, which will debut at the Figment Festival the weekend of June 6-7. Having hit Figment's courses in years past, I want to note that they work better as interactive art installations than as mini golf. The 10 holes are visually striking but difficult to play. Plus many kids wander around, doing holes out of order. If your kids are like mine and into scoring and setting up their shots, let them know the deal in advance so they don't become frustrated.
Flushing Meadows Golf Center – Flushing
100 Flushing Meadows Corona Park Road
Open year round with longer hours in from May-October
Another gorgeous spot, this 18-hole course is lined with waterfalls and exudes serenity. It's open late for older kids, well-lit at night and relatively inexpensive. Bonus: If you're heading there by car, parking is free.
Jewish Children's Museum – Crown Heights
792 Eastern Parkway near Kingston Avenue
The most offbeat course of them all, the Jewish Children's Museum has a small Six Holes of Life Mini Golf installation on its fifth floor. Of course playing isn't the sole point; each hole is meant to teach about a specific Jewish ritual, from bris to bar mitzvah. While it won't take long to tackle this six-hole course, there are plenty of other things to do at the museum once you're through.
Pier 25 in Hudson River Park – Tribeca
North Moore Street and the Hudson River
212-766-1104 extension 228
Run by Manhattan Youth, this 13,000-square-foot, 18-hole course debuted in 2011 and quickly became a family hot spot due to it being easy, inexpensive and accessible. Even mini golf novices should be able to complete the game in less than 20 minutes, and the holes have some cute features, like the one where your ball ends up in a stream and floats back to the green. Plus there's a fantastic playground nearby.
Randall's Island Golf Center – Randall's Island
1 Randall’s Island
This course is absolutely beautiful with a waterfall and lovely landscaping that makes you feel like you're far from the city. There's also a beer garden, a cute cafe and batting cages. If you don't want to take the public M35 bus (which doesn't come very often), there's a shuttle bus that runs from the Upper East Side directly to the center.
Rocket Park Mini Golf – Flushing
New York Hall of Science, 47-01 111th Street near 47th Avenue
Open April-June: weekends; July-August: daily; September-December: weekends
This nine-hole course boasts two real NASA rockets, making it truly out-of-this-world. Kids get to explore concepts like propulsion, gravity, escape velocity, launch window and gravitational assist while playing. Forget spinning windmills; in Splash Down, players attempt to shoot their balls across the putting green into a Skee-ball-type mechanism, with a globe as its main target. The whole park is reminiscent of the Space Age '60s, making the atmosphere super cool.
Staten Island Go Karts Mini Golf – Staten Island
215 Schmidts Lane between Manor Road and LaGuardia Avenue
This complex is a very popular destination for families. In addition to mini golf, there's a go-kart racing track, a roller hockey rink and batting cages. The 18-hole golf course is pretty traditional, with water and sand traps that stymie players throughout. Before you go, download discount coupons on the website.
Turtle Cove Golf Center – the Bronx
City Island Road in Pelham Bay Park
This 18-hole mini golf course in lush Pelham Bay Park (not on City Island, despite the address) features landscaped gardens, shade trees and water features.
And while it's technically not mini golf, kids may enjoy the five-hole AstroTurf putting green in the southwest corner of Bryant Park, which is open every day, weather permitting. The park has a total of 30 free games for visitors to play.