Miniature Golf Courses for NYC Kids
For many families, mini golf is a quintessential warm-weather activity that they look forward to every year. My son loves it, so we've tried just about every putt-putt course in the tri-state area.
While there are plenty of courses on Long Island and in New Jersey, you don't need to head out of town to hone your short game. We've rounded up a handful of spots to play within the city limits, plus a few grown-up places where kids can take their golf game to the next level. And as sports go, mini golf is relatively inexpensive—often as little as $5 a round for kids. Another bonus: It's one of those rare intergenerational activities parents and kids can play together. You can even host a >birthday party at most of these spots.
Read on to find out where to play mini golf with the kids in the city, and we'll see you on the green!
The pandemic has taken its toll on our favorite mini-golf courses, and many are still shuttered. We're leaving them on the list in hopes they open soon, so be sure to click through to the links for current operating status.
Dedicated Mini-Golf Courses in NYC
Hit the links at Pier 25's 18-hole course before a playground romp.
Pier 25 in Hudson River Park – Tribeca
2020 update: Pier 25's mini-golf course is open. Masks are required. Hours vary and can be found on its website.
Wednesdays through Sundays from March through mid-April, weather permitting; daily mid-April through mid-November
Run by Manhattan Youth, this 13,000-square-foot, 18-hole course debuted in 2011 and quickly became a family hot spot for easy, inexpensive, and accessible fun. Even mini-golf novices should be able to complete the game in less than 20 minutes, and the holes have some cute features, like one where your ball ends up in a stream and floats back to the green. Plus, there's a fantastic playground nearby. Note: It's cash-only!
Flushing Meadows Golf Center – Flushing, Queens
2020 update: Flushing Meadows Golf Center is currently open.
Open year-round with longer hours from May through October
This 18-hole course is lined with gorgeous 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.
The indoor Shipwrecked course features a super cool pirate and NYC theme. Photo courtesy of Shipwrecked
Shipwrecked Miniature Golf – Red Hook, Brooklyn
2020 update: Shipwrecked Miniature Golf is currently closed and preparing to implement new safety procedures as soon as New York state permits its reopening.
This newcomer to the putt-putt scene was put together by some well-known Brooklyn buddies who previously banded together to build the Holiday Lights Spectacular in South Slope. The indoor, 18-hole course features four golf rooms, with theatrical lighting and mini-shows telling the story of Captain Red Hook. Once you've finished the course, spend some time in the arcade with its retro video games (Think: Frogger and Donkey Kong) for a quarter per play.
Brooklyn Go Kart and Mini-Golf – Coney Island, Brooklyn
2020 update: Coney Island’s rides and attractions are currently closed. Dining venues are open.
After you've had your fill of roller coasters and other thrill rides, hit the 18-hole putt-putt experience at Coney Island. The course features waterfalls, streams, and sand traps. You can also take a go-kart for a spin here.
Staten Island FunPark – Staten Island
2020 update: Staten Island FunPark is closed until further notice.
In addition to mini golf, this popular destination offers 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. A 2017 revamp to the park introduced new games, a snack bar, and more.
Mini-Golf Courses at Area Grown Up Courses
The pretty Turtle Cove Golf Center is a popular party spot for Bronx families. Photo courtesy the golf center.
Turtle Cove Golf Center – Pelham Bay Park, the Bronx
2020 update: Turtle Cove Golf Center is currently open; however, the pro-shop is closed. Face masks are required. There are no lessons, camps, or programming taking place, but the outdoor cafe is open.
This 18-hole mini-golf course in lush Pelham Bay Park (not on City Island, despite the address) boasts landscaped gardens, shade trees, and water features. It's among our top party spots for Bronx kids, too.
Aviator Golf Center – Marine Park, Brooklyn
2020 update: The Aviator Golf Center and Riis Park Par 3 are open by reservation only. Rentals are not available. The mini-golf course is currently closed. Face coverings are required. The pro shop remains shuttered.
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. Formerly Brooklyn Golf Center, it's now part of Aviator Sports.
Play an 18-hole miniature golf course with waterfalls and fountains at the Alley Pond Golf Center.
Alley Pond Golf Center – Douglaston, Queens
2020 update: The Alley Pond Golf Center is open daily, however its practice putting area, miniature-golf course, and short game area are closed until further notice. The driving range and screen golf are still available. Face masks are required, and social distancing is enforced.
In addition to a driving range and a pro-shop for grown-ups, this Queens course boasts an 18-hole mini-golf course for kids and families. A $3 million renovation revealed in 2016 included a sprucing up of the mini-golf section, too.
More Fun Spots to Play Mini Golf in NYC
Jewish Children's Museum – Crown Heights, Brooklyn
2020 update: The Jewish Children’s Museum is open by reservation only starting Monday, August 24. Face masks are required, and social distancing is enforced.
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 purpose; each hole is meant to teach a specific Jewish ritual, from bris to bar mitzvah. While it won't take long to tackle this smaller course, there are plenty of other things to do at the museum once you're through.
Kids learn about science while playing mini golf at Rocket Park Mini Golf at the New York Hall of Science. Photo courtesy of NYSCI
Rocket Park Mini Golf – Flushing, Queens
2020 update: Rocket Park Mini Golf is temporarily closed along with the New York Hall of Science, which doesn't plan to reopen until 2021.
Kids get to explore concepts like propulsion, gravity, escape velocity, launch window, and a gravitational assist while playing golf at this STEM spot. The course got an overhaul in 2019, so look forward to a brand new experience when it reopens.
Industry City – Sunset Park, Brooklyn
2020 update: The game room at Industry City is closed until further notice.
Open year-round; outdoors beginning in late April
The NYC-themed mini-golf course at Industry City is now open year-round. During the colder months, kids can get their mini-golf fix indoors in the Game Room. The nine-hole course, inspired by Brooklyn landmarks, can be played in any order, making it a good option for even little kids.
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 through October. The outdoor game room also has a total of 50 FREE games for visitors to play.
This article, first published in June 2010, has since been updated. Katie Nave Freeman contributed additional reporting.
Places featured in this article:
Rocket Park Mini Golf
Alley Pond Golf Center
Pier 25 Hudson River Park
Turtle Cove Golf Center
Staten Island Go Karts Mini Golf
Jewish Children's Museum
Shipwrecked Miniature Golf