Monday, June 22, 2015

Mini Golf in the South West of England

Visiting 62 more miniature golf courses on a tour of the South West of England.

We've been on some big road-trips in the past few years and this summer we had a brilliant two-week holiday around the coast of South West England.

Minigolf Explorers Richard and Emily Gottfried at Gilmores Golf in Newquay, part-way through their mammoth road-trip around the South West coast of England
At Gilmores Golf in Newquay, part-way through our mammoth road-trip around the South West coast of England

During our time away we visited the milestone 600th course. The Jurassic Adventure Golf course at the Santa-Fe Fun Park in Swanage, Dorset became the 364th course played when we visited on Sunday 31st May.

Jurassic Adventure Mini Golf course in Swanage, Dorset
Jurassic Adventure Golf in Swanage

Two weeks later we visited Mini Golf course number 661 at Vivary Park in Taunton, Somerset. The 18-hole course was the 380th we've played since the tour began in September 2006, and the 17th played on our holiday.

Mini Golf at Vivary Park in Taunton, Somerset
Mini Golf in Vivary Park, Taunton

We got into playing minigolf after making a resolution in 2006 to visit as much of the UK's coast and on this trip we reached 227 seasides visited. We're looking forward to our next holiday already.

Here's the list of the 62 courses we visited in Dorset, Devon, Cornwall and Somerset:
Swanage (Santa Fe Fun Park) - Jurassic Adventure Golf - 600th course visited overall
Lyme Regis (Lister Gardens) - Crazy Golf

Mini Golf course in Lyme Regis, Dorset
The Lister Gardens Mini Golf course in Lyme Regis

Seaton - Grass Putting Green
Oak Mead Family Golf Centre - Grass Putting Green
Oak Mead Family Golf Centre - Pitch and Putt
Salcombe Regis, near Sidmouth (Thorne Park Golf Centre) - Crazy Golf

Mini Crazy Golf course at Thorne Golf Centre near Salcombe Regis, Devon
Putting on the Crazy Golf course at Thorne Park Golf Centre near Sidmouth

Salcombe Regis, near Sidmouth (Thorne Park Golf Centre) - Grass Putting Green
Salcombe Regis, near Sidmouth (Thorne Park Golf Centre) - Pitch and Putt
Sidmouth (The Victoria Hotel) - Grass Putting Green
Sidmouth (The Belmont Hotel) - Grass Putting Green
Sidmouth (The Triangle / Coburg Fields) - Grass Putting Green
Exmouth (Seafront) - Arnold Palmer Crazy Golf
Exmouth (Seafront) - Grass Putting Green
Exmouth (The Imperial Hotel) - Grass Putting Green
Dawlish Warren (Funderland) - Adventure Golf

Funderland Adventure Mini Golf course in Dawlish Warren, Devon
A crazy hole on the Funderland Adventure Golf course in Dawlish Warren

Dawlish (Station Road) - Swedish Felt B-Run Mini Golf
Teignmouth (Sea Front) - Jurassic Adventure Golf

Adventure Mini Golf in Teignmouth, Devon
The Adventure Golf course in Teignmouth

Torquay (The Imperial Hotel) - Crazy Golf

Mini Golf at The Imperial Hotel in Torquay, Devon
Our hotel in Torquay had a Crazy Golf course - what a bonus!

Torquay (Torre Abbey Gardens) - Jungle Journey Adventure Golf
Paignton (Sea Front) - Pirates Bay Adventure Golf
Paignton (Junior Browns) - UV Indoor Crazy Golf - removed
Goodrington Sands, Paignton - Beton Mini Golf - 600th course visited in the UK

Mini Crazy Golf course in Goodrington Sands Paignton
The Goodrington Sands Beton Mini Golf course in Paignton

Roundham Head, Goodrington Sands, Paignton - Pitch and Putt
Torquay (Torre Abbey Gardens) - Pitch and Putt
Dartmouth (near Higher Ferry) - Grass Putting course
Plymouth (The Hoe) - Grass Putting course
Plymouth (West Hoe Park) - Treasure Island Adventure Golf
St Martins (Parkdean Looe Bay Holiday Park) - Crazy Golf
Looe (Looe Bowling Club, Marine Drive) - Upper Grass Putting course
Looe (Looe Bowling Club, Marine Drive) - Lower Grass Putting course

Miniature Golf Putting Green in Looe, Cornwall
Looe Bowling Club in Cornwall is home to two grass Putting courses with some great views

St Austell (Kidzworld Cornwall, Stadium Retail Park) - Mini Golf
Swanpool, Falmouth (Swanpool Park) - Crazy Golf

Crazy Golf course in Falmouth, Cornwall
The Crazy Golf course in Swanpool Park, Falmouth is in a great spot

Falmouth (Gyllyngvase Beach) - Crazy Golf - now part of a garden
Penzance (The Alexandra Inn) - pub beer garden Crazy Golf

Crazy Golf course at The Alexandra Inn, Penzance, Cornwall
The beer garden of The Alexandra Inn, Penzance has a 17-hole Crazy Golf course in it!

St Ives (Porthminster Beach) - Grass Putting course
St Ives (Porthmeor Beach) - Grass Putting course
St Erth (Penwith Pitch and Putt) - Crazy Golf

Crazy Golf at Penwith Pitch & Putt in St Erth, near St Ives, Cornwall
The Penwith Pitch & Putt centre in St Erth, near St Ives, has a very bright and colourful Crazy Golf course

St Erth (Penwith Pitch and Putt) - Pitch and Putt
Perranporth (Boating Lake) - Grass Putting course
Newquay (Gilmores Golf) - Beton Crazy Mini Golf

Crazy Golf at Gilmores Golf in Newquay, Cornwall
Playing the Beton Mini Golf course at Gilmores Golf in Newquay

Newquay (Trenance Gardens) - Crazy Golf

Crazy Golf in Trenance Gardens, Newquay, Cornwall
The Trenance Gardens Crazy Golf course in Newquay

Newquay (Trenance Gardens) - Pitch and Putt
Newquay (Killacourt) - Grass Putting course - out of season
Newquay (Tolcarne Beach) - Crazy Golf - course on the cliff has been removed
Newquay (Narrowcliff, near Tolcarne Beach) - Crazy Golf - hut remains, no course evident
Newquay (The Headland Hotel, near Fistral Beach) - Grass Putting course
Porth Island, Newquay (Krazy Golf at Newquay Football Golf) - Crazy Golf

Krazy Golf on Porth Island in Newquay, Cornwall
Putting at the Krazy Golf course on Porth Island, Newquay

Mawgan Porth - Crazy Golf
Mawgan Porth - Pitch and Putt
Berryfields Holiday Park, Porthcothan Bay - Crazy Golf
Padstow (Greens Cafe) - Crazy Golf - 650th course visited overall

Greens Cafe Crazy Golf course in Padstow, Cornwall
Playing a Pyramid hole in Padstow

Padstow (Greens Cafe) - Grass Putting / Pitch and Putt
Bude (Bude Haven Recreation Ground) - Crazy Golf

Bude Haven Crazy Golf course in Bude, Cornwall
A snakey hole in Bude

Bude (Bude Haven Recreation Ground) - Grass Putting Green 1
Bude (Bude Haven Recreation Ground) - Grass Putting Green 2
Bude (Crooklets Beach) - Pitch and Putt
Westward Ho! - Putting course on a signpost - not found
Westward Ho! (Pebble Ridge) - Pirate Adventure Golf
Woolacombe (The Bay Hotel) - Mini Golf (Pitch and Putt)
Woolacombe (Funderland) - 15-hole Adventure Golf
Ilfracombe (The Promenade) - Crazy Golf
Taunton (Vivary Park) - Mini Golf

It wasn't possible to stop at, or play all of the mini, crazy and adventure golf courses, or all the putting greens and pitch & putts we saw on this trip, or those we'd heard about beforehand.

On Broad Road in Swanage there is a piece of parkland that overlooks the bay and pier. This area has appeared on many postcards over the years and used to be home to a grass Miniature Golf course.

The Parkdean Holiday Park in West Bay, near Bridport used to have a Crazy Golf course. We checked, it's no longer there.

After we'd played the Crazy Golf course in Lister Gardens in Lyme Regis we noticed on the town map that the gardens are also home to a grass Putting Green. We had noticed a two-tier patch of land near to the course, but it wasn't laid out for putting. Perhaps it was too early in the season.

This year the Ladram Bay Holiday Park has created a Jurassic Adventure Golf course at the site in Otterton near Budleigh Salterton. We didn't get a chance to play it. Charter member of the Crazy World of Minigolf Tour Christopher Gottfried did visit the course on a trip to Devon last year.

On that trip Christopher also visited Paignton and spotted a Crazy Golf course on the pier. On our visit we saw it had been removed. There were trampolines instead. The stroll along the pier wasn't all for naught though as I got to have a go on a Hillbilly Shooting Shack.

It's not minigolf, but it's a seaside classic - a Hillbilly Shooting Shack on Paignton Pier
It's not minigolf, but it's a seaside classic - a Hillbilly Shooting Shack on Paignton Pier

Other Crazy Golf courses we had to skip on this trip due to time constraints are at:
- Pecorama Games, Gardens and Trains in Beer
- Exmouth World of Country Life
- Babbacombe Model Village
- Holywell Bay Fun Park
- Lappa Valley Steam Railway
- Old MacDonald's Farm and Bed & Breakfast
- Bideford Atlantic Village
- Devon Railway Centre

There are also quite a few more miniature golf courses at holiday camps, caravan parks and hotels in the area.

Thanks to everyone for their tips and hints about places to visit on the trip, and special mentions to Tim 'Ace Man' Davies for his excellent course list on MiniatureGolfer.com, Jam Trubridge, Matt Dodd, Helen Dodd, Chris Harding, and Christopher Gottfried.

There'll be more blog posts about the courses we visited in the coming weeks so watch this space!

Related blog posts:
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour
- Dorset
- Devon
- Cornwall
- Somerset

Videos:
- Crazy Golf Hole in One at the Jurassic Adventure Golf course in Swanage
- Mini Golf Hole in One at the Jurassic Adventure Golf course in Swanage
- Crazy Golf in Lyme Regis, Dorset
- Mini Golf in Lyme Regis, Dorset
- Mini Golf Hole-in-One at The Imperial Hotel in Torquay
- Crazy Golf Hole-in-One at The Alexandra Inn, Penzance 
- Playing Krazy Golf on Porth Island, Newquay

4 comments:

Richard Gottfried said...

One of my areas of interest (among many) is old tokens from amusement arcades, theme parks and crazy golf courses. And a variety of other places and uses for that matter.

I bought an old token for Watermouth Castle and Family Theme Park, aka Gnomeland, at an antiques fair in Bedford at the weekend, and when I had a look on the theme park's website I spotted they have a Crazy Golf course!

Check out the two sides of the coin here.

Watermouth Castle and Family Theme Park is in Ilfracombe, North Devon - so we drove past it on our tour of the South West coast.

You can see a photo of the Adventure Land Crazy 'Fountain' Golf on the Watermouth Castle website.

They've got a brilliant mascot too.

Link:
- Watermouth Castle and Family Theme Park

Ace Man said...

Hmmm - Pub & crazy golf. Class!
I like tokens too :))

Richard Gottfried said...

We've played Crazy Golf in a few Pub Beer Gardens over the years *hic* - Details of Pub Miniature Golf courses we've found on our travels.

Richard Gottfried said...

The 601st course visited on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour was the Mini Golf course at Lister Gardens in Lyme Regis, Dorset.