Summer calls for a laidback lifestyle. Beach days, leisurely strolls to your local ice cream parlor and afternoons by the pool. If the most competition you indulge in is seeing who can finish a three-scoop sundae with all the fixings first , no shame.
But other family and friend groups love it when the competitive juices heat up like the temperatures. Mini-golf does the trick. Though hitting a PGA championship-style course is fun for some, mini-golf requires far less skill or athletic ability, making it accessible for beginners and young kids.
The East End has mini-golf courses full of all the trimmings and trappings for an afternoon of friendly competition (and long-term bragging rights). Whether or not you keep score or manage to avoid the windmill, you’ll have a blast at one of these Hamptons mini-golf courses that are well above par.
Whale’s Tale combines two quintessential summer pastimes: Ice cream and mini-golf — an excellent recipe for a fun day between the ferries. The 18-hole golf course follows a tale of a whale — see what they did there? — vacationing on Shelter Island. Make friends with dolphins, penguins and a mermaid, see if your ball can navigate lighthouses and anchors and know that everyone wins if you end your day with Hershey’s ice cream on the outdoor terrace.
Some families get up and get going regardless of the season or whether they’re on vacation. Others? Not so much. Hamptons Mini Golf allows early birds and stragglers alike to get the worm. The spot is open seven days per week from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m., making it a stellar pick for a late-night date night. The 18-hole golf course celebrates Hamptons landmarks like Conscience Point Rock, Hook Windmill, Dune Road and the Montauk Lighthouse.
Summer days can begin and end at this spot that’s enjoyed a more than four-decade run at “The End.” Puff N’ Putt’s 18-hole mini-golf course and watersport rentals allow guests of all ages to partake in multiple alfresco activities. Take your best shot at a hole-in-one on a course with Fort Pond vistas. Then, hit the water — paddleboards, kayaks, canoes and paddleboards are among the equipment available to rent. If a summer shower hits, take cover at the arcade. FYI: Cash only.
The Clubhouse is essentially an indoor-outdoor playground for kids from 1 to 92. You’ll find more than three-dozen arcade games, bowling, pool tables, cocktails and an 18-hole mini-golf course. The outdoor course’s obstacles include bridges, waterfalls and rocks. Coming with a totally 21+ crowd? Hit the indoor-outdoor sports bar for some grub and brews after, or consider pairing a day of mini-golf with a night of entertainment. The Clubhouse often transforms into a music hall with performances by local legends and icons like Bon Jovi.
The nine-course mini-golf doubles as a classroom at Children’s Museum East End. Children (and adults) can learn about physics and math through bi-lingual signage at each hole. Navigate curves, chutes, rocks and other obstacles. The mini-golf course is included with regular-price and membership admissions and is open during operating hours. Other exhibits to check out during a visit include the windmill, farmstand and seafaring ship — all provide lessons for littles and prove learning is fun.