Fantasia Gardens: Miniature Golf at The Happiest Place on Earth
By Rachel Petrosky
My husband and I recently returned from a week of amazing Disney World magic. For our fourth Disney trip as a couple, we decided to try new things outside the normal realm of a typical visit to “The Mouse”. We purposefully only visited the parks for two days out of our time there, opting instead to take the road less traveled…for us anyway. We knew a miniature golf course existed on Disney property, having passed by it before, so this time around we blocked out our schedules for the experience. Allow me to share all that I learned attempting to play my best, in case you were pondering whether it’s an activity worth trying on your next vacation. Let’s break everything down into categories…
Where is this place anyway? According to the “official Disney website”, (which you can find here https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/recreation/fantasia-gardens-fairways-miniature-golf/) Fantasia Gardens is located in the Epcot Resort area near the Walt Disney World Swan Hotel. We opted taking a bus to Hollywood Studios and walking up to the Boardwalk, then around to the Swan and across the street. It was a hike. If you happen to have access to the boats around boardwalk area, I would suggest taking those. Your feet will thank you.
When paying for a round of golf, it is important to note that you only pay for one side of the course. Because there’s two. They are very different from each other so choose wisely. For a single game, adults are $14 and children are $12. Not too shabby for a Disney experience, I was expecting twenty or more. We paid for the “family friendly adventure” our first go around. The attendants told us to show up the next day with our receipt and we would receive 25% off the next game. And we did just that.
As mentioned, Fantasia Gardens has two different courses for you to choose from. A family friendly side and a challenging side. My advice is to begin on the family friendly side, unless you’re Tiger Woods. More on that in a second. If you’re bringing the kiddos, I would only opt for family friendly. If you are just a party of adults, I would still opt for that one unless you are very skilled in golf. I am not skilled in golf at all. Your family side is a typical miniature golf experience. Make the shot. Go through the cave. Hit it through the windmill, etc. There are Disney sculptures along your route for nice picture opportunities as well. Take the family, post on Instagram, it’s a pleasant experience.
The challenging course is just what it says it is, very challenging, at least to me. This is not a “putt putt” type of golfing game. This is an actual golf course, shrunk in mini form. Sand traps, bunkers, water hazards and sloping greens are all present. There is also a “rule” posted stating there is a six-par limit on each hole. Basically, you have six chances to get your ball in the hole or you should move on to the next one. This will keep the course from becoming backed up and clogged from someone like me still trying on her twenty-eighth par. (I don’t want to talk about it)
There are a few more things to keep in mind before agreeing to seek this adventure out. What is the weather like on that day? The only shading offered was a few trees so if you’re one to duck in and get out of the Florida sun and humidity, you may take that into consideration. What amenities are available? As soon as you walk up to the counter, there is a room adjacent with snacks and drinks for purchase. Ice cream, chips, water, sodas, and even beer and hard cider for the grown-ups. The prices for these was typical for any Disney location. I also recommend pocketing a few extra balls. If you “accidentally” lose one, you may find yourself getting lost on the way back to the counter.
To wrap this up, I had a good time and I’m glad we checked it off our bucket list. If I do it again, I’ll go in the winter and I’ll do the family friendly side…unless I practice at the range first. I will also remember what the great Yoda once said, “Do or do not, there is no try”.
Hi friends! I’m Rachel Petrosky. I’m an educator, military wife, and lifelong Disney fan. My husband and love it so much, we married at Shades of Green near the Magic Kingdom. We try and go every year if we can! You can follow me on Instagram @racheybabebeauty. “Growing old is mandatory, growing up is optional.” -Walt Disney