Dragon Quest Adventure Golf

When we were backpacking in New Zealand, Nick and I had a thing about going to every crazy golf course we could find and playing a round against each other. Highlights included Caddyshack City in Queenstown (possibly the best mini golf course in the world*), a downhill course in Kaikoura and one that was located on a random residential street in Wanaka. We dubbed our travelling tournament the 'Nose Cup' and, at the risk of sounding braggy, I won.

Since then, we've occasionally played one-off games (usually when we are on holiday - is it wrong part of me wants to go back to Hastings so we can play that course again?). However, Nick has recently taken up golf as a hobby and discovered that the golf centre where he has lessons has a crazy golf course called Dragon Quest. So of course the only thing to do on a recent sunny Sunday afternoon was get ourselves down there and play a round.

Giant plastic dragon outside the golf course. As yo do, like.
As the name suggests, Dragon Quest is themed around medieval knights, meaning that on the surface it looks like a family-friendly version of the set of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. There's a dragon's tail atop a cave on the 12th hole (complete with roaring sound effect if you get a hole in one hitting the ball through a stalactite), artfully placed shields and rocky outcrops, a castle tower and an enormous waterfall effect that contains all the blue dye you can shake a stick at. It looks very impressive though!

Dragon footprints going up to the shop entrance.

One of the things that surprised me most was the mix of people there. I had expected it to be dominated by families with small children - and there were a few of those, as well as a kid's birthday party - but there were also several couples and groups of friends too.

Nick taking a shot in the cave.
The course itself is surprisingly challenging. I think a big part of it is the water feature, which dominates the course and means that the middle section is fairly risky as it's worryingly easy to accidentally knock your ball into the stream. There's also a fair few uphill shots and interesting corners, so it's quite easy to get to the six-shot limit. At least that's what I'm blaming our less than brilliant scores on:

Winner: Nick, by 54 strokes to 57 (on a par 40 course. Fail!)
Rounds won: Me 0, Nick 1
Accumulative scores: Me 57, Nick 54

Overall, we really enjoyed Dragon Quest - yes it is very child-friendly but to be honest it's so darn fun that you kind of don't mind. In fact we liked it so much that we've decided to revive our tournament by playing the crazy golf courses of London (of which there are a surprisingly large amount!). Nick is off to Swingers *awaits Blogger to block me* soon with a friend so will report back, but I think our next one is going to be Birdies as it's summer-only. Although if there's anywhere you'd particularly recommend please let me know!

Dragon Quest costs £8 each for adults (with a second game on the same day for half price) and also offers child and family tickets - find out more on their website.

* You can have that one for nothing, Carlsberg.

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