Disney’s Fantasia Gardens Miniature Golf – Orlando, FL

Played on 12/27/2016

Reviewed by the Pink Putter

Due to a minor wait time mishap for the Snow Course at Disney’s Winter Summerland, we had a voucher in hand for a free round at Fantasia Gardens. Appropriately located just outside Disney’s Swan and Dolphin hotel, this course was much closer to where we were staying a lot easier to find than Winter Summerland had been for us. It was a hot and sunny morning and there wasn’t a lot of shade on the course, but coming from Minnesota this was a welcome dose of vitamin D.

Rating:

Hole-in-One – Based off of Disney’s 1940 film Fantasia, Fantasia Gardens certainly captures that classy feeling of orchestral compositions, perfectly manicured country clubs, Greek mythology and topiary gardens. As a kid, my sister was obsessed with classical music and Pegasus, thus watching Fantasia was a natural fit and a household favorite for the two of us. Playing mini golf at Fantasia Gardens brought back a ton of memories of some of the incredibly animated scenes in the film, including dancing mushrooms, a ballet of hippos and crocodiles, a family of baby Centaurs and Pegasus horses and of course, Mickey in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. While this course felt a little more serious than the prankster elf tone of Winter Summerland, it was still meticulous in its game play design and thematic execution. And like Winter Summerland, each hole greets players with a cute rhyme that hints at game play. In this case, it’s placed on an oversized music stand instead of a candy cane. Tons of interactive elements including a spinning snowflake, a xylophone staircase, moving mushrooms, an immersive cave and various instances of splashing water all worked together to create fun and unique game play while simultaneously enhancing the course narrative. Sun-faded paint and turned-off waterfalls did reveal a bit of this courses’ age, but needless to say Disney has done it again.

Course sign
Clubhouse
Painted ceiling detail at the clubhouse
Hole 1 – Tocatta and Fugue
Mr. Tee at Hole 1
Me pondering Hole 2
Mr. Tee putting into Hole 2
Things are moving up at Hole 2
The Dancing Mushrooms, note the little one in the center moves up and down
A snowflake windmill and a snowflake shaped play area
Making our way through the caverns
Exiting the cave, sadly the waterfalls were turned off
A sculpture of Pan
Hippo ballerina, putt through the croc’s mouth
Broomsticks and buckets
Sorcerer Mickey
Hole 18

Pros:
Excellent theming
Fun and diverse interactive game play elements
Clean and well-maintained greens
Zero wait time to play

Cons:
Waterfalls on the mountain were turned off
Paint fading from the hot Florida sun

Nerdy Notes:

  • 18 holes, Par 53
  • final hole collects balls
  • no flags in holes
  • rubber covered putters

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