I have a confession. I’m not a competitive person.
And yes I played competitive roller derby for six years.
I get competitive in a team situation as I want the team to succeed but individually? Nah. I’d much rather figure out the competitive people and then ask them on a regular basis how much they enjoy losing(!) So with this in mind, I found myself finally going to Junkyard Golf in Old Truman Brewery safe in the knowledge that if I came last, it didn’t really matter plus mini golf is a time honoured British seaside tradition anyway so really, everyone’s a winner…right?
What is it?
Junkyard Golf has been open in London for about a year now and currently has four themed mini golf courses to choose from – Pablo (Polluted Paradise), Bozo (Circus Freaks), Gary (Scrapyard Challenge) and Bruce (Old School Movie Mash-up) all consisting of nine holes each. They also have four bars, so you can grab a beer and take it round the course with you, if you feel that’ll improve your golfing ability! The courses are cleverly set up using weird junk – definitely not your average mini golf course – and I found myself gasping and laughing at each new hole we arrived at, both at how clever the obstacles were and the creative puns!
They also have a Junkyard Golf in Manchester which currently consists of two courses.
What was it like?
I was there as part of #Traverse17 with this particular event hosted by the Spanish Tourist Office. I ended up going round the course and pitting my amazing golf skillz(!) against Anna from Would Be Traveller, Gem from Little Miss Gem Travels and Gisela from Life is a Festival. We did the Old School movie course and the scrapyard course back to back making it 18 holes in total.
After signing my life away on an iPad that really didn’t like responding to my nail bitten fingers, we were handed clubs and a ball and directed to the stairs directly in front of us. It’s relatively dark there to add atmosphere so it took a few seconds to realise our first hole was Crocodile Dundee themed complete with a massive croc and a sign saying “don’t feed the animals!” Of course we ignored that and ‘fed’ it sweets and beer…
The next hole was a little bit more complicated, titled ‘Spa Face’, the inital shot was off a high platform into a briefcase full of money below which had a small hole for your ball to fall down into the rest of the course below. I think I was the only one in our group to manage this part and we ended up spending half our time at this hole searching for balls with the help of my trusty phone torchlight!
From then on it just got more awesome…and harder! Searching for balls became almost a game in itself, though we only lost one ball in the whole 18 holes!
To be fair to our golfing ability, we weren’t doing too badly until we made it to the ‘Lord of the Bling’ hole. X marks the spot where you whack your ball up a steep slide and hope it’s enough for it to make it’s way into the mountain and down to the course below. Most of the time it wasn’t and Gem managed to whack her ball up the slide, only for it to come spinning back down past the X and jump into the course behind!
After completing the ‘Bruce’ course, we moved onto the ‘Gary’ one. I absolutely loved this course and if I went back and had to redo a course, I would pick this. Driving and car themed, it consisted of actual cars, parts of cars, tyres, neon paint and…wait for it…A SLIDE. A FREAKIN’ SLIDE, YOU GUYS! Climb the steps, place your ball on the X, whack it down the slide and then slide down yourself!! I may have been two or three drinks in but honestly, it was the best!
How much will it set you back?
Tickets for Junkyard Golf are £9.50 (inc. booking fee) per person per course and they recommend you book in advance. Each time slot can have a max of 12 people so bear that in mind when booking.
Should you go to Junkyard Golf?
Yes! I loved it, it’s quirky holes make it a dream in itself. Perfect for a night out with mates as you can get food and drinks and take them round the courses with you. I will definitely be going back to try the jungle themed course.
Where’s your favourite mini golf course?
Disclaimer: I went to Junkyard Golf as part of Traverse 17. This means I bought a ticket to the conference and got to attend lots of events as part of it and this was one of it. As always, all opinions are my own.