Konnichiwa! こんにちは Behold, golfers who prefer the miniature game with green carpets, waterfalls, and fluorescent balls, there is a new course with a Japanese inspired theme in the unexpected locale of suburban Granger, Indiana called Ninja Golf! We may have played nearly all the putt-putt courses in the Northwest Indiana area so it was an exciting discovery to return to Michiana for this little gem. Ninja Golf is set up into three 9-hole courses, East, Middle, and West, with unlimited play at $10. The facility also offers a nature walk, laser maze, kabuki theatre, and karaoke lounge with ice cream treats featuring mochi and pocky.
There were some unique toys and souvenirs for sale in the gift shop.
On the first course, we had a little fun posing by the markers and taking photos of the garden sculptures while waiting for the group in front of us to finish playing.
The course had a rough texture to it that was well groomed with a gardener sweeping the carpet and pulling weeds from the surrounding rock gardens. The ball played a little differently than on a velvety course and there were times when my ball wouldn’t travel as far or would catch the surface of the sand trap areas. On the contrary, Derek played very well on this surface with most of his holes at just two strokes each. I can’t completely place blame on the material because my game was having an off day in general but the texture was unique to other courses we’ve played. The holes were simply designed, yet beautifully maintained. We appreciated the effort to keep the garden theme as authentic as possible with rock stepping stones over tricking water, Japanese maples, and bamboo supported bonsai trees. Each hole had a slight obstacle related to it with rock structures and slope changes.
When we had completed the West course, we took a brief stroll on the Nature Path in the woods. I would imagine that the Ninja Golf course is pretty iconic at night with all of the light fixtures flickering over our heads. Each hole also had floor lamps and lights inside the cups to illuminate the path for night games.
I noticed some features of the Japanese Garden theme that they incorporated by arranging stacks of rocks and raking stones in a zen design. It must be difficult for a mini golf facility to preserve these details as I’ve only ever seen this at Japanese gardens with gardeners attending to round the clock maintenance. I appreciated the effort to include these features but the zen garden could be improved with finer rocks that are more like sand and removing the rake from the stones so that it doesn’t distract from the design.
The most beautiful sand display that we’ve ever seen was in the Portland Japanese Garden so the Ninja Golf sand garden didn’t quite compare to an authentic zen experience. Even so, dry landscaping is an important feature in Japanese gardens so I can appreciate their inclusion of this detail.
We played all three courses for 27 holes with Derek coming out on top by a whopping 12 strokes! My favorite hole was a funnel swirl on the East course.
The grand finale of the Ninja Golf experience was the Jagers’ attempt at the Laser Maze where we channeled our inner ninjas to avoid the green beams and complete our mission as fast as possible. We did a few runs at the medium and hard levels before running it together at expert mission. Let’s just say there were many tripped alarms and flashing lights! You can watch the video of Ashley’s Ninja moves at this link: here.
This was fun experience for us overall and we enjoyed the Japanese theme of one of our favorite pastimes. Until next time on the course of green carpets in miniature golf!
One thought on “Ninja Golf!”
We loved the video