I think in the summer at some point I tweeted a photo or two of a new dinosaur that was being put in at the back of Dinosaur Adventure Golf on Clifton Hill. Here is a gallery showing some pictures of the dinosaur as it was being constructed and lifted into place. They also have some new smaller dinosaurs.
Right now there is a metal fence, but I assume they will put up a nice fence in the spring.
A couple of weeks ago I received the latest email newsletter from Falls Avenue.
Yesterday I received the latest email newsletter from Falls Avenue.
If you travel into or out of Niagara Falls in the direction of Fort Erie/Buffalo, then you have driven by Niagara Go-Karts. Since it isn’t in the main tourist districts of Falls Avenue, Clifton Hill, or Fallsview Blvd, you may not have considered it, but you should. A week or so ago I went there with my family, and we spent a couple of hours mini-putting and driving the go-karts. It was a lot of fun, and the prices are surprisingly reasonable.
We started off with the mini-putt. It is a “classic” course with solid wood edges so you can bank the shots. Nice! The course looks like it was recently cleaned up, but there is still some work to do with the shrubery. Some of them are overgrown and make it difficult to position yourself to hit the ball. The holes are mostly par 2, with a few par 3. None of us are “pros”, but we do mini-putt quite a bit, and none of us got a hole in one. That shows that it is fun, but not too easy. There are several large animals around the course including giraffes, elephants, a zebra and a gorilla. My three kids insisted on getting their pictures taken with each one. Other than the bushes I mentioned earlier, the only other complain I would have would be about the sound. Since the course is located right beside the highway, and it is part of the go-kart complex, you hear nothing but engines. Obviously there is nothing that can be done about this, as it goes with the territory. There is music playing in the background which tries to drown out the engines, but you can still hear them. I suppose if you go there, you should expect it.
Perhaps one of the most appealing things about the mini-putt is the price. You can purchase an all-day pass on the Niagara Go-Karts web site for only $4 plus tax.
I’ve only been in a go-kart once before (it felt like I was sitting on a lawnmower), so I don’t have much to compare it with. When we were down in Orlando in March, I went around the Kissimmee Go-Karts track once for free. Niagara Go-Karts was definitely better. The karts run better, and I definitely felt safer in the Niagara Go-Karts go-kart than down in Florida. In fact, while were there a man was regularly checking the karts. If it matters to you, Niagara Go-Karts also tries to be hygienic. You have to wear a helmet, and they provide hairnets for you to wear.
There are two different types of go-karts. There is a two seater “family” kart where you can take kids with you. You only pay for one person, as the passenger rides for free. I drove with my 7-year-old son, my wife drove with my 3-year-old daughter, and my sister drove with my 9-year-old son. We all had a blast. The track is 1 KM long, and weaves a lot. This can be a lot of fun as you go fast around the bends. You can go as slow as you want, or go as fast as the karts will go. My sister and I drove as fast as we could, while my wife drive as slow as she could. We joked with her afterwards that the carts might not have ever gone slower! There is obviously a one seater that you can drive as well. I did a couple of laps with my son and then did a few laps on my own in one of the faster one seater karts.
The standard price this summer for laps is 6 laps for $22. However, if you buy online you get 4 more laps free. There is also a package with those 10 laps as well as mini-putt for only $25.
They used to sell hot food in the building where you pay for your tickets, but they don’t any more. They just sell simple snack foods and drinks. There is a small arcade there, as well as washrooms. My wife was pleased that the washrooms were very clean. The customer services was very good. No one was rude, and the young man who got us our putters and tickets was very nice. The only general complaint about the complex is that since it open air, they allow people to smoke on the properly. If I am breathing in the fumes from the karts, maybe I shouldn’t be concerned about second-hand smoke at that point, but I still didn’t like the smell.
Overall, we had a great time. In fact, a few days later we drove past the complex, and my daughter was already asking when we could go again. Also, my sister has already planned another trip. We had a great time!
I took some pictures of both the miniature golf course and the go-kart racetrack. As always, you can see some of the thumbnails below, and you can see all of them along with the larger versions in the Niagara Go-karts in Summer 2011 gallery.
As a side note, there are now 3,284 images in 257 galleries in the Niagara Falls Image Gallery.
I also made a video of some of the miniature golf course and the go-kart track. I filmed it in HD, so be sure to look for that when you watch in on YouTube. You can also see the video embedded below.
My video doesn’t show the carts very well, but there is a promo video that you can see at http://www.gokartsniagara.com/video/
Like many of the attractions on Clifton Hill, I’ve been to Dinosaur Park Miniature Golf lots of times (perhaps a dozen). I went when it was located right on Clifton Hill (before Boston Pizza and the Great Canadian Midway came along), and have played it in its current location. I’ve always thought the grounds were nice, but for some reason this time I was very impressed. Perhaps it is just the age of the place, and the plants are maturing nicely, but it was gorgeous! We were there on a nice clear evening. It was still warm out (but not too hot in the shade), and there weren’t many people on the course.
I was also very impressed with the dinosaurs. I don’t think there are any new ones, but they look very good. I think I posted or tweeted last year that some work was being done on them. Well, whatever they did, the dinosaurs look fantastic. Of course, I don’t know what real dinosaurs look like, but these ones look pretty real.
If you haven’t been for a while, it may be worth another visit. Also, with the new course being built behind the Niagara SkyWheel, I don’t know if there will be then three courses, or if either Dinosaur Park or Galaxy Golf will be dismantled.
As always, you can see some of the thumbnails below, and you can see all of the full size images in the Dinosaur Park Miniature Golf in Spring 2010 gallery.
Note: There are now 3,038 images in 244 galleries.
I also made a video of some of the course and the beautiful surroundings. I filmed it in HD, so be sure to look for that when you watch in on YouTube. You can also see the video embedded below.
Work continues on the Dinosaur Park Adventure Golf location on Clifton Hill (behind the Niagara SkyWheel). Right now all of the work is on the volcano. It appears that the mesh overlay is almost up, and they’ve started putting on the concrete outer shell.