Posted by: Alan Kristmanson
I’m a avid golfer (ok, full disclosure, I’m also the GM of the Whistler Golf Club) but I’m also a dad with two young girls and I’m painfully aware of how valuable our time and vacation dollars are these days. Four and a half hours of free time to play a round of golf is hard to find, especially if it’s on a family vacation when not everyone in the family is as “avid” as you are.
So, if I’m talking your language, here are a few tips on how to get your fix, but include the whole family in a way that won’t break the bank and might just convert some of your family into golfers too.
Juniors golf for free in Whistler. My favorite way to hit the links with my kids is in the early evenings. All of Whistler’s four courses offer great Sunset rates or “after 5” specials and Juniors Play for free anytime in Whistler, so it's hard to beat. We do an early dinner, and follow it up with a few holes (they’re not paying, so I’m not pressuring the number we play), we play from the waaaaay up Junior tees, look for bears, “drive” the cart, they even play a little golf and I get to work on my short game.
Hit the range. When we don’t have a round of golf in us, but some energy to expend, we head to one of the practice facilities in town. Each course has one, each with its own incredible views, driving range, putting greens and practice bunkers. We grab a bucket of balls, hit a few, have a putting contest, then practice in the sand trap, which is really just a great excuse for them to rake sand. Who knew there were hours of entertainment in those things?
18 hole of putting. Whistler is home to one of the best, little, all-grass, 18 hole putting course I’ve ever come across. Located in Whistler’s Riverside Campground just north of the Village, this course is a blast for the entire family. Think “mini golf” but on real greens! It comes complete with water hazards and sand traps, a really cool, laid back vibe and late afternoon and evening sun. It’s hard to find golf that is more family friendly than this.
Of course, if you’re looking for a more conventional astro-turfed mini-putt, you’ll find a novel one at the base of Blackcomb. Not many mini putts have you putting up the side of a mountain, but this one offers a bit of diversion. Our tip: adults grab a table on Milestone’s patio adjacent to the course, get your kids putters while you have a cool one and watch from the sidelines.