Playing a round of golf is always unpredictable. Rain can spoil it. Any storm can, really. And in most places, golf courses lay dormant for half a year, their fairways untouched as they await the passing of the season. Fortunately, the courses at Fore Season Indoor Golf never close. That's because they exist in the massive, high-definition screens of seven Full Swing golf simulators and are impervious to weather. Best of all, the simulators let golfers play replicas of 42 world famous courses, including Pebble Beach and Pinehurst No. 2., without having to book airfare or turn their golf bag into a personal jet pack.
Along with the golf simulators, the facility’s driving net and indoor putting green allow for golfers to work on every facet of their golf game or schedule lessons conducted by the center’s two instructors. Fore Season Indoor Golf also shares space with a Pub that serves a menu of hot dogs, burgers, and sandwiches that golfers can eat by spearing them with golf tees.
Wonder Mountain Family Fun Park sternly rebuffs boredom with two mini-golf courses and a challenging human maze. Adventurers can negotiate the twisting turns, dead ends, and elevated checkpoints of the Treasure Trap ($5/person for ages 5+) in less than 10 minutes to enter weekly drawings for cash and T-shirts or to outrun overzealous Pac-Men. Alternatively, opt for a round of mini golf ($10/adult; $8/senior or child ages 5–12) on one of two courses strewn with lush foliage, flowing waterfalls, and muttering streams. Send dimpled balls spinning across the Mountain Mania course, recently rebuilt with five new hole layouts, or test your mettle on the Nautical Nightmare course, whose challenging holes may be better suited for teens and adults than youngsters or those who depend on holes-in-one for life force.
Sculpted into tree-studded mountain slopes, Ragged Mountain Golf Club's 18-hole course plots a winding path over dramatic elevation changes. When played from the double black diamond tees—the club borrows skiing terminology in an homage to the winter activities hosted at the same site—club pros compare the layout to a U.S. Open course and advise only scratch golfers or those with remote-controlled golf balls to brave the tips. Along with tight tree lines and rolling terrain up and down the mountain, the course runs over streams that come into play on 14 holes.
With onsite lodging and golf-and-stay packages, Ragged Mountain invites golfers to set aside a weekend amid the mountain air. In the winter, Ragged Mountain activates a high-speed, six-person chairlift, from which skiers, snowboarders, and snow-angel enthusiasts gain access to two mountains with 50 trails, including 11 glades and three terrain parks.
Course at a Glance: * 18-hole, par 72 course * Course rating of 74.9 from the farthest tees * Slope rating of 149 from the farthest tees * Four tee options
Frisbees zoom toward metal baskets as players await the rattling of chains that signifies their disc has hit its target. This scene plays out year-round at Dragon Field Disc Golf's three Maine locations, each of which challenges disc slingers of all abilities with 18 or more holes.
Home to Maine's largest Professional Disc Golf Association tournament, the Dragan Field course unfurls an 18-hole layout for disc golfers of all stripes. The holes range from 170 to 479 feet in length, giving players an opportunity to flaunt their precision and long-tossing skills. At Enman Field's 18-hole Beast course, disc golfers test their mettle against a challenging layout that includes two holes that measure longer than 600 feet. On the same site, the Beauty course plots a more beginner-friendly, 27-hole path. Rounding out Dragon Field's trio of courses, Topsham Fair rolls out an 18-hole layout of tee-to-basket fun. At each site, Dragon Field rents out discs and offers private and group lessons.
The once-private Boothbay Country Club now welcomes the general public to send shots sailing through invigorating ocean breezes that sweep through its verdant acreage. Hilltop vistas, stately pines, and foliage that emblazons the autumnal landscape in bursts of color make playing the course a distinctly Maine experience, marked by the nautical titles of each hole and carts with caddie stowaways. Golfers of all skill levels can play the course from one of the four sets of tees, with the course extending to 6,356 yards from the farthest Gold tees. The par 4 eighth hole—known as Widow's Walk and also the hardest-rated hole—presents beautiful vistas and difficult hazards, with two creeks meandering across the fairway and multiple sand traps guarding the peanut-shaped green. In closing their round on the 18th hole, titled Fiddler’s Green, players have a final shot at birdie, requiring them to avoid the rocky creek that cuts between the split fairway and hit an uphill shot into a green that sells part of its fringe to shag-carpet purists.
Course at a Glance: * Par 71 * Four sets of tees * 6,356 yards from the back tees
Brunswick Golf Club dates itself back to the late 19th Century, when a couple of Bowdoin College kids and a college professor went out in search of an open field to play. As it turns out, they landed on what is now the club's back nine. Today, the venerable 18-hole championship course challenges players with holes that have become historic in their own right. The sixth hole, for instance, is far and away the toughest test with a lengthy dog leg that makes even a bogey tough to achieve. Still, the tree-lined fairways and picturesque midcoast views make it a bit easier to swallow higher scores. In fact, Brunswick is recognized as one of the easiest walking courses in the state, meaning you don't have to rent a cart or turn your bag into a jetpack just to get around.
Course at a Glance
* 18-hole, par 72 course
* Total of 6,601 yards
* Four sets of tees per hole
* Click here to view the scorecard.