A visit to Carlucci Land with our SLG friends was an hour or so of mini golf with a difference. Set on a property in Happy Valley Road, Wellington, the mini golf course meanders up and down a hillside which is dotted with sculptures made with recycled materials. Our group was split into three teams, with no couples allowed in the same team. The course was certainly quite different, with strange objects placed strategically to ensure that each hole had a reasonable degree of difficulty. Out of our eleven players, four of us managed a “hole in one”. It was certainly good luck and not skill as far as my playing was concerned.
Carlucci Land is the dream of Carl Gifford. He came to chat with us after our golf game and explained the origin and history of some of the huge old rocks which are carefully placed about the grounds. He is passionate about rocks, recycling, and making steel sculptures, which are everywhere. He told us that the green steel sculpture in the background started life as a steam powered sewage pump at the Pass of Branda.
A large water feature trickles down the hill side over huge boulders with steel sculptures dotted here and there and plants placed in nooks and crannies. Tiny steel kiwis, huge steel spiders, and intricate hollow balls are carefully placed amongst the rocks all around the property.
Oh, dear, what has happened here? This is another piece of art which Carl designed. He told us that he came across this massive boulder on the side of the road and did a deal with the workmen involved. Once he had bought it, he then had to transport it back home. Wonder what came first, the boulder or the old car?
As an Elvis fan, I was delighted to find this car plate to pose beside, maybe one day I will make it to Gracelands. Carl told us that he purchased a box full of assorted car number plates some time ago and this one was part of the group.
Carlucci Land is certainly quite a different kind mini golf course. There is plenty of added interest with the many sculptures of recycled materials everywhere, and old bits and pieces from yesteryear. Take the time to have a good look around when you visit, you won’t be disappointed. A cafe is planned in the future.