There are basketball courts everywhere. At Courts of the World, we have already put over 35,000 on our map. Most streetball courts resemble each other. They have similar surfaces, similar hoops, and are in similar locations. Then, there are those that just don’t fit the norm. Something makes them incredibly unique. Here’s a look at 10 such courts from around the world.
3D Basketball Court, Munich, Germany
It might not be the best court to lace up the sneakers and get after it, but it is surely one of the most unique basketball settings in the world. The 3D court in Munich almost looks as if aliens landed from another planet and took their best shot at recreating what they thought was basketball.
The surface is an eye-attracting soft orange-red tartan and features rolling dunes as if one was playing in the Sahara Desert. The court is complete with two hoops and all the painted markings. If you’re ever in Munich, the 3D court is definitely worth a stop.
The Floating Court, Lake Tonle Sap, Cambodia
If you’re like most people, you’ve probably never been to Cambodia. There is plenty of jungle there and approximately 1.5 million people live in floating villages. On Lake Tonle Sap, which is connected to the Mekong River, there is a floating basketball court.
There is just one hoop on a hardwood surface. The court is fully enclosed, which makes sense otherwise balls would roll right into the lake. It also makes sense that the court allows for maximum air flow. Average temperatures year-round in the area are 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit).
The Carrier Classic Court, on board the USS Vinson
While also a floating court, this one is a little different than Cambodia. At the beginning of the 2011 college basketball season, the Carrier Classic was held on Veteran’s Day onboard the USS Vinson, an aircraft carrier in the Pacific Fleet.
The carrier served in Operation Desert Strike, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and was also used to complete the at-sea burial of Osama bin Laden. In November 2011, it served as the home of the Carrier Classic played between North Carolina and Michigan State.
Pigalle Basketball Court, Paris, France
Perched snugly between a row of buildings in the 9th arrondissement of Paris, sits the Pigalle Court. It is like no other basketball court you have ever seen. You are immediately captivated by the bright colors of red, blue, and yellow.
The whole idea of the court at Pigalle was to be a tribute to the city’s urban art. The colors are reminiscent of an old oil painting called “Sportsmen.” The final design came from Nike, which helped fund the project.
City Wall Rooftop Court, Dubrovnik, Croatia
If you’re ever in Croatia, head to Dubrovnik where you can shoot hoops at this one-of-a-kind court. It is located on a rooftop with a view of the Adriatic Sea in the background. Don’t worry about losing your ball over the edge. The court is enclosed.
It’s a unique setup as the building is located among the many terra cotta roofs of the city of Dubrovnik. The court itself has two hoops, but not at each end of the court. At one end, the court opens up to see the Adriatic. The other hoop is located on the other end of the court but in almost perpendicular fashion.
House of Mamba, Shanghai, China
The NBA is big in China and after Kobe Bryant’s ninth trip there, Nike unveiled one of the world’s most high-tech basketball courts. It’s a regulation-sized court with LED capabilities. Players wear special armbands to use motion-tracking and reactive LED visualization to help them train.
It’s the world of technology merged with the game of basketball creating an almost “Robo-player.” Players are given cues to move to certain spots on the floor and use certain moves, many of which come from Bryant himself.
Just Do It HQ, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Chicago has long been one of the hotbeds of basketball in the U.S. Nike decided to take one of the city’s churches – built in 1885 – and refurbish it. The end result is something called Just Do It HQ, where a number of different camps and programs are run for Chicago youth.
The old church held onto its old designs, including the stained glass. Nike even painted a stained glass basketball at center court. It’s a beautiful basketball facility inside a gorgeous building with vaulted ceilings, arches, and stained glass.
Centre Market Place, New York City, USA
With space at a premium in Manhattan, there was no room for an indoor basketball court at 5 Centre Market Place located in Little Italy. Designed by the husband and wife team of Robert and Crystal Novogratz, the Centre Market Place court sits on the roof of the townhouse.
The court is an open-air venue surrounded completely – sides and top – by fencing. It’s not a regulation size court but it’s a great place to take the edge off a long day. If you want to lace up on this court, it helps if you know the owners.
The Regal Basketball Court, London, England
When the World Basketball Festival was held in England in 2012, Nike wanted to leave something behind to inspire the youth of the country. Nike helped transform a basketball court at the Black Prince Community Hub into something now called “The Regal.”
The name is to signify the ambition of “The Regal” becoming the hub of British basketball. The facility features an all-black floor with gold markings and seating for 160 fans. At each end of the court are gold-plated hoops with smoked glass backboards. The court also features integrated LED lights linked to the scoreboard and shot clocks, something very rare in the UK.
Floating Basketball Court, Mumbai, India
The NBA tried to hype basketball in India by launching the first-ever floating basketball court to bring attention to the first NBA pre-season games played in 2019. The court floats in the Arabian Sea in the waters right outside of Mumbai.
Court in a Cave, Guizhou Province, China
Villagers in Xinchun, located in Nayong County in Guizhou province in China, can now play hoops regardless of the weather. The court is not technically indoors, but it is in a cave.
The village received a grant from the government for $14,000 and raised $6,500 more to build the court inside a massive cave. The full-size court saved the village on the cost of land and the cave is naturally ventilated. A long staircase and bleachers were built so that spectators can watch.