This adjustment period that we’ve all been though in 2020 and the beginning of 2021 has been… less than ideal, to put it mildly. Since many of us, including you (probably), are stuck at home with children, it might be high time to send them off to a scavenger hunt throughout the house.
That’s can keep them busy at least for a little while so you can manage your sanity much better than you’d be able with them bothering you nonstop. This activity also has the added advantage of motivating and teaching kids to solve problems on their own. In short, it’s both a relaxing and educational activity at the same time.
Before You Get Started With the Indoor Scavenger Hunt for Kids
Now, depending on the size of your house, you can increase the scope of the riddles as well. For example, while this guide is mainly for indoor scavenger hunts, we won’t exclude the outdoors if you have a backyard. But if you live in an apartment complex, then you should only pick the riddles and hints that can be applied to your apartment space.
Finally, before getting started, make some ground rules. And make sure that the kids have understood all the rules beforehand. Anticipate that the child will be excited to get started. Rule one: No running. If more than one child is playing along, they will be a team. The second rule should involve taking turns to read the clues. Moving further, the third rule could force them to read the clues as quietly as possible to avoid waking up the monsters. You get the point: make it in such a way that you can rest easily while they consume their energy.
Clues and Ideas for an Indoor Scavenger Hunt for Kids
Try to create clues that have a certain appeal towards children. For example, clues that rhyme are much more appealing to children than bland clues that you might find in a corporate office space. Alternatively, you could make clues with pictures or drawings if the kids are too young to understand writing. With that said, here are a few examples of clues with answers written below them:
Give me a tap and I’ll give you some suds,
I come in handy when you’re covered in mud.
For fast heating or cooking, I am tops.
And, oh, that good smell when my popcorn pops!
I get hot, and work two ways,
on top and within, but not on spinning trays.
You can lay on me or sit, and put me up or down,
I’m better with cushions, and keep you off the ground.
Paper comes in, and paper goes out,
but adding words in between is what I’m all about.
Walk, walk, walk, on me,
You can step, step, step on me,
Don’t forget to tie my lace,
Else you’ll fall flat on your face!
You can find me big and small, I hang around all day,
when I’m not needed, I’m out of sight, folded, and put away.
More Indoor Scavenger Hunt Ideas for Kids
I’m a welcome sight for tired eyes; and comfy to the max,
the perfect option for nightly dozing, and good for aching backs.
I’ll keep you cool on a hot sunny day,
but don’t forget to put me down, or I’ll blow away.
I’ll give you cubes and cold creamy treats,
when it comes to negative temperature, I can’t be beat.
I go round and round, spinning and spinning,
if you don’t like wrinkles, I’ll keep you grinning.
I get cold, but my door twin gets colder,
I keep food fresh, and help it from getting older.
I take your food and return it to you hotter,
I also crisp it up, and you’ll probably want butter.
I’m in the kitchen, and you’ll never eat me,
but Scruffy the dog sure loves to greet me.
You’ll fill me up and then drain me when done,
adding bubbles always makes me more fun.
Other Indoor Scavenger Hunt Ideas
Ok, so now we’ve covered a few examples of riddle scavenger hunt ideas. Now let’s focus on other forms of scavenger hunting that are just as effective. First off, you can make a list of attributes that objects might have (such as color or shape) and make your kids find their equivalent.
For example, your list could include something like “black, round, squishy” or “red, square, rough”. Alternatively, you can put such attributes separately and make your kids look for a single item for each one. For example, your kids can get only one item for “blue”, another item for “round”, and another item for “squishy”.
Another alternative is to make them find their favorite X. For example, replace X with “game”. Make them find their favorite video game in a gigantic bookcase with tons of video game cases. That should keep them occupied for some time. But don’t limit yourself to a single item. Make a list with several items so that you can keep them busy for longer periods of time.
Ready-Made Scavenger Hunt Games for Kids
If you’re too busy to make a list of indoor scavenger items for your kids, maybe a better solution is to order some that are made by others. We’ve found a couple of great offers on Amazon that we’d like to share with you. We might earn a little commission when you buy from these links, but other than that we are not sponsored or endorsed by any of the producers below:
GoTrovo Fun Scavenger Hunt Board Game for Kids | Indoors and Outdoor
- Race around the board and encourage critical thinking and deduction skills with our at home treasure and...
- Spark your child's imagination with this indoor and outdoor games for kids that uses picture clues for...
- It's not easy to find cooperative family kids games for 5 year old that keep your kids active and moving,...
This is one of the indoor scavenger hunt games that has won a Mom’s Choice Gold Award, so it’s practically guaranteed to be fun for the whole family or for your kids and their friends. The game is great for kids between 3 and 10 years of age, and it works by leaving clues behind a golden trail either indoor or outdoors in your backyard to keep kids entertained for hours on end.
Speedy scavenger-hunt card game | Card ‘n Go Seek
- Card ‘N’ Go Seek game delivers get-out-of-your-seat scavenger hunt fun for the whole family!
- Each card describes a type of item that players must find and retrieve. The first player to get back with...
- The first player to win one card of each color OR three cards of the same color wins the game!
Able to provide fun for the whole family or just for your children from 7 years of age and upwards, Card ‘n Go Seek is a fast-paced, adrenaline-inducing pre-made scavenger hunt card game that’s worth its title. The game is as simple as it is fun: each card provides you with a short description, i.e. “completely flat”, and the player who draws said card needs to find something that matches the description. The ultimate goal is to win either one card of each color or three cards of the same color.
Amazon Exclusive Family Scavenger Hunt Game
- Easy-To-Play: Pick Your Partner Or Team, Deal Out Ten Cards Each And Get Hunting. Family Scavenger Hunts...
- Family Favorite: Great Game For Road Trips, Camping, Parks, Cabin Vacations, And Cruises. In Family...
- 280 Cards. Inside Or Outside: Our Game Includes An Indoor Deck For Scavenger Hunts Inside The House And...
Being made by Amazon, this indoor and outdoor scavenger hunter game for kids and adults alike really sets the bar high for others on the market. All you need to do is pick a partner or a team, deal ten cards each, and then go out and find the objects that are specific to each of your cards. What makes this set special is that it contains a deck for indoor use, as well as one for outdoor use, so you don’t have to improve your own deck to hold the cards or other pieces that you might need when improvising new versions of this classic game. And don’t worry, you won’t be running out of cards any time soon. The set contains 280 cards as well as instructions for those who have never played scavenger hunt before.
Hapinest Find and Seek Scavenger Hunt | Outdoor and Indoor Card Game for Kids
- Our Find and Seek Scavenger Hunt is a fun activity game for the whole family to play both indoor and...
- This set includes 35 Find and Seek cards, 2 instruction cards, and 1 drawstring bag making this game...
- Find and Seek Scavenger Hunt is for ages 3 years and up. Even non readers can play by picture...
This set includes 35 Find and Seek cards, 2 instruction cards, and 1 drawstring bag making this game perfect for road trips and travel. You can also use it indoors without any problems, as the cards are varied enough to include things that you could, theoretically, find in just about any household. However, the best part is that even children who haven’t yet learned how to read can still play it because they can recognize the pictures. The pictures themselves are explicit enough even without warranting the text that appears on the bottom, so it’s highly unlikely that a three-year-old will have trouble playing it along with you or some friends.
GoTrovo Seek’n’Build Indoor & Outdoor Scavenger Hunt Find It Game for Kids
- Not your average scavenger hunt! Keep your kids entertained for hours with a variety of fun and engaging...
- Spark learning and curiosity at home or at the classroom with over 35 ideas to inspire you. Perfect for...
- Play can last as little as 5 minutes or you can extend the fun to last an hour! Let your kids enjoy the...
GoTrovo calls this the Boredom Buster for very good reasons. It’s the perfect brain teaser for kids, as it includes a lot of challenge cards and “go find it cards” sorted by difficulty levels. Practically, it encourages your kids to experiment with scientific methods that they can practice without a chemistry kit or other dangerous hazards. On top of scavenger challenges, it also has “seek and build” challenges that encourage kids to use their creativity and imagination in a more practical manner. It gives them the freedom to experiment and discover the world in a fun and safe manner. Furthermore, people who care about the environment will absolutely love this game. There’s no wasted packaging in the slightest. The package is small and it will fit in most cupboards with ease. Finally, it also comes with a coloring sheet to further encourage your children’s creativity. It’s practically a 3-in-1 educational tool.
Amazon Exclusive Christmas Scavenger Hunt Game
- EASY-TO-PLAY: Pick your partner or team, deal out ten cards to each team and get hunting. This holiday...
- FAMILY FAVORITE: Christmas Scavenger Hunt is a great game for kids and adults. It puts everyone in the...
- INSIDE OR OUTSIDE: Our game includes an INDOOR deck for scavenger hunts inside the house and an OUTDOOR...
If you’re reading this near the holidays, you might be interested in getting a Christmas-themed scavenger hunt game. It includes both an indoor and outdoor deck for your kids so they can play an all-time favorite game for the holiday season. The set includes 220 cards and instructions, and everything is themed around the magic of Christmas. Every card gives your kids the opportunity to “hunt” for something that is Christmas-related either inside the house or in your backyard. What better way to get your loved ones into the holiday spirit than this?
Toddler Scavenger Hunt Cards at Home – Interactive and Educational
Finally, we have a great indoor scavenger hunt game for toddlers. Toddler Scavenger Hunt cards contain 20 double-sided sturdy cards that provide simple, satisfying questions and prompts to guide your toddler. Playing with the cards builds vocabulary and increases confidence and encourages toddlers to explore the world around them. All the cards are placed on a ring so that your toddler won’t lose them. Every card contains both text and an illustration to make it easier for your little ones to find what they’re looking for. Below the item that they’re tasked with finding is also a certain instruction. For example, below “Can you find a button?” it asks “What shape is it?”. Basically, it puts your toddlers’ bran to the test without being too difficult or harsh on them.
We’ve also found a great After Dark Scavenger Hunt game for older folks at The Dating Divas.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between a scavenger hunt and treasure hunt?
A treasure hunt tends to present a series of clues, each of which leads to a specific mystery location; a scavenger hunt tends to offer a laundry list of items that you need to go out and pick up. So for example, in a treasure hunt, you might receive a cryptic clue, written as a puzzle, rhyme, or code. In a scavenger hunt, by contrast, you’d get a scavenger hunt list of items to discover, starting with let’s say, “Find a bar coaster marked with an animal on it.” Your task would be to go out into the world and locate this item, wherever you think might be the easiest place to find it.
What is the best scavenger hunt app?
If you want to go fully digital, then check out this list of the best scavenger hunt apps.
The Bottom Line
We hope you’ve found our ideas interesting. Feel free to leave us a comment below with other suggestions, if you have any, or your opinion on the information above.