Chances are, you already have a good idea of what a scavenger hunt is even if you have never taken part in one before. There are endless variations, but the basic ingredient of a scavenger hunt is a list of items to be located by participants. Individuals or teams are each given a copy of the list, and the goal is to be the first to find all the required items. The listed items can either be planted by the scavenger hunt organizer or they can be preexisting, or a combination of both. If the list items have to be figured out using riddles or clues, the scavenger hunt is often called a clue hunt. When a scavenger hunt involves a reward that must be found, it is usually labeled a treasure hunt.
Some of the most common types of scavenger hunts ask participants to take photos or video of items on their list. This method can insure that every individual or team has the opportunity to complete the list without items being removed by those that locate them first. Scavenger hunts of this variety frequently require participants to perform specific tasks or actions, or be present in the pictures. Scavenger hunts that ask players to physically collect items should be planned in such a way that guarantees enough of the required items are available, unless limiting the quantity is intended as part of the challenge.
Scavenger hunts can be designed for any location. Indoors, outdoors, public, private, virtual, physical… there are no limits to the scope or methods when it comes to scavenger hunts. Successful hunts have been executed within a single small room and others have spanned the globe. The important factor is not really the location of the scavenger hunt, it is the level of challenge and engagement. A perfectly organized scavenger hunt will not be too easy to finish and also will not be too difficult to be fun. Players get a thrill each time they find an item or solve a clue that required effort without being so bewildering that frustration sets in. Reading examples and tips here on Scavenger Hunt Scout can help you accomplish the perfect equilibrium of challenge and achievement your participants will love.
Some of the first considerations to think about when planning a scavenger hunt are:
- What are the ages or ability level of the participants? Are they fairly even or will some players have an obvious advantage?
- How many participants will there be, and will there be teams or individuals? Teams can help keep things fair if you have a range of ages or skill levels.
- Where will the hunt take place and how much distance will be covered? These components should be considered simultaneously with the amount of time you have available to set up your scavenger hunt.
- Do you want to include a theme, clues, or additional challenges? Will there be interaction with people required?
Once you have determined these basics, you can begin setting up your scavenger hunt. If you have a lengthy list that might not be completed by any participants, it’s a good idea to incorporate a time limit into your scavenger hunt. If no one finds everything on their list, the winner is whoever finds the most within the time limit. Scavenger Hunt Scout recommends that you have a minimum of 10 items or objectives to be found if no clues or other challenges are involved. Your players may surprise you and complete their list much sooner than you anticipate, but they will generally still be satisfied if they feel like they accomplished a lot in a short time.