Scavenger hunt clues are the heart of a good treasure hunt for adults

21. July 2017 - Alexander Schmidt

Scavenger Hunt Clues – Sophisticated Riddles, Puzzles & Tasks


Action & Trips


Here’s how to create the funniest scavenger hunt clues, trickiest puzzles, and most original tasks for an adult scavenger hunt. For more scavenger hunt tips, check out Part 1 & 3!

At the heart of any good scavenger hunt are the puzzles, scavenger hunt clues and tasks that participants must solve to get from one station to the next at a time. Especially in a Scavenger hunt for adults clues should not be too easy, because in the challenge of tricky tasks lies ultimately the special charm!

In addition, there is always the possibility of getting help. With several players of a scavenger hunt there are often teams of 2 and in pairs you can crack more complicated puzzles. In case of a single player (e.g. a birthday boy or girl) it is a good idea to give him or her 3 jokers for the scavenger hunt, e.g. a telephone joker, a hint joker (hint directly from the game leader) and an audience joker. The audience would then be the party society that eagerly accompanies the scavenger hunt.

As with the choice of the hiding places and stations of your scavenger hunt, the same applies to thinking up the scavenger hunt clues and riddles: you will find it infinitely easier if you choose a theme or motto as a common thread.

As a suggestion for what riddles, clues & tasks are best suited for a scavenger hunt for adults, we have collected and described a few possibilities for you.

Personal Questions as Scavenger Hunt Clues

Write down a question that only the birthday child, or the lone player of your adult scavenger hunt can answer (and you, of course) that leads to the next hiding place.


  • Where do you keep your favorite necklace? – Go there
  • What’s your favorite pub? – That’s where you go!
  • Where did you last meet with me (game master)? – Seek out this place.

Coded Scavenger Hunt Clues

Write a clue in Morse code, Caesar cipher, runes, with a number code (each number is assigned to a letter) or Wingdings! To solve it, you are allowed to use a smartphone in this task. Or you hide somewhere nearby a printed key of the code.

Messages That Must First Be Made Readable

Use magic ink to write an invisible message that must first be made visible. By the way, a good DIY self-method is to write with lemon juice on paper and then hold it over a burning candle.

Or cut the sheet with the message into small puzzle pieces. You can also write the message on a printed picture or even on a finished puzzle.
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Logic Puzzles and Math Problems

Feel free to make the player(s) sweat a bit with a tricky math text problem (what did we love those in school!) or a logic puzzle.

The result or answer then leads to the next station of the scavenger hunt. For example, the results of several math problems yield the GPS coordinates of the location where the next clue awaits. To find there must then provide a smartphone or GPS device as in geocaching.

A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

Not every hint has to come in written form. The simplest variant of a non-written hint in a scavenger hunt is the good old treasure map. Of course, this can also be combined with a written text.

Another variant to give a picture hint is a photo that shows the next destination. However, not in such a way that it is immediately clear at first glance. Otherwise it would not be a puzzle and there would be no challenge!

Either you digitally alter the photo beforehand, for example with a pixel effect or a blurred filter, or you take it in such a clever way that the searcher has to search for a while before he or she finds the place. You can achieve this very well, for example, by photographing a very distinctive detail of a building, room, or the surrounding area that people will definitely recognize when they pass it, but that still won’t let them know immediately exactly where it is.

Interactive Scavenger Hunt Clues: Involve People

It becomes really cool when you can activate helpers for your scavenger hunt, who appear as interactive figures during the scavenger hunt. These can be friends and acquaintances, but also strangers, whom you brief accordingly shortly beforehand, e.g. a kiosk salesman, a barmaid etc..

Or the scavenger hunt for a special occasion leads the birthday child / the jubilarian / the bride and groom etc. to a place where a surprise guest is waiting for them, who also has the next clue for them.
Example: You inform the barkeeper of the next corner bar about your plan, show her a picture of the treasure hunter (if she doesn’t know the person) and give her the next clue, e.g. in the form of a described beer mat for safekeeping. You also pay for a beer in advance for the treasure hunter. If he then asks a certain question or says a code word, the bartender will give him the beer on the beer mat with the next clue.

In the first and third parts of our adult scavenger hunt guide, you’ll learn all about planning, as well as ingenious and extra-pimped hiding places, the ultimate materials checklist, and geocashing.

Check out even more excursion tips and ideas for indoor activities. On Abenteuer Freundschaft you can get inspiration for gifts completely different leisure ideas for activities with friends, family and with your partner.

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