May 262014
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summer scavenger hunt ideas

Summer vacation is always a much anticipated time for both kids and parents. No school, warm weather and sleeping in! Inevitably though, after a week or so the phrase “I’m bored” starts becoming a daily lament. Prevent boredom before it starts by having a “bag of tricks” up your sleeve. There are tons of activities that kids and parents alike can do to stave off summertime boredom. One such activity is a scavenger hunt. If you have never done one, you are missing out. Here are some summer scavenger hunt ideas that will keep your kids busy and engaged whether they are hanging out at home, on a long road trip, or at a park or other outdoor space.

  • Nature-themed hunts are easy and fun. They can be done in parks, on camping trips, around your neighborhood or in your backyard. There are a ton of interesting things to be found in nature, so you should have no problem coming up with a list.
  • Road trip scavenger hunts can make a long trip more bearable. In this type of hunt, you may not be collecting physical items, but other things such as road signs, certain types of cars, roadside restaurants or other stops, geographical features, etc.
  • People watching is always fun, so turn it into a scavenger hunt! Make a list of things like people wearing the color orange, wearing a certain sports team hat, reading a book, etc. If you want to take it a step further, have participants collect signatures from the people they “find.”
  • You can also hide your own specific items, especially if the hunt is taking place at home or in the immediate vicinity. This type of hunt in particular lends itself to themes. If your child has a particular interest, such as Harry Potter, Cars or princesses and pirates, for example, you could really get creative!

Ensure that your scavenger hunt is safe and successful by outlining specific instructions, safety rules and time and distance limits. Don’t make the hunt too difficult or too easy. If you have enough participants to create teams, keep them as even as possible. Scavenger hunts are a great way to teach kids to sharpen their observational skills, work together as a team, and improve their social skills.

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  97 Responses to “How About a Summer Scavenger Hunt?”

  1. I love this idea it is something fun and cheap for my boys

  2. Scavenger Hunts are always fun and it is something you can do to keep the boys busy for awhile.

  3. Cute idea for the summer and may need to try now!! 🙂

  4. My kids LOVE scavenger hunts, we do them indoors too along with our hoemschooling.

  5. My kids always loved scavenger hunts when they were kids. Usually they’re easy to put together, so it is some inexpensive fun.

  6. We did one for my daughter’s bday party last year. We broke the kids up in two teams and sent them around the neighborhood to look for items on the list. The teams had different things they needed to find, and first one back was the winner. They had a blast!

  7. Oooo now that is a fun idea for a summer day! I will have to try this!

  8. My granddaughters love to play “hide the thimble”. My grandmother had me play it as a kid and now I have passed it to my grandkids! So awesome! I LOOOOVEEE MY GRANDKIDS SOMETHING FIERCE. lol

  9. Great ideas, I love ways to keep kids outside and off electronics.

  10. This is a great idea to try with the kids. I’m going to have to try it this summer!

  11. These are great ideas. My boys love scavenger hunts!

  12. Such a fun summer activity to keep the kids busy! I also love that it doesn’t cost any money!

  13. I am always looking for more things to do with my kids in the summer. Scavenger Hunts are a great idea!! Thanks!

  14. These are some great ideas! I have two very curious little boys who would LOVE a scavenger hunt this summer

  15. I like the idea of a nature scavenger hunt! We have been talking about going through a walk in the state park near here — it would be fun to have my 3 year old looking for things too.

  16. I have done one scavenger hunt in the past. A nature inspired theme is a wonderful idea for a group of boys. Sounds like fun!

  17. I totally just pinned this! I am always looking for ideas to keep the little ones busy during the summer!

  18. What a great list! My girls love scavenger hunts..I’m just never creative enough to think of them.

  19. It’s been a long time since we went on a hunt, we need to do this out camping next weekend!

  20. I used to love scavenger hunts growing up 🙂 Great ideas, I need to use some of these with my boys this summer!

  21. We used to do these at parties a lot. We also did adult scavenger hunts and teamed up as couples. It was so fun!

  22. A summer Scavenger hunt sounds fun and perfect if it ends with a swim in the pool.

  23. What a great idea! I love this. As long as it doesn’t involve too many people knocking on my door. LOL

  24. I think a scavenger hunt would be awesome! I may set up one for the boys to do on one of our long road trips to our vacation destinations. They may not be too long but for them it is haha. Or do one for when we go to the park! That would be fun.

  25. Scavenger hunts are always so much fun for the family. I love your ideas!

  26. This would definitely be ideal for the kids. For a long roadtrip, I’m sure I’d be snoozing because I can’t handle riding with my husband driving. He makes me nervous, LOL!

  27. My kids would love this! I will have to remember this so we can do it on a weekend.

  28. These would be fantastic ideas to do by my in-laws! There are several families of cousins of all ages, this would be perfect to keep them all happy!

  29. This is a great idea.I can just see how much fun this can be for kids and adults.

  30. So much fun! WHat a great way to get out and explore your town. I would love to do a family scavenger hunt

  31. these are some great ideas, fun things to do during the hot days of summer.

  32. We do a lot of scavenger hunts. It is something the kids will ask for when they are bored

  33. Fun! Think I’ll have to plan one for my kids!

  34. I’m saving these ideas for my little nephew when we go out to the lake this summer. Gonna put a scavenger hunt together for him. He will love it!

  35. I used to love scavenger hunts – we always did them at day camp growing up –

    good ideas for kids during the summer 🙂

  36. My boys love scavenger hunts. They get one for Easter every year. I like them because it makes them think.

  37. What a wonderful idea! I never thought to do this. How awful! I think I will try for my sons Birthday too – he would LOVE hunting for things:) this will be fun this summer!

  38. some terrific ideas. my kids love doing scavenger hunts. I have even brought items to the local beach to bury while they take a swim – and they come up and dig them up.

  39. I love this idea and will definitely be doing some nature scavenger hunts. The people one can be fun too – people watching is always fun and this gives us an excuse to do that.

  40. Sounds fun, especially the People Watching scavenger hunt.

  41. I love the idea of a summer scavenger hunt. we will be doing this for sure!

  42. My younger kids love scavenger hunts! We like to do a nature themed one on a walk. 🙂

  43. We love road trip scavenger hunts! Always fun for a long car ride

  44. What a great idea! I have to add this to our list of summer activities, the kids will love this!

  45. A nature scavenger hunt sounds like an AWESOME idea!

  46. These are great ideas! I love playing road games with my five year old now. It definitely helps develop their mind.

  47. I love these ideas. The nature and people watching are definitely my favorite.

  48. My kids would love this idea! I think that may be what we do this afternoon!

  49. Great ideas Robin! My children shouldn’t be too bored this Summer since my they’re in Summer camp with their day care and they’re always attending events.

  50. I love scavenger hunts! I actually just saw a Groupon for a scavenger hunt in San Diego and am thinking of doing it.

  51. My kids love when their grandparents make a scavenger hunt for them, but we’ve never done one outside! It’s a great idea! My oldest likes making up the clues for her little brothers now too!

  52. I love the idea of a nature filled scavenger hunt. That could be mixed up for different parts of the season too. I think I’ll give that one a whirl!

  53. WOW, love this! I’m going to have to do this with my girls. They’ll be thrilled.

  54. Such Great & Creative Ideas For A Hunt I Never Done One With The Family I Must Over The Summer! Thank You!

  55. This is a great summer activity! I am keeping a list for the summer of things I can rely on when the “i’mmmm boooorrrred” syndrome hits.

  56. My son loves scavenger hunt as long as we pretend like we are pirates!

  57. My kids love scavenger hunts and I have been looking for fun summer activities for them. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  58. What a great idea, I remember scavenger hunts from my childhood always such fun 🙂 x

  59. I used to love the scavenger hunts we did as children in the Girl Scouts…it was my favorite part of our camping trips.

  60. Super fun idea! Can’t wait to try it with my girls! Thanks for sharing!

  61. I used to love scavenger hunts when I was a kid. It’s great to get young minds away from technological devices and outside for a bit.

  62. I have done this before with my family and it is always so much fun.

  63. I like the road trip one.. my kids would definitely be into it..

  64. I am going to have to do this with my kids. We live at the beach, essentially, so I may have to do one there.

  65. GENIUS!!!! I am so adding this to our “unplugged” jar! It would be so much fun!

  66. I really like the idea of scavenger hunts. We’re gonna try the People watching one next time we’re out and about.

  67. We love road trip scavenger hunts. They make time pass so much more quickly. A nature themed hunt sounds really fun too.

  68. This is a fun idea. I am totally looking forward to days like this with my little man.

  69. Great post, my kids LOVE scavenger hunts we do them inside too because it’s wayyyyyyyyyyyy too hot here!

  70. What a great idea! I totally need to construct one that would take my kids hours!

  71. Great idea especially for rainy summer days!

  72. Scavenger hunts are big fun for kids of all ages and the summer is a great time for them.

  73. What cool ideas for a little bit of summer fun!

  74. This is such a great idea! I love it!! I need to do things to keep my boys active this summer.

  75. I’m always up for a fun scavenger hunt. I used to do them with my ex-husband and his friends and I really miss that. Not him, but that. 😛

  76. I love this idea for road trips. Maybe this will eliminate the “are we there yet” queries!

  77. What a great idea! We take long road trips so this would be great!

  78. Usually I love when my son gets out for the summer, but this time it is a bit bitter sweet since my middle son will be starting school this year. My oldest is actually taking summer school this year but it only lasts for a month so we will have plenty of time to do lots of fun things.

  79. Awesome ideas,even my teens love scavengers we just make the prize bigger like I write vouchers for small amounts of cash from a quarter to a dollar and we go to the park, we have so mu ch fun!!!!

  80. Scavenger hunts are always fun we go geocaching all the time and my son just love it.

  81. This sounds like so much fun! My son would enjoy this and it would make him use his brain power while he is not in school!

  82. I love the people watching one since that is my favorite thing to do 🙂 Great list!

  83. We love scavenger hunts! Just last night we created a ‘treasure hunt’ for my four year old to wake up to. Such fun 🙂

  84. My kids love doing scavenger hunts. I like that I get a little break while they are trying to find everything on the list.

  85. What a fun way to play games and bond with the family 🙂

  86. That is so fun!!! What a great idea.

  87. I love people watching and never thought of the scavenger hunt for it! How creative!

  88. Great summer idea! It’s been awhile since I have done a scavenger hunt

  89. Great idea for keeping the kids busy! I’m sure my kids would love to do a scavenger hunt this summer!

  90. I need to try this on our way home from vacation this year. My girls have been spacing out with their iPads the entire time and I hate that they’re not interested in anything else.

  91. Great idea! This is also a lot of fun for kids birthday parties. As a kid, I was in one and they had us searching for clues in a scavenger hunt near and far. It was a lot of fun!

  92. I think I’ll have to set some of these up regularly to keep my kids busy this summer, it’s a fun idea!

  93. Scavenger hunts are awesome! I can’t wait until my little guy is old enough for one.

  94. These are really cool ideas! I think I’ll do a scavenger hunt with my son and his friends. Maybe one of the items can be his iPod and another my laptop. That way he’ll HAVE TO scavenger, LOL

  95. I’ll have to try these ideas, because I’m already getting “I’m bored” from my son. His last of school was last Thursday! ~lol~