Christmas Treasure Hunts, Kids and Adults, Festive Fun for All Ages

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We’ve got lots of ideas for holding treasure hunt parties and treasure hunting games as an ice breaker for get-togethers of families and friends not just at Christmas but all year round. We’ve also have a tried and tested great idea for making sure that opening gifts on Christmas Day is slow burning fun and not a paper tearing frenzy.

There’s nothing like having treasure hunt parties and treasure hunting games as an ice breaker for get-togethers of families and friends. The great thing is everyone can join in.

You can bring together children and adults in pairs or teams, and by the time they’ve completed the hunt they’ll be like old friends.

One twist we have in our treasure hunt games is to include an anagram of where the treasure is hidden.

For example you may want to hide the presents under the Christmas tree or in a bag or box. Any hiding place can be used but you need to be able to spell it in the same number of letters as you have clues. So if you have 11 clues, you could decorate a cardboard box and write on it Christmas box, or a large bag and write Christmas bag. With 12 clues you can have Christmas tree and so on.

Then, you just need to put a letter next to each object on the treasure hunt trail. It’s a good idea to jumble up the letters, so that the treasure’s hiding place is not spelled out as the clues are discovered!

You need to decide what your treasure will be – a prize just for the winning team, something for everyone with the winners Chasse au trésor à imprimer getting first pick, a small wrapped present for each player with their name on it or something for all to share equally (such as a big bag of sweets.) It’s up to you.

On Christmas Day, a really good way to avoid the frenzy of present unwrapping is to hide the presents in a treasure hunt. We start with a note from Father Christmas (FC) saying that he’s feeling a bit mischievous this year (our children chorus: “AGAIN!”) and so he’s hidden their presents. To find them they need to solve the clues in the envelope that he has left. (When our children were younger we used to lay trails of foil stars to the presents rather than use clues.)

We generally let the children solve three clues, open these presents and enjoy them before moving onto the next batch. To begin with we put a present for each adult to be discovered alongside the cache for the children as they solve a clue. Now that they’re older (15, 12, 10 and 6) the eldest three spend hours writing clues for us in the days leading up to Christmas: the youngest still believes that it is all the work of FC. We tend to have around half dozen clues before lunch.

Whether it’s just the family involved or a larger group of children, family and friends, one thing it is well worth doing is setting the rules for treasure hunting before the hunt begins. Why not crib the ones we use!

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