Treasure hunts are an enjoyable, inexpensive family activity for kids of all ages. Though the hunt itself is the main source of entertainment, kids generally look forward to the surprise treasure in the end. Whether for a birthday party, team celebration or simply as a way to spend a warm afternoon, your treasure hunt is sure to make memories that last.
Kids love snacks and treats, and certainly work up an appetite on their treasure hunt. Fill your treasure chest with suckers and other individually wrapped candies that will not melt on warm days. Small packages of cookies, chips or granola bars along with juice boxes or pouches are also sure to be a hit with your hungry explorers.
Small toys are an excellent reward to find at the end of a treasure hunt. If the hunt is for a party, each guest will have a memento from the special game. Include seasonal items like sidewalk chalk and beach balls, or pick traditional toys like jump ropes and bubbles. Many toys are available at dollar stores or other discount stores. If your party has a theme, like pirates or SpongeBob, buy toys that follow the same theme.
For family treasure hunts, have a contest to see who can find the treasure first. The winner will get to pick an activity for the entire family to enjoy, such as an afternoon picnic, bowling, going to the movies or visiting a special ice cream parlor. Parents can provide a list of choices, and the child will feel pride in choosing how to continue the family fun.
Stick with a traditional treasure bounty by filling your treasure chest with money. Choose pretend money available at dollar stores, along with plastic jewelry and tiaras. Fill a small, decorative box with pennies and allow each participant to grab a handful of pennies to keep. For a small group of kids, choose to award each player with a $1 bill tied with a ribbon.
Kimberly Dyke is a Spanish interpreter with a B.A. in language and international trade from Clemson University. She began writing professionally in 2010, specializing in education, parenting and culture. Currently residing in South Carolina, Dyke has received certificates in photography and medical interpretation.