Recently, I’ve been feeling the itch to travel internationally again. I’ve been fortunate enough to have traveled abroad quite a few times, but I always seem to want to explore new places. The food! The people! The hilarious misunderstandings! I love everything about it. And, lucky for me, I’ve got a ticket to Barcelona and a couple airbnb reservations in my inbox. That trip isn’t until April, but in the meantime, perhaps I can satisfy my travel urges with a travel-themed scavenger hunt.

I love the idea of using something simple like a world map as the scavenger hunt list. Every country would be labeled, but it would be up to the teams to figure out how to find an item to represent each country (or as many as they can in the allotted time period). They could find cuisine from the country, a novel written by an author from that country, a product patented in that country, etc.

To provide a little structure (because constraints actually help to increasefun), share the following rules:

  • Up to 10% of your items can be food-related
  • Up to 20% of your items can be language-related
  • Up to 25% of your items can be art-related (including visual artists, performance artists, and writers)
  • Up to 20% of your items can be science- or technology-related
  • Items that don’t fall into any of the above categories are unlimited

Scoring works like this:

  • Every country on the map is worth 1 point, except the country you’re currently in which is worth 0 points
  • Award 20 additional points for having three completed countries in each of these regions: The Americas; Europe; East Asia; Northern Africa and the Middle East; Eastern/Western/Central/Southern Africa; and Australasia and Oceania. (Tip: define the regions in advance, to avoid confusion.)
  • Deduct 5 points for each region with no items found
  • Award 10 additional points for any region with every country completed
  • No item can be used for more than one country, but the team can decide which country to apply the item to if it has multiple origins or associations (for example, a team might plan to use their piece of baklava to get the point for Greece, but then later decide to apply it to Turkey after they stumble upon a political protest and decide to capture this moment of democracy in the Greece slot.)
  • Award 10 points to the team with the most creative justification for the link between an item and its associated country.

I think this hunt might be somewhat difficult to administer and score, because of debate about the associations between items and countries. I imagine Wikipedia would be consulted quite a bit. It would be important to set the right tone—one of curiosity and learning. Having teams justify their item associations would be part of the fun. Teams should be rewarded for their creativity!

In fact, the difficulty in this is exactly what is appealing about this hunt. Think of the conversations it would spark at the after party!


Travel not your cup of tea? You might be interested in our other themed scavenger hunt templates. We’ve got something for everyone: Nancy Drew,Outer SpaceFairy TalesAll Five SensesLuckDreamsJokesSymmetry,ChildhoodHarry PotterFood, and Anachronisms.