two children taking part in a treasure hunt in a garden

My kids LOVE treasure hunts, they have for as long as I can remember. Whether it is a National Trust event, a hastily thrown together home made hunt or an impromptu imagination fuelled beach based hunt for long lost pirate treasure. They absolutely love having to follow clues and find something. A few years ago, inspired by this obsession, we decided to take a trip into the world of Geocaching. For the uninitiated this is basically a global treasure hunt which you can take part in using your phone or another GPS enabled gadget.

You can find out more about Geocaching here 

 

The great thing about the Geocache app is that wherever you are you can click into and find out whether there are any caches nearby, you can click on the icon and it will help guide you in with clues and a GPS location then the final hunt is down to you. They can be a large plastic box where you can swap a small item or a tiny tube just with a paper log in. Some of them can be pretty tricky!!

Our first caches were discovered whilst on a family holiday in West Wales. We loved the strange secrecy of hunting on a crowded harbour wall whilst most people (referred to as muggles in the Geocache world) were completely unaware as to why we were examining a signpost in minute detail. We found the tiniest little container which contained a list to add our details to and we were hooked.

Last weekend we were at Chirk Castle, a National Trust property, enjoying a wander on the estate and stumbled across this cache, we weren’t actually looking but found this hidden away in the most beautiful location! This is one of the bigger caches with space for you to leave a little treasure for the next hunter to find, we left one of my fox hair clips and collected a red wax crayon. We popped onto the app, logged this one (it changes the icon to a smiley face to show you’ve found it!) and spotted that there was another one hidden nearby. Off on a hunt we went!!

Castle on a hill
Child hiding in amongst a tree's branches
Child holding geocache plastic box
Child placing a fox hair clip into the Geocache box
Child crouching by tree finding Geocache

The next one was a bit more tricky to find and a lot smaller with just enough space to add our name to the log (always remember a pen when hunting so you can leave your mark!).

This unexpected little geocache hunt has reignited the treasure hunting bug so I think we will be on a mission to find more during the Easter holidays!

Geocaching ticks all the boxes- it gets you outdoors, involves a mix of concentration and physical effort, lets you explore somewhere new and of course it is free!! (n.b. there is a paid for option on the app but you can join in without needing to pay)

Why not get out there and give it a go!!!

 

If you have a Guide or Scout in your family they can also work towards a Geocache Badge!

Page from Girl Guides badgebook showing Geocache badge