Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and that means it’s time to start making plans. There is no hotter trend in the romance game this year than scavenger hunts. They’re a fun and creative way to show someone how much you really care. Not only is a scavenger hunt a unique experience, it’s memorable. Treat your Valentine’s Day crush to the perfect scavenger hunt and you’ll have something special that neither one will be able to forget.
Create the perfect Valentine’s Day scavenger hunt for your crush with this great guide. It includes everything from ideas to clues, so there’s really no excuse. Get to romancing!
The Ultimate Guide to Valentine’s Day Scavenger Hunts
Step 1: Planning the Hunt
1. Start from the end and work your way backward.
If you want to plan the perfect scavenger hunt, then start at the end and work your way backward. Where do you want your loved one to end up? At a the place you had your first date? At the putt-putt golf course? Think about what spot you want your evening to climax at and then you’ll be able to work your way backward from there.
Some great places to end a scavenger hunt: a hotel room, the place you had your first date, the place you got engaged.
2. Consider what and if you want to include gifts.
Gifts could be an important part of your scavenger hunt — or they could not be. If you decide you want to include gifts in your scavenger hunt, sit down and make a list, always keeping in mind your actual budget. You don’t have to include gifts all the way through your scavenger hunt. Many people opt to place one large gift at the end, or a few small gifts along the way. Whatever you do, make sure it has a lot of thought and meaning behind it.
Some great ideas for gifts: makeup palettes, purses and handbags, fishing reels, battery packs, leather journals, NFL products, digital photo frames, high-end jewelry, therapy treatment vouchers, candles, cameras, coffee machines.
3. Decide if you want to use clues or riddles.
This might seem like a no brainer, but if you want to plan a good scavenger hunt, you need to decide if you want to use hints or riddles. You’ll really need to consider your partner here and what they would enjoy most. Would they enjoy hard riddles? Or short fun hints about your relationship?
If your loved one is someone who enjoys crosswords and secrets, then odds are riddles are the way to go. If your loved one doesn’t like making a hard time out of their fun, however, keep it simple and sweet with some intelligently placed lovey-dovey hints.
Always, always, always remember to personalize both the basic hints and the more difficult riddles. It can be tempting to just search for ones online (or use the ones that I’ll be providing below) but you’ll need to put in a little more effort. Add a personal touch to each one of the riddles and make it a truly special occasion your loved one will be impressed by.
(Scroll down for great ideas for riddles.)
4. Get other people involved.
Anyone that has seen the Italian Job knows a good con needs a whole team of people. Get other people involved on your scavenger hunt to make sure everything goes just right. Your loved one will feel so much more important, seeing other loved ones from your lives getting involved. Likewise, your loved ones will feel special to be involved in your special day.
The people you get involved don’t have to be loved ones, however. You’d probably be surprised how many baristas or move theatre attendants regularly help couples pull off romantic stunts. Don’t be afraid to get creative. Get people involved.
5. Plan the scope and the work.
You’ll need to consider how wide-spanning you want this scavenger hunt to be. Like the spots, is it going to be something that takes your love across town? Or will it be completely self contained in the love nest? The only right or wrong answer is whatever your loved one would enjoy or hate.
The scope of your hunt isn’t the only thing that needs to be considered, though. You’ll also need to consider how much work you want to put in. Are you going to make all of the clues or hints yourself? Are you going to get the clues printed? Do you need to visit a craft store? These are all things to consider and your ability to put in the effort should be considered as well. There’s nothing more disappointing than a half-hearted attempt!
6. Develop your hook.
You can’t just dump someone into the middle of a scavenger hunt. You need to develop a story, or a hook, that will set the tone. Brainstorm how you’re going to introduce them to the idea of the hunt. It doesn’t need to be some theatrical event. It can be as simple as a note left beside their toothbrush — “Ha, ha! The game is afoot!” Just always keep in mind that the hook is the most important part of the hunt. If your first clue doesn’t pique their interest — it’s not going to be a good time.
Step 2: Setting the hunt.
1. Make your clues or riddles.
Put together your romantic clues and make sure to pay a lot of attention to detail. Lead your loved one to their favorite places, or places you’ve visited together. Use pictures to pictures of landmarks and romantic memories to help your loved one get to where they need to be. Photos can hint at everything from a first date to an inside joke. The more creative the better. If there are gifts included with the clues or riddles, wrap them / bag them.
2. Create the trail.
It’s easy to get carried away when it comes to creating a trail, but remember: the simpler the better. Keep it easy here and don’t make the work too hard for your one-and-only. Take the time to create a trail that will eat up a few hours of the day, but don’t lay out anything too elaborate or hard to get through.
Each stop along the trail should have a gift and / or a riddle or clue that leads them to the next spot on the trail. A really great idea is to meet them somewhere along the trail so that the two of you can finish it together. That is, of course, unless you have something really special planned for the ending. *winkwink*
3. Nail the Payoff.
I can’t stress this enough — the ending needs to be worth the work. Make sure you put a lot of thought into the final stop on the trail. This is the payoff and the thing that your loved one has been working toward. Depending on what your payoff stop is, the gift could vary pretty radically. The payoff can be anything. Again here, it’s about being creative. The payoff gift could be a ring, a watch, a bracelet, you anything. Just make sure it means something to your loved one.
Payoff stop ideas: baseball game, restaurant, rooftop bar, art museum, coffee shop.
4. Practice, Practice, Practice.
Don’t wait until the bid day to try and pull off your hunt. Get friends involved or walk the trail yourself and make sure it’s going to work for the big day. Take time to set up the clues and have a friend go through the hunt with you. You want things to move seamlessly, so make sure to take extra time here to get it right. This will give you the chance to fix any major (or minor) logistics that go wrong.
Romantic Clue & Riddle Ideas (see, I told you they’d be here…)
1. The Mirror
Our night of romance has begun
It’s time now to have some fun
So, go to the place
That reflects your face
And there you’ll find clue number one
2. The Naughty Drawer
With just time and some soft candlelight
I’ll be the maiden and you the brave knight
So, go find the place
With lingerie and lace
And discover a lover’s delight
3. A Bit of Music
Remember our song and first dance
If you search, you might find by chance
A sweet serenade
Where music is played
To prepare for a night of romance
4. The Hot Tub
Let’s set first the amorous mood
A dreamy, relaxing prelude
Something scent-filled and nice
Where bubbles entice
And passion and strength is renewed
5. Heat it Up
It’s time now to turn up the heat
Your search is yet still incomplete
Go claim a prize
Where temperatures rise
To continue this steamy retreat
6. The Glove Box
Cancel plans and set time apart
I’ll even give you a little head start
In your glove box is placed
A small foretaste
A delicious piece of my heart
So what’s your Valentine’s Day scavenger hunt going to look like? Buy that champagne! Roses? Throw them in there too. Take this chance to wine and dine your loved one. Or just stay home and keep it simple. The choice is yours. What would make your loved one’s day perfect? As long as you stay creative, loving and open — you’ll create memories that will last a lifetime.
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