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Geocaching homemade

Around the world there are millions of geocaches and many people looking for them. Some people not only search, but hide caches themselves. If you want to get creative with the family itself, here we explain how.

Not only the search for a cache is great fun. You can also hide caches yourself and come up with riddles and clues. There are hardly any limits to creativity and you don’t need much for it. Developing your own scavenger hunt is suitable for children from about eight years old. Depending on the age and interest of the child, geocaching can be linked to educational and learning content – also called educaching. In this way, knowledge is combined with fun and games. Your own does not have to be officially listed on a geocaching platform, but can also be created just for friends and family. It can lead to a treasure, a surprise and/or a riddle. It can be a single cache or a multi-part cache (multi-cache), where different stations are walked.

From the idea to your own cache

The first step is to find a topic. Content with a local connection – e.g. exciting places in your own city – is a good idea. However, topics such as the environment and forests or historical events can also be covered. It is important that it is appropriate for your child’s interests and age. Your child may also have ideas of his or her own that he or she would like to implement.

Once the topic is found, research is done to find interesting things. The smartphone camera can be used to capture possible hiding places. Then it’s on to thinking up puzzles and tasks. In a multi-cache, the stations must be placed in order and hidden at the locations. Make a note of the GPS coordinates of the hiding places. If you want to play the scavenger hunt, you will only receive the coordinates of the first station at the start. During the search, each newly discovered cache then contains the coordinates for the next track.

For your own geocache you will need the following:

  • Tins or containers for clues, puzzles, and items as appropriate.
  • GPS device or smartphone with GPS turned on (coordinates can also be searched using a map app such as Google Maps ).
  • if necessary, camera or smartphone to photograph hiding places in advance
  • Paper and pen
  • A notebook (log book)
  • Cards for hints and tips
  • Possibly small prizes for the last cache (treasure chest)

Geo- and Educaches can also be designed multimedia-based with the help of the app Actionbound. More about Educaching can be found here.

Geocaching – the modern treasure hunt

This scavenger hunt, which works with a smartphone or GPS device, is also fun for older kids and teens. Try it out and go on this special treasure hunt together with your child.

What does Geocaching mean?

Geocaching involves using a GPS receiver to find small treasures that other players have hidden in different places. These caches are located in cans or jars of different sizes. The respective GPS location is registered on a platform, e.g. geocaching.com or opencaching.de, and can be saved and retrieved via app. Whoever finds a cache enters his or her name in a so-called logbook, which is attached to the cache. After that, the can is closed again and hidden in the same place, so that the next person also has to look for it.

Geocaching is a popular hobby among adults, children and teenagers. The treasures are hidden all over the world, so even on vacation you can go in search and discover exciting places. For some geocachers, it’s all about finding as many caches as possible and signing logbooks around the world.

What is there to consider?

There are caches in different categories and sizes. All important information is in the cache description. Some caches require special equipment for the search. With puzzle caches, tasks must be solved beforehand in order to get the GPS coordinates. Depending on the cache, children as young as 4 can join the treasure hunt. Older children can already read the descriptions themselves and be more independent in their search.

Some caches are not easy to find. This can quickly frustrate children. Therefore, read the cache description carefully beforehand. Often there are still important hints in the comments of the digital logbook (under each cache description). Occasionally it happens that a cache is no longer in hiding because someone has destroyed it or taken it away.

In some caches are barter items, such as a toy figure, a coin or the like. Some items have a mission. For example, they are to get to another country or place by barter. All information is available on the geocaching platform. An important rule is that geocachers search inconspicuously so as not to draw the attention of so-called muggles to the cache. Throwing away trash or destroying the landscape is not welcomed in the geocaching community and is against the rules of geocaching.

Here’s how to go on a treasure hunt:

  • register with geocaching platform and search for suitable caches
  • Install geocaching app on (loaded) smartphone
  • Read cache descriptions well, as sometimes there are things to keep in mind during the search
  • Pack a pen and barter item if needed, put on sturdy shoes and let’s go!
  • Search for the cache with the help of the smartphone, find it and log the visit (in the can and/or on the platform/app).
  • Hide cache again (in the same place)
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