Hiking Games for Kids

If a child already knows how to use a map and compass, this hiking game for kids will provide some new challenges. This is great to play with friends, fellow campers, or youth groups.

These outdoor games challenge kids' map and compass skills and teach valuable survival techniques -- but don't worry, they're still a lot of fun.


What You'll Need:

  • Orienteering-style compass with degree markings (such as a Silva compass)
  • Map of your local area or area of interest
  • Flag

Try the beeline game. Instruct kids to stand on a starting mark. They can then use a compass to find the exact bearing of a certain landmark within a few minutes' walk. Make sure there are obstacles between the landmarks and the starting point. Measure the distance in paces.

Have all players begin at the same starting point. Give each player or team of players the bearing of one of the landmarks. Tell them to go a certain number of paces in a straight line in their given direction. Don't tell them what landmark to aim for. On your signal, the teams set out.


It's up to each team to cope with obstacles, but make sure to be safe and set rules regarding safety and private property. When the teams reach what they think is the destination, they should wave a flag as a signal. Award points to those closest to the landmark.


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ABOUT THE ACTIVITY DESIGNERSHiking Games for Kids by Maria Birmingham, Karen E. Bledsoe, and Kelly Milner Halls