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Supported by Generation Green

Discovery treasure hunt

Discover nature by heading out on a treasure hunt. How many items will you find?

You will need

  • Pens or pencils
  • Scrap paper
  • Camera or phone (optional)
Activity Plan Discovery Treasure Hunt
PDF – 346.5KB

Feel joy, wonder, and calm when interacting with the natural world.

Discover the five pathways to nature connectedness >

Before you begin

  • Choose an appropriate outdoor area such as a nature reserve, woodland area, riverside, canal, or park. If you’re going to meet there (rather than at your usual meeting place), make sure parents and carers know exactly where you’ll be, and what time to drop off and collect everyone.
  • You’ll probably need extra adult help for this activity.
  • Create a selection of treasure hunts by writing out items to find of squares or scraps of paper. We’ve included some suggestions below, but you could get everyone involved in setting the treasures to discover.

Discover the great outdoors

  1. Everyone should gather at the agreed place.
  2. An adult should explain any specific safety arrangements for the activity.
  1. Everyone should split into pairs or small groups.
  2. The person leading the activity should give each pair a treasure hunt card and ask them to find the item written on it.
  3. Pairs should record the item they’ve found by remembering its description, drawing it, writing down what it looks like, or taking a picture.
  4. Once a pair has recorded the item, they should tell someone about the item (or show them their drawing, writing, or photo) and explain why it matches the card.
  5. Pairs should repeat steps four to six until the group has found all items on the treasure hunt.


This activity helps everyone focus on what is around them and connect with the outdoors. Everyone should tell the group about some of the items they’ve found:

  • Why did people choose a certain item for a treasure hunt card?
  • Were there other items they could have chosen?
  • Is anyone surprised by the items the other pairs chose for the same cards?


All activities must be safely managed. Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Do a risk assessment and take appropriate steps to reduce risk. Always get approval for the activity and have suitable supervision and an InTouch process.

Visits away from your meeting place

Do a risk assessment and include hazards such as roads, woodland, bodies of water (for example, rivers, ponds, lakes, and seas), plants, and animals.

You’ll probably need more adult helpers than usual. Your risk assessment should include how many adults you need. The young people to adult ratios are a minimum requirement; when you do your risk assessment, you might decide that you need more adults than the ratio specifies.

Think about extra equipment that you may need to take with you, for example, a first aid kit, water, and waterproofs.

Throughout the activity, watch out for changes in the weather and do regular headcounts. 

Outdoor activities

You must have permission to use the location. Always check the weather forecast and inform parents and carers of any change in venue.