We've done a lot of hunts in a lot of cities — and each one offers a unique charm. Here are our absolutely favorite challenges from some of the amazing cities where we've been privileged to host a hunt.
1. Grand Rapids, Michigan
Our hometown! Grand Rapids is famous for craft beer and down-to-earth people, but our favorite challenge involves heading to the famous Motu Viget sculpture located just off Calder Plaza downtown.
Challenge: "Head to the famous Motu Viget tire swing (from GR's city motto 'strength through activity') and snap a "groupie" on the tire swing.
2. Portland, Oregon
Nike's corporate headquarters is in nearby Beaverton, so Portland makes a great spot to host a downtown team building scavenger hunt. Portland's hunt photos reflect both the city's innate weirdness, and a charming willingness to interact with strangers.
Favorite scavenger hunt challenge (custom challenge we created just for Nike): "Recreate the famous Michael Jordan 'Jumpman' logo with a photo of one of your team mates."
3. Boston, Massachusetts
Home to the Freedom Trail and some of the most competitive sports fan in the world, it's safe to say we felt right at home in Beantown. We've done several hunts in the "Cradle of Liberty," and every single one of them have been so much fun, mostly because the people of Boston seem to be up for anything.
Favorite challenge: "Head to the Sam Adams statue & snap a photo of a team member recreating Adams' famous pose in the foreground."
4. Dallas, Texas
Dallas holds a special place in our hearts, since our app developer Eventzee is headquartered there. The Big D is known for its incredible public art, as well as great food and great people. The fact that the weather is pretty awesome (at least in the winter!) is another great reason why Dallas makes our top scavenger hunt location list every year.
Favorite challenge: "Everything's Bigger in Texas: Photo of your shortest team member standing back to back with the tallest stranger you find. "
5. Washington D.C. (well, technically Arlington, VA)
Ah, our nation's capital! Washington D.C. and its suburb Arlington, Virginia, is rich in history, as well as eclectic shopping and diverse cultures. We had a ton of fun creating scavenger hunt challenges for accounting firm Grant Thornton that reflected both the local gathering place AND the company's culture of professional and personal balance.
Favorite challenge: "Vision is everything! Find the best view of the Potomac and take a team selfie."
6. Charlotte, North Carolina
At its heart, Charlotte is a city of sports. NASCAR was born here, and Charlotte's NBA team, the Hornets, is one of the most celebrated teams in the south. Our scavenger hunt teams had a great time exploring the city while learning more about their teammates in the process.
Favorite challenge: "Go to Romare Bearden Park & snap a photo of your team 'dancing' on the Dance Chimes located there. "
7. Atlanta, Georgia
HOT-lanta! (At least that's what people always shout whenever we mention the city's name.) Atlanta is famous for its diversity, boutique neighborhoods and southern hospitality, which make it a great place to host a scavenger hunt. Working with accounting firm Smith Howard, we had a blast with one of our favorite challenges where we asked teams to engage with public art.
Favorite challenge: "Snap a photo of your team with a piece of public artwork that reflects your team's spirit."
8. Mall of America, Minnesota
Supercomputer manufacturer Cray, Inc. likes to gives reward its interns for all their hard work with a scavenger hunt inside the Mall of America near Minneapolis. There's plenty for the teams to explore in the massive complex, whether it's baseball history, a variety of theme restaurants (that make excellent photo ops) or just finding tourists who agree to be in a stranger's scavenger hunt photo.
Favorite challenge: "Mall of America is locally known as 'MOA' — spell it out with your bodies."
9. Chicago, IL
The Windy City! Chicago is one of our favorite places to host scavenger hunts for groups because 1) It's close to everywhere; 2) Midwestern hospitality in a big city makes for great scavenger hunt challenges; 3) There's just so much to do here! We were particularly thrilled to work with experience design company Freeman XP a few years ago, helping them out with their company holiday party in downtown Chicago.
Favorite challenge: Artistic expression increases innovation (and of course creativity). FInd a local mural & show us your best strongman/woman pose!
10. Holland, Michigan
"If it ain't Dutch, it ain't much!" Wooden shoes and tulips abound in Holland, Michigan, nestled on the shores of Lake Michigan. It's also the headquarters for automotive manufacturer Gentex, a company that, for a bunch of engineers, has some pretty creative people. It's also home to Hope College (one of the Top 100 Liberal Arts Colleges in the U.S.) and the Flying Dutchmen.
Favorite challenge: Taking measured risks is one of the best ways to further your career. Snap a photo of your team members leaping into the air.
11. Chandler, Arizona
A few years ago we had the very unique opportunity to run a scavenger hunt in a casino! A pharmaceutical company's sales reps were on-site for a series of meetings, and were looking for a unique way to blow off some steam afterwards — and of course we were happy to oblige.
Favorite challenge: Benchmarking is all about keeping an eye on what other "teams" are doing. High-five another team if you see them while you're out hunting (just to keep an eye on them)!
12. Royal Oak, Michigan
We do a lot of bachelorette parties in Royal Oak, and for good reason: this Detroit suburb is home to some of the coolest bars and restaurants in the state. It's walkable, the people are friendly, and there's plenty of shops and restaurants who are happy to help out a bridal party when celebrating their bride.
Favorite challenge: "Have the bartender invent a drink just for the bride. Take a team photo with it!"
13. Tampa, Florida
Usually Tampa as known as a tourist destination, but it also happens to be the record-holder when it comes to the most lightning strikes in any major U.S. city. So of course we had to make a photo scavenger hunt challenge out of that fun fact!
Favorite challenge: Tampa is famous for getting hit by lightning more than any other city in the U.S. Photo of your team's best "shocked" faces.
14. Detroit, Michigan
There's simply no other city like Detroit, a community that's come back from the brink of ruin to become a vibrant, thriving city full of great companies, great food and great culture. We love you Detroit — keep on fighting the good fight!
Favorite challenge: Detroit is known for its strength! Show us your best bodybuilder poses.
15. Miami, Florida
Miami is known for its nightlife and great Cuban food, but it's also a hotspot of innovation and tech. We were thrilled to do a hunt there this past April, and were happy to see that even though Miami weather tends to be warm, at least one resident dared to grow out his beard in defiance of the heat.
Favorite challenge: "Peter the Great in Russia once taxed beards. Snap a 'groupie' with at least 2 team members & someone with a beard (not on your team)."
16. Orlando, Florida
What's with all the Florida scavenger hunts? It must be the great weather and Floridians' adventurous spirit! One of our favorite hunts in Atlanta we held on the campus of University of Central Florida ("Orlando's Hometown University") — there our teams found plenty of cool challenges around UCF's incredible campus.
Favorite challenge: "Legend has it that stepping on the Pegasus in the UCF student Union is bad luck. Snap a photo of your team not stepping on it!"
17. Denver, Colorado
The Mile High City boasts a million different things to do, plus the weather is usually sunny, which makes it pretty much the perfect place to hold a team building photo scavenger hunt. This group held their hunt near the 16th Street Mall, where there was plenty of people, art and culture to interact with.
Favorite challenge: "We're no herd of cattle! Photo of your team with a 'blue cow.'"
18. San Francisco, California
The Bay Area offers no shortage of cool photo opportunities, which is why we were so geeked to see this group of interns make the most of their scavenger hunt. Truth be told, there are a million great photos we have from the Bay Area, and had a hard time picking our favorite, but we love the combination of strong young women, blue skies and art in this particular photo.
Favorite challenge: "We all bring our own superpowers to work. What's yours? Snap a photo of everyone in their best "superhero" pose.
18. Lake Placid, New York
Not long ago we had the great pleasure of running a hunt in Lake Placid, New York, home of the 1980 Winter Olympics. Although smaller than some of the other cities on this list, Lake Placid hosted just under 100 NYSTRS employees for an amazing scavenger hunt in this beautiful ski town.
Favorite challenge: "Things move pretty fast at the NY Teachers Retirement System. Snap a photo of at least 3 team members on a 'wild bobsled ride.'"
20. Cincinnati, Ohio
From Steven Spielberg's hometown to having its own kind of chili, CIncinnati is our kind of city. With friendly Midwestern values yet plenty of culture to go around, it was the perfect place for White Castle's frozen food division to come together for some awesome team building.
Favorite challenge: WC's Vision is "To Feed the Souls of Craver Generations Everywhere." What feeds your soul? Photo of a team member doing something that feeds their soul(s).
21. Lubbock, Texas
Go Red Riders! Lubbock is home to Texas Tech, where a gutsy group of interns spent the afternoon exploring the campus and brushing up on their creative photo-taking skills. This hunt was so much fun to design, and even more fun to watch.
Favorite challenge: According to legend, Soapsuds’ rear was placed facing towards Texas A&M. Snap a photo of your team with the famous statue, with your rears facing the same direction as Soapsuds’.
22. Traverse City, Michigan
Cherries, film festivals and great views of the water — Traverse City is sort of the Riviera of northern Michigan. This "Up North" paradise has a lot of things going for it, not the least of which is a thriving downtown and a citizenry that's committed to supporting the arts — kind of perfect for a scavenger hunt!
Favorite challenge: "Innovation often means taking risks. Snap a photo of at least one team member doing something outside their comfort zone."
That's it! The our favorite cities, along with the best scavenger hunt for each city. Is there a city on the list we should totally check out? Book a hunt with us and we'll add you to the list!
Co-founder Jill Hinton Wolfe is a communicator, entrepreneur and Army veteran who is passionate about the outdoors and designing surprising and unique challenges for all sorts of clients, all over the world.