Easter egg hunts are an April staple, but after a while, they can get a tad boring. Your kids learn all the good hiding places, and pretty soon it just becomes less of a “hunt,” per se, and more like “just a few minutes of climbing over each other to get to the goods.” But if you think neon plastic eggs filled with crappy candy is all that an egg hunt can be, think again. Amazing, creative Easter egg hunts for the whole family are out there — and fortunately, we’ve found the best.
My own family fills our Easter eggs with nips of alcohol, because we are all adults, but if you’re looking for a way to spice up your kids’ egg hunt this year, look no further. We’ve rounded up the most epic Easter hunt ideas you’ll wish you’d thought of years ago. Add some Easter games, a few tasty Easter treats, and you’re in business. Easter bunny, move over.
Easter baskets are getting a tad out of hand, no? I recently saw a baby pool filled with toys and treats that was somehow supposed to be an “Easter basket.” An entire. Pool. Does your kid seriously need all that stuff?
Keep things simple with an awesome Easter bunny hat that doubles as a basket. Fill it with a few treats, then hide it somewhere in the house. Tie a string to it, and meander on over to your kid’s room (wrapping around lamps, couches, tables and chairs along the way). When your kiddos wake up, they’ll have to unwind all the string to find their basket. Use a different colored string for each child, and once they’ve emptied out their goodies, behold: a festive bunny hat they are obligated to wear, at least until bedtime. Head over to The House That Lars Built for the step-by-step bunny hat tutorial.
In case your family is one of those that’s just a tad competitive when it comes to your annual Easter egg hunt, up the ante by gracing the winner, loser, and everyone in between with these incredible egg hunt trophies. It will make finding the most eggs that much sweeter — and finding the least eggs just a little more bearable. Lovely Indeed has the how-to on these beauties.
Not that you need an excuse to make a piñata, but in case you wanted one, your Easter egg hunt is the perfect occasion. This Easter egg piñata DIY from the folks at The Merrythought is easy, beautiful, and — unlike most piñatas — neither gaudy nor neon-colored. Have your kids collect empty eggs you’ve hidden (empty since all the treats are inside the piñata) and let them bust this puppy open at the end of the search; the one who found the most eggs gets the first whack at it.
If you’re running out of hiding places for your egg hunt, try this covert option: botanical Easter eggs. If you’ve got a garden (and the weather is cooperating for an outdoor hunt), hide these gorgeous eggs among the flowers — and see just how cocky your kids are when the eggs are no longer shiny, plastic, and super-obvious.
This requires a little time on your end, but if you aren’t artistically inclined, go to town on a seed catalogue and Modge Podge the pictures on. Then sit back, relax, and prepare to hear some complaints about your having hidden the eggs too well.
A little creepy? Yes. A successful way to ensure there’s no fighting because one kid found all the eggs? Also yes. A Subtle Revelry has the instructions on how to decoupage these family Easter egg pictures, so each child is only looking for the eggs with their face on them. Simply take some photos of your kiddos (the goofier the faces, the better) print them onto printer paper, and use some Modge Podge to glue them in place.
The opportunities for these egg portraits are endless. You might even want to make a few of your boss to conveniently leave in the break room fridge. Just a thought.
This bath bomb egg could go one of two ways; if you have younger kids, have their Easter egg hunt in the bath. Help your toddler search through the bubbles to find a few plastic eggs filled with bath toys, bath bombs, or color fizzing tablets that turn the water different hues. If you have a teenager, these egg bath bombs could be one of many eggs hidden throughout the house filled with self-care items like a rolled-up sleep mask, soothing lotion, or new nontoxic nail polish.
If you have older kids who are so over the whole Easter-egg-hunt thing — and/or younger kids who are willing to participate in a show of neighborly affection — this giant egg from The House That Lars Built is the perfect egg hunt replacement (and it doubles as your good deed for the day, too). Instead of actually, you know, throwing eggs at your neighbors house, leave this giant one on their doorstep filled with treats for a much more friendly (and less damaging) version of “egging the neighbors.”
Scavenger hunts are fun. Scavenger hunts that involve smashing eggs on each other’s heads? So much fun. This Easter egg scavenger hunt from The Merrythought is straightforward and easy to execute, and it basically guarantees your kids will have the best Easter ever.
Write the numbers one through 12 on a dozen eggs, poke a couple holes in each with a pin, and blow out the yolks. Then add a rolled-up paper clue to each, hinting where kids can find the next egg (bonus points if you get some confetti in there, too). Whoever finds the egg gets to smash it on the head of one of their siblings in order to get the clue out (see, we told you they’d love it). The last egg leads them to their easter baskets or a sweet treat.
My sister used to make my siblings and I crepe paper surprise balls every Christmas — filled with trinkets and treasures. These surprise crepe paper carrots from the Queen of holidays, Martha Stewart, are an incredible Easter version. All you need is orange and green crepe paper and a handful of little goodies. Wrap candy, cute erasers, tiny toys and more in the crepe paper to make a surprise “ball” fit for the Easter bunny himself.
A version of this article was originally published in March 2012.