Geocaching, many have already heard about it, some operate it, but there are many of us who do not know what it is. We always choose geocaching when we want to get to know interesting places off the tourist trails, or to entertain children in places that might otherwise be boring for them. With geocaching, fun is simply guaranteed anywhere.
What is Geocaching?
It is actually one of the fun map activities for kids and adults. Ideally, you need at least a smartphone with an internet connection to play this game (but you can also do without it). First you need to register on www.geocaching.com and half the work is already done. The principle is that you can find the one you want to find on the “cache” map on your mobile or computer and simply go after it. You will be helped by an application on your mobile or any navigation in which you enter the GPS coordinates of the destination, which you will find in the description of the cache.
What is a “cache”?
A cache is actually a box hidden in an interesting place or a place with an engaging story that you would otherwise find difficult to learn about. And what does such a box actually hide? It never lacks a “logbook” = a booklet, a notebook or just a piece of paper on which you write the date of your visit and your nickname under which you registered in the web application www.geocaching.com. So always carry a pen or pencil with you when hunting, sometimes it’s in the box, but sometimes it’s missing. You can then make the same entry in the Geocaching application. And done! A smiley will appear on the map at the location of the cache. This is the whole secret of the game.
Types of caches
- traditional (green) = a classic cache that takes you straight to your destination. It is the most common, easiest to understand and also the most popular
- mystery (blue question mark) = you can find the GPS coordinates of this cache in its description on the Internet, but not the box itself. You have to guess the GPS coordinates. In the description of the cache, you will find instructions, a riddle or a quiz, according to which you can find the coordinates of the hiding place. You are solving a mystery ?
- multi (orange) = again, this cache does not have GPS coordinates in the description on the Internet, but it is definitely necessary to go to this marked place. They are the coordinates of the starting point, where you will find a hint that will lead you to the next place. From the second place, you will then get to the next and the next, and the box with the logbook will be waiting for you at the very end. These caches usually take you around interesting places in the park, or around the city between houses with the same architecture, they have their own charm.
- earth (globus) = the cache has its GPS coordinates, but the box with the logbook is missing at the end. To log in (confirm that you have found it), you must complete the tasks listed in the cache description. This is usually evidence in the form of taking a photo of the place, but it is not the rule. The goal of earth cache is to teach you something about our planet and its geology.
There are many more types of caches, but these basic ones are enough to get you started. The green, traditional ones are the most interesting for children. It’s a bigger experience for them to find a box than to take a photo with their parents at the final destination 😉
Size and difficulty
To facilitate the search for caches at the final coordinates, not only hints and photos of the hiding place are used, but also an indication of the size. They can be micro-sized (eg a photo film box) or they will be large containers. It’s good to know what to look for. And the difficulty is also very important, it shows us if we will take an easy walk for the cache or if we will be asked to climb trees, wade through a stream or abseil over a rock while hunting it. Yes, they also exist and you will be surprised, they have their fans.
Where did the caches come from?
If you look at a map of caches, you will find that there are literally millions of them all over the world. Where did they come from? Quite simply, the cache hunters themselves invent, establish and maintain them. Perhaps you also know a beautiful place or a place with a story that you want to draw attention to, and you will create a cache at some point in the future.
All Geocaching sounds interesting, but at the same time terribly complicated and over-technological. It might be fun for adults, but certainly not for children. Big mistake! We’ll let you in on a secret, we don’t use the word Geocaching in our house. We call the game “Treasure Hunt” and the kids love it. We try to plan hunting for such caches that will be interesting enough for children, in easier terrain and ideally not of micro size. If the final box is only slightly larger in size, it will most likely contain a real treasure – trading cards, small toys or anything else. Children can take something from it as a reward, but then they have to put a toy of their own there. It is a good idea to collect some toys at home before hunting and take them with you on the trip.
Another way to entertain children while hunting is to let them look for boxes. According to the help in the description of the cache on the Internet, you can find out whether the treasure is in a tree, under a stone or perhaps in a fence post, but leave the discovery itself to the children. They will compete to find the box first.
And this is certainly not all. Geocoins, events, travelbugs and much more to talk about. Be careful, the game is addictive. If you try it once and find a few caches, you’ll be hooked and you’ll be looking forward to the next treasure hunt.
Where to play Geocaching?
The answer is simple – anywhere! In any place you can think of. We played it ourselves in the mountains, in big cities, on tropical islands and around our house. There are millions of caches on the planet. Are you on vacation at the beach and the kids are tired of building sand castles? Launch the app and look around to see if you can find any cache to hunt down. Did you miss the bus or the train? Make waiting for your next connection more enjoyable by searching for caches. Can’t think of anything to do on the weekend, try Geocaching around your house. Simply guaranteed fun from anywhere.