This article was originally published in January 2019; it has been updated.
If you’re looking for a fun and challenging indoor activity to “escape” the winter doldrums, consider an interesting adventure that will give your brain a workout. Escape rooms, in which players must solve riddles or piece together clues within a specified time frame, are popping up all over the Garden State.
These innovative and interactive forms of entertainment are ideal for those who loves puzzles and cracking codes. Here’s how they’re set up: Players find themselves in a fictional location and scenario that can range from a prison cell to a submarine and are given a bit of the backstory that explains their mission. Then, they must put their detective skills to the test to figure out the rest and ultimately free themselves from the room.
Fortunately, if participants get stuck, a game master, who’s watching from another room, will provide helpful hints to put them back on track.
If you’re looking to get the family out of the house and do something that forces you think and work together as a team, check out these escape rooms, which offer something for a range of ages and meet a variety of interests.
Escape Room NJ presents different challenges at its various locations. There are some adventures that are scary, some that are racy, and others that offer non-scary age-appropriate fun for all. Some novel adventures you can join include The Lost Cabin: Book of Souls, King Arthur’s Castle: The Holy Grail, and S.W.A.T. Team.
Groups of 2 to 18 people can participate. Locations: Madison, Hackensack, Pompton Lakes. Per person prices begin at $25. For more information, visit Escape Room NJ‘s website.
Proving that not all adventures need to be scary, Amazing Escape Room presents The Lost Record, in which your favorite band has recorded some tunes the world had never heard. Those missing recordings are hiding somewhere in that room and you have to find them before time runs out.
There’s also The Forest: You are stranded in a secluded cabin in the woods. The village locals tell of a priceless treasure that was buried in the woods many years ago. Your objective is to find your way through the dense woods to unearth this great treasure!
While anyone can play, those under 12 must be accompanied by an adult. Locations: Montclair, Freehold, Green Brook, Princeton, Cherry Hill. For more information, visit the Amazing Escape Room‘s website.
The Other Tales Escape Room in Hawthorne features games that intertwine puzzles and stories. Amazing Adventure Society is a game about adventuring in the early 1900’s. The Anomaly is a science fiction game where players get a glimpse of a parallel world. Both of our games feature kid friendly versions of the games.
Tickets are $30 per person.
Last Minute Escape was featured on an episode of Impractical Jokers but the fun doesn’t end there. Adventures include traveling back to the 1930s to take on a crime boss in The Speakeasy, or join a famed treasure hunter on his quest to discover what lies among the ruins of The Mayan Tomb.
With locations in Morristown, Montclair and Wayne. Anyone under the age of 16 will have to be accompanied by an adult at the site, even if the adult doesn’t participate. Last Minute Escape recommends that you be at least 13 years of age to participate.
Pricing varies by day and group size. For more information, call or visit Last Minute Escape’s website.
Trap Door boasts the largest escape games in New Jersey, includes the hugely popular Witch Hunt game and was reviewed as having the most immersive set design in the world with F5: A Tornado Escape. New Jersey locations are in Red Bank and Morristown NJ.
For more information visit: www.trapdoorescape.com.