If you haven’t heard about Hidden City yet, they are a company offering walking trails with a twist, like an interactive scavenger hunt. I chose the Cheshire Cat trail to try out with a team of four adventurers. At the time of booking, it was £23 per person, which seems expensive for an scavenger hunt, but for what you get with this great trail, it really is a good deal.
The whole trail works through text messages, you can have one or several phones listed as the team phones. I recommend registering at least two phone numbers from different providers, as some locations might have spotty reception, one of our two phones had no network reception whatsoever, while the other was able to text in the very same location. Most of this trail takes place outside, but it does take you interesting places all over central London.
Starting by the National Portrait Gallery, you send your first text message to start the quest and immediately receive a reply from the Cheshire Cat. The first few messages guide you to different places where you have to find clues and interact with people. Along the way, you get to make decisions that will decide how the story unfolds for you and your team, so be careful which way you decide to go. The clues and riddles aren’t very difficult, but finding them can be a bit of a challenge.
We were quite surprised with how many larger institutions and shops are actually involved with this hunt, it’s surprising and super fun. There are quite a few snack, drink, and food spots along the scavenger hunt, so you can take a rest whenever you need to, if you’re not trying to compete for time.
Overall, it was so much fun to follow the story, make decisions, find hidden spots, be surprised by invitations and interactions, and eventually learn the results of our decisions. I really recommend trying out a Hidden City trail if you haven’t done so yet, we really enjoyed this one! Five and a half out of six rainbow sloths!