Scavenger Hunts at the National Gallery of Art in DC

Scavenger Hunts at The National Gallery of Art

  • private
  • adults
  • kids
  • indoor

The National Gallery Gallop Scavenger Hunt

Warning: This isn’t your ordinary tour

And thank goodness for that because it’s much, much better. Instead of just getting a whirlwind tour of this amazing museum, you’ll also get a team-building experience that will make you laugh, think, and bond with your group. You’ll follow a trail of clues though the galleries and tackle tricky, entertaining questions about the surprising art you find.

Your discoveries might include…

  • An eye-popping saint
  • An ancient version of American Idol you can’t afford to lose
  • Whistler’s Mother (of Pearl)
  • A gal who wants to be “leafed” alone
  • A remarkable Civil War scene made more famous by a Hollywood movie
  • America’s only painting by Leonardo da Vinci
  • A shark attack against a guy named Watson (no relation, we hope)

And those are just a few of the highlights on this hunt. Don’t worry: you don’t need to know anything about art or the museum to play or to win. You just need a sharp mind and comfortable shoes. This “level playing field,” in which anyone can contribute to the victory, makes the game a perfect activity for any corporate group looking to add a dash of culture to a team-building outing.

A Kids Edition, for children and adults to enjoy together, is available for school field trips, scout outings, birthday parties—you name it! Suitable for ages 7 and up.


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  • public
  • private
  • adults
  • indoor

The Murder at the National Gallery Scavenger Hunt

Do you have what it takes to solve a murder?

You’re about to find out. A curator at the National Gallery of Art has been murdered, and he left behind a trail of cryptic clues connected with secrets in the museum’s masterpieces. Gather answers about the art with your team and you’ll begin to piece together a sordid tale about greed, lust, pride, revenge, and treachery, all revolving around the museum’s planned purchase of a long-lost painting by Leonardo da Vinci. The murder victim knew too much—and it’s up to you to discover what it was that drove one of four suspects to commit murder.

You don’t need to know anything about the museum or its art to triumph: all you need is a sharp mind and comfy shoes.


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  • public
  • private
  • adults
  • kids
  • indoor

The Wizard School Scavenger Hunt

Like Harry Potter on a Hogwarts field trip…

…you’ll explore the National Gallery of Art, in search of art that echoes characters, places, and enchanted objects in J.K. Rowling’s beloved books and movies. On teams, you’ll follow a surprising trail of clues through the museum and answer tricky, entertaining questions about what you find.

You might be challenged to track down…

  • A Snape-like potions master
  • Hagrid-like giants
  • Centaurs and unicorns who’d be at home in the Forbidden Forest
  • Mystical mermaids and strange sharks that seem straight out of the Triwizard Tournament
  • Cloaked and masked figures as terrifying as any Death Eater or Dementor

Plus, owls and dragons, fierce knights in armor, a powerful sorceress, and much more.

Both wizards and muggles (i.e., people who aren’t Potter experts) can play and enjoy this game. The hunt is not an addition to or variation on Harry’s adventures; instead, references to the books provide a surprising bridge to many strange and wonderful works of art. It’s a unique way to discover—or rediscover—the National Gallery.


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  • public
  • private
  • adults
  • kids
  • indoor

The Whodunit Scavenger Hunt

Watch your back: there’s a killer on the loose…

…and it’s up to your team to stop him! How? By playing the devilishly tricky scavenger hunt at the National Gallery of Art that the murderer created. When completed, you’ll learn who he is, which weapon he used, and where he hid the body. He sent the hunt to the police and dared them to try and solve it. Now they need your help.

You’ll be supplied with a list of suspects, weapons, and places. By following the trail of clues and answering clever questions, you’ll narrow down the list and provide the police with the evidence they need to catch and convict the killer. Can you figure out who dunnit?

No knowledge of the museum or art is necessary. You just need to pay attention to the details and work well with your team.

We also offer a Kids Edition of this hunt. It’s a great game for introducing younger audiences to art and the National Gallery, whether you’re planning a birthday party, a scout or camp outing, or a school field trip. Suitable for ages 10 and up.


  • public
  • private
  • adults
  • indoor

The Escape the National Gallery Scavenger Hunt

You’ve been poisoned!

That’s the bad news at the start of this scavenger hunt. But wait—there’s good news! (Sort of.) The evil mastermind who did this has challenged you to solve a series of puzzles to save your life: come up with the combination to a box and you’ll get the antidote. Sure, you can escape a room, but can you unlock the box and escape the East Building of the National Gallery of Art? Your life depends on it.

You’ll follow the villain’s diabolical clues, which lead you to explore the visually spectacular East Building, searching for telltale works through the galleries that feature eye-popping 20th-century art. Your team will have to answer devilishly tricky questions about secrets in a wacky Warhol, a mind-bending Magritte, a daffy Duchamp, a quirky Calder, a puckish Picasso, and more. You’ll also interact with our staff and tackle sneaky puzzles to crack a code.

Don’t be daunted! No knowledge of art or the museum is required: you just need sharp eyes, comfy shoes, and excellent teamwork.


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