What on earth is she on about now?
Good question my friend.
Munzee is described as a next generation global scavenger hunt. Using GPS you track down game pieces hidden by other players. Once found you scan the game piece, usually a sticker, using QR code technology and the Munzee app on your smart phone.
I discovered it about a week after I started geocaching. I’ve found a few but it’s not the love affair of geocaching. In fact I feel a little unfaithful just talking about the M word.
Scanning a Munzee is like a cheap, quick thrill.
Find, scan and off you go. I normally just grab them if I spot them on a nearby sign or lamp post and rarely you might find one in a geocache.
This week I spotted on Twitter that Thetford, a large town in the Brecks, has launched a Munzee trail.
Hmm interesting. Retweet. Hold that thought.
A few days later and the day is a bit miserable, the children are in full on, school holiday, climbing the wall mode. We’ve exhausted all play parks within a 10 mile radius and I’d quite honestly rather poke sharp objects in my eyes than go to soft play on a wet day. Argh!
Then I remember the Munzee trail. Let’s do this!
I’ve been to Thetford several times but without ever actually heading into town.
Luckily we miss most of the foul weather on the drive over and for the first time ever I venture further than the outskirts.
We start off simply, grabbing the first Munzee of the day near to where we have parked, a pleasant enough spot on the riverside and the kids find a bench which they find absolutely hilarious.
We scan the code and the app invites us to answer a question. Ooh! This is a new one for me.
A quick read of the information board and success we get our points. Pointless points if like me you don’t play much, but we get them. 😉
We grab a nearby regular Munzee (not part of the trail) which somebody who is at least eight ft tall has placed up on a street sign. Being 5 ft this proves quite the challenge but waving a child in the air saves the day.
It also draws a bit of attention, move along folks there is nothing to see here. And to think I usually feel suspicious with my head in a bush.
We grab more Munzees as we make our way through town, being awarded with a satisfying beep as we capture. The app is playing up a lot this time though and it crashes. Continuously. Driving me nuts.
For some reason each time it restarts though it thinks I’m trying to rescan an already captured Munzee and sounds a loud Britains Got Talent style buzzer at me. Rather amusing as you walk streets full of shoppers.
Yep I could have hit silent but where’s the fun in that? 😉
Eventually we leave the busy town and find ourselves on a rather lovely riverside walk and discover a nature reserve too. We don’t have time to venture further this time but will definitely be back to explore this area at a later date.
I sneakily flick over to the geocaching app. Not needing a find today the children have put me on a strict geocaching ban.
I’m merely 33m from a cache. Like I can resist! I quickly sneak a look at the hint before switching back to the Munzee app and handing the phone back to the children.
We stop to search.
‘I can’t see a Munzee mum.’
‘I don’t think they would put a Munzee under the bridge mum.’
Nope, but look what I found! Fancy that! 😉
With the Munzee app acting as a virtual tour guide we explore the town, capturing, answering questions and buzzing hilariously (sorry Thetford!) as we go.
Sadly the app eats battery at an alarming rate. I wasn’t prepared with battery back up and am never organised enough to print off the accompanying paper map, (but it’s an excellent idea!) So our fun was cut short for the day.
We had fun though and the Munzee were a great way to explore the town, helping us find some nice places to visit.
I don’t usually rate Munzee that highly which is why I’ve never written about them before. They generally just take you through busy streets on a tour of street signs and bins but in this situation were used really well. I’ve googled to see where else has Munzee trails and could only come up with Norwich.
Which is a bit of a surprise and a shame it’s a great way to explore a place you dont know, and even better a fantastic way of getting children outdoors and interacting with the world around them.
This time Munzee gets my vote!
For more information on the Thetford Munzee Trail click here
For more information on Munzee visit here
To download the app and get zapping walk this way