Click. You and a group of friends are stuck inside a medieval prison with only your wits to help you escape. 60 minutes later, will you taste freedom… or failure?

Trapped Halifax is one of five escape rooms in Halifax, part of the “boom” of escape rooms that have popped up in HRM over the past few years. It’s a simple enough concept: a group of friends or colleagues is led into to a staged puzzle room (phones confiscated, blindfolded if desired), given a back-story and a walkie talkie, and then left alone for one hour. The goal to manipulate the clues in the room to solve a puzzle, and ultimately, escape. If you get stuck, you can just radio in for a clue.

At Trapped Halifax, there are four themed rooms: Medieval Prison, Ancient Egypt, Contaminated Hospital, Death Note, plus a special room, only to be unlocked by members, called the Chaos Effect. The cost per person is $28.oo, but if it’s within 3 days of your birthday, you get in free.

Although Trapped Halifax is popular with families, I decided to leave the kids at home for my first visit, instead attending with a group of colleagues from the writing world. Despite being 100% confident that the group of us, including a medical doctor, a lawyer, a teacher and several well-travelled writers would sleuth our way out within minutes, in the end, this was not the case. We failed!

Once our time was up, an employee took us through the puzzle, showing us the clues that we missed.

Without giving too much away (participants are sworn to secrecy and photos are not allowed inside the rooms), I can say that no part of the puzzle was simple. Each part had several levels, and required some lateral thinking. In the end, it was not education, breadth of experience or general intelligence that would have solved the puzzle, but systematic teamwork, and “thinking outside the box”.

The purpose of our excursion was to team-build, and although we didn’t explicitly learn more about each other in the literal sense (there was no time for chatting in the room!), working together on a problem created a sense of cohesion that you can’t get from a board meeting.

Most importantly, we gained a shared sense of experience, and it is for this reason that I would recommend a visit escape room to anyone, including families, neighbours, friends, or even couples!

Escape Room Tips:

  • Check in advance: is the room the right level of difficulty for your team?
  • Wear comfortable clothing; there was a minor amount of crawling and kneeling in our room.
  • Don’t drink a lot of water (or anything else) before you go in. You truly are locked in there for an hour!
  • Swallow your pride and ask for clues if you need them. Don’t worry – they will never give the game away.
  • Stand back and survey the scene, then get close and look everywhere for clues including in mirrors and on walls.
  • Do not break stuff. You will not be required to peel wallpaper, or break walls or furniture.
  • DO move objects that are moveable. This will likely be part of the puzzle.

Escape Rooms in Halifax

1313 Barrington Street, Halifax B3J 1Y9
(902) 406-0011

The Great Escape
5693 North Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia B3K 1N5, Canada

1649 Barrington St, Suite 400, Halifax B3J 2A2
(902) 422-2224

Escape Artists
475 Sackville Drive, Lr. Sackville B4C 2S1
(902) 266-5503

Mind Hack 
1410 Hammonds Plains Rd, B4B 1P6
(902) 809-4225