Pirate Party Games for Kids

If you are arranging a pirate themed birthday for your child, then of course you will have to think of some pirate party games.

If possible a pirate treasure hunt is a must, read suggestions for that here. (Coming soon)Apart from the treasure hunt I have collected some very funny birthday games with a touch of pirate and dangerous times 🙂
As I guess you can see, almost any party game can be changed into a game that has something to do with different themes, but I think the games I describe here are really great for a pirate party birthday.

I have tried to make notes of which age, number of participants, what you need and for some games that they are certainly best outdoor, but it is just an advice.

Pirate Games:

Lined Up to Walk the Plank

Age: 6 and more.
Number of participants: 3 and more
You need: A scarf for each kid

You know, when you read a story with pirates, there is almost always somebody who has to walk the plank.

Wendy had to, but was saved by Peter Pan, and your pirate guests can be saved as well.

pirate games

Be sure there is enough space where the game shall take place, the more kids the more room is needed to avoid kids bumping into furniture and stuff.
Now you tell the guests that they have been take prisoner and they are on a pirate ship where they have to walk the plank, all of them. So they will have to line up in a row to go to the plank.
The only way they can avoid that is if they can manage to make the row with the smallest (lowest) child first, then the next and so on, ending with the tallest child.The difficult thing is that they have to do it blindfolded, and without saying a word or sound!

All the kids get blindfolded, and you blow a whistle or shout “start the row for the plank!”.
Now they shall get hold of each other, feel the height of the other and themselves, then make a row with the tallest child in the back and the smallest child in the front.

Pirate picture
Blackbeard the Pirate himself

Topple Tins

Age: 7 and more
Number of participants: 2 and more
You need: 10 – 15 empty tins (be aware there are no sharp edges) or plastic cups, foam balls (or water balloons if outside, or any soft balls)

Build a pyramid out of the tins with either 4 or 5 at the bottom. Make a line a little away from the tins.
Now the kids shall throw the ball, each kid has 3 -5 attempts, and gets 1 point for each toppled tin.
Build the pyramid again for the next kid to throw.

This is a really fun birthday party game, and to make it fit the pirate theme you can decorate the tins with black paper with a white scull and bones, or white paper with a face of a pirate.
Painting the pirate faces on the tin can be part of the game.

pirate party game for kids

When this game is played at a 10 year birthday and if the kids are really great at throwing the ball, you can add the rule that they have to throw the ball with the left hand, if they are right-handed and vice versa.



Getting Warm

This well known children’s game can easily be combined with the pirate theme.

Age: 4 and more
Number of participants: 2 and up to 6
You need: 2-6 big cardboard keys, a treasure chest (you can easily make it yourself of a cardboard box) and a treasure (candy, cakes or something like that)

I would play this game with the children at the birthday party if I didn’t make a treasure hunt.
A pirate treasure chest has been found, but the pirates will have to find all the keys to open it.

You have already placed a number of big cardboard keys different places in the room/rooms. (If you like you can use this template for the keys. Click the picture to get to the bigger one, save it and print it.)

treasure chest key for game
Now the first pirate child has to find a key. You are the only one who knows where it its, and tell the child: “It’s getting hot” “It’s getting hotter” and so on, as long as the child gets nearer to the key you have decided on. “It’s getting cold” “Oh, it’s really getting colder” when the child moves away.

When the first pirate child has found the key you will lead the next child to another key, until all the kids have found a key.
If the children are very young, and if there are more than 5 children, I suggest you make them search for keys two and two, holding hands.

Now you pretend to use all the keys to open the treasure chest, and the children will get their pirate treasure.

big octopus climbing a pirate ship


Fetch Drinking Water for the Pirate Ship:

Age: 4 and more
Number of participants: 6, but more is better
Where: Outdoor
You need: Two small buckets and two similar glasses

All the pirates will have to practice to fetch drinking water for when they abut on a deserted island, so they should stand in two rows. The first in each row is handed a bucket filled with water.
Now the child with the bucket hands over the bucket to the next in the row, who hand it over to the next and so on.
When the last child in the row gets the bucket, she or he hands it back, which goes on until the bucket gets to the first child again.
The children have to do it without wasting too much water, but also fast, because you never know if there are any natives who might want to come and steel the pirate ship.

When the bucket has passed all the way back and forth in the two rows, you fill the glasses with what water is left, and the team with most water left is the winner.

pass the water for the pirate ship

You can play a pirate song and ask the children to pass the bucket in rhythm with the music (Hey – Ho -Hey – Ho or something like that), and if the children are really good at not wasting the water, you can make it more difficult (and fun) telling them to let the bucket pass back and forth one more time, but this time pass it between the legs.


Pirate in Sight!

Age: 4 and more
Number of participants: 6 and more
Where: Outdoor
You need: Rope or chalk to mark out the field, or maybe just a stick to mark a lines in sand or soil.

Mark a field approx. 16 ft x 50 ft. This is the ocean, and the pirate captain stands in the middle of the field. All the other children divides into two groups, one at each short end of the ocean.

When the pirate captain shouts: “Pirate in sight!” all the children will have to cross the ocean from one end to the other and the pirate captain will try to catch them (They are caught when touched by the pirate captain).
Those who get caught are now pirates, and the pirates hold hands two and two or tree, and they try and catch the other children when they cross the ocean. It is still the original pirate captain that shouts “pirate in sight!”

The child who gets caught last shall be the pirate captain next.

Set the Eyepatch on the Pirate:

Age: 3 and more
Number of participants: 2 and more
Where: Indoor and outdoor
You need: A drawing of a pirate, an eyepatch for each participant, double sided tape

Pirate birthday gameMake a drawing of a pirate on a big paper. It doesn’t have to be a very artistic drawing, as long as anybody can see it is a pirate and it has two eyes – it will work fine!

Make an eyepatch out of black paper, one for each participant.
If the kids are 4 years or more, take your time together with them to write their names (in white) on each eyepatch. It is always something special to have your name written. If there is not time for that, write their names before the birthday starts.

Add the double sided tape to the eyepatches, give each child their own.
The child who “is it” shall be blindfolded and try to place their eyepatch as correctly on the drawing as possible.
The person who has placed her eyepatch in the right place winns.


Pirate Dance:

Age: 3 years and up
Number of participants: 5 to 20Where: Indoor or outdoor, the more participants the larger the room you need
You need: A pirate sword, a music player, a helper to control the music. If you can find some kind of “pirate-music” it would be great.

All the children form a circle, you can be in the circle too, or stay outside.
The music starts, and all the kids dance to the music, while the pirate sword goes from child to child.
When a kid receives the sword, he or she has to turn around dancing, before delivering the sword to the next child.

Now and again the music shall be stopped, and the child who has the sword at that time shall drop as dead, preferably with an “Arrrrgh!” and then leave the circle.

The music starts again, and the pirate dance goes on, until only one child is left standing.


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