When the going gets tough, sometimes all you need is a dose of escapism
Thinking fast and slow, solving mysteries, beating the clock, making decisions: these are the features of a good escape room experience. And if you’re looking for something to take your mind off work stress (or the news headlines), being locked in a room with an imaginary quest scenario may be just the thing you need. As the autumn days set in and the weather starts to look less enticing, an escape room also makes a perfect small-group indoor activity.
Escape rooms are becoming a go-to for corporate teambuilding events, as well as family days out. They can also be a great way to connect with your friends and get to know each other better in a totally unfamiliar situation. And why not put your partner to the test? See what you can achieve on a quest together (or pit your wits against each other – it’s up to you).
What’s On has selected four of Kyiv’s most ingenious escape rooms to help you plan your next autumn adventure. This is just a small preview to whet your appetite: head to the sites below for more detailed information about the quests available, as well as information on group sizes, pricing, and special offers.
With COVID in mind, we recommend that you refrain from visiting in large groups for now: you’re better off visiting with family members and close friends only.
1. Don’t Panic
For one hour, two to six players enter an abandoned military laboratory after a global apocalypse. You’ll need to solve the mysteries of the lab using a variety of devices and techniques. Will you be able to solve it in time and save humanity from extinction? Project Genesis is not the hardest room in Kyiv, but definitely not a walk in the park either.
Check the website for other quests in different locations around Kyiv, such as Museum of Impossible Arts and Quarantine: Zombie Virus (sound familiar, anyone?).
Panasa Myrnoho 3
Price: 700 UAH – 1000 UAH for 4 players, + 200 UAH for each additional player
2. Pid Zamkom
Pod Zamkom is a chain of escape rooms with several locations in central Kyiv, each offering a different range of quests. One of their best scenarios puts you in the shoes of a group of robbers, who plan their every step with the utmost care. You receive a request from someone who has kompromat (compromising materials) on you. If you want to win back your freedom, you will have to commit the crime of the century.
If you don’t fancy being a criminal, Pod Zamkom has a range of other rooms where you can try your hand at being a politician, a time traveller, a Chernobyl liquidator, or even the Invisible Man. For tech aficionados, VR rooms are available.
Shota Rustaveli 3
Metro: Palats Sportu
Price: 700 – 1000 UAH for 2-5 players
At KADRooM’s most popular location in the heart of Kyiv, you have a once-in-a-lifetime chance to save the Titanic. Who’d have thought it? KADRooM rate their rooms not only by difficulty but also in terms of the fear factor – and rightly so, as many their quests are based on horror films. (For parents, or the faint-hearted, don’t worry: family-friendly quests are also available.) One room – the Morgue – is designed for one player only. Perhaps the most COVID-friendly quest in all of Kyiv, but also the scariest…
Metro: Teatralna or Zoloti Vorota
Price: 400 UAH (for one player) – 1000+ UAH
Resident Evil fans rejoice! For all you gamers out there, Vzaperti has the quest you’ve been waiting for. In the Umbrella’s secret laboratory there’s been an outbreak of the T-virus. All the staff have been killed and it is your mission to take back control of the systems. As the virus spreads, you have only an hour to stop it from destroying everyone…
If you’re not into Resident Evil, other scenarios include Samurai-era Japan, Area 51, and an eerie gingerbread house. As well as traditional room-based quests, Vzaperti also offers VR options and quests on foot around the city, delivered in an online format.
Price: 760 – 980 UAH
It’s official: in addition to being great fun, an escape room also hones your cognitive and interpersonal skills. It’s bound to stimulate your imagination as well as engaging the analytical side of your brain.
The psychological benefits are manifold: taking part in a quest helps to improve team cooperation and communication, while fostering self-confidence, encouraging creativity, and getting you into that elusive state of ‘flow’ – in other words, totally absorbed in your task.
So if you’re looking for a good excuse to have some serious fun, look no further!