Overland travel: Our favorite games!

Playing UNO in river bed

No TV, no Netflix! So how do we keep ourselves entertained around our overland truck, aside from the occasional movie or reading a book? Games!

The games we took along can be played with 2 or more. They are easy to explain to someone who never played it before and do not require you to speak the same language. This makes it that much easier to play these games with people you meet along the road.

Games bring people together!


UNO is a fun card game that can be played by all ages. It was developed by a barber in the 1970’s.

  • Number of players: 2-10
  • Age range: 7+
  • Playing time: approx. 30 minutes

Tip: Did you play this game a lot when you were younger? Reread the rules, even when you think you still remember them 🙂


Yahtzee or Kniffel

Yahtzee (or in German “Kniffel”) is classic dice game, first marketed around the 1940’s. There is no limit on the number of players and it only requires 5 dice, piece of paper and a pen or pencil.

  • Number of players: 1+
  • Age range: 8+
  • Playing time: approx. 30 minutes

Tip: You might not want to play this game when in stealth-mode. It’s hard not to shout “Yahtzee” (or “Kniffel” if you’re German) when you roll 5 the same numbers.


Mikado or Pick-up sticks

We both grew up with Mikado (Pick-up sticks), but had not played it for at least 20 years. We found it in between our old games and thought it to be a good addition to overland travel games. Why?  This is probably the easiest game to explain to someone who doesn’t understand you. A steady hand is the only thing you need to play this game.

  • Number of players: 1+
  • Age range: 5+
  • Playing time: approx. 20 minutes



Playing Rummikub inside our Expedition TruckRummikub is our most favorite game at the moment! It was invented in the early 1930’s by a man called Mr. Ephraim Hertzano.

  • Number of players: 2-4
  • Age range: 8+
  • Playing time: approx. 30 minutes (but can variate greatly)

We searched for a while for the most overland travel friendly version:

  • a smaller size rack where to set your tiles on
  • rack without legs, so it can be easier placed on uneven surfaces and no legs can get lost or broken
  • not too tiny, like some of the travel sizes are, so you can still easily handle the tiles

Tip: Keep the tiles in a fabric shoe bag with drawcord. This way you no longer have to place all the tiles face-down on the table. Just dump all the tiles in the shoe bag, and hand it over to the player who needs to draw a tile. The drawcord decreases the chance of losing tiles and make it is easier to stow everything away.

Playing Rummikub at the Black Sea beach

Any other games we should add to the list?

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9 thoughts on “Overland travel: Our favorite games!
  1. Love this post! You guys are so creative. But pick up sticks? That would be such a good challenge for me with my shakey old hands. I think I will have to stock up on some of those games and turn off the internet. Travel well you two

    1. Thank you Kathy! It’s incredible how much more we laugh and talk when not having internet or TV distracting us. We will probably take them along when visiting family for the holidays – a good old game night.

    1. Love hearing about these other games. I have to admit that I never heard about Qwirkle before. From the videos I found online, I have to say this seems like a fun game to play. A new game I can beat Elmer in 😉

  2. Pass the pigs, scrabble, any card game (Canasta etc). Backgammon, Mühle (Nünistei).
    Thanks for writing about this, reminds me of old days in ski huts.

    1. Can you believe we still don’t have a deck of cards on board?! We keep forgetting it. But remember I always enjoyed playing card games, so should take this up again. This is part of what I love about traveling; it guides you back to the things that you truly enjoy and sharing this with others (instead of spending hours watching TV, maybe side by side, but inherently in solitude)

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