Activities & Itineraries

Call Your Best Code-Cracking Mates, These Are 13 Of The Trickiest Escape Rooms In Sydney

By Antonia Minutolo
26th Oct 2020

best escape rooms sydney

There’s just something so bloody exciting (read: terrifying) about being locked in a room, forced to solve your way out. Whether you're looking to amp up date night, something fun to do on a rainy day or even the next group activity with all of your best code-cracking mates, escape rooms can do no wrong.

Sydney has plenty of escape scenarios to sink your teeth into—including rooms with laser beams, rooms dated back to the 1900s and even challenges with a 10 percent success rate.

These are 13 of the toughest escape rooms in Sydney. 

Next Level

CBD

Next Level is one of the MVPs of escape rooms in Sydney, with not one, but two rooms to choose from and 75 minutes to solve each mystery. There are now on-site and online games for you to play which basically means you could really commit to trying to solve these every night of the week. 

In terms of what you can play on-site, the "Ex Libris" room merges real life with fiction via a whole bunch of literary-based puzzles…so who’s the Hermione Granger in your group? For a more intense escape mission, try to solve the "Artefact"—a mission centred around an alien artefact no less. 

If you're keen to play online (plus whenever and wherever you like), your go-to is "Temporal Tangle". This one will have you trying to figure out what happened to a top agent at Future Directions Bureau (code name Fox) who was sent on a crucial mission in the 21st century. With the agent now gone off the face of the earth, enemy action is suspected and naturally, it’s up to you to trace his whereabouts and save the future.

Level of difficulty: Extremely difficult (near impossible actually), perfect for seasoned escape room enthusiasts. 

Ukiyo At Home

Online

Like many businesses across Australia, Melbourne’s escape room company Ukiyo has pivoted in a big way and that means bringing its cinematic stories and escape room vibes no matter where you are. We’re talking a virtual escape room. You’ll be in for hand-drawn animations, a culturally diverse set of characters and like most escape rooms, you’re encouraged to try and solve this one with a group of your best mates.

The new virtual escape challenge has been dubbed “Loom” where the children of Cottonsworth Mill are planning their escape and you’ll help them explore underground rooms and hallways, collect items and uncover some dark realities about the “Master Of The Mill”. This one has been inspired by the likes of Spirited Away and A Series Of Unfortunate Events and the text-based game is filled with puzzles, immersive storytelling, and some solid narration.

Level of difficulty: Medium

FunLab

Online

The team that brought you the likes of Holey Moley, Strike Bowling, and B. Lucky & Sons has just dropped a virtual escape room that is so good, you should prepare to cancel all other plans. The virtual room looks like two themed and interactive virtual escape rooms called “Pirate Island” and “Magic School” (Harry Potter-style) which require you to solve riddles and complete a slew of gnarly puzzles. These can both be played on Zoom and you can play with up to seven other people (but choose wisely, these aren’t your run-of-the-mill puzzles). You’ll also have a dedicated “game master” in true escape room style to help you out when you (inevitably) get stuck.

Level of Difficulty: Medium to hard

The Cipher Room

Newtown

Race against time, test your mind, teamwork and instincts in Newtown’s dark and chilling escape rooms at The Cipher Room. While "The Marlowe Hotel" and "Espionage" require you to discover secrets set in the early 1900s, it’s really "The Cabin" that’ll have you creeped-out to the core and dying (pun totally intended) to solve the serial killer case. You’ll also find this one on South King Street so you’re close by to the likes of The Imperial Hotel, Gigi’s Pizzeria, Hartsyard and Golden Lotus for post-escape room feasts, drinks and debriefs.

Level of difficulty: Medium to difficult. 

The Enigma Room

CBD

Can you save the memories of a mysterious woman in a coma? How about saving the world from a missile on the moon? From an Inception-style room to an espionage mission, The Enigma Room caters to all escape junkies, and boy is it a wild ride. With dynamic puzzles that’ll leave you completely on edge, these are some of the crème de la crème of escape rooms in Sydney. 

Level of difficulty: Medium to difficult. To nail this one, you’ll need a variety of different “thinkers”, because the problem solving here tests logical and lateral thinking, observational skills, and can even be ever so slightly physically demanding. 

Social Escape Room

Alexandria

If it’s your first foray into the world of solving puzzles to get you out of a locked room, Social Escape’s “Paris Escape” is the one for you. This one has a scare-factor of zero, with the mission being focused on finding your passport and plane tickets within the hour so you don’t miss your flight (actually, that does sound pretty stressful and therefore scary). 

If you’re keen to step things up though, there are three other rooms that boast spookier puzzles like “Baker Street Mystery”, which involves a murder mystery, “Bank Heist” where you enter the mind of a criminal, and “Ransom” where your loved one disappears.

Level of difficulty: Medium to difficult. 

CT Adventure Escape Room

CBD

One of CT Adventure’s rooms, "The Witch", has a measly 10% success rate—so you know you’re in for a tricky treat. This one sports a super creepy and eerie atmosphere, and is set in Europe in the Middle Ages—so yep, "The Witch" is perfect for all of you escape room pros. For those less experienced, CT Adventures also offers two other rooms that lower the freaky factor but are equally as challenging. Each runs for 60 minutes. 

Level of difficulty: Extremely difficult.

Paniq Room

The Rocks

Paniq Room serves up four epic escape rooms that'll see you hand-cuffed inside a prison cell, locked inside a house and having to overcome a mysterious magician's tricks, escaping the Mafia and an actual game of Jumanji. We love this one because each room has been so brilliantly thought out.

Level of difficulty: Medium. The beauty of Paniq Room is that the clues start off quite ambiguous, but you develop a knack for figuring things out as you continue. Perfect for beginners who want to train their brain to start thinking outside the box.

ParaPark Sydney

Macquarie Park

Where paranormal becomes normal, ParaPark is Northwest Sydney’s escape room and it’s only for those brave enough to overcome spirits—and murderers. As part of a global puzzle network starting in Budapest, you’ll have to work your way through dozens of elaborate and straight-up confusing puzzles to find your way out. There are two different rooms to choose from, both giving you just 60 minutes to escape.   

Level of difficulty: Difficult. Not for the fainthearted. 

Escapism

Darling Harbour

Located inside Strike Bowling at Darling Harbour, once you enter one of Escapism’s three rooms, any feeling of comfort and glee normally associated with ten pin bowling disappears. There are two rooms to hit here although the standout has to be Escapism's "Gateway No.9" which will see you forging your way through a bunch of challenges and some paranormal perfection. You'll need to work your way through a conjuration of spirits (casually) and the walls while whisper the words of a secret and ancient language so if you're not a fan of getting scared... this one isn't for you.

Level of difficulty: Medium.

Mission Sydney

CBD

You’ll be spoilt for choice at Mission, Sydney's first mechanical escape room and there are seven escape room themes to have a crack at. Unlike regular escape rooms, these are less about unlocking keys and more about lasers and special effects, which we love.

Our favourite room here has to be “Trapped”, where you play detectives in charge of investigating a lift that malfunctioned and killed two people. This room is totally immersive, thrilling and interactive, so you’ll only want to have a try after you’ve warmed up to some easier escape room challenges.

Level of difficulty: Medium to extremely difficult. We definitely recommend working your way up to TRAPPED. 

Break The Code

Haymarket

In the heart of Chinatown, you'll find Break The Code. With riddles, detective games and mysteries that are in desperate need of solving within 60 minutes, bring the best and brightest of your friends to help you out of this room. Most of the rooms are inspired by iconic mystery movies like “Indiana Jones”, “The Da Vinci Code” and “Avatar” but the absolute best room has to be "Lost: Survivors Of The Crash". After flying into a powerful lightning storm your plane has crash-landed in a dark and mysterious jungle and you'll need to escape from the plane wreckage and radio for help, but the big challenge is—how do you escape and where is all the necessary equipment?

You and the other surviving passengers ie. your best friends, need to work together to stay alive and escape.This one has a three per cent success rate so... good luck.

Level of difficulty: Extremely difficult.

Labyrinth Escape Rooms

Parramatta

At Labyrinth Escape Rooms, there are four dark rooms to test yourself in and be warned—you'll need every ounce of logical-thinking and skill-based talent you can muster. All challenges have a strong plot, which makes trying to escape these rooms even more fun. The “Insane Asylum” is worth a go and you’ll be in the middle of a story that sees you locked inside an insane asylum (accidentally) and trying to escape. You’ll start to hear voices but you don’t know until the end if they’re real or whether it’s all in your head. Creepy. 

Level of difficulty: Medium to difficult. 

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Image credit: Cipher Room, Cipher Room, Mission Sydney, Break The Code

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