20 Best Hidden Picture Books

One of the best things about hidden picture books (also called seek-and-find and search-and-find books) is that the books are engaging and are fun ways to spend quality parent-child time. From toddler to preschool to elementary ages, my kids love to sit and pour over these nonfiction activity books. Especially with their dad.

Using their visual discrimination skills, kids search for the hidden pictures in illustrated books filled with both adventures and learning concepts.

Fun and learning!

None of us have been a big fan of Where’s Waldo because the size of the words and illustrations is SO very small. At least the books that we owned.

But when I gave the hidden picture Waldo books to my daughter’s therapist for her waiting room, she told me that teens and adults loved them. Go figure! Apparently, there’s a search-and-find book for everyone and… every age.


Best Seek and Find Books

Richard Scarry’s Super Silly Seek and Find!

ages 0 – 3
Perfect for ages zero to three, this is a playful, oversized seek and find board book. From the bedroom to the bathroom to outside on a busy street and gas station, your littles will get to look for one or more items such as 3 trash cans, 7 green bugs, and 1 potted plant. The updated Richard Scarry picture books are wonderful choices to share with the little readers on your lap.

Where’s Walrus?
 by Stephen Savage
ages 3 – 5
Walrus and Penguin escape from the zoo and wander the city. Can you find them? Together they have many fun adventures and Walrus even finds love! Seek and find with excellent opportunities to pay close attention to detail in the illustrations.

Have You Seen My Monster?
 by Steve Light
ages 2 – 5
Help this little girl search for her monster at the fair. Her monster loves the funhouse, the slide, and bumper cars. The illustrations are black and white except for the geometric shape featured on each page — octagon, rectangle, decagon, etc. This is a delightful search-and-find story.

Activity Books Beat Boredom
Find Your Way Under the Sea and Find Your Way In the Jungle by Paul Boston
ages 5 – 8
Hidden picture puzzles with map and math skills!! Not only are you trying to complete the maze, but you’re also looking for items, answering map questions (coordinates), and answering math questions (who live in the hut with three windows?). Lots of details to notice in these colorful illustrations — no boredom here!

I Spy Numbers by Jean Marzollo
ages 3 – 5
Help your toddler and preschooler identify numbers with this exciting I Spy book search and find book about counting and numbers. We highly recommend it.

Seek and Find Puzzle Books
Treasure Hunt for Kids by Roger Priddy
ages 2 – 5
Develop counting and sorting skills while searching for the hundreds of hidden things in the busy, colorful scenes packed with multiple images and objects to seek and find.

search and find books for kids
Highlights Hidden Pictures Sticker Book 
ages 4 – 8
Younger learners use stickers to find hidden objects. It’s so fun! My kids always preferred the sticker hidden picture books to the color books.

Around the World A Can You Find It Book
by Sarah L. Schuette
ages 4 – 8
Similar to other I Spy books, search in the photographs to find the hidden objects.

Animals Seek and Find Sticker Pad
by Melissa and Doug
ages 4 – 8
Over 250 stickers and 14 scenes for you to search, color, and sticker!

I Spy School Days
by Jean Marzollo
ages 4 – 8
We adore the Marzollo I Spy hidden picture books. Read the rhyming poem, then look at the accompanying full-color photo filled with objects to find the items listed.

Have You Seen Gordon?
by Adam Jay Epstein & Ruth Chan
ages 3 – 8
A funny narrator battles the independent-thinking characters who have their own ideas about how the story should go. But first, can you find Gordon? When Gordon doesn’t hide very well, the narrator decides to find someone else to look for — but his new target, Jane, the construction worker, is shy so she runs away. Goofy adventures and fun characters make this the most hilarious seek-and-find book you’ll ever read with themes of consent and allyship.

 Seek and Find Puzzle Books
LEGO Star Wars: These Aren’t the Droids You’re Looking For by Ameet Studio
ages 5 – 12
If your kids like LEGO and Star Wars, they’ll love this fun hidden picture books where you’ll be tasked to find your favorite LEGO heroes and villains from the Star Wars movies.

Penelope Strudel and the Birthday Treasure Hunt by Brendan Kearney
ages 7 – 10
It’s Penelope’s birthday, but her Uncle Derek hid her presents from the pesky puffins. You’ll have to help her solve the puzzles, including ciphers, mazes, and equations on each page as well as search for the lists of items. That will help Penelope move to the next room until she finally finds out what her birthday present is. One of our favorite hidden picture books with great problem-solving fun with detailed, interesting illustrations that ages 7 – 10 will enjoy.

Where’s the Princess? And Other Fairy Tale Searches by Chuck Whelon
ages 5 – 8
Start with Little Red Riding Hood and continue to Pinocchio… each two-page spread asks you to search and find fairy tale items in the cheerful illustrations.

Search and Spot Animals! by Laura Ljungkvist
ages 4 – 8
We’re SO in love with this nonfiction picture book! Instead of an overwhelming mashup of illustrations, Ljungkvist’s illustrations are simple, clean, and not too crowded. For example, on a bright yellow background, look at the purple and blue chickens to find a dozen eggs. Or, on a blue background, search, and spot 10 dragonflies sitting on blue lily pads next to green frogs. Lovely.

Search and Find Books
Elephants on Tour: A Search & Find Journey Around the World
by Guillaume Cornet
ages 8 – 12
I really like the integration of geography and world cultures in this fun search and find book! And maybe, it makes me a little nostalgic for Barbar. 🙂 Because elephants. Five elephants are traveling the world — find them on each page. The illustrations are minuscule and enchanting! Each location’s two-page spread shows where the elephants are visiting next from the Amazon to Madagascar and Amsterdam. You’ll also see a “Fact File” with the country, currency, language, and population. Another fact overlay shares how to say hello, places to visit, things to do, what to buy, and what to eat. Cool, right?!

Draw Your Own Seek and Find Puzzle (+ Recommended Books)
Around the World in 80 Puzzles
by Aleksandra Artymowska
ages 7 – 10
This is a GREAT hidden picture gift book for the entire family to enjoy. Visual discrimination never looked so beautiful! My kids and husband were hooked on it as soon as this book arrived in the mail. So together or individually, you’ll have so much fun with this book that celebrates the world! I love how the puzzles give kids practice with visual discrimination skills and following directions. And in this unique book, there is a lot of white space while still requiring detailed orientation. See the pieces of the Eiffel Tower and answer — “Which of these pieces isn’t part of the Eiffel Tower?” and “Can you arrange the other pieces in the correct order?

Bigfoot Visits Big Cities of the World

ages 5 – 8
My kids love this search-and-find book showing Bigfoot around the world. So do I — it’s an added bonus to learn more about famous world cities.

20,00 Leagues Under the Sea
by Aleksandra Artymowska
ages 7 – 9
We’re enjoying this search and find and spot the difference puzzle book where readers help Captain Nemo search for adventure and treasure. Each full-page spread is intricately illustrated, so there is a lot to notice. Then use these illustrations to solve the tasks. For example, find a diving helmet that is different from the others. Or find identical seashells. Fun, right?

The Bear’s Song
 by Benjamin Chad
ages 5 – 8
Papa Bear is searching for Little Bear, who has escaped the den. Little Bear is following a bee because where there are bees, there is honey! When the quest leads both bears into the bustling city and a humming opera house, theatrical hijinks ensue, culminating in a deliciously harmonious reunion. Use this to sequence the series of events.

Where’s the Llama?
by Paul Moran, illustrated by Gergely Forizs
ages 6 – 10
A group of ten llamas in the Andes in Peru decide to see the world. Can you spot them in each of the world locations like Miami Beach, New York City’s modern art gallery, a fairground in Canada, a Cambodian jungle, an ice park in China, and more? Answers are in the back, plus more things to spot. We love the artwork in this hidden picture book!

Photo Puzzle Mania!

ages 6 – 12
These Highlights Hidden Picture books are gorgeous with all photographs, not illustrations. Whether you’re finding the difference or finding hidden objects, there are many brain-boosting activities in this colorful book series from Highlights.

Pierre the Maze Detective Coloring Book
ages 8 – 12
We did this coloring hidden picture book as a family activity after dinner for several weeks — it was a blast! We liked how it combined coloring with a search and find. If you don’t want to color, you can purchase full-color Pierre the Maze Detective books.

Where’s the Unicorn?
by Jonny Marx
ages 8 – 12
Can you find the hidden unicorns from Rainbow Valley around the city? If you’re like us and you love unicorns, this is the book for you.

Colossal Creature Count: Add Up All of the Animals to Solve Each Scene
 by Daniel Limon
ages 5 – 8
More than just a search and find book, in this book, kids must also use math skills — both adding and algebra. Algebra because you get the total of animals, so if your numbers don’t add up, you’ll have to figure out how many are missing. Isn’t this so cool? I’m impressed with the way Colossal Creatures makes learning so fun.

One of the best things about hidden picture books (also called seek-and-find and search-and-find books) is that the books are engaging and are fun ways to spend quality parent-child time.

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