Hard Riddles🗿 in 2023
People who enjoy riddles for the challenge prefer hard riddles, particularly those who have been solving riddles since childhood or want to keep their brain active.
I’m full of holes but strong as steel. What am I?
A man calls his dog from the opposite side of the river. The dog crosses the river without getting wet, and without using a bridge or boat. How?
What can you hold in your right hand but never in your left?
The answer is right there in front of you.
A murderer is condemned to death and he has the option to die in one of the following three rooms: a room full of raging fire, a room full of assassins with loaded guns, and a room full of lions who haven’t eaten in years. Which room should he choose?
Three different doctors said that Paul is their brother yet Paul claims he has no brothers. Who is lying?
I have many faces, expressions, and emotions, and I am usually right at your fingertips. What am I?
What begins with an “e” and only contains one letter?
What gets bigger the more you take away?
Good luck digging yourself out of this one.
How many letters are in the alphabet?
I am always hungry and will die if not fed, but whatever I touch will soon turn red. What am I?
What word in the dictionary is spelled incorrectly?
What can fill a room but takes up no space?
I have three feet, but I can’t stand without leaning. I have no arms to hold me up. What am I?
What ancient invention allows people to see through walls?
Only one color, but not one size,
Stuck at the bottom, yet easily flies.
Present in sun, but not in rain,
Doing no harm, and feeling no pain.
What is it?
I have cities, but not houses. I have mountains, but no trees. I have coasts, but no sand. What am I?
Think “bigger picture” with this one.
I am something people love or hate. I change people’s appearances and thoughts. If a person takes care of themself, I will go up even higher. Some people might want to try and hide me but I will show. No matter how hard people try I will never go down. What am I?
What has four fingers and a thumb but isn’t alive?
No, the answer is not “hand.”
There is a single-story blue house where everything is blue; the doors, windows, couch, television, kitchen, etc. are blue. What color is the carpet on the stairs in this house?
A man looks at a painting in a museum and says, “Brothers and sisters I have none, but that man’s father is my father’s son.” Who is in the painting?
What is there one of in every corner and two of in every room?
The more you take, the more you leave behind. What are they?
It can’t be seen, can’t be felt, can’t be heard, and can’t be smelt. It lies behind stars and under hills, And empty holes it fills. It comes first and follows after, Ends life, and kills laughter. What is it?
What bird do you associate with lifting weight?
What belongs to you, but everyone else uses it?
What can run but never walk, have a mouth but never talk, have a head that never weeps, and a bed that never sleeps?
What is it that given one, you’ll have either two or none?
What can go through glass without breaking it?
George, Helen, and Steve are drinking coffee. Bert, Karen, and Dave are drinking Pepsi. Following this pattern, is Elizabeth drinking coffee or soda?
Pay attention to the vowels.
Who has a neck and no head, two arms and no hands?
It can look pretty funny or wrinkly.
I speak without a mouth and hear without ears. I have no body, but I come alive with wind. What am I?
Don’t let the description of body parts throw you—the answer is definitely not a person or animal. Focus more on the “wind” to get to the answer.
What comes once in a minute, twice in a moment, but never in a thousand years?
Think less about the meaning of the words than the words themselves.
If you have me, you want to share me. If you share me, you don’t have me. What am I?
It’s something you share with friends.
I have a neck and no head, two arms and no hands? What am I?
C’mon, you know this one by now.
What two things can you never have for breakfast?
I have lakes with no water, mountains with no stone, and cities with no buildings. What am I?
It’s shorter than the rest but when you’re happy you raise it up like it’s the best. What is it?
Until I am measured, I am not known. Yet how you miss me, When I have flown. What am I?
A man is trapped in a room that contains only two exits. The first exit is constructed of magnifying glasses that fry anything that walks through when the sun is out and blazing hot. The second exit includes a fire breathing dragon that is bound and determined to kill. How does the man escape?
If a plane came crashing down on the border between Canada and America, where are the survivors buried?
A barrel of water weighed 60 pounds. Someone put something in it and now it weighs 40 pounds. What did the person add?
What has ten letters and starts with gas?
I belong in the month of December, but not in any other month. I am not a holiday. What am I?
It doesn’t have to do with a day or temperature…
With pointed fangs I sit and wait; with piercing force I crunch out fate; grabbing victims, proclaiming might; physically joining with a single bite. What am I?
I am four times as old as my daughter. In 20 years time I shall be twice as old as her. How old are we now?
The man who bought it doesn’t want it for himself. The man who buys it doesn’t buy it for himself. And the man who needs it doesn’t know he needs it. What is it?
What has only two words, but thousands of letters?
What has roots that no one sees and looms much taller than trees? Up it goes but yet it never grows; what is it?
If you eat me, my sender will eat you. What am I?
How is it possible to drop an egg onto a concrete floor without cracking it?
One day, a magician was boasting about how long he could hold his breath underwater. His record was 6 minutes. A kid that was listening said, “that’s nothing, I can stay underwater for 10 minutes using no equipment or air pockets!” The magician told the kid if he could do that, he’d give him $10,000. The kid did it and won the money. How?
Sometimes narrow, sometimes wide, wind or rain, I stay outside. Even if there’s heat or snow, from house to house I will still go. What am I?
I speak without a mouth and hear without ears. I’m invisible, but you can call for me. What am I?
One knight, a ninja, and a pirate were on a ship. The ship began to sink. The ninja and the pirate jumped into a lifeboat before the ship went underwater. Who died?
White bird, featherless. Flying out of paradise. Flying over sea and land. Dying in my hand. What is it?
Think you got it? You’re getting colder…
This belongs to you, but everyone else uses it.
Don’t get tripped up thinking this is an actual object…
You’re in a dark room with a candle, a wood stove, and a gas lamp. You only have one match, so what do you light first?
This one is obvious when you know what to look for.
A room contains a match, a kerosene lamp, a candle, and a fireplace. What do you light first?
If your uncle’s sister is not your aunt, what relation is she to you?
A woman shoots her husband and then holds him underwater for five minutes. Next, she hangs him but right after, they enjoy a nice dinner together. How is this possible?
Two girls were born to the same mother, on the same day, at the same time, in the same month, and in the same year, however, they’re not twins. How is this possible?
The more there is, the less you see. What am I?
How can the number four be half of five?
Nobody has ever walked this way. Which way is it?
A man runs away from home. He turns left but keeps running. After some time, he turns left again and keeps running. He later turns left once more and runs back home. Who was the man in the mask?
I have cities, but no houses. I have mountains, but no trees. I have water, but no fish. What am I?
One of these words does not belong: Which is it and why? Brawl, Carrot, Change, Clover, Proper, Sacred, Stone, Seventy, Swing, Travel.
It’s got nothing to do with order they are in
I come from a mine and am surrounded by wood. I help others to express themselves. What am I?
Thanks to texting and email, I don’t get used as much as I used to.
I have keys but no locks. I have space but no room. You can enter, but you can’t go outside. What am I?
If you’re like most modern workers, you spend a lot of time on this during the typical day.
butcher stands six feet and one inch tall and wears size 12 shoes. What does he weigh?
Pay close attention to the phrasing of the question—there’s a reason it didn’t ask, “How much does he weigh?”
What are the next three letters in this combination? OTTFFSS.
To figure this one out, think less about letters than numbers.
What can travel all around the world while remaining stuck in a corner?
It might also find itself in a collection.
If you drop me I’m sure to crack, but give me a smile and I’ll always smile back. What am I?
What goes through cities and fields, but never moves?
Lily is a lilypad in a small pond. Lily doubles her size each day, On the 20th day she covers the whole pond. On what day was Lily half the size of the pond?
What common English verb becomes its own past tense by rearranging its letters?
If a red house is made of red bricks, and a yellow house is made of yellow bricks, what is a greenhouse made of?
What has ten letters and starts with gas?
I can shave every day but my beard never changes. What am I?
What is it that no one wants, but no one wants to lose?
wo men are in a desert. They both have backpacks on. One of the guys is dead. The guy who is alive has his backpack open and the guy who is dead has his backpack closed. What is in the dead man’s backpack?
I can be long or can be short, I can be black, white, brown, or purple. You can find me the world over and I am often the main feature. What am I?
I am something people celebrate or resist. I change people’s thoughts and lives. I am obvious to some people but, to others, I am a mystery. What am I?
They can be harbored, but few hold water. You can nurse them, but only by holding them against someone else. You can carry them, but not with your arms. You can bury them, but not in the earth.
A woman shoots her husband, then holds him underwater for five minutes. Next, she hangs him. Afterward, they enjoy a lovely dinner. How?
I only lie down once in my life—when I die. What am I?
Who can finish a book without finishing a sentence?
When Billy’s asked how old he is, he replies, “In two years I will be twice as old as I was five years ago.” How old is he?
Just do the math.
Without a bridle or a saddle, across a thing I ride a-straddle. And those I ride, by help of me, though almost blind, are made to see. What am I?
Look closely and the answer should come into focus
My thunder comes before the lightning. My lightning comes before the clouds. My rain dries all the land it touches. What am I?
We could also add that you don’t want to be near me when I blow my top.
I’m everywhere and a part of everyone. I am at the end of space and time and existence itself. What am I?
Think more literal than metaphysical.
Which word in the dictionary is always spelled incorrectly?
The answer is right there in the question.
You measure my life in hours, and I serve you by expiring. I’m quick when I’m thin and slow when I’m fat. The wind is my enemy.
“Quick” does not mean that it is moving toward you
It’s best to put this coat on wet.
This one’s easy once you realize it’s not about an item of clothing.
How much dirt is in a hole that measures four feet by four feet by five feet?
Don’t let the specific numbers fool you—the answer would be the same no matter what the hole measured.
What word in the English language fulfills all the following criteria: The first two letters signify a male, the first three letters signify a female, the first four letters signify a great person, while the entire word signifies a great woman.
Think Wonder Woman…
George, Helen, and Steve are drinking coffee. Bert, Karen, and Dave are drinking soda. Using logic, is Elizabeth drinking coffee or soda?
When John was six years old he hammered a nail into his favorite tree to mark his height. Ten years later at age sixteen, John returned to see how much higher the nail was. If the tree grew by five centimeters each year, how much higher would the nail be?
Lighter than what I am made of, More of me is hidden Than is seen. What am I?
Which is heavier: a ton of sand or a ton of feathers?
ake one out and scratch my head, I am now black but once was red. What am I?
I am the beginning of the end of time and space that surrounds everything and every place. What am I?
What can fill an entire room without taking up any space?
The first two letters signify a male, the first three letters signify a female, the first four letters signify a great person, while the entire word signifies a great woman.
A man attending his mother’s funeral, sees a woman in another pew, and experiences love at first sight. He tries to find her but has no luck. A few weeks later, he kills his sister. Why does he kill his sister?
Two fathers and two sons come home from the mall. Yet when they arrive home, only three people get out of the car. How is this possible?
What English word retains the same pronunciation, even after you take away four of its five letters?
I exemplify a rare case where today comes before yesterday. What am I?
What is stronger than steel but can’t handle the sun?
How do eight eights add up to one thousand?
What word has kst in the middle, in the beginning, and at the end?
It can’t be touched and can’t be felt. It can’t be seen, or heard, or smelt. It lies behind stars and under hills, and any empty holes it fills. It comes early and follows after, ends life, and kills laughter. What is it?
It’s shorter than the rest, but when you’re satisfied, you bring it up. What is it?
What connects two people, but touches only one?
What has a neck but no head, two arms, and no hands?
You see a boat filled with people. It has not sunk, but when you look again you don’t see a single person on the boat. Why?
Focus on the word “single” to figure out the answer to this one.
I have only two words but thousands of letters. What am I?
“Letters” is the important clue to focus on here.
Turn me on my side, and I am everything. Cut me in half and I am nothing. What am I?
Consider the concept of shape.
What is so fragile that saying its name breaks it?
What can run but never walks, has a mouth but never talks, has a head but never weeps, has a bed but never sleeps?
What breaks yet never falls, and what falls yet never breaks?
The person who makes it has no need of it; the person who buys it has no use for it. The person who uses it can neither see nor feel it. What is it?
What does man love more than life, hate more than death or mortal strife; that which contented men desire; the poor have, the rich require; the miser spends, the spendthrift saves, and all men carry to their graves?
What can never be put in a saucepan?
Mr. Taylor has four daughters and each has a brother. In total, how many children does Mr. Taylor have?
I possess a halo of water, walls of stone, and a tongue of wood. Long I have stood; what am I?
If an electric train is moving north at 55 mph and the winds blowing east at 70 mph, which way does the smoke blow?
How can you throw a ball as hard as you can only to have it come back to you without it bouncing off of anything?
There are 6 sisters. Each sister has 1 brother. How many brothers are in the sister’s family?
People in poverty have this. If you eat this you will die. What is it?
You are my brother, but I am not your brother. Who am I?
What has ten letters and starts with gas?
Who spends the day at the window, goes to the table for meals, and hides at night?
He’s also not a particularly welcome dinner guest.
hat English word has three consecutive double letters?
This word actually refers to someone who loves numbers.
How is seven different from the rest of the numbers between one and ten?
Sort of the reverse of the previous riddle, this one tricks you by making you think that it’s a numbers question, when it’s actually about words.
What is able to go up a chimney when down but unable to go down a chimney when up?
You’re stuck in a room with no windows, doors, or vents to use to climb out. In the room with you is a light, a mirror, and a log of wood. How do you get out?
If all Wibbles are Criggles, all Borkins are Kwumblins, no Hoggles are Borkins, and all Criggles are Borkins, is it true that all Borkins are Criggles?
A man drove from New York City to Los Angeles in four days. At the end of his trip, he discovered that one of his tires had been punctured. How was he able to make the drive?
What is the capital in France?
I am laced twice in eternity and always within sight. What could I be?
What grows up while growing down?
First you eat me, then you get eaten. What am I?
The “you” in this instance is an animal.
When asked how old she was, Suzie replied, “In two years I will be twice as old as I was five years ago.” How old is she?
What walks on four feet in the morning, two in the afternoon, and three at night?
Mr. and Ms. Mustard have six daughters and each daughter has one brother. How many people are in the Mustard family?
Who is that with a neck and no head, two arms and no hands?
If eleven plus two equals one, what does nine plus five equal?
A is the brother of B. B is the brother of C. C is the father of D. So how is D related to A?
Don’t let all this talk of “brothers” and “father” might get you stuck thinking about male relatives.
Start With the Easy OnesStarting with the most difficult riddles could lead to disinterest or a sense of defeat, but many adults who enjoy hard riddles began solving riddles as children with easy riddles for kids. As children, these riddles provided a challenge and now as adults, they can share them with friends and family to try and stump them. Teens who enjoyed riddles as kids are more likely to enjoy harder riddles with assumptions and references they learned in school. Those who enjoy these will also appreciate the challenge of the hardest and even impossible riddles that only a select few can solve.
Many hard riddles are enjoyable and challenging for everyone, but finding the answer can be difficult, and some may need to look up the solution. Failing to solve a hard riddle does not indicate intelligence but may be related to how information is processed and extrapolated. These unique processes make individuals good or not good at solving hard riddles. The best hard riddles will require teamwork and multiple approaches to find the solution.
Start with easy riddles and gradually move up to the hardest ones over time. Hard riddles are designed to make the obvious answer seem wrong, and it may take years to solve them. Even if you can't solve them, hard riddles can still be fun to share with friends and learn about each other.
Riddles for Brain HealthStudies suggest that exercising the brain with challenging activities can improve and maintain brain health, boost memory, and retain cognitive function even in the senior years. Hard logic riddles can help engage multiple areas of the brain, keep the vocabulary fresh, and improve comprehension of written and spoken language, making them an excellent tool for brain training at any age.
Using riddles from childhood into adulthood can improve mental health, memory, and thought process, preventing depression and anxiety. It provides an opportunity to connect and interact with others, have fun and laughter which positively affects brain, mental, and physical health.