5 board games: travel even when you're at home

What's happening in the world right now may dampen our desire to travel and get away, but nonetheless it is still possible to get away from it all in a different way (and that's a good thing!). Remember our musical journey all over Europe and our list of animated films inspired by real places, as well as books to read and European flowers. This time, we are telling you all about board games! They are the perfect topic for this season to fill up the (rainy) weekends while you let your imagination travel. And then there are all the benefits - you get to develop your sense of observation, sharpen your strategic thinking, broaden your knowledge and strengthen your relationships.

Discover our top 5 board games so you can travel from your home: from the South of France to London via the old town of Ulm in Germany. Have fun!


1. Carcassonne

Type: A game of tiles and tactics / 2 to 5 players

Purpose of the game:Immerse yourself in the medieval atmosphere as you set out to conquer the land and towns of the South of France. It's up to you to devise the best strategy to impose your power and thwart your opponents' plans. The game of Carcassonne is based on the same principle as dominoes. The game is played around a board on which each player places tiles representing villages, churches, roads and fields. The players build a landscape and place their pieces while pursuing their own strategy. The player with the most wins the game.

Why we like it: The game is obviously a reference to Carcassonne, the magnificent city in the South of France, famous for its ramparts and fortifications. 

Mr Jack

2. Mr Jack

Type: Investigation and deduction game / 2 players 

Purpose of the game: Night covers the dimly lit alleyways with its dark mantle, and only a few areas are lit up by gaslight. Eight detectives have banded together to track down the elusive Jack the Ripper, who is hiding in their midst". This thrilling and addictive puzzle game demands great concentration and strategic acumen of you. Using successive deductions and putting the characters into the dark or the light, the investigating players must figure out on which identity the infamous Jack is hiding behind, and attempt to catch him. An intriguing plot involving the famous Jack the Ripper set in 19th century London.

Why we like it: Mr Jack is one of the few games where each player has different objectives. The Investigator needs to reveal the identity of Mr Jack and arrest him, as he wants to escape at any cost.


3. Ulm

Type: Game of management and tactics / 2 to 4 players

Purpose of the game: In the early 16th century, the city of Ulm in Germany was booming. Anyone looking to be successful in the city had to find favour with influential people. It's up to you to use your money, power and assets to put your stamp on the city. When the game starts, each player has Action tiles that they can use to collect money, move ships, buy a building, etc. to earn reputation points and ultimately win the game.

Why we like it: The game encourages travel and creates the desire to visit the charming city of Ulm in Southern Germany. Ulm makes an ideal destination for a romantic weekend. The old historic town centre is great for strolling around, not to mention climbing to the top of Ulm Cathedral (NB: in fact, the cathedral is actually just a church, but its impressive size means that people tend to refer to it as a cathedral).

Ticket to Ride

5. Tickets to Ride

Type: Positioning game / 2 to 5 players

Purpose of the game: Relive the golden age of railways and set out to conquer railways.  At the start of the game, each player needs to set their objectives they want to achieve (to create links between 2 towns). Setting these objectives is very important for the game, because if a player succeeds in achieving them, they will earn bonus points. If they don't, they will incur a penalty. This game has become a must-have for toy libraries, with its accessible gameplay, rapidly explained rules and the romantic, poetic world of 19th century railways.

Why we like it: Even if the game won't take you on a journey with its scenery, at least it has the merit of helping you to rediscover world geography with all the versions and add-ons it offers: Europe, France, London, Scandinavia, etc. 


5. iKNOW Mini - Journey in Europe

Type: General knowledge game / 2 to 4 players

Purpose of the game: Discover Europe in a different way with iKNOW Mini - Journey in Europe: 200 questions on European history, culture and geography. Answer the questions in as few clues as possible, and listen to your opponent's answers and betting on their answers to try and win some extra points. This general knowledge game also involves a bit of strategic thinking - knowing who to bet on, calculating the number of clues required, misleading your opponents, etc.

Why we like it:  Its practical, compact format can be played in addition to the classic iKNOW. You can revise your geographical knowledge, and you can also win extra points by placing the right bets on your opponents.