20 Best Puzzles For Adults

Are you ready to exercise your brain? Below you'll find a list of the 20 best puzzles for adults. This includes both puzzles that come in pieces and those that come in the form of books. Look no further for help deciding which type of puzzle suits your fancy. 

The puzzles listed below include jigsaw puzzles, 3D mechanical puzzles, board games, and a variety of other brain teasers that train your brain while also helping you pass the time during travel or simply survive through a stormy weekend stuck indoors. You will also find unique opportunities to add some brainy fun to your next party with family and friends.

Table of contents


Jigsaw Puzzles

Jigsaw puzzles are a relaxing activity for adults of all ages. They have been shown to improve concentration, problem-solving abilities, and spatial awareness, among other attributes. You can always enlist the help of family and friends, making jigsaw puzzles a unique bonding opportunity for players of all ages.

  • Playable by a wide age range
  • Can be completed over several days
  • Any number of players welcome

As you'll see in the section below, jigsaw puzzles come in a wide range of difficulty, with some puzzles being relatively straightforward, while others are a unique challenge that may require an effort lasting several days or even weeks to complete. 

Springbok 1000 Piece Cabin Evening Sunset

This 30" x 24" jigsaw puzzle displays a beautiful cabin sunset with a backdrop of pristine waters and a mountain. The company manufactures its jigsaw pieces from sustainably sourced soy-based inks and 100% recycled materials. In terms of difficulty, this puzzle is suitable for beginners, as the design is not as complex as some of the other puzzles listed below.

InGoooD Castle In The Night 1000 Pieces

For those looking for a little bit more of a challenge, there's the Castle In The Night 1,000 piece puzzle. The artwork displays an expansive castle and village below it. The pieces themselves are made out of wood and contain clues to help players solve the puzzle. 

Ravensburger If Fish Could Walk 2000 Piece

With the Ravensburger If Fish Could Walk Puzzle, every piece in the set takes a unique shape. This makes it much easier for players to solve the puzzle. The individual pieces are topped off with an anti-glare coating to improve the user experience.

Ravensburger At The Dog Park 500 Piece

This 500 piece Ravensburger At The Dog Park Puzzle is great for those searching for a puzzle with fewer pieces. Each jigsaw piece in the puzzle is unique, which also makes this a solid choice for beginners. The artwork theme, which is a dog park, can appeal to players both younger and older.

A2Play Solar System 1000 Piece

This solar system puzzle displays a scaled solar system, with the planets and their moons sized appropriately for the shot. The cardboard pieces are made out of recycled materials. This puzzle presents an excellent opportunity for parents to teach their kids about the solar system. This puzzle comes with a poster containing many facts about the solar system.

Perre Group Entering Constantinople 2000 Piece

Perre crafts beautiful jigsaw puzzles based on historical events. This particular puzzle harkens back to the days-old Constantinople. Each set comes with its box stand to make solving the puzzle easier. The pieces are made out of thick cardboard.

Most Challenging: Circular Jigsaw Puzzle

This Zodiac Horoscope Artwork puzzle displays artwork coming from the famous Italian painter Raphael. You'll find that the artwork is unique for a jigsaw puzzle. The 500-piece circular design also provides a sturdy challenge to any player. The pieces themselves are made out of recycled cardboard and are 0.09" thick each. 

3D Building Puzzles

If you liked playing with Legos as a kid, then you'll surely enjoy 3D Building puzzles. These have you constructing a structure using a set of pieces. It's a bit more of a challenge than a jigsaw puzzle, but can be quite rewarding for participants once it is completed. You may even hesitate to deconstruct the pieces, instead opting to proudly display your masterpiece.

CubicFun 3D Puzzle For Adults

CubicFun makes a bunch of different 3D puzzles for adults, with one of the most popular puzzles being a model of the Norte Dame de Paris Church.  The set comes in 293 interlocking pieces, designed for a detailed, authentic look. This would be a great activity for parents or grandparents to work on with their kids or grandkids.

The sturdy structure can be stood freely if you wish to proudly display your masterpiece after you have completed it. Even after the 3D puzzle has been completed, the building can be opened 180 degrees to display the magnificent structure's interior.

ROKR Marble Run Wooden Model Kit

If building pieces of machinery interests you, then you are encouraged to take a peek at the ROKR Wooden Water Wheel Coaster. In this kit, the player gets to construct their model roller coaster, which they can then run marbles through.

As long as the roller coaster has been set up correctly, the model becomes fully functional with a hand crank that you will install during the process. You can expect it to take 4-5 hours to complete this 254-piece mechanical puzzle. This puzzle is rated for ages 14 and up.

ROKR 3D Pendulum Clock

This 3D Pendulum Clock Puzzle presents another unique bonding opportunity for kids and their parents or grandparents. It'll also capture the interest of any adult looking for a mechanical puzzle, owing to its complexity. The set contains 166 wood pieces and can function as a clock for 3 hours. This mechanical puzzle is rated for ages 14 and older.

Puzzle Games For The Road

Jigsaw puzzles and 3D puzzles are great brain teasers, but they can't be brought out onto the road. In the following sections, you'll find the best way to keep you and your family mentally engaged while you are out on the road. The fun you'll have in solving these puzzles will help the time fly by until you reach your destination.

There are many health benefits in adding these to your routine, even if you're not waiting for your next flight. Staying mentally engaged is essential to brain health and also helps you wind down after a long day.

Sudoku Puzzles

Although they involve a bunch of numbers, Sudoku puzzles do not involve any arithmetic. Rather, it is a game of logic, where you must be able to recognize patterns. It's an excellent mental exercise for players looking to hone in on their problem-solving skills.

All you need to play with is a pencil and a pre-set Sudoku grid, making this an excellent puzzle for anyone in a waiting room or airport. The difficulty of these puzzles is varied, so every participant should be able to find a grid that suits their skill level. 

Here is how Sudoku works:

  • You start with a 9x9 grid separated into rows, columns, and boxes.
  • Each 9-square row, column, and box are filled with the numbers 1-9, with each digit being used only once.
  • Every puzzle comes with a few spaces already filled in.

Funster Sudoku Puzzle Book

The Funster Sudoku Puzzle Book contains over 1,000 puzzles, ranging from easy to hard in difficulty. The puzzles themselves are displayed in large print, making them easier to complete than the grids that have traditionally come in newspapers. Even after you make it through every puzzle in the book, you will have access to free bonus puzzles that can be downloaded online using a code from the book. 


Calcudoku looks similar to Sudoku, except it involves addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, thereby adding a new wrinkle to the puzzle that you don't see with other logic puzzles. Just like Sudoku, the puzzles vary in difficulty from very easy to extremely difficult.  You'll see a math operation at the top of the grid that will clue you in on the solution.

Logic Brain Games Calcudoku Puzzle Book

This Calcudoku book comes with 500 puzzles to solve, ranging from easy to difficult. The answers to each are provided at the back of the book. The 164 easy puzzles give plenty of chances for beginners to learn how to solve Calcudoku puzzles. 

Crossword Puzzles

There is perhaps no puzzle type more synonymous with waiting rooms and airports than the classic crossword puzzle. Players are provided with a set of clues corresponding to numbered boxes, where they will then need to use their internal word bank to find a solution that fits the grid.

There are many benefits to crossword puzzles, which can help your brain stave off the effects of aging. Research has shown that engaging in mentally challenging tasks like crossword puzzles in early to mid-adulthood can help make participants less susceptible to Alzheimer's later on.

Funster Crossword Puzzle Book For Adults

The Funster Crossword Puzzle Book For Adults has over 101 large-print easy puzzles for adults. It also comes with codes for buyers to download free word searches and sudoku puzzles as well. Funster also makes a similar book containing 101 challenging crossword puzzles for the more experienced players. 

Word Search Puzzles

Word searches are simple puzzles designed for players of all skill levels. The most challenging of these can feel like trying to find a needle in a haystack.  They can be deceivingly tricky to complete.

Research has shown that these puzzles are even effective at teaching participants a second language. Word searches allow players to sharpen their vocabulary skills and ability to concentrate. You can even reward yourself with surges of dopamine when you complete puzzles.

Funster Word Search Puzzles

The Funster Word Search Puzzle Book has over 500 puzzles for adults from cover to cover. There are 45 words hidden within each game. The paperback book's dimensions make it a suitable companion for airports, waiting rooms, and long car rides.

Tile-Matching Games

Tile-matching games are not much unlike jigsaw puzzles in that they require pattern recognition. The major difference here is the games shown below require the player to work at a much quicker pace. An advantage of these versus other board games is that there is not a steep learning curve, as is required for some board games.


Tetris has been called the world's most addictive puzzle game and is the first video game entry on this list. The game can be downloaded onto PCs, laptops, and any mobile device. The seven different playing pieces are called tetrads and exist as four interconnected squares of 7 different colors. The game can be downloaded onto the Amazon Fire Stick here.

How Do You Play Tetris?

The tetrads fall one at a time, from the top of the screen towards the bottom. Players must maneuver and rotate the tetrads to fit them together. Once a horizontal line is filled with matching tetrads, the entire line disappears. If the player fails to fill horizontal lines, the tetrads stack up towards the top of the screen until the game ends when there is no more room for the pieces that continue to fall from the top.


There are many different types of domino games, so there's a good chance that you've played a game or two under rules different from the standard rules.

The object of the game is to match tiles of the same number of dots, also known as "pips." Each player draws seven tiles from a face-down pile at the beginning of the game. If players don't have any matching tiles in their hands, they must continually pick up tiles from the boneyard pile until they find one that can be played. Here you can find a set of dominoes that comes in a special leatherette case.


Tri-Ominos is a unique take on the traditional game of Dominoes. The playing tiles are triangles containing numbers at each point. Players score points by matching the three-sided playing pieces. Bridges and hexagons offer unique scoring opportunities that you wouldn't have with a standard game of Dominoes. Figuring out which tile goes where is not unlike trying to solve a jigsaw puzzle.

Logic Puzzles

Logic puzzles offer the player a chance to challenge their brain using text-based clues. They can be completed over any duration of time, but if you're the competitive type, you may look to beat the average anticipated time displayed alongside the puzzle.

Puzzle Baron Logic Puzzles

The Puzzle Baron Book Of Logic Puzzles contains more than 200 pages of grid-based logic puzzles between its covers. Players are presented with a backstory and a list of clues so that they may deduce the answer.

Here is an example of one of the problems:

"Five skydivers are attempting a difficult maneuver. For the trick to work, the skydivers, wearing different-color jumpsuits, must jump at different heights and get into position while in free-fall. Using only the clues provided, determine the jump height, suit color, and order each skydiver should jump." 

There are many other conundrums like the one above in the book. Information regarding each problem's difficulty is displayed, including how much time it should take to reach a solution.

Board Puzzles

Perhaps you are looking for a competitive puzzle involving multiple participants. These board games are a must for any family event:


Scrabble is a word puzzle with its own unique set of rules. It is a unique combo of board games and puzzles, since players must combine their knowledge of vocabulary with a strategy that nets them the most points per word. It is possible to spell a complicated word and still not score very many parts.

The scoring process is what makes Scrabble so much more appealing to many players than the standard crossword puzzle. The victors are often the ones who can figure out how to best take advantage of unique scoring opportunities such as triple word squares and high-scoring letters such as Q, Z, and J.

Escape Room The Game: Puzzle Adventures

This is a combination of an escape room game and a jigsaw puzzle, all in one box. Players solve riddles to gain puzzle pieces to unlock new rooms. You must complete five separate puzzles to beat the game, which is set in a mansion. 

Here is the backstory of the mission: a security alarm is blaring at a mansion. You are playing the role of a rookie police officer after discovering a murder scene. You are horrified to find out that all the doors are locked from the mansion. The only way that you can escape this ordeal is by solving the puzzles. This game is rated for ages 16 and up.

Final Thoughts

What kind of puzzle is best for adults? In the sections above, you've found 20 of the best puzzles that are designed to challenge adults. This includes jigsaw puzzles, 3D building puzzles, tile-matching games, classic brain teasers, and some unique brain challenges for the road. 

Research has shown that by engaging the brain, you may be able to stave off the effects of mental aging. Puzzles also offer participants a unique and fun way to wind down after a workweek, since puzzle sessions have been shown to reward the mind with healthy surges of dopamine.

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