How to Make a Box Maze

There are two types of box mazes. The big maze is a maze created by the arrangement of large boxes. The small maze is a maze created inside a cardboard box usually for rolling a marble through the maze design. Making both mazes starts by creating the maze design on paper. The maze should be carefully thought out based on the age of the person trying to solve the maze. It should have dead ends to make it fun.

Draw a maze on 1/4-inch graph paper. Fill in a full square to represent a closed box. Leave one or two lines open to indicate a box you can crawl through. Create long passages that go nowhere or loop back on themselves in a confusing way. This type of maze is designed for crawling through.

Start building the maze at the entry door and create the maze so that it ends at another door. The boxes you use should be large enough for the largest person participating to crawl through easily. A large person should be able to turn around inside the box.

Position the open end of the box in the doorway with the flaps out to each side to block the rest of the doorway opening. Tape the flaps to the door trim to hold the box in place.

Follow your maze plan and position the next box against the first. Cut an opening in the side to create a door or open the back flaps to create a pass through. Tape the flaps or doors to the second box to allow as little light between the boxes as possible. Every fourth box cut small roof holes to allow light into the maze. These should be too small to stick your head through.

Assemble and tape the maze together all the way to the goal doorway. Create sticks with small ribbon flags for each player to carry. The person who creates the maze should have a chair in the room where they can see the maze clearly. As the players move through the maze they can stick their flag through a light hole showing where they are if they get stuck, and the maze master can give them clues to move forward.

Find a large shallow cardboard box. Box lids are a good choice.

Cut plywood to fit the inside dimensions of the cardboard box. Draw a grid of squares on the plywood using a ruler and marker. The squares must be larger than the game marble. All of the grid squares should be the same size and shape.

Nail large-headed, 2-inch nails into each spot where the grid lines cross and along the outside edges. Apply construction adhesive to the back of the plywood and attach the plywood to the inside of the cardboard box. Allow the glue to dry for 4 hours.

Spray the inside of the cardboard box, the nails and the plywood with white spray paint and allow the paint to dry for 4 hours.

Look at a maze you like or draw your own on 1/4 inch graph paper. Locate your beginning spot and create the maze by stretching large, thick rubber bands around the nails in the shape of the maze. Keep the rubber bands close to the plywood so that the marble cannot escape under the bands. Mark the beginning and ending of the maze with coloured push pins. Play the maze by placing the marble on the start spot. Two people pick up the box and tilt the box together to try to send the marble through the maze to the goal. The maze can be changed quickly for new games simply by moving the rubber bands and push pins.


A good maze can provide hours of fun and laughter and usually the elements of the maze can be moved around into new forms many times before the maze time is over.

Things You'll Need

  • 1/4-inch graph paper
  • Ruler
  • Large boxes
  • Utility knife
  • Box tape
  • Ribbons
  • Sticks
  • Cardboard box
  • Plywood
  • Nails and hammer
  • Construction adhesive
  • White spray paint
  • Large rubber bands
  • Marble
  • Push pins
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About the Author

F.R.R. Mallory has been published since 1996, writing books, short stories, articles and essays. She has worked as an architect, restored cars, designed clothing, renovated homes and makes crafts. She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley with bachelor's degrees in psychology and English. Her fiction short story "Black Ice" recently won a National Space Society contest.