Corn mazes are a sign that cider, pumpkins, and leaf peeping are about to take over the season. But not all such produce puzzles are worth the drive, apple cider donuts or not. There are kiddo versions where you can see over the hedges to the end, and you proceed to walk there in about 90 seconds. And then there are the big ones—the ones where you feel like you’re in a true labyrinth, where there’s actual thinking and choices involved and maybe even a brief moment of panic (before you realize no minotaur is chasing you and you can, in fact, just leave whenever you want).
Many of these intricate mazes are custom designed into jack-o-lantern patterns, flowers, even dragons—whatever idea is shaped into fruition. Some corn mazes are open after dark and others have you looking for clues or solving puzzles all while trying to reach the end—so that hopefully you’re not still there after dark if you didn’t intend to be. Wherever you are in the US, here’s where to get lost.
Claiming to be the longest maze in New England, the 24-acre Big Maze is advertised as more of a “hike.” Seriously, wear good shoes, bring water, and consider taking snacks; it can take two—even three—hours to get through this one, with records just topping a little over one hour. This maze is for the committed.
There’s plenty to find along the way, including bridges, lookout towers, big bells, a ship, and more. If it all gets to be too much, there’s an Emergency Exit trail, for when you need a break or have to use the bathroom. Plus, workers walk around and offer tips if you decide to cave in and ask. As an alternate route, the shorter Scenic Maze provides similar spots without the long stretch. Hurry though, as this maze closes on October 15.
This 21-acre cornfield has four different mazes with corresponding games where participants find clues at hidden checkpoints to solve a mystery. One is for children, but the other three offer more of a challenge, with a combined total of eight miles of trails and 18 checkpoints. On certain dates, the checkpoints offer wine and cider tastings, which will surely help your navigation skills if not your confidence in your navigation skills. This year’s theme is “Pinocchio” and it usually takes over an hour to complete the entire thing.
This farm near St. Augustine has a nine-acre maze that’s broken down into four phases. At the entrance, there’s the option of filling out a “passport,” a form of 10 questions that will help guide you through the maze. Phase one and two take around 15-30 minutes to navigate, with the first phase being slightly shorter for the directionally challenged. Phase three and four are their “kiddie” mazes featuring the story of Jack and The Cornstalk and The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin on large storyboards.
The Maize at Sherman Farm has 12 acres of designed pathways to confound even those with the best sense of direction. There’s more to find than just corn here, though. You can play games including a Farm Scene Treasure Hunt, Monster Mystery, and Cornundrums (corny riddles to solve). There are three phases in the Maize, one for every ability. There’s even a new, interactive GPS map to help you to find your way.
Right outside of Boise, the Lowe Family Farmstead’s annual corn creation is a “MAiZE” unto its own. Each year, the family announces a new design, and the 2023 version is called “Land That I Love.” Carved into 183 acres of corn and split into two phases, this year’s design is fully Americana, with a flag of the United States. There’s a mini maze for children set in the same cornfield, but much shorter and easier to navigate.
This Smithsonian-affiliated interactive history path is marking fall 2023 with a 22,160-foot maze featuring three different adventure paths catering to maze-goers of all ages. You can watch a scintillating teaser on YouTube of its making. In the first option, visitors’ wits can be put to the test with a puzzle maze that takes up to an hour or more to complete. The Kids’ Maze is a shorter path for young ones. And lastly, the after-dark Haunted Maze draws inspiration from the region’s ghost stories and legends. There’s also a Headless Horseman experience that’s open throughout October.
Starting their maze in 2001 with a design in the shape of a giant piece of popcorn, Treworgy Family Orchards’ 2023 edition has a tractor theme to celebrate 40 years of farming. There’s a special map with riddles to solve as you visit different “stations” within. When you complete the puzzle and bring your ticket to the cafe, you’ll receive a free small vanilla, chocolate, or twist soft-serve ice cream cone. And be sure to stake your claim in the corn maze’s “Hall of Fame.” Family-friendly night events invite visitors to bring flashlights on the evenings of October 20, 21, 27, and 28.
Around a half-hour from Rochester, this farm has New York state’s longest-running corn maze. It also boasts an evening escapade called the Moonlight Maze, which challenges visitors to navigate the five-acre labyrinth without any lights. Make it a group outing by ordering wood-fired pizzas, food from the farm’s grill, and beer and wine from their on-site winery. Groups of 10 or more can rent a private campfire, which includes a picnic table, benches, extra fire wood, and a fire attendant. During the day, you can visit the Amazing Maize Maze as part of the farm’s Fall Festival Barnbuster ticket special.
If you need some help getting through this farm’s “Bee A-Maized” themed corn maze, you can find it through their “Maze Masters” who are on hand to get you back on track. Designed by Don Franz and the American Maze Company, the miles of paths weave over a five-acre cornfield into the image of a gigantic bee hive.
Color-coded levels allow you to go at your own pace. Yellow trail markers guide you on an easy and quick trip along the outside edge of the maze. An intermediate level can be done using orange clues that involve more problem solving, or go for the difficult level via red markers that wind through the entire map and provide “Kernels of Knowledge” along the way. In the evenings, flashlight mazes run Fridays and Saturdays until the maze’s closing on November 5.
About 90 minutes outside of Chicago, this farm’s corn maze is actually created out of four smaller mazes, each with its own dedicated in-and-out path. Together they total nine to ten miles of trail winding through 28 acres. There are multiple checkpoints throughout, as well as three bridges that will help you find your bearings and pretend to be good at reading maps. Also, there is a perimeter path surrounding the entire maze and no dead ends. This year’s theme is “30 years of Jurassic Park,” which showcases familiar scenes from the movie alongside a giant T-Rex.
In operation since 1880, Nelson’s Pumpkin Patch recently unveiled their 2023 corn maze, inspired by the North Dakota state logo and spread over 10 acres. In addition to a kind of haunted house experience called the “Gruesome Granary,” there’s also a Corn Cannon, where you can shoot off three cobs for a dollar, or step up your game at the more intimidating Pumpkin Blaster. You can also find a “Three Little Racing Pigs” straw maze designed for little corn maze explorers in training. The farm is open every day through October 27.
Treinen Farm’s owner Angie Treinen spends months collecting ideas and sketching designs before choosing a maze’s theme, and this year, it’s “To All the Good Dogs,” featuring a loving canine at its center. At the start, participants are given a map—that’s mostly blank. The missing pieces are in seven different mailboxes scattered throughout the maze that will help you find your way out. Don’t worry, you’re also given a super-secret completed map that is stapled shut, for use in case of emergency. Visitors can turn in their unopened complete map for a candy prize after successfully completing the maze.
Each fall, this long-standing farm puts together a Fall Festival with a 12-acre corn maze shaped into a different design every year. There are 12 hidden checkpoints with trivia, as well as a Maze QR code that will help you figure out your completion time. Top times are posted on FaceBook throughout the season.
Virginia’s largest corn maze spreads across 34 acres and includes four trails of varying difficulty. The time needed to get through the trails varies from 30 minutes for the easiest to three hours for the most difficult. On select dates, the corn maze stays open after dark, and guests are encouraged to bring a flashlight to make their way through the maze. In addition to the corn maze, there is an eight-acre pumpkin patch with 40 different varieties.