50 Riddles For College Students

Feeling that pre-exam pressure?

Textbook overload got your brain fried?

Don’t worry, fellow scholars, there’s a cure for the academic blues (besides a nap, which is always a good option). It’s time to exercise those mental muscles in a different way – with riddles!

Yep, riddles.

Those brain teasers that combine a little wit with a lot of thinking.

They’re a perfect way to take a mental break, challenge yourself, and maybe even impress your friends with your impressive problem-solving skills (who doesn’t love a little know-it-all moment?).

Let’s check them out.

Riddles For College Students

  1. You find a cabin deep in the woods. Inside, there are two dead bodies on the floor. There’s no sign of forced entry, violence, or any other people around. How did they die?

  2. A man is found dead in a locked room with a puddle of water and a piece of metal. There are no windows, and the only door was locked from the inside. How did he die?

  3. Two men are found dead in a desert. They have a pack of matches and an unopened bottle of water with them. How did they die?

  4. A man is found dead in his car. The windows are up, the doors are locked, and there’s no sign of foul play. However, there’s a hole in the car. How did he die?

  5. Three people visit an island and find a pile of coconuts. They agree to split them equally the next morning. During the night, each person sneaks out separately and takes one-third of the coconuts, discarding one coconut each time to make the division even. In the morning, they split the remaining coconuts equally. How many coconuts were there originally?

  6. You are in a room with three light switches, each corresponding to one of three lightbulbs in the next room, which you cannot see into. You can only enter the next room once. How can you determine which switch corresponds to which bulb?

  7. A man lives on the 10th floor of a building. Every day, he takes the elevator to the ground floor to go to work. When he returns, he takes the elevator to the 7th floor and walks the rest of the way up, except when it’s raining. Why?

  8. Four people need to cross a bridge at night. They have one flashlight and can’t cross without it. The bridge can only hold two people at a time. Each person walks at a different speed: 1 minute, 2 minutes, 5 minutes, and 10 minutes. What is the quickest time they can all get across?

  9. Two people eat exactly the same meal. One dies, but the other lives. The food was not poisoned. How is this possible?

  10. A bookkeeper mistakenly wrote a purchase amount as $72 instead of $27. If the error went unnoticed and the total balance is correct, where did the missing $45 go?

  11. A plane crashes exactly on the border of two countries. Where do they bury the survivors?

  12. A man dies and leaves a will stating that a specific room in his house should not be opened until one year after his death. When it’s opened, they find a large sum of money. How did he know there would be money there?

  13. An explorer finds an island inhabited by two tribes: one always tells the truth, and the other always lies. He meets two inhabitants – A and B. A says, “B is a liar.” What tribe does A belong to?

  14. At a bar, four friends ordered a soda. Three drank their sodas fast and died. The one who drank slowly survived. All drinks were poisoned. How did the survivor live?

  15. A car without any mechanical problems stops abruptly on a country road without running out of fuel. There were no obstacles or other vehicles involved. Why did it stop?

  16. A man goes into a library and asks for a book. The librarian hands him a book, leading to the man’s arrest. What did he ask for?

  17. A man was murdered in his office. The suspects are Peter, Julie, Jason, Molly, and Brian. Written on a calendar with blood were numbers 6, 4, 9, 10, 11. Who is the murderer?

  18. A woman shoots her husband, then holds him underwater for over five minutes. Next, she hangs him. Right after, they go out for a lovely dinner. How is this possible?

  19. A man tells his friend, “I have two children. One is a boy born on a Tuesday.” What are the odds he has two boys?

  20. You’re trapped in a cave with two doors. One leads to certain death, and the other to freedom. You can ask one question to the guard at one door. One guard always lies, and the other always tells the truth. What question do you ask?

  21. A ship is anchored at a port. Its ladder is hanging down with its bottom rung at the water’s surface. The rungs are one foot apart, and the tide rises at 12 inches per hour. How long before three rungs are submerged?

  22. A book has 1,000 pages, numbered from 1 to 1,000. How many digits have been used to number the pages?

  23. Two chess masters played five games of chess. Each won the same number of games, and there weren’t any ties. How is this possible?

  24. A vase is broken, and three people are questioned. Alex said he didn’t break it. Sam said he didn’t break it. Charlie said Alex broke it. Only one is telling the truth. Who broke the vase?

  25. A farmer died, leaving 17 cows to his three sons. In his will, the eldest son gets half, the middle son a third, and the youngest son a ninth. How did they divide the cows without killing any?

  26. A woman reports her expensive necklace stolen. The suspects are the gardener, the maid, the cook, and the son. The necklace was found in the soup. Who stole it?

  27. A stamp collector has a rare stamp that disappears from a locked room. The room has no windows and only one door, which was under constant surveillance. How was the stamp stolen?

  28. A photographer goes to a secluded beach to capture sunrise photos. He finds an unconscious man with no footprints around him. How did the man get there?

  29. A car is found in a field with no tire tracks around it. The doors are locked, and a man is found dead inside. How did the car get there?

  30. A boat crashes on a deserted island. There are several survivors, but no casualties. A month later, a rescue team finds no one on the island. How is this possible?

  31. An employee at a mint factory is accused of making a mistake that led to flawed currency being circulated. However, he has a solid alibi for the entire week. How did he do it?

  32. A digital lock uses a four-digit code, which is the same as the number of squares on a chessboard. What is the code?

  33. An egg is dropped from a 20-foot building and doesn’t break. How is this possible?

  34. A painting is stolen from a gallery; the thief left no fingerprints or evidence. The only clue is a set of tire tracks outside. How did they steal the painting?

  35. A train leaves at 8:00 PM from New York to Boston and another at 8:00 PM from Boston to New York. The journey takes 4 hours. Do the trains meet at midnight?

  36. You must cross a river that’s home to crocodiles. You don’t have a boat, but you see a sign that says the crocodiles are at a meeting. How do you cross?

  37. A ship sinks with valuable cargo. Everyone is saved, but the cargo is lost. A few days later, the cargo is found floating. How is this possible?

  38. In a room, if you add the number of corners to the number of square feet on the floor, you get the total number of years in a century. How many corners does the room have?

  39. A man lives on the 10th floor of a building. Every day, he takes the elevator to the ground floor to go to work. When he returns, he takes the elevator to the 6th floor and walks the rest of the way up, except when it’s raining or when others are in the elevator. Why?

  40. A hiker finds a dead body in the forest with a backpack nearby. Inside the backpack is a sealed envelope. The hiker doesn’t open it but knows what’s inside. How?

  41. A woman receives a call at midnight, but it’s not a wrong number, a prank, or an emergency. Why did the phone ring?

  42. A car is found in the middle of a deserted island. There are no roads or bridges connecting to the island. How did the car get there?

  43. A submarine sinks in shallow waters. The crew survives but can’t escape. Rescue teams can’t reach them for several days. How do they survive?

  44. A rope burns from one end to the other in 60 minutes. How can you measure 45 minutes using the rope?

  45. A famous painting is reported missing from a locked gallery. The frame is still hanging, and there are no signs of a break-in. How was the painting stolen?

  46. You hear an echo that returns to you in 2 seconds. How far away is the reflecting surface?

  47. A hiker gets lost and encounters two paths. One leads to safety, the other to danger. Two siblings, one who always lies and one who always tells the truth, guard the paths. What question does the hiker ask to find the safe path?

  48. A clock chimes 6 times at 6 o’clock, 12 times at 12 o’clock. How many times will it chime at midnight?

  49. You have a 3-gallon jug and a 5-gallon jug and need to measure exactly 4 gallons of water. How do you do it?

  50. An apple hangs from a tree branch. No one touches it or cuts it, but it disappears. How?


  1. They died in a plane crash. The “cabin” was part of a small airplane.

  2. He died of hypothermia. The metal was part of a broken heater, and the water was from the melted ice.

  3. They died in a hot air balloon crash. The matches and water were part of their emergency supplies.

  4. He died from a golf ball hitting the car, creating the hole and causing a fatal injury.

  5. There were originally 27 coconuts.

  6. Turn on the first switch, wait a few minutes, turn it off, and then turn on the second switch. Enter the room: the bulb that’s on corresponds to the second switch, the warm bulb to the first, and the off and cool bulb to the third.

  7. He’s short and can’t reach the 10th-floor button unless he uses an umbrella on rainy days.

  8. The quickest time is 17 minutes.

  9. One of them ate slowly, and during that time, a deadly bacteria in the food multiplied to lethal levels.

  10. The bookkeeper’s error didn’t create or lose any money. The accounts would still balance.

  11. Survivors are not buried.

  12. The room contained a safety deposit box that matured to a large sum over time.

  13. A belongs to the tribe that tells the truth. If B were a truth-teller, A’s statement would create a paradox.

  14. The poison was in the ice. Drinking slowly, the survivor’s ice didn’t have time to melt.

  15. The car was a toy car being pushed by a child, who stopped pushing.

  16. He asked for “a book on how to make bombs.”

  17. Julie. Each number corresponds to the first letter of months. Julie is the fourth month, April.

  18. She shot him with a camera, then developed the photo in a dark room before hanging it to dry.

  19. The odds are 13/27. The specific mention of “born on a Tuesday” introduces additional combinations.

  20. Ask either guard, “What would the other guard say is the door to death?” and then choose the opposite door.

  21. The ladder will rise with the ship, so the rungs will never submerge.

  22. 2,892 digits.

  23. They were not playing against each other.

  24. Sam is telling the truth. So, Alex or Charlie broke it. Since Charlie claims Alex did, and only one is truthful, it must be Charlie.

  25. The eldest son gets 9 cows, the middle son 6 cows, and the youngest son 2 cows. This sums up to 17.

  26. The cook. He could have hidden the necklace in the soup to avoid suspicion.

  27. The stamp was stuck to the inside of the door. When the door was opened, it was concealed behind it.

  28. The man fell from the sky (e.g., a skydiver whose parachute didn’t open).

  29. The car was dropped from a helicopter.

  30. The “survivors” were part of the rescue team, who arrived later and left before the second team.

  31. The employee had programmed a machine to create the flawed currency remotely.

  32. The code is “2048” (64 squares in total, each contributing to multiple larger squares).

  33. The egg was dropped from ground level.

  34. The painting was painted on the road; the tire tracks are over it.

  35. No, they do not meet at midnight. Each train will have completed its journey by midnight.

  36. You can cross the river since the crocodiles are not there.

  37. The cargo was buoyant or in watertight containers.

  38. The room has 4 corners. (100 years in a century – 100 square feet = 4 corners)

  39. The man is too short to reach the buttons higher than the 6th floor unless he uses an umbrella or someone else presses the buttons.

  40. The envelope is addressed to the police and marked as “evidence.”

  41. It was a scheduled alarm or reminder set by the woman herself.

  42. The car was air-dropped or transported by boat for a film or scientific project.

  43. The submarine was still partially above water, or they had access to an air pocket.

  44. Light the rope from both ends and from one end of a second rope. When the first rope burns out (30 minutes), light the other end of the second rope.

  45. The painting was painted directly on the wall, and only the frame was added.

  46. Sound travels approximately 340 meters per second, so the reflecting surface is 340 meters away.

  47. Ask either sibling, “Which path would your sibling say leads to safety?” and take the opposite.

  48. It will chime 12 times.

  49. Fill the 5-gallon jug, use it to fill the 3-gallon jug, leaving 2 gallons in the 5-gallon jug. Empty the 3-gallon jug and transfer the 2 gallons to it. Fill the 5-gallon jug again and use it to top off the 3-gallon jug, leaving exactly 4 gallons in the 5-gallon jug.

  50. The apple was eaten by a bird or an animal.
50 Riddles For College Students

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