“Escape from the USSR” Spy Game

The Idea

To allow participants to go back 30 years into the past and learn or remember about the era of soviet occupation and this history that isn’t so far past us;– To include the unique Csar era structures, all around the town, in the tourism flow. If not pointed out in context, these monuments to the past often go unnoticed and unappreciated. Game takes place in Northern forts;– To provide the opportunity for participants to actively get involved – to think, make decisions, help their peers, feel the emotions, run, hide… a combination that we don’t often experience in our daily modern consumer-driven lives…

The Game

Work as a team to cross a number of obstacles, find a friend who is not able to get to safety alone and get them and your team to safety at the submarine.The team works on the principle of “all for one and one for all!” The most important thing about the game is teamwork, helping one another and providing a shoulder to those in need. In the Soviet border zone it is vital to be silent and move unnoticed and in secrecy. If one of the team members is noticed by a border guard, an alarm will sound and the operation will be considered a failure and incomplete.

Approximate duration 1,5 hours.


The game is open to anyone over the age of 7 years – if parents are present, it might be possible for younger children to escape as well.If participants feel that it would be uncomfortable or unpleasant to climb out a first floor window, it may be better to choose a calmer, more peaceful activity – in this case, we can offer guided lantern-lit tours of the underground labyrinth at the Northern Fort. Please come to the game with comfortable and simple clothing. Since we will also provide outerwear from our own collection, you may not want to wear your best suit or wedding dress which could get dirty or damaged… And please think about your shoes! We recommend that you wear old sneakers or boots that you won’t be sorry to get muddy or wet if the situation arises…If participants suffer from asthma, claustrophobia or other disorders that may affect performance in the game, we ask that the organizers be informed in advance.Before the game begins, each participant is asked to sign a waiver form that acknowledges that they are responsible for their own safety, are not under the influence of drugs or alcohol and will care for the supplies and equipment provided during the game.


Adults 12 EUR
Schoolchildren, students, seniors 9 EUR

Min price for group (6-10 pax) – 120  EUR

Escape from the USSR is for groups (10-40 people). Please call in advance to reserve your group. Phone: +371 26369470, or by email: info@karosta.lv

History and background

The game takes place in the former Union of Socialist Soviet Republics (USSR on the border zone which during that time was strictly controlled. Each evening, the beaches were raked so that in the morning the footprints of anyone trying to escape would be visible for the guards to see.Young people and foreigners might find it hard to fully grasp the idea that for soviet citizens to legally get out of the USSR was almost impossible. For those who could not accept living under the Soviet regime, all sorts of creative ideas came to mind to illegally escape the USSR. But for the most part, these attempts were unsuccessful.The last known escape attempt from Liepāja took place in 1984 with coordination from LCTAG* “Helsinki-86” founder Raimonds Bitenieks. On a windy night, two brave souls and their teenage children pushed a boat into the sea at the end of Pērkones iela and sailed forth into the free world. The course was supposed to take them to Gotland, but destiny thought otherwise. The waves on the open sea were too high for the little boat which was tossed and flung around like an eggshell. Water constantly barraged the boat and flooded the boat’s motor. The children had to continually bail water out of the tiny vessel and the situation became critical. While trying to revive the flooded motor, Raimond’s friend was hurled against the edge of the boat by the force of the storm and broke his hand. But despite all this, the small group struggled forward and did not lose their nerve. They reach neutral waters and the refugees grasped at their unwavering hope that a Swedish ship might find and take them on. But it happened a bit differently. In the morning at reveille, the soviet border guards noticed the footprints in the sand and sounded the alarm. Western life and dreams were replaced by KGB** interrogation and soviet prison cells.

* The Latvian Human Rights Group “Helsinki-86” was founded by Linards Grantiņš, Raimonds Bitenieks and Mārtiņš Bariss in the summer of 1986 in Liepāja.

** State Security Committee (Russian)