Some Of The Craziest Places People Have Played Chess


While chess games are typically played at home, online, in school, or in public parks – some players like to take the game to the extreme. With new technology including magnetic boards, it’s easy to play chess anywhere, and it may have even crossed your mind to play in a unique location too. Whether you are looking for inspiration or just for some entertainment, you are definitely going to want to check out some of the crazy places players have been photographed playing chess!




Water and chess are certainly not an expected combination, however players have competed in both the pool and the ocean in this fun mashup of activities.

Image from:

In August 2022, scuba diver Savins Puertas won an Underwater Chess Tournament in Spain against Jorge Fernandez Montoro. With an audience of fish and see life, this game was played 50 meters from shore, and at a depth of about 5 meters.

Savins Puertas holds onto underwater chess title in Spain - La Prensa Latina Media


Image from:

Then there’s an entire category of chess playing that takes place underwater called Diving Chess. Diving chess is played like normal chess only submerged underwater with a weighted and magnetized chessboard and pieces. Each player has the amount of time they can dive down and hold their breath to make their move. Once they make their move they can come up for air while their opponent makes theirs.

What is it? – Diving Chess

Players Face Off Underwater in Dive Chess Championships - YouTube


On Horseback

Every two years the town of Marostica, Italy, hosts a human chess game on horseback. Around 600 figures dress in medieval costumes including knights, fire-breathers, jugglers, and flag wavers to reenact a local legend game between Rinaldo d’Angarano and Vieri da Vallonara that took place in 1454.

Image from:

The Human Chess of Marostica, Italy | Weird Italy


On Rollercoasters

Playing on a high-speed roller coaster has been made possible by players sneaking in props and a lot of glue! There are some pretty amazing versions of the ‘chess on a roller coaster’ photo, and you can check out quite a few using the link below.

Image from:


In Outer Space

In 2008, Greg Chamitoff, a Canadian space station astronaut/flight engineer spent his free time while in orbit on his other favorite hobby, chess. While in space, Greg used a board specially made with pieces that attached with Velcro, to play against space centers around the world, including the K-3rd grade US Chess Championship Team. Due to his busy schedule, he was only allowed to make one move each day, so they game was certainly enjoyed for a while.

Image from:

Article on Universe Today


In the Boxing Ring

Chess boxing combines two extremes – physical and intellectual stamina. It was invented by the French comic book artist Enki Bilal, and was adapted by a Dutch performance artist named Lepe Rubingh. It has since grown into a competitive sport, and is gaining popularity in Germany, the UK, India, and Russia.

In chess boxing you can win a match with either a knockout in the ring, or with a checkmate on the board. Events are held in a standard boxing ring - including the chess rounds! For the chess rounds a table, board, and seating is moved in and out of the ring. Each match consists of 11 rounds, starting and ending with chess – six rounds of rapid chess, five rounds of boxing, and a 1 minute break in-between each. Each round lasts 3 minutes, and participants wear headphones during the chess rounds to block out distractions.

Image from:

You can learn more about chess boxing in this ESPN feature.



We would love to hear from you - have you ever played chess in a really unique location? If not, where is a unique place you would love to play?