The sun has made an appearance and in honour of National Picnic Week, it’s time to grab the hamper, dust down the blanket and embrace al fresco dining in London. Follow these top tips to have a picnic in paradise.
Equipment is key
We all know the most important part of any picnic is the food. A group trip to get supplies can be almost as fun as the picnic itself. Head down to Co-op or ASDA to get all the things you want to snack on during the day. Pack these in a hamper or rucksack and you’re good to go. Nothing can ruin a picnic quicker than an ant invasion or being uncomfortable. A good blanket is crucial to shield you from prickly grass and keep you and your pals comfortable for the whole day.
Set the scene
Once you’ve gathered all the necessary calories for your picnic, it’s time to find the perfect spot to settle down. Finding a good spot for a picnic can often be quite tricky. Below is listed some of the best places in London to have a picnic but thinking more practically, try and avoid being too close to roads and rivers. Roads are noisy and disruptive so will undoubtedly have a negative impact your picnic, and during the summer months flies love hanging around rivers. If the flies didn’t get the WhatsApp invite, don’t make it easy for them to crash the party.
While parks are public spaces, and everyone using the parks should be respectful of others, there is nothing quite like kicking back with your friends and some music. Either play music directly from your phone or bring a small Bluetooth speaker. If you haven’t got a playlist to match those chilled-out summer vibes, then below is perfect one for you!
If it’s a sunny day make sure you bring all the sunny day essentials to protect yourself so you can last all day long. SPF, sunglasses, a hat and plenty of water are all a good idea to prevent getting dehydrated or catching sun stroke. Also check the weather before you head out and bring a coat if it’s supposed to cool down or potentially rain (we live in London after all).
We are extremely lucky to have such a picturesque campus that is already the perfect spot for a picnic but if you fancy heading further afield for your picnic, here are our top picks:
Only a short walk away from campus, the largest of the Royal Parks provides a wealth of opportunities to find an Instagram-perfect picnic spot all to yourself.
Hopping on the 170 bus from Danebury Avenue and then a short walk gets you to Battersea Park, running alongside the River Thames. Grab a spot near to the river (beware of aforementioned insects) around sunset to witness the amazing Chelsea Bridge light up.
Hampton Court Palace
The beautiful outer grounds of Hampton Court Palace are free to explore. Head right at the entrance to discover the bank that stretches the length of the Palace. Catch the 85 from Medfield Street and swap at Kingston. Take advantage of the bus hopper fare and get the 111 or 216 for 5 minutes to be dropped off right at the gate!
Holland Park is a smaller park hidden in Kensington and Chelsea, not too far from Westfield London, with woodlands and gardens to boot. In this affluent area of London you may even spot someone famous. The 72 towards East Acton and then a walk will get you there.
Now this is the place to go if you fancy a picnic with a view. Despite being located just north of Regents Park, the travel is well worth it for the amazing views over Central London this provides. Head to Camden Town tube station and walk from there to catch the rays and the sights.
Don’t forget to leave your perfect picnic spot as the perfect picnic spot; clear up any mess made and always recycle where possible.
Happy Picnicing, Roey.