Make the most of the sunshine this summer and pack your picnic basket full of all your favourite summertime treats - it’s time to embrace the great outdoors. We’ve scoured the North for the most beautiful spots for you to lay down your picnic blanket and open a hamper.
1. River Dee, Chester
What better way to spend a lovely warm day in Chester, than to head to the banks of the River Dee and find yourself a secluded spot. Just a short walk from the bustling city centre, you can find a serene and relaxing space to enjoy some alfresco dining. Sit back and watch the pretty boats sail along the river, perfect for a lazy summers afternoon.
2. Talkin Tarn Country Park, Carlisle
Talkin Tarn Country Park is made up of 120 acres of luscious woodland. Set on the waters edge, it’s a perfect spot for those keen on water sports. Hire a sailing boat and go for a cruise on the tranquil Tarn. Explore the ancient woodlands before sitting down for a well-earned picnic lunch. This is one that’s great for a family adventure.
3. Fletcher Moss Botanical Gardens, Manchester
One for the naturists, Fletcher Moss Botanical Gardens is a countryside idyll just 20 minutes out of the energetic city centre of Manchester. Set in the heart of Didsbury, these botanical gardens are a beautiful setting for a mid-summer picnic. Expect to see lots of interesting and wonderful wildlife, from rare species of birds to vibrant colourful flowers and plants. It’s hard to believe this haven of paradise is so close to the city centre.
4. Humber Bridge Country Park
Overlooking the iconic Humber Bridge, this country park is a beautiful spot to lay down your blanket and indulge in an alfresco feast. Spend an afternoon in the meadow relaxing and watching the many butterflies fluttering around, you’ll feel like you’re lunching in a fairy-tale setting. Afterwards why not go and explore one of the many trails within the park. The Phoenix Sculpture Trail is a fun adventure, find the ten unique sculptures inspired by the special heritage of the area.
5. Walton Gardens, Warrington
A firm family favourite is Walton Gardens on the outskirts of Warrington. This picturesque setting is great for exploring with the kids, visit the children’s zoo where you can see the beautiful peacocks roaming around the green, Shetland ponies, parrots and many more animals. Take a leisurely stroll around the gardens and find a spot for the family to chill out in the sun and eat a glorious picnic feast.
6. Sefton Park, Liverpool
A much loved picnic spot amongst Liverpool locals, is the magnificent 200-acre Sefton Park. It’s a great place to go and explore when the weather is scorching. There is plenty to do; go and feed the swans on the boating lake, or chill in the sun by the bandstand before discovering the Grade II listed Victorian Palm House. After exploring the beautiful landscapes, cool off with an ice cream from the park’s cafe.
7. Avenham Park, Preston
A beautiful natural park with splendid views of the River Ribble, Avenham Park was designed by Edward Milner, an English landscape architect during the 1860’s. Wander around the Japanese Rock Garden and discover the unique ornamental plants, and beautiful water features, before finding a perfect picnic spot - there are plenty around this green space, just minutes from the city centre. From the riverside embankment to The Belvedere pavilion that overlooks the park and river, you will be spoilt for choice for places to enjoy a quintessential English picnic.