The Famous Five, the Wind in the Willows, Women in Love – as every author knows, no scene depicts a break in the British countryside as much as the perfect picnic. What could be better than a basket filled with delicious treats and a picturesque spot, with birds singing and babbling brooks? We’ve put together our top 10 secret picnic spots for you to discover this summer.
1. Family fun in Cornwall
As family activities go, a picnic is one of the best. Just a short distance from Deerpark is the beautiful Golitha Falls, a peaceful walk through the woodlands along the banks of the River Fowey.
There’re a number of places where children can paddle in the river, and there are many old structures to explore. And as there are no designated picnic spots, you’re free to choose your own, in sight of the tumbling waterfall.
2. Undiscovered peace in Hampshire
Explore Barton Meadows Nature Reserve, a new wildflower meadow nature reserve begun in 2017 – and therefore quietly undiscovered by the main tourist track. The public paths are dotted with benches, giving you plenty of places to pick for a peaceful picnic with beautiful views of the Hampshire countryside. If you’re looking for privacy near Blackwood Forest, this is the spot for you.
3. Woodland dells in Norfolk
You don’t have to go too far from your cabin at Thorpe Forest to find a picturesque picnic spot – nearby Thetford Forest has plenty of places to stop, including the magnificent Lynford Stag, complete with a giant wood sculpture of a stag. Choose a flower-filled dell here for your picnic.
4. Poetry in the gardens of Nottinghamshire
The beautiful Newstead Abbey is just a short ride away from our cabins at Sherwood Forest.
Wander the grounds of the ancestral home of Lord Byron and choose your picnic spot among the parkland, the walled garden or the sunken ornamental Japanese oasis.
5. Birdwatching in Gloucestershire
Forest of Dean has plenty of countryside to explore. Hire bicycles from the Forest Retreat and enjoy a leisurely ride to Cannop Ponds, a series of manmade ponds where you’ll find plenty of local bird life.There’s lots of seating areas along the trail to stop for your picnic.
6. Spoilt for choice in Snowdonia
It’s difficult to choose the best place for a picnic in Snowdonia when the whole area is idyllic. Not far from our cabins in Beddgelert there’s a lovely walk that follows the River Glaslyn through the village past Gelert’s grave, onto a wooded island called Ynys Dol-leian and into the spectacular Aberglaslyn Pass.
All along the route you’ll find amazing views and lovely spots for your picnic, but we love the Pass itself. Enjoy your picnic with the sound of tumbling waters over the rocks.
7. A giant picnic in North Yorkshire
For spectacular views across the North York Moors, try visiting the Hole of Horcum.
Allegedly created by Wade the Giant, this enormous cauldron provides numerous spots for picnics and a lovely long walk around the rim of the hole itself. It’s close by our cabins at Cropton.
8. A hamper of treats on the moor.
Our Keldy location is right on the edge of the moors, but you don’t need to walk far for the perfect spot. Ask our team in the Forest Hub and they’ll not only point you towards hidden forest glades or flower filled meadows, they’ll even provide a picnic hamper filled with all the treats you need to satisfy a hungry family.
9. Spectacular view of Loch Katrine
Choosing the best view in The Trossochs National Park is a tricky one. One of our favourites overlooks Loch Katrine. Walk from Ardgartan Argyll along Ben Venue to find your favourite spot.
10. Your personal butler in Scotland
When you’re holidaying in one vast picnic spot, there’s only one way to find the best place to go – ask a local expert.
Our Picnic Butler will take you on a trip from your cabins at Strathyre, along the loch shore and into the forest, to find a secluded and romantic location for a couple’s picnic paradise, before serving you locally-sourced Scottish delights.
Choose your favourite picnic spot and book your forest cabin for a summer break. Whether you’re after something to do with the family, fun with your friends or a romantic moment for two, suspend time and create a memory you’ll never forget with the perfect British picnic.
6 of the best picnic recipes for your hamper
Japanese Scotch Eggs - Jazz up your Scotch Eggs with a touch of the oriental.
Chicken and quinoa salad - Don’t forget your forks for this energy boosting salad.
A picnic pie - Caramelised onions, griddled veg and goat’s cheese in a handy wedge.
Pork and black pudding sausage rolls - Luxurious finger food
No-bake oatmeal bars - Chocolatey goodness in a bar
Apricot cheesecake bars - A dessert for grownups
We also have a wide range of food to go in our Forest Retreats!