Picnic Do's and Don'ts

Picnic Do's and Don'ts

Do you love a picnic? well even if you don't, this summer there are going to be lots of them, especially before restaurants and pubs open properly again. Here are some do's and don'ts for picnics based on highly detailed research.

Don’t get me wrong, I am all for spontaneous pizza picnics in the park after work where all the rules go out the window.  The below checklists refer to the more organised weekend picnics that are either meant to impress a romantic target or celebrate an occasion with friends or family.

Do take:

*a small chopping board and knife
*wet wipes
*a padded picnic blanket and cushions
*a bin bag to take your rubbish home with you
*a blue tooth speaker you can hook up to your phone
*some games or a ball or a book with you
*ride a bicycle and use pannier bags to carry heavy things.
*home made food if you can
*pre mixed cocktail in a thermos


*take too many heavy things with you
*wear a short skirt
*place your feet too close to the food on the picnic rug
*don't too much liquid if you are not sure how you are going to be able to go to the toilet
*get carried away and get sun burnt
*walk around forever looking for the perfect spot
*just sit at the first spot you find, find somewhere facing downhill with a nice view and shade if you are lightweight
*take food that might go bad in the heat 
*be afraid to have a picnic by yourself

2021 Picnic etiquette

If you are a fan of eating in fresh air and grazing whilst lazing around in the sun, then it is worth investing in some picnic items such as a good picnic blanket and some bamboo cutlery and plates. Gone are the day where it is acceptable to bring a full spread of disposable items, try to make your picnic as sustainable as possible and make sure you take all your rubbish with you when you leave. Here are some more picnic etiquette pointers:

* make sure to taste other people's home made food
* do not put your bare feet on the food picnic blanket
* bring your food to share with others
* don't smoke whilst others are eating
* don't play music too loud
* clean up after yourself before you leave
* keep your dog in control and clean up after it

Other handy tips

I'm a big fan of cask wine, it cuts down on heavy bottles if you fancy drinking some wine on your picnic. Its also really great for sharing and allowing people to help themselves. The charm of the picnic is that it allows people to eat what and whenever they like, the whole vibe is flexible and informal. People can turn up at different times and its nice when everyone brings things with them so there is a constant stream of food and drink. The most highly looked upon food items at a picnic are usually the ones home made.

* take pre-mixed cocktails
* take a pillow
* take sunblock
* dress your kids in bright clothes so you can spot them

Check out:

The 12 best picnics on film on the BFI website

300 years of picnics in art, NPR

Thomas Cole's A Pic-Nic Party, 1846

Thomas Cole's A Pic-Nic Party, 1846

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