Six of the Best Picnic Spots in Sydney
By Megan Gibson, ellaslist explorer
Here are Six of the best picnic spots in Sydney, with tips on what makes a great picnic spot!
1. Mt Annan Botanic Gardens
Mt Annan has so much space, perfect for a stroll to have a few moments peace. Lots of facilities, including a Mountain Bike Track, playground, lakes, toilets, and covered shelters. The shelters are booked most weekends for large groups so make sure to follow the advice of staff. The café near the playground does great coffee. Read My Review.
2. Royal Botanic Gardens
Nothing better than a picnic with the most spectacular harbour views. You can explore the Royal Botanic Gardens, wander to Mrs Macquarie’s chair or head to the art gallery. Finding toilets requires a bit of preplanning but still a great destination to explore.
3. Royal National Park
Really get away from it all and explore the world’s second oldest national park. Beautiful vistas, lovely bushwalks, amazing ocean views or quiet contemplation, take your pick. Older kids will love exploring the coast track, the waterfalls and paths at Wattamolla while younger kids will work up at appetite wandering Lady Carrington Drive or Audley Weir. If you are out in the bush facilities are limited, but peace is abundant. A permit is required to park in the Park for the day.
4. Centennial Park
There is so much to see and do in Centennial Park, there are playgrounds, ponds, walking tracks, multi person hire bikes and horse riding. A large circular park, you can drive the loop before settling on a location to stop. Park and explore before you find a shady spot to set up camp. Lots of open expanses are perfect for family football or cricket.
5. Oatley Park
Oatley Park is a medium sized local park on the picturesque Georges River. The top playground offers a football field, playground equipment and antique steam roller to climb. Or head to the bottom of the park to explore the water front with sandy beach, netted swimming area and lots of bushland to wander. The quiet roads are also perfect for a bike ride.
6. Lizard Log
Part of the Western Sydney Parklands, Lizard Log boasts plenty of parking, easy access, free BBQs, and really well looked after facilities. A fantastic natural playground is backed by miles of paths for walking and scootering, natural features like mountains, lookouts and dams. Read my Review.
What Makes a Great Picnic Spot
A great picnic spot depends on your needs, you can go traditional with a shelter and BBQs, or rough in the bush. However there are some things to keep in mind to really make a picnic a fantastic day out.
- Covered picnic tables (beware as in larger parks these may be booked out on weekends)
- Free BBQs, are fantastic, however sometimes these aren’t the most effective so it’s best to allow lots of time for cooking.
- Sufficient bins which are emptied frequently so rubbish isn’t littered everywhere. A governing body (local council) that cares for their outdoor spaces well, will also mean less graffiti and better security.
- Somewhere for the kids to ride, play or explore, a playground, river, or the beach are great entertainment while adults relax. Alternatively a large expanse of grass can turn into a cricket or football game without too much effort.
- Clean toilets that are always stocked with toilet paper.
- And a nearby Café for a hot drink or a cold ice-cream.
I am a Sydney-sider born and bred, but spent 12 years living in Wagga, Canberra and London. I am married to an Englishman and we have three children, Eli age 5, Allegra nearly 3 and Cooper who is just 5 months.
I am a stay at home Mum and keep myself sane by getting out and about and exploring all that Sydney has to offer. The kids and I enjoy parks, museums, picnics, playgroup, gardening, walking, cycling and road-tripping. I am the typical “crafty” mum and love getting my hands dirty, taking photos, and running (sort of). You can read my blog here.