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25 Tips On How To Plan The Ultimate Picnic This Summer!

A picnic is the best way to have fun in the sun with family this summer! So, here are 21 tips on how to plan the ultimate picnic.

We all want to go outside when the sun shines brightly, and flowers bloom! A picnic is one of my favorite ways to spend a sunny afternoon.

It takes more than a blanket, a basket, and food to plan a picnic. There’s a lot of preparation to be done. However, I am here to help you with my years of experience in planning picnics!

So, before you choose a shady spot to enjoy your cheese platter paired with the best wine, make a plan with the help of this guide.

These 21 tips on how to plan the ultimate picnic will ensure you have a great experience, no matter where you are.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: the plan

1. Make a checklist

There are so many things that you should bring to a picnic.  Making a checklist is the most effective way to stay organized. 

It will also ensure that you do not forget anything. You can use this checklist to plan future picnics or for unexpected picnics.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: the ideal

2. Think of the best spot

Look for a picturesque, lush, and grassy place with plenty of natural shade. I like to set up under a tree to ensure I can have natural shade.

Picnics on the beach are also great. However, if you have children, it may not be ideal if they will do everything they can to go into the water.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: the food

3. Don’t overstress yourself for the food

I prefer to keep things simple and bring food that I know my family will enjoy. I usually bring crackers, cheese, pickles, berries, cherries, and homemade bread as snacks.

It’s important not to overthink it. Take it easy and simple. Take whatever you have in the refrigerator.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: the basket

4. Get your basket ready

If you pack your basket reverse, it will be easy to get to the things you need to get to your picnic spot. Put non-perishable food on the bottom, then serving items and tableware, and then the tablecloth on top.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: how to pack

5. Pack wisely

Wicker baskets are attractive, but they are not always the most practical choice. Choose an insulated tote or bag with compartments and handles and padding to secure your goods to protect soft food or glasses.

6. What to bring and what not to bring

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: what to bring

What to bring:

  • Sunglasses and sunblock
  • Napkins or hand wipes
  • Bug spray
  • Trashbags

What not to bring:

  • Radio or music system of any kind
  • Candles, portable barbecues, or anything that could cause a fire
Plan The Ultimate Picnic: keep it light

7. Keep it light

Keep things light because many great spots for picnics require walking. You don’t want to carry heavy stuff with you. Nobody wants to carry a heavy basket or cooler around. Use paper plates and plastic cutlery instead of china plates to save weight.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: storing food!

8. Store food properly

You should store your food in containers that are safe and secure. You must ensure that your food is stored correctly, especially when traveling long distances. 

Rather than using glass containers, I prefer to use acrylic containers. Glass is fragile, and I don’t want to break it while on the road.

9. Keep your drinks cool

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: keep drinks cool

We want to keep our drinks cool to beat the sun’s heat. If you’re not eating near your car, you’ll most likely use a non-electric cooler. 

Keep in mind that these boxes will not constantly cool your drinks. You’ll need some pre-frozen ice blocks to surround your drinks to get the most out of them.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: what not to bring

10. What foods should you not bring

Avoid bringing ice cream, sticky puddings, and cakes to picnics. They are hard to carry and attract wasps and other insects.

11. Think of alternatives to sandwich

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: sandwich alternatives

Is a picnic complete without sandwiches? Maybe not. But if you want to try something different, make a salad or spaghetti in a tiny screw-top jar. Simple!

If you want to take your picnic to the next level, consider investing in a portable stove. This way, you can enjoy hot, freshly prepared meals and drinks.

Just be creative with your picnic menu! Here are some picnic food ideas that you can try. 

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: simple snacks

12. Easy-to-carry snacks

Finger foods are a great way to keep things light at a picnic. You don’t need to use a fork, spoon, or knife set.

Sandwiches, Scotch eggs, sausage rolls, and chicken drumsticks are classic picnic foods. You can eat them with your hands, which are easy to transport.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: how much food?

13. Pack enough foods

To avoid leftovers, estimate how much food your group will eat. You should throw perishable leftovers unless they can be kept very cold or hot.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: the right blanket

14. Pick the right blanket

Choose a blanket that gives padding while also being washable in case of grass stains or food spills.

If you know, you’ll be heading somewhere with picnic tables. A checked tablecloth might be a better option.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: make some shade

15. Make some shade

 Are you planning an all-day picnic? Take it further and hang umbrellas from a tree to provide shade.

However, if you can find a site with natural shade, that would be ideal. But, you should keep some umbrellas on hand if the natural shade disappears.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: the centerpiece

16. Picnic centerpiece

Prepare the main dish ahead of time that you can easily divide to make picnic prep easier. It is important to keep your main dish simple yet delicious. 

I like serving grilled chicken thighs with homemade barbecue sauce. And I will pair it with the best wine

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: desserts in a jar

17. Make desserts in a jar

Desserts in a jar are simple to pack, and there are plenty of no-bake options! Here are some of my favorite dessert in a jar recipes, especially for picnics.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: keep off the ground

18. Keep your utensils off the ground

You can use a small container or vase to hold utensils, napkins, and straws in an easily accessible area. We don’t want our utensils to get dirty because we’ll use them to eat.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: plan for fun!

19. Bring something to do

Even the most engaging conversation can become boring after a while. Prepare for boredom by carrying activities such as board games, sandcastle building supplies, books, and adult coloring books. 

These are simple to bring in and out of the house. They make an afternoon of beautiful meals even greater.

20. Prepare for bugs

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: plan for bugs

Flying insects and nasty crawlies will attack even the most urban picnic. Prepare a plan and strategy.

You can use closed containers to store and serve food and drinks and use mesh covers and plastic wrap. You can also use unused shower caps for covering bowls and keeping them cool.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: get a cutting board

21. Don’t forget a portable cutting board

A small, portable cutting board is great for slicing, dicing, and dividing your picnic treats. Bring some wipes or a roll of paper towels to clean it before you leave quickly.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic use a tray

22. Use a tray

If you have an outdoor kitchen and are having a picnic, you can use a serving tray to carry things from the kitchen to the lawn.

Or, if you’re going somewhere else, a tray can help you get the things you need from the car to the picnic spot.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: use a small table

23. Bring a small table

Are you worried about the fragile bottles tipping over? Bring a small folding table or picnic table stake to put bottles and glasses to avoid tripping on uneven ground.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: clean as you go

24. Clean as you go

Bring some trash bags with you to leave your picnic spot as clean and litter-free as you found it. Environmentally friendly picnic supplies will make your picnic even greener, such as compostable plates, glasses, and napkins.

Plan The Ultimate Picnic: keep it fun!

25. Have fun!

Have fun and spend quality time with your family and friends in the sun!

People Also Ask

At what time should a picnic begin?

The best time to start your picnic is in the morning or late afternoon when the sun is about to set in an hour. Don’t start your picnic if the weather is very hot because you wouldn’t like that. Picnics should be relaxing and fun.

Why do families enjoy going on picnics?

It’s because of the time spent together. Most of the time, food is the most important part of a picnic, but we also love spending time with the people we go with. Getting outside and enjoying the fresh air with some friends or family members is fun with a picnic.

Why is it important to have a picnic?

Spending time outside is good for our bodies. For kids with breathing problems like asthma, breathing in fresh air is good for them. A picnic in the sun also helps the body absorb vitamin D and calcium, which helps build strong bones and teeth and protects against diseases like rickets and osteoporosis.


What’s not to love with picnics? It’s one of the summer’s annual joys.

Every summer, my family and I will go on picnics. We just did it last year in our newly renovated outdoor kitchen. We like to barbeque with the best barrel grill I got on Amazon. The oil mister also helped me in keeping my grilled dish juicy!

Where should we go on a picnic this year? Let me know in the comments!