When spring arrives and the sun shines, it’s time to make the most out of the weather and get outdoors. What better way to soak up the sunshine than by gathering a group of friends, a couple of blankets and a basket full of food and drink and enjoying a lingering picnic? You’re not short of picnic spots in Leeds with plenty of parks and green spaces to lay down your blanket. Here are six of our favourite spots for picnicking in and around the city.
One of the largest city parks in Europe, you’re guaranteed to find a spot in the sun in Roundhay Park. Whether you opt for picnicking on one of the lawns, beside the lake, on the banks of the canal or in one of the botanical gardens, you’ll sure to find escapism from the busy city streets within Roundhay’s 700 acres. With plenty to explore, you could make an entire day out of a picnic in this park.
If you’re planning on watching the cricket this summer, it’s worth noting that Headingly Stadium have a relatively relaxed policy when it comes to bringing food and drink inside the ground. Not only will they allow you to bring a bag of picnic food with you, but you can even take a sensible amount of alcohol (inside plastic bottles) to your seats. Combine a day at the County Championships with a boozy picnic lunch for the ultimate summer’s day out.
Kirkgate Farmer’s Market
If you awake to a sunny Sunday, grab a basket and a blanket and head to Kirkgate’s outdoor market (every first and third Sunday of the month) to stock up on fresh local produce for an unforgettable picnic. The market offers everything from organic vegetables to freshly baked bread with a variety of savoury pies and delicious cakes on offer to bulk up your spread. Once you’ve filled your basket, head to Park Square to sit down and enjoy your smorgasbord.
Although Queen’s Square is popular with students during term time, it’s relatively quiet during the summer break, providing a peaceful spot for a romantic picnic or place for you to enjoy a small spread on your own while catching up with a favourite book. You’ll find this pretty little park to be a bit of a suntrap, so don’t forget your sun hat and sun tan lotion.
If you’re looking to get a bit further out of town for a picnic, you can’t do much better than Temple Newsam. This iconic stately home has acres of beautiful grounds to explore, allowing you a secluded spot in the sun to lay down your blanket and enjoy a delicious picnic. The house itself is so beautiful that even if you want to stay outdoors, you can pick a spot within sight and admire the view.
Even if you don’t fancy exploring the ruins or wandering through the woodland, be sure to pay a visit to Kirkstall Abbey. The River Aire flows through its grounds, providing an idyllic spot for laying down a picnic blanket and spending several hours chatting with friends, enjoying a wholesome spread of food and admiring the surrounding landscape and wildlife.