Slap on the suncream and ready the hamper, British summertime is calling. Here are the perfect spots for a socially distanced picnic in the North East of England this summer.
1. Wooler Common and Woodland Park, Northumberland
Munch on your sandwich in lands that were raided by marauding Scots between the fourteenth and sixteenth century. Both picturesque and educational, a visit to this mixture of mature woodland and open common is truly unforgettable.
2. Simonside, Northumberland
This picnic location is known for its rugged beauty and awesome adventures. A 430m climb after lunch will reward you with panoramic views, revealing the whole Northumbrian coastline. This is a skyline that even your imagination can’t match.
3. Hepburn Wood, Northumberland
Work up an appetite by exploring the walking trails of this lesser-known nature spot. Sweeping vistas and tranquil landscapes await you. Try to spot the prehistoric features whenever you pause for a scotch egg break.
4. Thrunton Wood, Northumberland
Straight out of the pages of a fairy tale. Follow winding trails through majestic trees and open moorland before discovering a perfect place to perch. Enjoy your lunch as the sun beams down upon the surrounding lofty crags.
5. Holystone Wood, Northumberland
Feeling hungry? Satisfy your cravings for delicious picnic food and tranquil treescapes in the former grounds of a twelfth century nunnery. Often a quiet and secluded spot, you may see more wildlife than you do people!
Pssst… you're stepping into someone else's kitchen! Please remember that the nation's forests are home to a vast array of local wildlife. Take your picnic rubbish home with you so they aren't in danger from it.
6. Hindhope Linn, Northumberland
Don’t go chasing waterfalls, unless they’re located in this outstanding spot at the northern end of Kielder Forest Drive. This is a picnic destination that ticks all the boxes. Views? Check. Valleys? Check. Very likely that you’ll get wet? Check.
7. Kielder Castle, Northumberland
There’s never a dull moment at this popular picnic site. Make a day of it by exploring the nearby maze and lakeside walk. Remember to keep your eyes to the skies, as sightings of Northumberland’s only breeding osprey population are common here.
8. Warksburn, Northumberland
This atmospheric picnic spot is overlooked by two famous Totem Poles which have been standing for 50 years. Still undecided whether this is the ideal place for you to nibble on lunch? The pre-Roman earthworks and rumoured local gold deposits just might sway you.
You are welcome to hire our barbecues where you can, but to prevent forest fires and reduce waste, please do not bring any other barbecues into our forests.
9. Chopwell Wood, Gateshead
Boredom doesn’t exist when there’s 360 hectares of landscape to explore. Pause to take a rest on picnic tables that are scattered throughout this mesmerising mixed woodland. Bring along good food and good company… we’ll take care of the rest.
10. Hamsterley Forest, County Durham
This forest is as full to the brim with trees as your belly will be with sandwiches. After you’ve admired the woodlands sprawled along the sides of the sheltered valley, get stuck in to all the amazing activities on offer.
11. Guisborough Forest, North Yorkshire
Family holiday cancelled? Visit Guisborough for a fun-filled daytrip and delicious picnic instead. Stepping into this woodland is like stepping off a plane. Sun is not guaranteed, but escapism and relaxation are.
12. Sneaton Forest, North Yorkshire
Charming and serene. The adjectives to describe the stunning steep valleys lined with conifers and broadleaves are endless. The Falling Foss waterfall and boulder from the 1700s also make for a stunning addition to your picnic backdrop.
13. Broxa, North Yorkshire
Location can make or break a picnic. From seeing the unusual tree species that call this place home, to listening out for the summer wildlife, this forest truly is a feast for the senses. Speaking of feasts, have you packed the picnic basket yet?
14. Dalby Forest, North Yorkshire
Whether you love solo picnic adventures or group lunches, this nature-rich outdoor space will serve you well. From glacial valleys in the south, to upland plateaus in the north, there are memories to be made in this unique landscape of epic proportions.
15. Allerthorpe Wood, North Yorkshire
Grub’s up! Bring along a baguette as you bask in the sun like the adders at Allerthorpe. The flat terrain is perfect for a low-intensity stroll, a lovely leisurely activity for after you’ve eaten.