Best picnic spots in the Midlands

A man, woman, and two young boys wearing summer clothes holding ice creams as they sit on a picnic table in a forest setting.

Picnic spots in the Midlands

Butter the bread and grab the sausage rolls, British summertime is here and we're itching to get out for a picnic.

If you're as keen as us for some alfresco dining, check out this list of our favourite spots for a summer picnic near you in the Midlands.

Purple flowers within green forest and field landscape

1. Sence Valley, Leicestershire

Somewhere between Birmingham, Leicester and Derby in the heart of the National Forest, this relatively new forest park transformed an old open-cast mine into an idyllic woodland.

The spirit of development continued in 2019, when we planted 100,000 new trees at Sence Valley, including a cherry tree avenue to celebrate our centenary year.

Surrounded by a unique mixture of historical sights and new growth, you'll have a lunchtime picnic to remember.

2. Bourne Wood, Lincolnshire

Satisfy your cravings for delicious picnic food in this quiet, ancient woodland in Lincolnshire.

Bourne Wood has some lovely gentle woodland strolls, and if you find your way through to the ponds then you may be lucky enough to spot a kingfisher or heron (just don’t let them spy your tuna baguette).

Mother and two children grinning while eating a picnic on a cluttered bench
Pine trees with green grass on the ground

3. Cannock Chase Forest, Staffordshire

Located close to Birmingham, there's plenty of activities to do at Cannock Chase Forest to make the most of your day out with a picnic. 

After your scotch eggs and sandwiches, you could take to one of the woodland trails, give Disc Golf a try or even let younger visitors practice their bike skills on our Pedal and Play trail.

New to our forests? Check out the Forest Code.

4. Dimmingsdale, North Staffordshire

A visit to Dimmingsdale gives you access to magnificent drives built by the Earl of Shrewsbury. Fine carriages once rode here, and now here you are: strolling through, sausage roll in hand.

Once an aristocrat's dream, Dimmingsdale now offers a dreamy picnic spot for those of us whose only royal ties are to Earl Grey tea.

With abundance of woodland, streams, ponds and lakes, when it comes to throwing down the picnic blanket, you’ll be spoiled for choice.

Large pond surrounded by tall trees on a sunny day
Sherwood Pines forest view

5. Sherwood Pines, Nottinghamshire

Pack up your picnic basket for a visit to one of the Midlands' best known forests. With facilities on site and activities for all interests, there's plenty to explore once the sandwiches have been demolished.

6. Fineshade Wood, Northamptonshire

Based in rural Northamptonshire, Fineshade Wood is an idyllic spot for an alfresco feast.  There’s lots of choice for working up an appetite with walking trails, cycle trails and a choice of play areas for little ones.

Self-confessed bird lover? You'll want to look up to the skies while digging into your pasta salad - you may spot one of the resident Red Kites.

Eagle flying with Red Kite and Buzzard
Left to right: red kite, eagle, buzzard
A man, woman, girl and boy sitting at a picnic table with a basket and food items on display

7. Salcey Forest, Northamptonshire

Just 30 minutes drive from both Northampton and Milton Keynes you’ll find the enchanting and ancient Salcey Forest.  

There’s a fantastic picnic spot by The Elephant Pond Bridge, so called as elephants from a travelling circus took a bath there after helping to move timber for the WW2 effort. 

8. Hicks Lodge, Leicestershire

Located in the heart of the National Forest, Hicks Lodge is a great place for a picnic at any time of the year. Once the hamper's been packed away, you could head to the lakeside bird hide to spot wildlife or take to one of the walking or cycling trails to stretch your legs.

Bird hide next to lake at hicks lodge

Explore all of these forests and more with Forestry England national membership

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