Urban Picnics

| December 2, 2011

How to have a great picnic experience in the city

Living the big-city life has many advantages, but sometimes all the chaos catches up to you and you can find yourself feeling tense, exhausted, and very much in need of a break. It isn’t always easy to even take a weekend trip to get away from it all – you may have only a few minutes at a time to spare, but you can use that time to your advantage and de-stress without taking time off work or other responsibilities.

When you think about picnics, you probably imagine rolling hills, red checkered tablecloths, watermelon and wide open spaces. In a city environment, however, these ideas of how a picnic should be just don’t fit your reality in most cases. Naturally, city parks are the most obvious place to have an urban picnic, but there are many more places that will work out great if you think creatively. Consider bringing a close friend or significant other to a rooftop observation area; many tall buildings in large cities have them and you can have a cozy, intimate experience with a few folding chairs and some good food. Balconies are another romantic option, as are empty stadium stands and even the foot of a statue in a square downtown. Pack a picnic basket and hitch a ride on a horse-drawn carriage to the most remote spot you can find in Central Park, or any area where you might get some quiet and privacy. Big city picnics have the potential for the kinds of memorable picnic dates that you think only happen in romantic movies – just keep on the lookout for the perfect spot as you’re going about your daily routine.

When you’re short on time, your best option is always to have someone else do the cooking for you. Have your neighborhood deli pack up some sandwiches and salads to go, or call in an order to a local restaurant for your favorite meals. Just pick them up on the way, pack them in your picnic basket or backpack and get going! Another great option is to forgo having a large meal and having wine and cheese or cocktails instead. There are lots of great portable sets available that have everything you need for a chic little cocktail party in the open air. A great choice is the Manhattan Cocktail Set, pictured, which has an adjustable shoulder strap and cocktail service for two.

Of course, you may wish to go all out and prepare a big, impressive spread for your relaxing picnic experience. You’ll need some delicious new recipes – the Food Network is a great source for thousands of recipes that can be browsed by theme, ingredients, or by your favorite chef.

With some creativity and the need to unwind driving you, urban picnics can be the ideal for hardworking city-dwellers with fast-paced lives. If you’re headed out for a date and need some great tips and ideas, check out Planning a Romantic Picnic.

Category: Picnic Places

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