Sunny skies, fun friends, green grass, blankets and good food are all that’s required for an outdoor picnic. There are many great picnic spots around the world and our Bay Area boasts some of the best ones. Whether you plan to hike to the top of the hill with your picnic basket or want to lay down your blanket next to a water stream, it’s all possible around the Bay Area.
If you’re planning to enjoy an awesome picnic in San Francisco, then you should know about great picnic spots in the area. We’ve done the legwork for you and compiled a list of best picnic spots around the bay area. Check them out and pick your favorite.
Golden Gate Park
A San Francisco tradition with plenty of activity: bicycling, fishing, boating, sailing, jogging, and private group picnicking. Lush meadows and open space makes GGP a great place for your company picnic with family and friends.
Baylands Park in Sunnyvale, CA offers active recreation, picnic areas and pathways for large groups and families. It’s a great place for an evening or morning stroll with family and a good spot for an outdoor picnic.
With reservable picnic spots, volleyball areas, horseshoe pits, children’s playground and paved loop trail, Kennedy Grove is an ideal weekend destination for picnickers. This recreation area also hosts some short hikes through 218 acres of grassland, oak, California bay and chaparral.
This regional recreation area provides plenty of opportunities: bicycling, fishing, boating, sailing, jogging, windsurfing, swimming and picnicking. When you come to the Coyote Point, make sure to stroll through the giant themed Magic Mountain Playground and take your kids the CuriOdyssey where they can see wild animals and learn new things from science exhibits.
With views of the famous Golden Gate Bridge, few waves, nice weather and sandy beach, Crissy Field is an ideal spot for a summer picnic in the Bay Area. There are picnic tables in the area and most of them have barbeque grills. So, you may not have to worry about carrying your own grills to the picnic spot. However, you would have to come early to claim your BBQ grills before someone else takes the spot. Crisssy Field gets windy in afternoons; so arrive early and stay there for a couple of hours to enjoy the wind.
Sonoma Plaza is another great spot for a picnic in the Bay Area. Located near the Mission San Francisco Solana, the plaza boasts gassy laws covered by centuries-old trees next to duck pond and playground. Restaurants and shops surround the plaza; so you can do some shopping during your picnic. If you bring the kids to the picnic, don’t miss out on going to Sonoma Traintown railroad. It’s a small amusement park where kids can enjoy riding a mini train through tunnels and over bridges and play at the miniature town.
Log Cabin - Golden Gate Park
When the bay is chilly, the Log Cabin next to the Stowe Lake is perfect for grilling steak and enjoying a coffee. The four picnic tables are a stone’s throw away from the boathouse of Stowe Lake so if your kids want to try paddleboarding or canoeing after the picnic, it is very much possible. Otherwise, grassy meadows provide plenty of room for play.
Cesar Chavez Park
Cesar Chavez Park offers a picturesque view of Alcatraz and two bridges, 90 acres of grassy fun and picnic tables under the shade of the trees. If your kids want some adventure or water fun, head to Berkeley Marina’s opposite side where Adventure Playground provides the ultimate entertainment to the kids. The area gets very windy so keep some warm clothes at hand.
This is another great picnic spot in the Bay Area with picnic tables, miles of beach and hikes. Close to Point Reyes Lighthouse, Drakes beach is ideal for kids too as they can play in calm waters, run around or build sand castles. It gets chilly, so bring some extra layers. There’s a beach café and bookstore so you can spend some time there before heading out to see the whales from the cliffs.
Central Park (Lake Elizabeth)
Central Park in the Bay Area offers a number of activities with magnificent views of Lake Elizabeth and Mission Peak Hills. With 450+ acres of grass and 80+ acres of crystal clear water, the park offers a lot to picnickers including drop-in sites, reserved picnic sites, play areas for children, tennis, fishing, basketball, seasonal waterpark, skate park and boat rentals.
Stafford Lake Park
Stafford Lake Park is one of the best outdoor reaction spots in the Bay Area. There are a variety of activities to enjoy at the green park and if you have not been there yet, you should definitely plan your next picnic at Stafford Lake Park. With a play area, fishing, bike park and picnic spots, the Stafford Lake Park has a lot to offer to outdoor enthusiasts. Physical beauty is one thing that Stafford Lake Park offers in abundance. The sparkling lake surrounded by trees and hills and the adventure playground that features interactive obstacles, spinners, and climbing obstacles make the Stafford Lake Park the perfect spot for picnics.
Lafayette Reservoir is another great picnic spot near the Bay Area. You can enjoy the picnic sitting by the crystal clear water and there are also small boats available to canoeing and more. Wide grassy areas with picnic benches make Lafayette Reservoir is a good location for family picnics.
Now that you know all these great picnic spots around the Bay Area, which one would you visit for your next outdoor summer picnic? If you want to plan a large picnic in any of the locations mentioned above, contact the Bay Area Picnic Planners. We offer all-inclusive picnic packages that may be the right fit for your wallet if you’re organizing a large picnic. For more information about our offers, reach out to us.
History Park San Jose
There is so much to see at the History Park –so many historical buildings are rarely found in just one place. You can roam around with your family or friends. It’s well maintained and there are plenty of big trees that provide ample shade. Several picnic chairs and tables can be found all around the park. There are iconic buildings like church, firehouse, school, print shop, dental office, etc. and several museums too.
Central Park Santa Clara
This 52-acre park boasts a number of facilities. The area in Saratoga Creek’s west side contains individual and group picnic facilities, a play area for children, amphitheater, restrooms, parking space, basketball courts, two tennis courts, Community Recreation Center and Veterans Memorial.
In the eastern side of the creek, there’s George F. Haines International Swim Center, softball field, Santa Clara Tennis Center, lake, large picnic areas, public restrooms, exercise course, Central Park library and parking area.
McNears Beach Park
McNears Beach Park is another great picnic spot in the Bay Area. There are plenty of picnic tables and a large grassy area where kids can play. The beach is a bit rocky with plenty of interesting stones and broken shells to collect. You can slash in the gentle and shallow waters, but the swimming pool is the biggest attraction which gets busy on a hot summer day. In addition to the main pool, there is also a toddler pool for the kids.
The park boasts lush rolling lawn with plenty of shade which makes it perfect for picnics. There are several picnic areas in the park with charcoal grills and tables. There’s a snack bar near the swimming pool that serves hot dogs, chips, candy and ice cream.
Holbrook Palmer Atherton
Hollbrook Palmer Park is a good recreation site with outdoor and indoor facilities including tennis courts, ball field, playground, walking paths and gardens. Significant structures that can be rented include the Jennings Pavilion, Carriage House and Main House. Permits are available for day use of Hollbrook Palmer Park.
Tilden Regional Park
Tilden Regional Park is a hidden gem in the Bay Area. It’s one of the most popular and oldest parks in the region that offers a wide range of family-fun activities. Tilden Park has everything – bicycling trails, hiking trails, picnic tables with barbecues and parking lots nearby Lake Anza. There’re pony rides, nature center and steam train ride for the kids.