Who doesn’t love a good picnic? Whether it’s in the woods, by the ocean, or on a calm, clear lake—picnics are a way to relax and enjoy great food and the great outdoors. These 14 spots are perfect places to enjoy lunch outdoors in Massachusetts. So, check the weather report and head outside for a meal under the sun!
A short ferry ride from Boston Long Wharf lands you at Spectacle Island, one of the Boston Harbor Islands. In addition to enjoying your picnic, you can swim in one of very few places in Boston Harbor where that is allowed.
Parking is free at Smolak Farms, a 300-acre farm and orchard. After your picnic, stop by their farm stand and bakery or indulge in a decadent ice cream cone.
Even though the mansion on the Bradley Estate is used for weddings and other private functions, the 90-acre grounds are the perfect spot for a picnic. Check the website for information on an educational walk around the estate—the perfect way to work off that picnic.
Picnic beside the Merrimack River at Maudslay State Park. The $2 parking fee is nothing once you see the wildlife, wildflowers, and beautiful stone bridge.
Enjoy 1,000 acres of history when you picnic at Minute Man National Park. Hiking trails will take you through spots where Revolutionary War battles were fought. You must take your trash away with you, as there are no receptacles on site.
Four ponds and 21 miles of trails make for a beautiful picnic area. Hale Reservation is also home to a day camp during the summer months, but visitors are welcome on the grounds. Located just a short drive from Boston, city dwellers love this escape to nature.
Featuring a large sloping lawn and a rather grueling climb to the top, Corey Hill Outlook affords picnickers and others a fabulous view of the city on clear days. Definitely wear sturdy shoes if planning to hike to the top.
Seven-hundred acres of meadowland on this former estate make for perfect picnicking at Bradley Palmer State Park. Located along the Ipswich River, there is a wading pool and designated picnic area as well.
Sloping granite ledges allow very careful and agile picnickers views that sometimes reach as far as New Hampshire at Halibut Point State Park. While it’s best to picnic on the adjacent grass, this makes for an exciting (and probably even exhausting) post-lunch activity.
Located between Southbridge and Sturbridge, Westville Dam has a beautiful picnic area with shelters that may be reserved for special events. A walking trail allows for exercise before you return to your picnic for dessert.
Wooden pathways connect Goodwill Park to a freshwater public beach. In addition to a picnic area with grills, there are activities like horseshoes and volleyball.
Take a ride on the swan boats and picnic near the “Make Way for Duckling” Ducks at Boston Public Garden. Lay back and enjoy this tranquil city oasis—or people watch—as you digest.
The sand “sings” at Singing Beach, in the town that now has a film named after it. Even though non-residents must park about a half-mile away, it’s worth the walk to enjoy your picnic here.
Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, Larz Anderson Park is reminiscent of a bygone era. Enjoy your picnic under the willow trees or at one of the tables with grills in the designated area.
Dust off your picnic basket and start planning your picnic fare. With this vast array of Massachusetts spots, you’ll have a picnic planned for every weekend this coming spring and summer.