5 Best Picnic Spots in Cambridge

June 21, 2024

Why is Cambridge the perfect place for a picnic?

Not only is Cambridge well known for its rich culture and academic history, but is also known for its abundance of greenery throughout the city centre and surrounding areas. Not only are there great places of parks dotted around Cambridge, there are also enchanting gardens open to locals and visitors to soak in the sun rays, relax and enjoy the outdoor space for a picnic in Cambridge. This city really has the best picnic spots to host a memorable afternoon in picturesque surroundings.

1. Jesus Green

An excellent starting point for a picnic space is Jesus Green. This park is one of the city’s most popular spaces to sit outside and enjoy a picnic all year round, especially in the warm summer months. The park has acres of grassy land, vibrant flower patches and large trees shadowing the path that runs through.

The spacious size of the park is perfect for families and big groups of friends having a picnic who require a lot of space for games like football and frisbee. The park also accommodates those who want to indulge in a BBQ at their picnic, as there are specialised stones dotted around the park which ensure a safe place to set up a smokey BBQ. The River Cam runs alongside the park, providing a riverside view watching as each private chauffeured punting tour passes by.

Jesus Green is a family-friendly park with a play area with play equipment next to where the picnic blanket can be set up. This is great for keeping an eye out on the little ones, as well as keeping them occupied during the picnic day out. The park is set in a convenient location that is close to the city centre for anyone who needs to walk to the shop to get some more picnic essentials, like cold drinks or ingredients for an afternoon tea picnic encompassing finger sandwiches or scones, mini jams and clotted cream.

Due to the excellent central location in Cambridge, the park is close to The Folio Bar where friends can enjoy creative cocktails as well as classic drinks with a twist. The location and facilities Jesus Green has to offer make it an ideal picnic spot in the summer for families and groups who can take advantage of the park’s large space.

Picnic with Cocktails in Cambridge - The Folio Bar & Kitchen

2. Midsummer Common

Midsummer Common is located just next to Jesus Green and is another wonderful picnic spot in Cambridge. This unique green space will make your picnic feel like you are in the heart of nature while being surrounded by tranquil ancient trees, wildflowers and grazing cows. This picnic spot is perfect for those who want to experience outdoor dining in wildlife while still having quick access to the city centre.

Many appreciate the serene atmosphere during the picnic as well as taking a walk or bike ride next to the River Cam that runs alongside the park. For tourists or those who do not have access to a bike, The Fellows House which is located just a 5-minute walk from Midsummer Common, offers bike hire so everyone can take part in a bike ride during a picnic day out.

3. Parker’s Piece

Parker’s Piece is an iconic park located in the heart of Cambridge close to all the restaurants and shopping centres. This green space is not only a great place to relax and unwind from the shopping and sightseeing, but this park also has a history behind it. Parker’s Piece is known to be the birthplace of modern football, with artwork on the park symbolising this significance.

Not only is the park a lovely picnic spot surrounded by mature trees, but the park is also a lively urban place to enjoy pop-up events like summer festivals and fairs, as well as enjoy the picnic with entertainment from local sports groups like cricket and football matches. The upbeat atmosphere at Parker’s Piece is a great picnic spot in Cambridge for socialisation and entertainment. Using the bikes from The Fellows House, you can cycle to get a refreshing drink or bite to eat from The Sage of Cambridge.

Bike Hire in Cambridge - The Fellows House

4. Cambridge University Botanic Garden

For those who do not have a garden or are visiting Cambridge, a hidden gem within central Cambridge and a must-see in the wonderful green city is a visit to the Cambridge University Botanic Garden. Home to enchanting gardens featuring a diverse collection of plant species from around the world and stunning landscaped gardens, the botanical garden is a breathtaking place to host a picnic. The choice of where to sit is endless. Picnic benches are dotted around the garden, as well as available areas to place down the picnic blanket.

You can discover tranquil ponds, ancient grand trees and hidden corners within the garden for a romantic or private garden picnic spot. The relaxing ambience of the botanical garden is one of a kind and ensures a unique picnic spot in Cambridge. Not only can you enjoy the picnic in a picturesque garden, but there are plenty of opportunities to wander off, discover and immerse in the beauty of the rare exotic plants before or after the relaxing picnic.

5. Milton Country Park

The Milton Country Park is in a secluded setting of 95 acres of stunning space, perfect for a picnic nestled within natural beauty. The park is located just north of the city of Cambridge off the A14 with a large car park upon entry. The Milton Country Park is a relaxing environment offering both lakes and land to enjoy a picnic with a view. Throughout the warmer months, the park hosts plenty of events such as open theatre shows, which can be great entertainment before or after a picnic.

The nature at Milton Country Park has its captivating events like the nesting swans, great for those who enjoy wildlife watching and also offers paddlesports activities like paddle boarding as well as cycling and fishing. There are also free activities like playgrounds for the little ones and table tennis tables. The park has designated BBQ areas and fire pits, as a great addition to a picnic in nature.

Enjoy the best spots for a picnic in Cambridge

The city and outskirts of Cambridge offers the best exciting and eventful picnic spots for everyone to enjoy. The diverse variety of spaces meets the different requirements and definitions of what the best picnic spot is, from nature and wildlife-loving individuals who enjoy a private picnic to those who love to be around others and socialise. As the weather starts to get warmer, this guide to the best picnic spots around Cambridge will be your best friend when searching for where to host your next picnic.

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Afternoon Tea

Offered from Thursdays through to Sundays from 12:00 to 16:30 at The Folio Bar & Kitchen.