What To Bring On A Picnic

As any seasoned picnic-goer knows, there are picnics… and there are well-organised picnics! If you’re a fan of the latter, but not quite sure where to begin, then read on.

We all know that it’s not a picnic without Scotch eggs and strawberries, but aside from a mouth-watering spread, you’re going to need some essential supplies to create the ultimate alfresco dining experience. If you’re wondering what to bring to a picnic, you’ve come to the right place.

How To Plan A Picnic?

But before we get into it, here’s a few points to consider for a well-organised picnic.

  • Guests – Think about the crowd, is it a family get-together, or girl’s day out? This will dictate the kind of utensils, food and drink to pack.
  • Spreading the load – If you’re picnicking with friends, can you split the shopping list between you?
  • Location – From the local park to a beachside picnic, think about where you’ll be dining to help ensure you pack the right utensils. There’s plenty of inspiration online, celebrity chef Lisa Faulkner includes Burton Dasset Hills in her dream destination list.
  • Weather – Because it’s not just about what you pack, but what you don’t pack. Be prepared for all eventualities, from your clothing to protection against the elements.

Picnic Packing Essentials

With all the above considered, let’s take a look at what to bring on a picnic.

The Picnic Basket

First thing’s first, you’re going to need a bag or carrier for all those treats, and there’s a couple of options. If you’re all about convenience you can’t beat a picnic backpack, although you may need to buy ice-packs separately.

If you’re in love with the romance of outdoor dining, then a woven basket is perfect for all those twee vibes. But for a real showstopper, nothing beats a Fortnum & Mason hamper for impressing guests, and gorging in style. In fact it is one of the things we mention that could be included in a luxury picnic.

Picnic Blanket

As far as picnic essentials go, you don’t want to skimp on your picnic blanket, even if that means packing several to accommodate guests. What’s more, treat yourself to some extra padding like cushions, even the seating from your outdoor lounger, to keep you comfy and relaxed in the great outdoors. Experienced picnickers will also know to pack a water resistant blanket – better still if it has pockets for filling with rocks on windy days.

Cooler Box (And Bin)

On a similar note, a cooler bag is essential for transporting all those delicious treats. That said some picnic baskets have insulation too, although they may not keep food at the right temperature, in which case a heavy duty item like this cooler bag from Amazon is the answer. In addition to this, you’ll need plastic bags for disposing your rubbish considerately. And remember – most picnic sites do not allow disposable barbecues, so avoid unless you’re told otherwise.

Plates And Utensils

When you think about what to bring to a picnic, plates and utensils are top of the list. Plastic tableware is a smart choice as it’s lightweight to carry and easy to wipe clean. While disposable plates and utensils are great for convenience, they are less considerate to the environment. If you have cakes or pies, be sure to include a kitchen knife too.

Oh, and if you aren’t’ already aware of the latest cake cutting hack using a wine glass, check out the latest TikTok trend – total gamechanger.

Latest cake cutting hack – TikTok trend

Children’s Tableware (And Entertainment)

Bringing the kids? Don’t forget their favourite plastic plates for durability. And while you’re writing your list of things you need for a picnic, be sure to include entertainment for the little ones to make the most of being outdoors. Where possible consider outdoor toys; bikes and scooters, footballs and tennis rackets, rocket launchers and drones, you won’t regret it.

Drinking Utensils

Keeping hydrated is important for your picnic day out, so a bottle filled with water is a prerequisite. Additionally, you’ll want to pack plastic cups and wine glasses for your party. Don’t forget the bottle opener and wine cooler – absolute essentials for your picnic drinks cabinet.

Storage Boxes

We could easily file this section under ‘bits’ but it deserves so much more appreciation. Flying ants, busy bees and roaming dogs are all partial to a picnic spread. Do yourself a favour and bring plenty of containers, Tupperware, and cling film for protecting food.


The mayonnaise lovers amongst us will know just how vital the creamy dip is to any picnic soiree. Forget this at your peril! Now’s the time to stock up on mayonnaise mini sachets and invest in handy ketchup pack size condiments – your guests will thank you for it. Be sure to add condiments to your growing list of things you need for a picnic.


Whether you’re bouncing along to the dulcet tones of  Ed Sheeran, or bopping along to Calvin Harris, there’s a playlist for that. Be sure to bring your Spotify playlist and speakers to keep the party in full swing. (P.S, don’t forget batteries)

Weather Protection

You never know what weather you might encounter, so be ready for all eventualities. This includes packaging ample sun cream, insect repellent, and wind shields if you’re going to the beach.

Napkins And Wipes

Ask any parent what to pack for a picnic and the first thing that comes to mind is wet wipes. We can learn a lot from the toddler years. But seriously, do pack wipes and lots of them. Plus, hand sanitisers (modern day essentials) or these antibacterial biodegradable wipes to kill two birds with one stone and napkins. And if you are bringing the little ones, spare clothes are a given.

A Camera

And finally, whether you choose to take selfies on your phone, or photos on your camera (remember them), you won’t want to miss the opportunity to document your best day out. Just ensure everything is fully juiced up before you go – batteries can run down pretty quickly in the heat.

Well there you have it, an infinite list of things you need for a picnic, to ensure it goes perfectly – have a great day out!

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