Warm summer weather calls for al fresco eating at some of Bristol's best picnic spots.

Please remember to take your rubbish home with you, to help keep our parks and green spaces clean. 

1. The Downs

The Downs is an enormous expanse of green up in Clifton and is loved year-round by runners, dog walkers, Nordic walkers and all. But in the summertime it really comes into its own as a place for picnics.

Once you're done relaxing on the grass, pay a visit to 360 Cafe at Clifton Observatory for spectacular views of the Clifton Suspension Bridge and Avon Gorge from their rooftop terrace.

A man laying on the grass with his bike - Credit Tamany Baker
Image - The Downs 

2. Ashton Court Estate

For wide open space and the feeling of being out in the countryside, you can’t beat Ashton Court. The historic estate is made up of 850 acres of ancient woodland and parkland. You can watch the resident deer roam the grounds and find beautiful views of the city, take a ride on the miniature railway, or even play some disc golf.

You'll also find The Courtyard Cafe next to the house and car park if you need more snacks or to use the bathroom, or The Golf Hub Cafe sells hot and cold drinks as well as a range of nibbles if you're running low on supplies!

Mansion house surrounded by spring flowers
Image - Ashton Court Estate 

3. Brandon Hill

The oldest park in Bristol affords some of the finest views in the city from Cabot Tower (which is free to enter when open). After lunch, if you’re still hungry for more, you can explore the nature reserve, go on a tree trail or take the kids to the children's play area.

Aerial view of park
Image - Ariel view of Brandon Hill Park 

4. St Andrews Park

This classic Victorian beauty is a great place to soak up summer vibes thanks to its gorgeous wildflower meadow, blooming right about now. Kids will also love exploring the playground and splashing in their shallow swimming pool! 

St Andrews Park - Credit Visit Bristol
Image - St Andrew's Park 

5. College Green

Located at the bottom of Park Street, College Green is a truly urban oasis. Whilst you sit here tucking into your cheese and pickle sandwiches, consider that there has been a green space here since the 1100s – owned by Bristol Cathedral, a rare example of a city centre cathedral.

A white spray painted heart on College Green - Credit Visit Bristol
Image - College Green

6. Castle Park

This central park, found between the Old City and Bristol Shopping Quarter, has a lot of stories to tell. It was the site of Bristol Castle, then the city’s bustling shopping mecca and in more recent years various celebrations and events. Stop into the Vaulted Chambers Cafe for drinks and snacks in the only remaining part of the medieval castle!

An aerial view of Castle Park in central Bristol
Image - Ariel view of Castle Park 

7. Victoria Park

Victoria Park in Bedminster is a lovely relaxed space for a bite to eat with friends. And if you want to burn off the excess energy from all those mini pork pies and cocktail sausages then there are tennis courts, nine exercise stations including hurdles and leap frogs plus a 1700m route for walkers and joggers. There are also a couple of playgrounds on either side of the park to keep the little ones busy too.

Play ground in Victoria Park - Credit Visit Bristol
Image - Victoria Park 

8. St George Park

At St George Park you can feed the ducks as well as yourselves as there’s a lovely lake to wander round. There’s a large wheels park for BMX, skateboards and scooters, plus a children's playground. The Bake Box is on hand  in the middle of the park for ice creams, coffees and oven-baked goodies.

Skating area at St George's Park - Credit Visit Bristol
Image - St George's Park 

Other great local spots for a picnic

Queen Square - An elegant Georgian square where you can relax in the heart of the city. 

Eastville Park - Home to a fishing lake, basketball courts, playground and the Frome Valley riverside walk. 

Blaise Castle Estate - Explore 400 acres of parkland and woodlands, home to Blaise Castle House Museum, a folly castle, playground and cafe

Chew Valley LakeA big reservoir great for bird watching with cosy picnic areas. 

Read next:

Parks & Gardens in Bristol

Spring walks in Bristol

Top 10 dog walks in Bristol


Pin it for later:

Pintrest image for Picnic spots - Credit Visit Bristol