The Best Places to Celebrate National Picnic Month

July is National Picnic Month, and America has some stunning picnic spots you can enjoy with your friends and family. A picnic is a meal enjoyed outdoors, often as part of a special excursion. A spontaneous adventure, a road trip, a camping trip, an exploration, a drive through the country on a weekend, there are all sorts of scenarios that lend themselves to enjoying a picnic outside on a sunny summer day. It makes sense that July is National Picnic Month, with its glorious midsummer days full of sunshine and blue skies. July is also peak season for one of summer’s prettiest flowers, the sunflower. We’ve done a little research and discovered some of America’s best picnic spots – some right in the heart of the city – for your picnic planning pleasure.

If you live in the bustling metropolis of New York City, you may think there is nothing but shops and skyscrapers, with no place to enjoy a picnic. You’d be wrong about that, however, because Central Park in Manhattan made the list of 10 places to picnic in the U.S. by ShermansTravel. With 55 acres of Great Lawn to choose from, Central Park offers a multitude of picnic possibilities. Choose from eight designated quiet zones like the East Green on the East side entrance of the park if you’re looking for a little peace and quiet. If you’re looking for a spot close to playgrounds, ball fields, the carousel, and the zoo, go for the West side entrance near Sheep Meadow. Lovebirds like Cherry Hill in the center of the park. The beautiful view of the lake makes this is a popular spot for couples.

For Coloradans, it doesn’t get much better than Red Rocks Park and Amphitheater in Morrison, Colorado for picnicking. Although this gorgeous spot is most well-known for its musical history, the avid hiker and nature lover will be thrilled with the hiking and biking trails at this beautiful picnic location just outside Denver. Breathtaking views of the city are easily available from all angles, and a day here is time well spent. You can start your day with a morning hike, take a picnic lunch break and later enjoy a nighttime concert at the amphitheater. If you’re looking for a sheltered area to enjoy your picnic, the group picnic shelter off Tunnel Road has a snack bar and restroom facilities. Colorado summers nights are known for their stargazing opportunities, and if you plan your picnic at the right time, you’ll be treated to some incredible views of the starry night sky.

If you live out west in coastal California or are planning a trip to the area, be sure to pack a picnic basket (or cooler) and head to Crystal Cove State Park in Laguna Beach. Explore the natural tide pools, sandy coves, or enjoy a stroll along the pristine beach. If you’re there at sunset, you’ll be treated to something special. For a truly unique park experience, don’t forget to grab your snorkeling gear and explore a 1,140 acre underwater park created within the boundaries of the park. This exceptional feature offers snorkelers an extensive view of various marine life natural to the area. Hiking, biking, swimming, and scuba diving are also available.

Are you a lighthouse lover? If you love lighthouses, you’ve got to check out Ram Island Lighthouse in Boothbay Harbor, Maine. Known as the “heart of New England,” Maine’s rugged coastline offers incredible sightseeing opportunities, and Ram Island Light in Boothbay Harbor is the perfect picnic spot for lighthouse lovers. Before you sit down to munch on your lunch, take time to explore the island and search for beach glass, shells, and other treasures. For a special treat, stay until sunset to see the lighthouse in action.

If you’re anywhere near Calhoun, Georgia and you love sunflowers, hayrides, pig races, a petting zoo, and other farm fun, plan your picnic outing at Copper Creek Farm during their annual Sunflower Festival. Chosen by Country Living as one of the 25 prettiest sunflower fields across America, this family-friendly farm boasts beautiful sunflowers and lots of fun farm activities for the kids to enjoy like a barn loft slide, an animated chicken show, pony rides, a kid’s zip line, and a monster watermelon cannon. Purchase a full bucket of sunflowers to bring home as a memento of your trip for just $6. The owners’ goal is that you find laughter, joy, love, and happiness during your day at the farm. All that and a picnic to boot; what could be better?

Whether you’re on the east coast, west coast, in the heartland, up north or down south, we hope you take the opportunity during July to pack a picnic with all the fun picnic essentials, get outdoors, enjoy the sunshine and blue skies, and explore somewhere new with your picnic posse. You might just discover your new favorite picnic spot this year during National Picnic Month!