Picnic? We’ve Scot you covered

Explore the beautiful bounty on your doorstep this National Picnic Week

Whether you’re looking for a dreamy setting to enjoy an al fresco supper for two or a wild and wonderous spot to work up the family’s appetite, Scotland has all the ingredients for a successful picnic.

Ahead of National Picnic Week (21-30 June) we look to give you just a taste of what Ayrshire and Arran’s rugged cliffs and golden sands, woodland canapes, waterside spots and magnificent adventure playgrounds, can bring to your picnic experience.

And it’s not just the stunning surroundings that makes Ayrshire and Arran the first pick for a picnic, the fantastic food and drink made here will leave you spoiled for choice when it comes to your outdoor spread. So pack up your basket and explore the beautiful bounty on your doorstep…

Ayrshire & Arran

With spectacular views over the Ayrshire Coast,Brodick Castle and Country Park on the Isle of Arran is an incredible place to stop for a bite to eat. The quintessential island castle provides the perfect family day out with something for all ages. After fueling up with your picnic, explore formal gardens, woodland, and waterfalls. And be sure to bring any four-legged friends along too as the park is pet friendly.

Tucked away within the Galloway Forest Park is the stunning Loch Doon. It boasts incredible scenery and a variety of wildlife to look out for while you relax on its banks with a delicious spread. Located close to Dalmellington in Ayrshire, the loch also has its own castle to explore and the Scottish Dark Sky Observatory is nearby if you fancy staying after dark and staring at the stars – but be sure to pre-book a visit.

One of Scotland’s most beautiful woodlands is combined with one of its most unusual castles just outside Largs in Ayrshire. Kelburn Castle and Country Centre features a colourfully illustrated façade and the surrounding estate stretches across over 3,500 acres, so you will be spoiled for choice when it comes to a picnic spot. If you want to work up an appetite beforehand check out the numerous walks, adventure course and the fun, fortress-style Wild West Saloon.

A picnic spot with an incredible story can be found at Loudoun Hill in Ayrshire. This small bump in the lovely landscape was the site of the Battle of Loudoun Hill which took place in 1307.  It was where Robert the Bruce had his first victory against the English forces and helped his campaign gain momentum.

Dine out at a picnic table featuring a view of the “Spirit of Scotland” sculpture or sprawl out on the grassy plains but be sure to climb to the top too for some great views over Ayrshire to the Firth of Clyde and Arran.

What to pack in your picnic… thanks for its rugged coastlines and vast farmland, there’s no surprise that the region is famous for award-winning food and drink producers.  Tuck into an Ayrshire bacon roll or a special potato salad made with acclaimed Ayrshire ‘tatties’. Arran Fine Foods’ mustards, preserves and chutneys will make any sandwich sing with flavour, while the Scottish Charcuterie Company’s range of salami and air-dried meats, will give your spread a continental feel.

There is an abundance of freshly caught seafood, locally brewed beers, deliciously creamy cheese and even creamier ice cream, to make a feast to remember. Take a trip to one of the many farmers’ markets across the region and find out what culinary treats are on your door step.

Hope we have given you some food for thought? Or do you have a favourite picnic spot that trumps the rest?  Maybe there’s somewhere with a great trail for exploring with the kids, or a secluded spot with a view for two? Share them on the VisitScotland iknow community here and discover more of Scotland this #NationalPicnicWeek.

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