Picnics are back! Pull out Nanna’s old rug and get ready to pack your wicker basket full of local delicacies. Make your way to a local park for some outdoor fun, because here are our picks of places and people providing the goods.
If you’re after a central spot to eat, drink, swim, play and stretch the legs – Mornington Park ticks ALL the boxes. There’s plenty of open space, lush green grass to roll out your picnic rug, a playground for the kids, and Mothers Beach is but a stone’s throw away.
You can fill up your picnic basket with a selection of artisanal cheeses and antipasto at DOC’s iconic delicatessen, tasty AND good-for-you salads from Just Graze and a selection of cold-pressed juices and smoothies from Store Fifteen.
If you’re feeling a little cheeky, take a short stroll up Main Street to Peninsula Beverage Co, where they offer a wide range of locally sourced wines, craft beers and one-of-a-kind spirits for takeaway. Top it all off with gelati from Okay Lucy, OKAY?
With breath-taking views over the bay, and just up from Hotel Sorrento, Sorrento Park is prime real estate for picnicking. There’s plenty of tables to choose from, along with BBQ facilities, beautiful big trees for shade and a community-built wooden playground for the kids to enjoy – so YOU can sit back and relax.
We recommend picking up coffee and pastries from Buckleys on the way, where they serve up Inglewood coffee and baked goods that will blow your socks off. We’ll take an almond croissant and a rhubarb danish to go, please.
Next up, you’ll likely need something savoury for your esky. Meander up to Ocean Beach Pavilion to stock up on bento boxes, sashimi and sushi platters from their new pop-up sushi bar (plus, COCKTAILS).
Last but not least, you can stock up on fancy snacks, salads and fruit platters from Sorrento’s legendary grocer, Scicluna’s Real Food Merchants.
The Briars is a beautiful rural property steeped in local history, with the heritage homestead built in 1851. It also happens to be an EPIC picnic spot. With plenty of walking tracks, wildlife and wetlands to explore, you can roll out your picnic rug amongst the native bushland and soak in the surroundings.
Soley Sun Chaser is set up at The Briars from Wednesday-Sunday, serving Commonfolk coffee, toasties and pastries from their picturesque vintage 1968 Franklin Caravan.
A truly tranquil spot, Devilbend boasts the largest inland body of water on the Mornington Peninsula and is home to countless birds and woodland creatures. Meanwhile, the picnic area is particularly spacious and perfect for social distancing, with five hectares of grassland to enjoy.
You can pick up some boujee snacks for birdwatching from the deli at Tully’s Corner Produce Store, with juices and smoothies to go from their smoothie bar, Tonics at Tully’s.
Hillview Community Reserve
Hillview Community Reserve is the ultimate destination for adrenaline junkies and weekend warriors. It’s at the base of multiple mountain bike tracks that snake their way up Arthurs Seat, and it even has a pump track for the kids (and the young at heart). It’s off-leash, so you can take your furry friends, and there are undercover BBQ facilities that overlook the dam, which is usually full of friendly ducks. Ahh, the serenity.
You can fill your picnic hamper with hearty salads, wraps and smoothies from the vegan haven that is Wombat Café & Store, which sits just across the road. If you’re after a well-earned beverage, you can pop into Sea Breeze Cellars or head to Jetty Road Brewery in the nearby Dromana Industrial Estate, where they’re filling growlers with your favourite Jetty Road brews to takeaway.
If you want to get up close and personal with the local wildlife, Seawinds Gardens is a must-visit destination. Kangaroos and wallabies regularly graze on the lush green grass, whilst ducklings seem ever-present in spring as they waddle around the idyllic lakes and ponds.
The National Park features indigenous and exotic gardens and is home to William Rickkets sculpture collection. You’ll feel as if you’re in Melbourne’s Royal Botanic Gardens, though you are smack bang in the middle of The Ninch.
There’s also an excellent playground for the kiddies to enjoy, with electric BBQs and toilets nearby. Did we mention the lookout also has panoramic views over Port Phillip Bay?
You can pick up epic picnic fare, including fresh bread, antipasto, house-made salads and grazing platters, from the local IGA in Dromana. For healthy and tasty treats, head to Foundation Bulk Food Store to stock up on plastic-free goodies. It’s the dark chocolate-covered strawberries for us.
The Flinders Blowhole
You’ve got a couple of options here, as really any spot along this stretch of rugged coastline is picnic worthy. Whilst The Blowhole boasts a wooden boardwalk and a well-made track, the walk down to the surf is through serene rolling hills and pastures. Either way, you’ll have front row seats to watch the waves crash against the rocky shores and sheer cliff face. They’re not traditional picnic spots, but for those feeling adventurous, you can unfurl your picnic blanket or find your perfect perch to enjoy the show.
Fill your basket (or, in this case – perhaps your backpack) with a range of goodies from Flinders General Store. It truly is a one-stop-shop for all your picnic needs – with gourmet produce, a well-stocked deli, a bottle shop showcasing Mornington Peninsula wines, and a takeaway coffee bar to boot.
Leave some room in your bag for a stop in at Flinders Sourdough, where you can pick up some of the ever-popular beach buns as they come fresh out of the wood-fired oven.
View all these spots on the map
Know of more picnic-worthy parks and providers? Send their details our way! You can also check out this Guide on Instagram. Stay safe and have fun out there friends.