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The trick to packing a great family picnic (and exploring!)

by LaurettaCWright

Although national picnic week has been and gone, the weather has actually improved since June and in Kent we’re enjoying glorious sunshine and high temperatures week after week.

And when the sun is shining and you’ve got a free weekend, there’s little better way of spending your free time than having a picnic with the family – and having fun.

As many of you will know if you follow my blog, we like exploring as a family – and that often means visiting new places if we get a spare weekend.

So with the sun beaming down on us one Sunday, we decided to pack up a picnic bag and do just that. But as it was a last minute decision, we needed to make a speedy exit if we were going to miss the traffic rush.

Fortunately my go-to picnic bag (a 27 piece bag from B&M) already has all the essentials I need for my family picnic – all I needed to do was add the food and drink.


So what’s in my picnic bag? (retails at £14.99) 

  • A set of four knives, forks and spoons
  • Four napkins
  • Four wine glasses
  • Four melamine plates
  • A multi-function pocket knife (with bottle opener)
  • A striped picnic rug
  • A spice bottle pot
  • Reusuable ice cubes

The picnic bag is a lovely bright pink colour (also available in navy) and doubles up as a cool bag itself. It’s strong, sturdy and really great quality – which makes it even sweeter that it costs less than £15.

It’s also very roomy so you don’t need any other bags for your food – with the plates, glasses, cutlery, napkins, bottle opener and salt pot contained in a separate zipped compartment.

Oh and the bag also has the added advantage of a detachable shoulder strap, so if it’s a little heavy you can sling it over your shoulders!

What the kids loved (and made them feel very grown up) was drinking out of wine glasses while we dined al fresco, while VIP and I felt quite posh.

A Gillingham jaunt

We opted to visit Riverside Country Park in Gillingham, Kent. We hadn’t been there before, but VIP told me that it was amongst the top 20 Kent spots for picnics.

It took less than half hour to get there and there were already a few cars in the car park when we arrived mid-morning.

The coastal park is around 247 acres and is home to a plethora of wildlife – and the odd beached barge, which the kids loved.

We opted to take a walk on the peninsula along the river Medway, which was about a mile long. By the time we returned to where we started, we were definitely in need of refreshments!


On the way back the kids had clocked the adventure playground, so we decided to head to the picnic area and managed to find a free table to sit and enjoy our delicious picnic.

We packed: chicken and couscous, ham and cheese sesame baps, yoghurts, grapes, fruit salad, water, fruit shoots and crisps.

My essential picnic pack list:

  • Suntan lotion
  • Hats and sunglasses
  • Anti-bacterial hand wash
  • Wet Wipes – for sticky fingers!
  • Games – football / Frisbee and a pump in case the ball goes flat!
  • Fruit – to encourage the kids to get their five a day!
  • Water – and lots of it
  • Ice packs – to help keep food cool until it’s time to eat it
  • A magazine to read (if I want to sit out of playing games)


After a quick play on the monkey bars, the kids wanted to have a game of Frisbee and football (not at the same time!), so we set up our picnic rug in the adjacent field.

It was such a lovely day – I’d highly recommend visiting the park to soak up the atmosphere and enjoy a walk with some superb views over the Medway.



*B&M sent me their Picnic Bag with Dinnerware 27pc for an honest review.


Andrea Fletcher 6th April 2018 - 4:36 pm

We love going on picnics and this bag looks great.

LaurettaCWright 8th April 2018 - 10:10 am

Thanks Andrea – it was definitely a great buy.

Sarah Carter 1st February 2018 - 11:51 am

I love a good picnic and a good picnic bag looks like you all had great fun x

LaurettaCWright 5th February 2018 - 9:14 pm

Roll on summer so that we can do it all again! Thanks Sarah.

Umina Restaurants 18th January 2018 - 2:57 am

This is so practical and easy. kids will gonna love this, will have one this coming weekend, thank you for sharing!

LaurettaCWright 20th January 2018 - 8:19 am

Glad it helped! Cheers 🙂

Anthony Harrington 4th January 2018 - 7:09 pm

We love picnics, unfortunately we only managed one this year and it poured with rain! we still had fun though.

LaurettaCWright 5th January 2018 - 8:45 am

I’m hoping to have at least 2 – maybe 3 this year – we just need the sun to come out for a bit eh?!

Louise Smith 21st July 2017 - 10:35 pm

I totally agree with your list of essential picnic items. I never leave the house without sunscreen!

Louise x

Cal at Family Makes 16th July 2017 - 7:34 pm

That’s a great picnic bag – it has absolutely everything you could need! We spend all summer having picnics – it’s great! Have a fab summer.

LaurettaCWright 16th July 2017 - 8:48 pm

Thanks – and you! I have a feeling I’ll be getting it out a few more times over summer!

Stephanie 16th July 2017 - 11:09 am

I love picnics, we are heading out today for one too! We need a bag like this though, bargain price!

LaurettaCWright 16th July 2017 - 11:57 am

I think we might be heading out for more picnics if the weather holds up! You can order it online too if you can’t locate it in store…

Clair 14th July 2017 - 1:47 pm

I am hoping to go on a picnic tomorrow (if the sun is still shining) so thanks for sharing your tips. I like the idea of ice cubes!

LaurettaCWright 14th July 2017 - 2:07 pm

What a great idea eh? you could use them as ice packs too – to keep your food cool I guess!

Fashion and Style Police 14th July 2017 - 11:07 am

I love this picnic bag. Would be great to have around for picnics.

Sarah | Digital Motherhood 13th July 2017 - 9:27 pm

That picnic bags looks great, I need to invest in a decent one!

LaurettaCWright 14th July 2017 - 2:06 pm

It looks like it’s great quality so you can’t go wrong with this one..

Lucy Dorrington 12th July 2017 - 4:30 pm

I love the picnic bags from B&M, really fun designs and they last forever. Unbelievable prices for what you get.

LaurettaCWright 14th July 2017 - 2:06 pm

Yes the prices are fab!

Samantha Bye 12th July 2017 - 11:43 am

You are way more organised than I am! Usually I forget everything, and end up stranded and sunburnt in a field somewhere. Need to take a leaf out of your book!
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LaurettaCWright 12th July 2017 - 12:20 pm

Ha ha – thanks for the compliment Samantha!

Suzy Mccullough 11th July 2017 - 5:53 pm

Taking a picnic along on a day out is what summer is all about. Your bag looks fab for the price. I’m impressed

LaurettaCWright 12th July 2017 - 12:17 pm

Thanks Suzy – I want to go on a lot more picnics now!

Tripserto 11th July 2017 - 2:59 pm

Thank you for sharing your packing tips.
Love it and took a few notes for my next picnic adventure!

LaurettaCWright 11th July 2017 - 3:26 pm

Really glad it was helpful!

Stephanie ReadsWell 11th July 2017 - 2:24 pm

Aha…your picnic packing list is short and practical. I should try some of the items mentioned in it. I hope you had a fun trip in the glorious sunshine and high temperatures 🙂

LaurettaCWright 11th July 2017 - 2:25 pm

Thanks Stephanie! The antibacterial hand gel and wet wipes are a firm fave!

Jess 11th July 2017 - 2:23 pm

Picnic weather has well and truly passed us here in Manchester, but I love this idea. The picnic bag is such a bargain!

LaurettaCWright 11th July 2017 - 2:26 pm

Summer’s not over yet Jess – keep the faith…the sun might make a reappearance! 🙂

Sophie's Nursery 11th July 2017 - 1:31 pm

Looks lovely! What a good price for the picnic set!! Also, couldn’t agree more about taking wet wipes – so useful!! x

LaurettaCWright 11th July 2017 - 2:21 pm

Thanks Lauren – the wipes are pretty much always with me wherever I go! Actually wrote a post about their usefulness https://www.homeandhorizon.com/ten-great-uses-for-baby-wipes/

Caroline 11th July 2017 - 11:27 am

What a great value picnic set! It’s so nice that it has the added extras like the reusable ice cubes and spice pot too. Looks like a fab day out!

LaurettaCWright 11th July 2017 - 3:58 pm

Thanks Caroline! The extras are a great idea – I love the ice cubes – so easy and saves the hassle!

Gareth Torrance 11th July 2017 - 6:49 am

Your picnic bag is awesome! I might have to get one once the princess is a bit older and is used to sitting outside and feeding herself.

LaurettaCWright 11th July 2017 - 7:11 am

I’m sure she’d love it Gareth! ?

Mummy Times Two 10th July 2017 - 7:46 pm

Wow, I love your picnic bag. That was certainly a bargain, it looks really expensive x

LaurettaCWright 10th July 2017 - 7:49 pm

It does look rather expensive doesn’t it? …you wouldn’t believe it’s under £15! Thanks for commenting 🙂


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