15 Best Picnic Spots in Melbourne for Families

When the weather is pleasant, head outdoors to one of the best picnic spots Melbourne has to offer with a picnic rug and something delicious to eat.

You can even level up your picnic basket with the best picnic boxes in Melbourne or order a grazing box or high tea delivery!

Summertime Social Federation Square Picnic

Best Picnic Spots Melbourne

1. Royal Park, Parkville

As well as being the home of the award winning Royal Park Nature Play, Royal Park is one of the best picnic spots in Melbourne because it has wetlands, a native garden, sports grounds and expanses of spaces.

The best parking for this Melbourne picnic spot is Gatehouse Street, but as many of the parks are time limited, it is prudent to check the signage.

Royal Park, Gatehouse Street Parkville

Royal Park Playground

2. Edinburgh Gardens, Fitzroy North

Edinburgh Gardens is a great spot for families to picnic as ‘Edinburgh gardens playground’ could actually mean a choice of two playgrounds – a huge fenced playground at the southern end and a smaller fenced playground on the north side of the park.

Edinburgh Gardens also boasts huge expanses of grass, and off-leash dog park, sports facilities and toilets.

Edinburgh Gardens, Alfred Crescent Fitzroy North

Edinburgh Gardens South playground 173 Alfred Crescent Fitzroy North 1

3. Royal Botanic Gardens, South Yarra

If you’re looks for picnic areas Melbourne CBD then Royal Botanic Gardens are close to the city – but you’d never know given the tranquility of the space. It is a beautiful area to set up your picnic rug and bring your own food or collect some takeaway from the onsite kiosks at the Jardin Tan or the Terrace.

The Royal Botanic Gardens has beautifully maintained garden beds, a lake, plenty of paths to stroll along and well kept lawns. And, as an added bonus (or as your entire destination), the Children’s Garden is fully fenced and full of opportunities for nature play.

Royal Botanic Gardens, Birdwood Crescent South Yarra

Outdoor Escapades Forest School Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne 3

4. Treasury Gardens, East Melbourne

Treasury Gardens is an easy walking distance from Parliament Station and there are large patches of green to spread out your blanket with city skyline views.

Being in the city means that there are lots of places that you could buy your picnic goods, such as Spring Street Grocer (don’t miss the gelati!).

Treasury Gardens, 2-18 Spring St, East Melbourne

Treasury Gardens East Melbourne
Treasury Gardens East Melbourne

Find Accomodation in East Melbourne

5. Fitzroy Gardens, East Melbourne

East Melbourne sure is lucky with its picnic areas! Fitzroy Gardens is just a bit further past Treasury Gardens and it has beautiful old trees, a playground and plenty of grassy space to set up a picnic space nowhere near any other people.

One of the highlights of this nice Melbourne picnic spots (and the making of many a childhood memory) is the intricately carved fairy tree and adjacent model Tudor Village.

The onsite café or nearby Square and Compass are easy places to get coffees or take away food and drinks.

Fitzroy Gardens, Wellington Parade East Melbourne

Fitzroy Gardens

6. Ardrie Park, Malvern East

Located between residential streets, Ardrie Park is a landscaped English style garden, with a Japanese garden hidden within. It’s one of the magical picnic places in Melbourne.

Elm trees provide natural shade for the picnic grounds. There are water fountains, toilets, barbecue and picnic facilities, and a fully fenced playground.

If you’d prefer to collect some takeaway food on the way, Servery and Spoon in Malvern East has lovely family-friendly food, as well as an adjoining food store and deli.

Ardrie Park, Ardrie Road Malvern East

ardrie park

7. Box Hill Gardens, Box Hill

Box Hill Gardens provides a refuge from the bustling suburb surrounding it.

There are expanses of grass and garden beds, perfect for a picnic. Plus a multi-use sports court, a modern large playground and a smaller playground adjacent the duck pond.  Toilets, picnic tables and barbecue facilities are all available, but parking in this busy area can be scarce – so best to read the signs closely.

Box Hill Central and Box Hill CBD are close by if takeaway food (particularly Asian style) is on the menu for your picnic.

Box Hill Gardens, Irving Avenue Box Hill

Box Hill Gardens Duck Pond

8. Newport Lakes, Newport

Newport Lakes makes for a tranquil escape from the suburbs, and is dotted with tables, seating and grassy areas to spread out a picnic rug.  The lake itself is perfect for (pretend) fishing and there are plenty of opportunities for nature play.

Take your own food, or pick up supplies from Leroys Newport or The Backyard on the way.

Newport Lakes, Lakes Drive Newport

Newport Lakes

9. Footscray Park, Footscray

Footscray Park is an Edwardian Park on the banks of the Maribyrnong River, with views of Flemington Racecourse and the CBD. As a much earlier established picnic places Melbourne, it has garden beds with beautiful arbours, walkways, a pond and lots of expanses of grass to spread out a picnic rug.

If you’d prefer to collect some takeaway on the way to Footscray Park, try There, Footscray or Huxtaburger, Footscray.

The Footscray Park all-abilities playground is a welcome addition to the area, with play equipment, a sandpit and water play.

Footscray Park, Ballarat Road / Maribyrnong Boulevard Footscray

Footscray Park Playground 11 11

10. Queens Park, Moonee Ponds

Filled with a lake, walking tracks, summer swimming pool, bandstand and gardens, Queens Park is one of the most beautiful places for a picnic Melbourne western suburbs has to offer.

There is plenty of grass to spread out your picnic rug, as well as tables and barbecue facilities.  The onsite café, Curators Collective, is open 7 days, or you can grab some take away from Moonee Ponds cafes like Brother Hen.

Queens Park, Mt Alexander Road Moonee Pond

Queens Park Moonee Ponds Lake View

11. Organ Pipes National Park, Keilor North

Organ Pipes is popular for hiking and bushwalking, offering beautiful scenery without too much effort. It is also a beautiful place to go for a picnic, with seating right near the car park (and toilets near by too).

Organ Pipes National Park, Organ Pipes Road Off Cader Freeway Keilor North

Organ Pipes Park lookout

12. Alfred Nicholas Gardens, Sherbrooke

The Alfred Nicholas Memorial Gardens are a beautiful highlight of the Dandenong Ranges. It covers some 13 acres, with an ornamental lake (with water features) and boathouse at the bottom of the hill. If you want one of the most beautiful picnics Melbourne has to offer, Alfred Nichols Memorial Gardens will deliver all year round.

Alfred Nicholas Gardens, Sherbrooke Road Sherbrooke, 13 1963

Boathouse at Alfred Nicholas Gardens Sherbrooke

13. Yarra Bend Park, Kew

Yarra Bend Park is Melbourne’s largest natural bushland park and with its river views, it’s one of the best parks in Melbourne for picnic dates.

Take a picnic and enjoy the leafy grounds, then take a stroll or bike its many trails. You can even hire a canoe at historic Studley Park Boathouse and paddle upstream, making Yarra Bend Park/Studley Park one of the most romantic picnic spots in Melbourne.

The Studley House Boathouse cafe and kiosk offers take away picnic hampers if you haven’t brought one yourself.

Yarra Bend Park, Yarra Bend Road, Fairfield

Studley Park Kew

14. Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne

The Australian Garden at Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne is a beautiful expansive space with lots of interesting nooks and crannies, shaded spaces and wide-open views for a family picnic.

There are also playgrounds in other parts of the botanic gardens as well as nature play opportunities galore.

Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne

Australian Garden Royal Botanic Gardens Cranbourne

15. Melbourne’s best beaches

When the sun is shining and the wind is not blowing, head to one of Melbourne’s best beaches for families to have a picnic in Melbourne.

Although fish and chips is often perfect beach dining, a home made picnic would be delicious too.

Half Moon Bay

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About Joyce Watts

Joyce Watts is a former intellectual property, IT and media lawyer turned serial entrepreneur.

As well as being the founder of TOT: HOT OR NOT she helps businesses with their SEO, email marketing & social media as BrightSmart.com.au; she owns an online bike store CycleStyle.com.au and develops and produces creative experiences for families via WheelieGoodFun.com. She used to publish another popular lifestyle and food blog called MEL: HOT OR NOT The decisive guide to Melbourne.

She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband, two children and seven bikes.

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