picnic perfect!


Picnic Perfect!

Want the inside (ice cream) scoop on all the summer fun? Curious about kicking the heat while you enjoy a sweet treat? We’ve got you covered!

We are thrilled to be partnering up with our good Friend Amber Rohal, owner of Active Parents, as she walks us through a whole summer of opportunities in our downtown. Take it away, Amber!


Summer is right around the corner and Mother Nature is giving you the perfect excuse to have a picnic in downtown Burlington.

Dining alfresco (“Al fresco” is an Italian term meaning “in the cool air” or “in the shade”) can turn any run-of-the-mill dinner plan into an exciting experience for the whole family. You don’t even have to change your dinner plans if it can be packed up and brought along to a beautiful outdoor space. Or, treat yourself to a night away from the stove and stop off at a fabulous downtown restaurant to pick up dinner. Where are the best picnic spots in downtown Burlington and what restaurants are nearby? Let’s discover 5 of the best picnic spots and some delicious dining ideas nearby.

Brock Park
Brock Park is one of my favourite places to relax any time of day. On a warm day, pack the kids up after school and have an early dinner garden side, just outside the Art Gallery of Burlington. If you get there early enough in the day, you can treat yourselves to some sunshine donuts before they are all gone!

What to eat nearby:
Enjoy freshly made sandwiches and effortless eats from Bocconcino Bakery And Market
You can’t beat the classic donut from The Sunshine Doughnut Company

Centennial Trail
Centennial Trail receives many visits from my family throughout the summer. It’s a popular destination for walkers, rollers and bikers every day of the week, and a great spot for people-watching, too! The trail starts downtown and leads you through quiet neighbourhoods on a wide, paved path. Pick a bench that calls to you, or bring a blanket and enjoy spreading out while you watch the world go by.

What to eat nearby:
Burlington Charcoal Pit for a classic burger and fries
Son of a Peach for a delicious pizza to go
Cool down with some gelato from Lola Choco Bar & Sweet House

Lion’s Park

Lion’s Park is a hidden gem that you will be happy you discovered, especially if you have kids. The brightly coloured playground was recently updated and is ideal for kids of all ages. The massive trees provide lots of space for spreading out your portable feast in the shade. My family lived right across the street for years, and we come back often to enjoy the shade and peace.

What to eat nearby:
The WORKS Craft Burgers & Beer for a great burger with out of this world toppings
Pop into Pizza Nova for a classic pepperoni pie to go
Grab a sweet gluten-free and vegan treat at Kelly’s Bake Shoppe

Appeldoorn Park
Appeldoorn Park is a peaceful spot that is tucked away behind one of Burlington’s oldest churches, St. Luke’s. This bright blue and orange playground is named for one of Burlington’s Twin Cities, Appeldoorn, a city in the Netherlands and is home to a stunning tulip display in the spring. The playground is perfectly sized for little park fans, and you can enjoy your picnic on the green grass on the bench beside the tulip garden.

What to eat nearby:
Treat your tastebuds to real flavour from My Roti Place/My Dosa Place
Grab a pizza (or 2!) from Lugano 2 for 1 Pizza – a downtown staple!
Cool down with some authentic gelato from Alia’s Gelato & Café

Spencer Smith Park
Spencer Smith Park, Burlington’s flagship park, is always the location that comes to mind when we talk about beautiful park spaces. Whether you choose to eat near the spring tulips, enjoy a backdrop of the cherry blossoms or spread out at one of the many picnic tables free to use, you’re sure to enjoy a picnic in Spencer Smith Park.

What to eat nearby:
La Crème de La Crème Creamery Inc. for some of the yummiest ice cream you’ll find
3 Bills for a hearty burger
R.C.’s Boardwalk Fries & Ice Cream Parlour for crispy fries and a classic hot dog

Downtown Burlington is home to some of the best dining options in the entire city. Pair those with peaceful green spaces and impressive playgrounds and you’ve got yourself some perfect picnic locations. Where will you be dining alfresco next?