The weather is warming up and it’s time to wander into the beautiful outdoors and just enjoy being alive. If you want to do some outdoor activity with friends and family, and you don’t have a lot of money to spend, why not pack up some food and a few Frisbees and have yourself a picnic at some friendly location?
While Baltimore may bring to mind urban sprawls of concrete and chrome, Baltimore County is actually crammed with beautiful rural scenery, forests and waterfronts that welcome visitors to feast their eyes and stomachs. So grab your favorite finger foods and peruse this list to find an open location to get your kicks on.
2200 Rock Point Road
Essex, MD 21221
Located at the convergence of Middle and Back Rivers, Rocky Point is a 375 acre park which offers fishing, hiking and boating for guests. It also is a fantastic place for picnicking. Come take advantage of the convenient parking, and hike out with your picnic meal to the convenient tables or pavilion. There, enjoy a beautiful view of the Chesapeake, the lighthouse and Hart-Miller Island. Come to Rocky Point after Memorial Day and enjoy swimming or sunbathing at the beach before or after your meal. This park has lots to offer in terms of activities to go along with eating, but it’s also a beautiful spot to just have a bite to eat while you relax.
Essex, MD 21221
Hart-Miller Island takes a little work getting out to, but it’s well worth the effort. Accessible only by personal boat, the Island has a beautiful and expansive beach which looks out upon the vast stretch of water surrounding it. Because of its out-of-the-way nature, the Island isn’t crammed with visitors and sight seers. Still, it is staffed, and you can purchase snacks and soda at the concession stands to go along with your meal. You can also rent bikes to ride around the extensive trails that run through the forests and around the wide pond on the island. If you don’t want to hike, bike or camp, then finish you meal and enjoy a day at one of the most beautiful beaches in Maryland.
8211 Glen Road
Parkville, MD 21234
For being located smack dab in the middle of the Parkville suburbs, Double Rock has a surprising amount of wilderness. Water babbles over rocks, trees sway in the breeze, and birds sing – drowning out the sound of the suburbs around you. Double Rock has several trails for running, strolling or taking your dog for a walk. However, the park has a series of pavilions offering tables for picnicking, and shade from the sun. After you finish eating, burn off the calories by taking a hike or playing on the ball fields while your kids enjoy the playgrounds.
1211 Elm Road
Halethorpe, MD 21227
A quiet little park in the Arbutus community, Arbour Manor offers plenty of tables or lawn for picnicking, and plenty of recreational options once the meal is winding down. Kids can kick about on the playground while everyone else plays ball on the courts, or baseball on the field. The playgrounds are safe and well maintained, so concerns about the children’s safety can be held at a minimum. And once the kids (or adults) start inevitably asking around for the potty, take advantage of the convenient restrooms on the park grounds. A perfect day for the whole family!
535 Hampton Lane
Towson, MD 21286
The Hampton National Historic Site offers a different take on the picnic experience. This Historic Site is located on the sprawling estate of the Hampton Manor, which has a colorful history worth checking out. The estate has a large, scenic garden area making a beautiful place to stroll through. The estate offers picnicking areas, but it also offers guided tours which allow you to learn the history of the estate – a nice companion to any meal!
Related: Best Hiking Trails In Baltimore