Summer is the ultimate time for picnics. A picnic is a great cheap, outdoor activity that's perfect for a date or just good times with friends or family. Even the most urban cities in Canada boast a plethora of parks to picnic in. To help you find a great place to lay down your blanket and basket, the team at Bentall Kennedy Residential Services has a list of the best parks for picnics across Canada.
Vancouver: New Brighton Park
While Stanley Park jumps to mind for Vancouver natives and out-of-province folks alike, New Brighton should be at the top any Vancouver summer park list. While a bit out of the core, New Brighton is next to the Port of Vancouver, and is equipped with barbecue pits, a swimming pool, picnic tables, and tons of green space. It's a great place for sunset views, romantic strolls, and ocean gazing. Learn more here.
Burnaby: Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area
With stunning views of the mountains, Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area is a sensational spot. With eco sculptures, picnic grounds, hiking and walking trails, and a spectacular rose garden, BMCA is well worth a visit.
Langley: Campbell Valley Park
Campbell Valley Regional Park is set amid a vast expanse of farmland, with a sprawling 29 km network of trails for walking, horseback riding, and exploring. The park is also home to the Campbell Valley Downs Equestrian Centre and the historic Langley Speedway. The perfect picnic locale, CVRP is also stellar for bird-watching, dog walking, or a quick sidesaddle ride. Perfect for solo walks as well as family play time.
New Westminster: Queen's Park
While popular and perhaps cliche, any summer park list in New Westminster has to include Queen's Park. Having something for everyone of every age, Queen's Park not only has picnic tables and hiking trails, it's got a petting farm, splash park, "Rainbow Playground" for kids, plus an art gallery, and a rose garden. With all this at your disposal, there's not much to want for, especially on a summer day.
Victoria/Saanich: Mount Tolmie
Mount Tolmie features incredible mountain views that will elevate any picnic. With breathtaking, 360-degree panoramas of the Saanich islands, Mount Douglas, and the city of Victoria itself, Mount Tolmie has rocky outcroppings, picnic benches, and is a short drive from downtown. Learn more here.
St. Albert: Red Willow Park
Red Willow is a large urban park that is a popular year-round St. Albert destination. It's a beautiful picnic spot as it follows the expansive and stunning Sturgeon River Valley, and is best known for its 40km of multi-use trails (hiking, running, cycling, picnicking), and no less for it's glorious scenery. Learn more about St. Albert parks here.
Edmonton: Elk Island National Park
While perhaps more of a zoo and nature reserve, Elk Island is a gorgeous park full of activities and sights to see in summer. With canoeing, hiking, cycling, and birding, and more - not to mention the chance of seeing Bison, coyotes, beaver, muskrat and other wildlife - it's a natural gem and an incredible picnic destination, especially with its proximity to Edmonton.
Calgary: Bowness Park
Dating back to before the First World War, Bowness Park is located along the beautiful Bow River. With paddle boating, picnic tables, fire-pits and BBQ stands, Bow River access, shelters, walking trails, and the one and only Park Side Cafe, Bowness is a great place to picnic in summer. Learn more here.
Toronto: High Park
With a range of great picnic spot choices in Toronto (Ward's island, Trinity Bellwoods, Queen's Park, Withrow Park among others), High Park is our favourite. With vast open spaces, 18 designated picnic spots, covered areas, and forest hideaways, High Park has one of Canada's oldest ecosystems in addition to being one of the biggest and most beautiful parks in the city. If picnicking isn't your thing, get a wood-oven pizza or a fantastic brunch at the park's Grenadier Cafe. Learn more here.
Markham: Toogood Pond Park
The name alone is Toogood to resist. Located in Markham, Toogood Pond has 33 hectares of pond, marsh, hiking trails, and picnic areas. With a man-made dam, bird-watching, and a store serving ice cream and other refreshments, Toogood is a natural wonder. It also has free admission and parking making it well worth the drive and a great place for a summer picnic.
Oakville: Coronation Park
Commemorating Queen Victoria's crowning, Coronation Park lies on Oakville's south-western edge, nestled alongside Lake Ontario. With a large playground, picnic areas with BBQ pits, trees and open space, a gorgeous view of the lake, and access to pebble beach lakefront, Coronation is a crown jewel. Learn more here.
The Bentall Kennedy Residential Services blog team hopes this list of amazing Canadian parks helps you find the perfect place for a summer picnic. For more information about Bentall Kennedy properties in your city, please visit our website.