Luxurious Date For Less: 7 Romantic Picnic Tips For Frugal Couples

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Planning to celebrate a special occasion with your partner? If having dinner in a fancy restaurant for the 99th time isn’t what you have in mind, here’s one unique, affordable yet romantic date idea you might love: how about a lovely picnic for two? 

In this article, we’ll list down a couple of tips for pulling off an unforgettable romantic picnic. 

1. Find a picturesque yet quiet setting for your picnic

When picking a location for your romantic picnic, it’s not enough that you choose something Instagram-worthy. You’re not having a picnic for the ‘gram — you’re spending quality time with your beloved. The best place is the one where you can relax and enjoy each other’s company with fewer people and minimal distractions. 

You can take your pick from the following locations: 

  • Beach
  • Vineyard (for wine lovers)
  • Botanical garden (perfect for springtime)
  • Local park or farm abundant in flora and fauna
  • Lakeside or riverside with swans or ducks
  • National parks and scenic trails with picnic areas
  • Drive-in theatre
  • Hike a hill or a mountain with a view from a high vantage point

A place that has a sentimental value to you and your lover is also a great pick. You can go to a park where you first met or your favorite lakeside spot not a lot of people know about. Find a secluded spot that has a nice shade and scenic view. Bring along some mats and cushions for extra comfort. 

Also read: Exploring the Allure of Krakow

2. Time your picnic wisely 

The afternoon is usually the best time for picnics. You can do your menu preparations in the morning, drive to your destination, set up, and be ready just in time for the golden hour. You can catch the magnificent sunset together while sharing a bottle of wine or champagne. Just remember to ask about their closing time, as some attractions close after sundown. 

Don’t forget to check weather forecasts too! 

3. Plan a romantic picnic menu

Of course, your picnic menu is always a matter of personal choice. But if you’re looking for something that feels a bit luxurious, ditch cheap comfort food for now and refine your dining choices. Leave the unsightly fabric or plastic baskets too and go for stylish wicker baskets. 

You may swap good ‘ol sandwiches for a “create your own crostini”. Bring a few of your favorite cold meats, like prosciutto, pepperoni, ham, bologna, and chicken slices. Don’t forget your spreads or dips, cheeses, fruits, and veggie salad. You may also create a picture-perfect charcuterie board featuring a variety of cured meats, cheese, olives, fruits, and jams. 

If you two have big appetites (and the finger foods listed above won’t suffice), you may go for pasta dishes or bring a portable grill for BBQs. For crunchy snacks, swap your go-to crispy snacks for some gourmet chips, popcorn, and crackers. You can also level up your sweets by opting for a fancy box of chocolates or homemade baked goods. 

4. Buy luxury gift hampers

Don’t have a lot of time to curate your classy picnic menu? You can count on luxury gift hampers to do the work for you. A luxury gift hamper, which may come in a form of a box or basket, is a bundle of unique food, sophisticated beverages, and sustainable homeware gifts. Luxury gift hamper providers work with artisan suppliers, making sure you get items that are not easy to find. 

There’s a wide array of luxury gift hampers to choose from based on the theme of your picnic. Luckily, you can find a lot of hampers curated for couples, celebrating a special occasion like Valentine’s day, anniversary, or birthday. These luxury gift hampers usually include gourmet cheeses, a bottle of wine, champagne, or sparkling drink, premium chocolates, gourmet chips, popcorn, crackers, or other nibbles, and deluxe jams. Others sweeten the deal with tealight candles and elegant glasses for two. 

5. Don’t forget the booze

What’s a romantic celebration without some spirits? You may bring a bottle of premium red or white wine, champagne, whiskey, or craft beer. If you want to stay sober, swap sodas for a fine bottle of sparkling juice. 

If you’re having a cold-weather picnic, hot beverages like coffee, hot chocolate, and tea can make everything cosy. Feel free to spice them up by adding rum, brandy, or bourbon to your warm drinks. 

6. Set the scene

What makes a romantic picnic different from an ordinary one? It’s all about setting the scene to create a dreamy and cosy atmosphere. 

Instead of using an old plaid blanket, go for a vintage bohemian rug or a stylish woven mat. Make it more comfortable by bringing throw pillows. Intimate picnics are also never complete without flowers, like roses, tulips, daisies, and sunflowers. 

To create a warm ambiance, think about your lighting. You can set up battery-powered string lights for a whimsical effect or find a location adorned with hanging lanterns. Another foolproof way to create an intimate setting is to pack tealights or scented candles. 

Don’t forget these essentials: 

  • Insulated cooler for things that need to stay cold
  • Fancy yet travel-friendly dinnerware and flatware
  • Find a fun, old-school picnic basket 
  • Cloth napkins and wet wipes
  • Bug spray and sunscreen
  • Hats and umbrellas

7. Think about activities and games

Picnics aren’t all about laidback dining in a scenic location. You and your beloved should also plan fun things to do together. 

For adventurous couples, you may try spending an afternoon hiking and riding bikes. If you’re having a picnic by the water, check if you can have a romantic boat ride. 

If you two simply want to unwind with a nice picnic spread, bring entertainment items to keep the fun going. You can bring your musical instruments, indoor game packs, favorite books, and art materials. You can also go for a photography shoot, capturing memories that would last a lifetime.

Enjoy your romantic picnic, lovebirds! 

Author Bio: Carmina Natividad is a free-spirited blogger who loves cooking, eating, and writing articles about her foodie discoveries. To know more about food and lifestyle, visit Green Grocer’s Daughter, an Irish business that specialises in unique artisan luxury food and gift hampers.