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Grosvenor Square

credit: Tom Morrisson

A patchwork of pathways and grass, Grosvenor Square, in hoity-toity Mayfair, is an open book. Home to a memorial to former US president Franklin D Roosevelt, it’s no coincidence the stronghold that is the American Embassy also resides here.

Best for: A very secure picnic on a sunny day

Where: Grosvenor Square, W1 

Tube: Bond Street | Marble Arch

Lincoln’s Inn Fields

credit: Julian Osley

The largest square in London, Lincoln’s Inn Fields in busy Holborn is said to have inspired New York’s Central Park. Large grassy patches are criss-crossed by footpaths, and a lovely gazebo in its centre is perfect for shelter from unexpected rain. There’s also tennis courts 
and a café.

Best for: Showing off your athletic skills

Where: Lincolns Inn, WC2 

Tube: Holborn | Chancery Lane

Parliament Square

credit: David Dixon

Often the place of protests, Parliament Square 
is a mostly bare grassy patch adjacent to the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey. It’s also the place to seek democratic inspiration, as it’s surrounded by statues of political figureheads such as South Africa's General Jan Smuts, and former president Nelson Mandela. plus a sober Winston Churchill.

Best for: Those who want to stand up for 
a cause

Where: Parliament Square, SW1 

Tube: Westminster

Soho Square

credit: Peter Trimming

Soho Square is smack-bang in the middle of the West End’s media land. At its most basic, Soho Square is a tidy grassy area with benches, 
a small gazebo and statue of King Charles II. But on a sunny day, this is the place where Soho’s office workers and vibrant, colourful locals come together for lunchtime and twilight parties.

Best for: Watching London come alive

Where: Soho Square, W1 

Tube: Tottenham Court Road

St James’s Square


In St James’s Square, a pathway encircles 
a statue of William of Orange. Surrounded 
by some of London’s most lovely Georgian architecture, this is a great place to bag 
a bench and watch as flowers poke their colourful heads from the grass. One of the capital’s oldest squares, it’s located outside 
the London Library.

Best for: A picnic lunch with a view

Where: St James’s Square, SW1 

Tube: Piccadilly Circus | Green Park 

What to take:

credit: iStock

The Food
Keep it simple. Make up some baguettes with brie and cranberry jelly before you head out for the day. 
If you’re feeling gourmet, try 
a pasta or rice salad, some dips with breadsticks and 
a fruit salad.

The Booze
No one likes a glass of warm rosé/white/beer, so stick your bottle in the freezer before you hit the park and it should be the perfect temperature when it’s time to start glugging. Don’t forget 
your bottle opener.

The Ground Cover
Don’t bother with one of those expensive plaid jobbies – a beach towel, 
sarong or even sheet will keep the (let’s face it) damp grass away from your party. 

The Games
French cricket is always 
a winner. A hula hoop can also be a retro crowd-pleaser. For a gentler picnic, pack a battery-powered radio, lie back and listen to the World Cup/Olympics/Grand Prix.

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