Summertime is picnic time in Nebraska! There are countless places to have a great take-along outdoor meal here – so many that we can’t even name them all. But we have selected a few that you should definitely put on your wishlist of perfect picnic getaways.
Chadron State Park, Chadron
The idyllic forest setting makes Chadron a stunning choice for a picnic. You might be so busy looking at the scenery that you forget to crack open the picnic basket!
Lake McConaughy State Recreation Area, Ogallala
A favorite outdoor destination, Lake McConaughy features sandy shores and miles of perfect picnic spots.
Memorial Park, Omaha
Memorial Park is pretty big and has a lot of cool surprises. Did you know there is an All-American Rose Society garden on the grounds? Eat a meal among the beautiful flowers and then go check out the moving armed forces monuments.
Merritt Reservoir State Recreation Area, Near Valentine
The white sand beaches and seriously stunning scenery at Merritt will keep you coming back again and again whenever you need a place to unwind. It has great fishing and plenty of grills, so you might even be able to dine on the catch of the day at one of the 120 picnic tables!
Niobrara State Park, Niobrara
The perfect place for camping, fishing, hiking, and everything outdoors, Niobrara State Park is a beautiful setting for a special outdoor meal.
Platte River State Park, Louisville
The rolling hills of Platte River State Park offer up plenty of places to spread out that checkered blanket and break out the delicious picnic fare. After the meal, head out for some paddleboating or try out the awesome shooting range.
Ponca State Park, Ponca
A beautiful view of the Missouri River and a dense concentration of various flora and fauna make Ponca a must-visit for picnickers. Don't miss Three State Overlook where you can look into South Dakota, Iowa, and Nebraska at the same time!
Riverside Park, Neligh
The large Riverside Park overlooks the Elkhorn River and offers something for just about everyone. Tubing, kayaking, biking, and awesome fishing are a few of the activities you'll want to check out after your picnic.
Schramm Park State Recreation Area, Sarpy County
Picnic areas abound at this eastern Nebraska favorite. The Ak-Sar-Ben Aquarium and Gretna State Fish Hatchery offer up family education and entertainment. After your picnic, work off some of those calories on the 3 miles of beautiful nature trails.
Smith Falls State Park, Valentine
Seriously, who doesn't love Smith Falls? It's easily one of the most beautiful natural sights in Nebraska and also happens to be the state's tallest waterfall. You actually have to park a bit outside of the park and take a footbridge across the Niobrara River to get to the park, but once you get there the epic picnic site will definitely be worth the trek.
Sunken Gardens, Lincoln
One of the most serene and lovely places in Lincoln, the sunken gardens are perfect for sitting down with someone special and sharing an al fresco meal.
Victoria Springs State Recreation Area, East of Anselmo
As one of the lesser-known spots in Nebraska, Victoria Springs provides a nice sense of (partial) solitude. The Sandhills oasis was once prized for its therapeutic mineral springs and now provides a peaceful retreat where you can enjoy a picnic amongst amazing scenery.
Wellfleet Lake, Wellfleet
Known for its great fishing and no-wake boating, Wellfleet lake is a lovely, picturesque place to spend an afternoon with your family or with that special someone.
Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area, Gering
There are few places in Nebraska that offer better nature watching than Wildcat Hills. Situated near Chimney Rock, Scotts Bluff, and Jail and Courthouse Rocks, this ecologically unique site features lovely stone picnic shelters built in the 1930s.
Wildwood Park, Nebraska City
As part of the Nebraska Statewide Arboretum, Wildwood Park is full of gorgeous trees and other plants. You can roam the beautiful Victorian gardens at the Wildwood House for free.
We definitely don’t have enough space to name every great picnic spot at once, so let us know: what’s your very favorite spot to have a picnic in Nebraska?