Pack a picnic lunch, a comfortable blanket, some sunglasses and take advantage of the many parks and cozy spots as the setting for your next picnic. The following locations call for some walking shoes as you won’t want to miss out on the nearby trails and attractions.
Allentown Rose Gardens
Allentown has over 25 parks, trails, and green spaces in their inventory. One of my favorites would have to be the Allentown Rose Gardens, especially when the flowers are in peak bloom in June. Pick a bench, sit in one of the gazebos or set up a blanket on the grass. Every spot has an incredible view whether it is of the weeping willow trees or overlooking a pond filled with wandering water lillies. My puppy, Toby, is a big fan of the roses and taking long walks around the park.
Anchored by the Allentown Art Museum, Miller Symphony Hall, and the Baum School of Art, the Arts Park is completely surrounded by beauty while also being steps away from the city streets. You can picnic here year-round, but you may not even need to bring your packed lunch. On Tuesdays throughout the summer, the park boasts lunchtime concerts through the “Lively Lunches in the Park” series and a variety of food trucks make appearances. If you miss food truck season, stop by Café Vida for a variety of coffees and paninis. For the full experience, include a stroll along the ArtsWalk which connects Sixth and Seventh Streets and runs along Four City Center. You’ll be smack in between shops and restaurants and you’ll find several pieces of art along your way.
Hawk Mountain Sanctuary
For lunch with a view, Hawk Mountain offers this and much more. Start off by breaking a sweat with a hike to North Lookout. There are some uphill trails so be sure to pack your lunch in a backpack for this adventure. Grab a bench or find a nicely shaped rock to sit and enjoy your picnic lunch. Don’t forget your camera as this is one of the best views around.
Hugh Moore Park
Picnic at Hugh Moore Park with the Lehigh Canal on one side and the Lehigh River on the other. Complete with a Locktender’s House, mule-drawn canal boat rides, and the National Canal Museum, a trip to this park could be a day-long outing. While in the area, you can find plenty of fun nearby. Right down the road you’ll find the Heritage Guild and Weyerbacher Brewing Company—go ahead and make a day out of it!
Kreidersville Covered Bridge
Kreidersville Bridge is the oldest covered bridge in Lehigh Valley and passes over the Hokendauqua Creek. The bridge is only for pedestrian traffic now a days and presents a great photo / picnic opportunity. Grab a bench or a blanket and enjoy the views. The bridge is particularly beautiful in the fall when there are pumpkins and you’re surrounded by fall colors.
Lock Ridge Park
The highlight of Lock Ridge Park is the Lock Ridge Furnace. It resembles a stone castle but the structure was actually a coal burning iron furnace at one time. The stone structures and arches make this park unique and a great place to enjoy a picnic. Tip: the park is exceptionally beautiful when the bluebells are in bloom during the first week or two of Spring.
This scenic park runs right along the Monocacy Creek. Two pavilions straddle the falls and there are plenty of tables and benches throughout the park for you to take your pick. While you’re here, be sure to check out the Historic Bethlehem Heritage Trail which includes visits to the nearby Burnside Plantation and the Colonial Industrial Quarter.
These are a few of my favorites but the list goes on. Are there any must-try spots that I should check out with my dog, Toby?