The photo above was a picnic for about 20 people that we organized at a farmhouse in Tuscany. We just knocked on the door and asked the owners if we could use their back yard and it worked well. Picnicking can be a great way to save money, not worry about researching and booking a restaurant, and just get some fresh air. Here’s the how-to:
Pick up prepared hot items at a Rosticceria (which will also provide utensils, plates and napkins) and fresh fruit at open air markets. Have sandwiches pre-made at a Paninoteca, or make your own with bread from a Panetteria (bakery) and meat and cheese from a Salumeria (deli). Or, just hit the supermercato for everything you need. And don’t forget the wine!
In cities, it’s perfectly fine to munch a sandwich in public spaces. Some good options: sit on church steps, in a square, on a park bench, or along the water. But for a full-fledged spread-the-blanket-out, bring-a-picnic-basket affair, don’t plan on Rome’s Piazza Navona. More info on where proper picnics are allowed:
- Rome: Some ideas for picnics in Roman parks.
- Florence: This article describes specific picnic locations and places to buy picnic food in Florence.
- Milan: Here’s a list of Milan’s parksaka picnic spots.
- Venice: Eating in public in Venice is actually not allowed, but you probably won’t get in trouble sitting on a bench with a sandwich. However you are allowed to spread out at the end of Sant’Elena gardens. Or, take the boat to the island of Torcello.
If you’ve had a picnic in Italy, please share your favorite spots!
I’ve included this in Delicious Baby’s Photo Friday!
Photo by Charlie Scheihing
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