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Top picknick spots on your doorstep

For the city dwellers, London is rife with leafy retreats for summer cider and sweet treats.

If you're looking for somewhere to eat your sarnies in the middle of London, you won't find a better place than Somerset House. Perfect for an impromptu picknick - simply buy your provisions from one of the many sandwich shops, and then find a spot to sit down in the huge courtyard. House, Strand, London WC2, SomersetHouse.

A little beyond the smoking towers is the wonderfully named Devil's Dyke, In East Sussex.

Its elevated position makes it great for kite-flying, frisbee-throwing or general silliness, such as rolling down the hills. It's popular with hang-gliders, too. There's a pub and an ice-cream van – so all eventualities are covered.

But if you want a bit of Druid hoodoo voodoo to go with your picnic, or maybe just fancy getting naked with some hairy people then head down to Avebury Stone Circle, Wiltshire.

Sit in the middle of a 4,000-year-old stone circle - the largest in Europe. Watch the sheep graze around its massive stones and imagine how the ancient Britons who built it might have used this place – probably not too differently from what you’re doing there – but just with less flasks.

You can find out what little we know about them in the museum nearby. It is a beautiful, evocative setting - with tiny numbers of visitors compared with Stonehenge - and it is permanently open so you can have picnic breakfast, lunch or supper.

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