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Love In The Open Air:
A Guide for Your Valentine’s Picnic

Love In The Open Air:
A Guide for Your Valentine’s Picnic

Danti Tarigan
03 February 2023


When it comes to picnics, preparation is key. Especially if it’s a romantic one.


For those of you who seek romantic alternatives from fancy dinners, this might be the time for you to venture into the great outdoors and plan a picnic. With more and more open spaces popping up in Jakarta, you can now easily set up an intimate lunch in the open air with your loved ones. Here’s a guide to everything you need to prep for a successful picnic!

Where To Go in Jakarta

There are several spots available around Jakarta to have a free picnic, with stretches of airy grass patches and supporting facilities. In South Jakarta, public parks like ‘Hutan Kota GBK’ in Senayan or Spathodea Park in Jagakarsa will let you two bask under the sun while admiring the city’s skyscrapers. Those who reside near Central Jakarta, public parks like Menteng Park and Lapangan Benteng can be the go-to, as they are also located near landmarks such as Monas, shopping malls, and museums to explore after the picnic. If you are keener on a beach scene, then head north to Pantai Pasir Putih in the Pantai Indah Kapuk 2 area. There, you can enjoy spending time with your loved ones with the sea view and breeze.

What To Bring

The first thing to check when you’re planning a picnic is obviously the weather. Although the sun is invigorating, apply sunscreen or bring hats to protect you from the climate. Make sure to bring a blanket or mat big enough for two that can comfortably protect you from the dirt and greens underneath (nothing ruins a romantic moment like itchy feet and soiled clothes). Next, get an old-fashioned basket, a small portable table, and proper cutleries for the dining set up, even add arranged flowers and scented candles for extra charm.

Because you’re going to eat outdoors,  pack hygienic kits like hand sanitizers, disinfectants, and wet wipes. Fold some garbage bags and plastics in your bag as well to help you clean up the waste afterward. Lastly, pocket a power bank because there will likely be no outlets on site. You don’t want your battery to run out before recording the lovely memories!

Now that you know what to pack, the next question is: what to eat?

What To Eat

Homecooked meals can be great, as they befit the intimate feel of a picnic. However, if you don’t want the hassle of cooking and prefer to buy, choose ones that are portable, don’t spoil quickly, and easy to share. Here are some food ideas you can buy for the picnic:

Hand-held Starters

Hand Pies

The Australian-inspired Wicked Pies might appear light and dainty, but the flavor is anything but Their hand-held size makes them perfect to savor during a picnic without making too much of a mess. We recommend you try their signature ‘Feast and Melt’ pie with steak and cheese filling encased by the flaky and buttery pastry, or for a meatless option, the ‘Popeye’ pies with spinach and ricotta filling. They also serve one sweet option, a Salted Caramel Apple Pie that is so wickedly good, they name it ‘Forbidden.’


The triangle-shaped rice balls are the ultimate food for picnics! Besides requiring no dishes, Onigiri tastes even better the longer they sit, as the fillings’ flavors permeate into the rice without falling apart. You can find them almost anywhere, even in convenience stores. But for something more flavorful and special, try Kodaigiri Onigiri! The West Jakarta’s newcomer offers Onigiri with various fillings completed with crunchy toppings for texture, each priced at only IDR 20,000 – 25,000. You can also buy their colorful fruit sando to take on the picnic.

Main Course


It’s a classic picnic food for a reason: pizza lets you have a scrumptious meal without the ton of mess. With no silverware or plates required, you and your partner can enjoy a slice directly in hand with little preparation. Bonus points, whether served piping hot fresh from the oven or at room temperature, pizza is pizza (they’re still pretty dang good). So, order a box from Jakarta’s new-york style pizza pioneer, Pizza Place, or try the deep-dish style pizza from Giulia’s Chicago Pizzeria for a guaranteed good time on your picnic!

Hot Fried Chicken

It’s no secret that spicy food can be somewhat of a love potion; they contain chemical properties that wake up your senses and release endorphins and dopamine. One form of spicy food you can try is the trendy Nashville Hot Chicken! The crunch and spice are conveniently packed with bread to help you mop up the delightful mess of dripping oils and sauce. Our picks are The Buffalo‘s Chicken Burger / Waffle’ to experience the classic American style, or Benny’sAsian Buttermilk Chicken (ABC)’ for an Asian twist.


If Lady and The Tramp can find their romance in spaghetti and meatballs, Jakarta folks can sure find it in a bowl of Bakmi. As the newer generation brands of Bakmi arise, you can now enjoy one anywhere as they are served in trouble-free to-go boxes. Whether you opt for the no-frills Demie Mie Ayam Jamur (mushroom & chicken noodle) or the more ornate one like Sedjuk Bakmi dan Kopi’s Bakmi Ayam Oven series; let yourself become twirled and tangled with the chicken, noodles, and love in the romantic picnic.

Sweet Treats

Sliced Cakes

No picnic or date is complete without a sweet treat at the end. Try the online baker Oliv Sumichan’s* creations for delicious combinations and premium quality, like the rich yet light citrusy lemon cake with berries and oat crumbs. Otherwise, pop into Scarlett’s Cafe and grab its fresh sliced cakes. Their Korean-style cakes, like the Montblanc Chestnut or Peach and Earl Grey, are soft and studded with fresh fruits and fragrant cream, perfect for refreshing you on a sunny day outside.

(Note: Oliv Sumichan’s doesn’t offer a regular menu, so go to their Instagram for the daily availability).

A Box of Chocolate

No food symbolizes love and Valentine’s Day like chocolate, and for this special occasion, your partner deserves the best of the best. Buy the RR Chocolate‘s Artisan box of 9 filled with a delightful mix of bonbon, pralines, and truffles. The chocolate is made from scratch with selected high-quality cacao beans, producing an extraordinarily rich product. Another alternative is Crio‘s box of signature chocolate, a luxurious confectionary with various fillings and stunning presentations. These elegant chocolate boxes will serve as a standout ending to your sweet Valentine’s picnic.


Canned Drinks

In Jakarta’s sweltering heat, don’t forget to shove your favorite canned beverages into the cooler bag. They are delicious and easy to pop open everywhere, saving everyone from the sticky feeling of hot weather. The new Acaraki Golden Sparkling is a unique option, taking the traditional Jamu to a modern drink made from turmeric, tamarind, and sparkling soda. Meanwhile, the Koultoura canned coffees are for those who prefer flavorful and smooth caffeine jolts (with a bonus point of adorable packaging!).

Booze To-Go

While you enjoy the much-needed fresh air and sunshine, imbibe a glass or two drinks to liven up the alfresco eating experience. From the refreshing crafted Kura-kura Beer, Gus Lelata‘s bottled cocktails, to a tantalizing sip of Sababay wine, the local selection of boozy drinks will bump your Valentine’s picnic a notch more grown up.

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