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15 Different Types of Picnic Tables


A wooden picnic table and a barbecue grill stand at a green backyard.

There’s no official record of when the picnic table first came out but there’s a consensus that it was already in use in the late 1800s. The early tables were made of hardwood such as cedar and pine in contrast to many of the modern versions which are constructed from steel, aluminum, commercial-grade plastic, PVC, recycled materials and plastic coated metal.

While the early picnic tables were seen in small towns wherever there was a public gathering, picnic tables in private backyards is now a common sight. Its traditional design of a modified table with built-in bench seating on both sides have remained largely the same since the 1930s.

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Attached Benches

Kunkle Holdings LLC Classic Pine Picnic Table with Attached Benches Pine- Unfinished- 4 ft.

Source: Amazon

Some picnic tables come with the benches already attached to the table itself. This used to be a less common feature, but now you actually see these tables more often than you see detached benches. Having the benches built into the table can be very convenient. It makes the table very concise, and you will never have to worry about losing your seats or having them blow away in the wind during a storm.

Detached Benches

Detached benches

Source: Wayfair

There are many people who prefer to buy picnic tables with detached benches. This means that the table is completely separate from the benches and that you can move them around freely. Depending on your needs, a picnic table with detached benches may be better suited to for your property. These are readily available, so take your time to shop around and see what is on the market.

Perforated Picnic Tables

46" Perforated Square Picnic Table, Blue

Source: Amazon

At first glance, you may not even know what a perforated picnic table is. What the word perforated means in this circumstance is that there are little holes in the picnic table itself. These holes are sometimes referred to as mesh, and this makes liquid spills simply go through the holes and fall onto the ground below. In many ways, this is one of the easiest picnic tables to take care of for this reason.

Perforated picnic tables are super easy to clean, and this makes them really popular on playgrounds. If you visit playgrounds across North America, you will find many perforated picnic tables on the grounds. These little picnic table areas are perfect for children because they can be messy, and it won’t be that big of a deal to clean it up. Spilling drinks and food on a wooden table would create problems, and the table would start to look shoddy after a while, but this table is more resilient.

If you have children, then buying a perforated picnic table is highly recommended. These tables are most often made out of a durable plastic, but they can also be made out of metal. Take a look at the specifications of the table you are purchasing to determine the exact materials before proceeding. Whether the table is plastic or metal in nature, it will work well for your purposes.

Wooden Picnic Tables

Wooden benchSource: Wayfair

When you think about picnic tables, the first thing that comes to mind will likely be a wooden table. These wooden picnic tables fit in with the vision of what a picnic table is supposed to be. They look really nice and work great to create a fun picnic atmosphere. Some people like to decorate their picnic tables with tablecloths, and others prefer the natural look of the wood.

There are many different types of wood, so it makes sense that there will be a lot of variations on wooden picnic table designs. You will find wooden picnic tables made out of solid oak, pine, and many other types of wood. The common thread that binds all of these tables is that they all look very stunning. You will love the look of a real wooden picnic table and will be proud to have one in your yard.

It is important to buy a picnic table that is made solidly so that you will be able to feel confident that it will stand up to regular use. Depending on how often you plan to use it, you may want to look into getting a really heavy duty picnic table. Take everything into account before making your decision. You can definitely find a wooden picnic table that will wear well, but there are tables that are made to be a bit lighter in nature as well.

It can be beneficial to buy a wooden picnic table that has been finished or properly treated as well. This will reduce the likelihood of the table splintering over time. When a picnic table starts to splinter, it will create a risk of you hurting yourself on the table. This can be a big nuisance, but it should be able to be avoided completely by buying the right type of wooden picnic table.

Metal Picnic Tables

Global Industrial 72" Expanded Metal Rectangular Picnic Table, Green

Source: Amazon

Metal picnic tables are going to feel really substantial and will have a bit of a weight to them. This allows them to feel like good options for adults, and even larger adults won’t feel like they are running the risk of breaking the table. For this reason, these tables have proven to be the most popular option for taller and larger individuals. It’s important to buy a metal picnic table that has been treated with a protective coating, though.

The protective coating can help the metal picnic table to stay cool. In the summertime, you have probably noticed how hot metal objects can become when placed in direct sunlight. You wouldn’t want to sit at a metal picnic table that is scorching hot, as you would run the risk of burning yourself. The coating prevents this from being an issue, and you will have a much more pleasant time.

These metal picnic tables are made to be very sturdy, so you will want to look into them if you want something that will hold a lot of weight. When you plan on seating many adults at the table, these tables are going to be a safer option than something made of plastic. If you have many large adults in your family, then it makes sense to want to buy a table that is going to work well for you. A metal picnic table is going to be a good option to consider, so take a look at what is available, and, then, determine if it will work for you.

Thermoplastic-Coated Picnic Tables

Plastic picnic tableSource: Wayfair

Plastic picnic tables are really commonly used because they are inexpensive to produce. Often times, people associate plastic products with being low-quality and lacking in durability. This doesn’t necessarily have to be the case, as this thermoplastic-coated picnic table will help to teach you. When a picnic table is treated in this way, it makes it much more rugged than it would otherwise be.

The coating on this table is going to make it much easier to take care of. It will be easier to wipe off and clean because the coating will make it so that things don’t stick to it. You shouldn’t have to worry about stains, and cleaning food off of this table will be simple, as well. It’s really practical to use and should be able to make a great picnic table for your family.

Tables like this can stand up to harsh weather conditions pretty well, too. You won’t have to worry about it being ruined by being left outside during the winter. The coating will do a good job of protecting it, and you will be able to enjoy using it whenever the mood strikes you. It’s always a good idea to seek out this type of a picnic table if you want to go with a plastic one.

Recycled Plastic Picnic Tables

Jayhawk Plastics Park Place Recycled Plastic Picnic Table - 6'L - Gray - Gray

Source: Amazon

Being environmentally-friendly is really important in the modern era. With global warming at the forefront of public consciousness, people are clamoring to make sure that more recycled products are on the market. Picnic tables are no exception, and you will be able to purchase a recycled plastic picnic table if you are so inclined. These picnic tables actually do have several advantages, and they will make an excellent picnic table for your family if you do decide to make the purchase.

This particular table is coated with zinc, and this makes it resistant to any type of corrosion. This recycled plastic is really tough overall, and it isn’t going to crack under normal circumstances. In some ways, these types of picnic tables are more desirable than standard plastic because of how thoroughly they have been treated. Tables like this are built to last you for a very long time.

Another excellent benefit of this table is that it looks like it could be made out of wood. It almost has the appearance of pine, but it is actually made from recycled plastic. This gives it a very aesthetically pleasing appearance, and you don’t even have to worry about getting splinters. You should consider this option if you want a table that is going to stand up to regular use.

Concrete Picnic Tables

66" Concrete Round Picnic Table, Brown

Source: Amazon

Getting a concrete picnic table is a fantastic idea if you want something that is truly durable. You won’t have an easy time moving this picnic table to other locations, though. This is something that you will want to purchase if you are going to keep it in one spot, since moving it around is going to be too much of a pain. It isn’t so heavy that it can’t be moved; it just isn’t practical to move it around.

Regardless, this picnic table is really nice overall. It looks really pretty and is going to provide you with a fun spot where your family can enjoy eating their meals outside. The durable design of concrete picnic tables will allow you to enjoy using them for many years, so it isn’t something that you will have to worry about replacing in a few years. This reason alone makes it a very good buy.

The concrete picnic table being shown off here has a round design, and it will work in most spaces. These types of tables are seen in parks sometimes, but people like to use them at home as well. This is an option that is a bit more costly than many of the plastic options on the market, so it is going to appeal more to people who are serious about making a picnic area on their property. If you decide to make this purchase, then you will really enjoy how good this table looks at your property.

Aluminum Picnic Tables


Site Furnishings Aluminum Picnic TableSource: Wayfair

Aluminum picnic tables are preferred by people who want their picnic table to feel like it is really rugged. These tables are really simple to clean up, and they will stand the test of time. Most modern aluminum picnic tables have been treated so that they won’t get rusty due to the rain. This makes them a great option when you want to buy something that you can use for many years.

There are some negatives about aluminum picnic tables that should be taken into consideration, as well. The first thing that will come to mind is that they are made out of metal. This means that you wouldn’t want to sit at one during a storm, as that would simply be a bad idea. For the most part, people don’t try to have picnics in the rain, so this is sort of a moot point.

The other negative that people bring up is that these aren’t quite as stylish as some of the other options. It really depends on how you feel about the look of aluminum. Some people are really drawn to that aluminum look and quite enjoy it. Others are definitely going to prefer the beauty of some of the natural wood designs or ornate concrete picnic tables.


Round Picnic Tables

Best Choice Products Outdoor 6 Person Wood Picnic Table Set Natural Finish

Source: Amazon

Round picnic tables are really common and you have probably seen them at parks many times. Round picnic tables are convenient because they are very easy to find a place for in just about any space. A typical round picnic table won’t take up too much space at all. It will simply give you a nice spot where you can enjoy having a picnic with your friends and family.

Making use of these picnic tables will always be easy. Round picnic tables are always going to be prevalent because people like rounded designs. Some think that it makes it easier to sit people around a table when it is rounded. Many people feel that it makes it easier for the whole table to talk to each other when compared to square or rectangular designs.

Regardless of how you feel about that, it is definitely an option that you should consider. You will find many round picnic tables on the market that you can choose from. There will be wooden tables, plastic tables, aluminum tables, and everything in-between. Take your time to look at what is available and choose the table that suits your needs.

Square Picnic TablesGreen-painted square picnic table

Source: Wayfair

Square picnic tables are among the most common that you will see in people’s yards and in parks. These picnic tables are pretty convenient overall and they come in various different styles. You will see square wooden picnic tables just as often as you will see plastic ones. It’s a shape that works well for having a meal, so it makes sense that people would love making use of square picnic tables.

In many ways, these square picnic tables are more useful than round ones. It does depend on your needs and how you think about things, though. The square tables have more usable space on their surface, whereas the round picnic tables lose a bit due to the round design. You could also say that the edges of the square tables make it harder for people to sit around them, and this would be a fair point as well.

The truth is that this is a give and take situation. Both of these types of picnic tables are going to be appealing for different reasons. If you want to have a bit more space to put your food out, then a square table is going to work a little bit better. Often times, people just pick the table that is the most aesthetically pleasing to their eye.

Rectangular Picnic Tables

CoatedOutdoorFurniture T8-RED Rectangular Portable Picnic Table, 8 Feet, Red

Source: Amazon

Rectangular picnic tables are perfect for people who have larger families. Sometimes it just isn’t simple to try to fit all of the people you are having over at a square table or a round picnic table. When you need more surface space, it is important to seek out a rectangular picnic table. This is going to make everyone a lot more comfortable, and you won’t feel so cramped.

You will be able to find very large rectangular picnic tables on the market if you look. The model being shown off here has a good length, but it isn’t as wide as some other picnic tables. Regardless, this is an affordable option that your family will be able to make use of very easily. It will ensure that people have a place to sit, and you can enjoy your picnic readily.

Just get a head count for how many people are going to be attending your planned picnic ahead of time. This way, you will be able to purchase a rectangular table that is large enough to accommodate everyone. It pays to be prepared, and purchasing the right rectangular picnic table is going to make a difference. As long as you know how many people to expect, you’ll be able to make an informed purchasing decision.

Umbrella Picnic Tables

Picnic table with attached patio umbrella

Source: Wayfair

Keeping the sun out of your eyes is something that is quite important. It’s pretty hard to enjoy a picnic to the fullest when you can’t see your surroundings very well. For this reason, umbrella picnic tables have become very popular. People love buying tables that include umbrellas because they just make everything that much more convenient. You will be able to keep the sun out of your eyes and stay cooler with the shade that the umbrella provides.

If you live in an area that is quite sunny, then it makes sense to purchase one of these tables. Conversely, you could decide to purchase a table that doesn’t have an umbrella, and, then, buy your own on the side. This is just a more convenient way to go about things for people. It eliminates one of the steps and gets you everything that you need to enjoy your picnic time.

This model has the picnic table holding the umbrella just as you would expect. You may also be able to find picnic tables that come with umbrellas built into the side of the table, but these are far less common. If you decide to purchase this picnic table, then it will prove to be very popular with your family. It can help you to enjoy a lot of fun days out in the sun without feeling too uncomfortable.

Children’s Picnic Tables

Children's picnic tableSource: Wayfair

Of course, children’s picnic tables are also very popular options that deserve consideration. If you have children, then you know that they are going to want to have their own little area where they can enjoy a picnic, too. It is possible to purchase smaller picnic tables that are meant for children. These picnic tables don’t stand quite as tall as the adult tables on average and are more conducive to a child’s enjoyment.

There will be quite a few different options when you are looking for a children’s picnic table. The most popular children’s picnic tables are made out of plastic. Parents like to avoid wooden picnic tables due to fears of their children getting splinters. This is probably a good choice as kids do tend to play and can sometimes hurt themselves when they aren’t paying attention.

The plastic picnic tables will be quite durable and you won’t have to worry about your children getting splinters, as mentioned above. This will be a good table where your children can enjoy their picnic time. You should be able to find various color options, so getting your child’s favorite color shouldn’t be a problem. This will help you to have the most fun possible while on a picnic with your family.

In-Ground Picnic Tables

46" ADA Round Picnic Table, In-Ground Mount, Blue

Source: Amazon

There are several reasons that people want to seek out in-ground picnic tables. Some people see them as being a safer and more permanent option. These picnic tables are able to be put right in the ground, and this makes it very difficult for a storm to blow the table away. Even during a severe and powerful storm, the likelihood of the table being removed from the ground is very low.

This also makes these picnic tables more difficult to steal. For this reason, in-ground picnic tables have become the most common that you will see at many parks across North America. The picnic table is sunk into the ground and people are able to make use of it as normal. This does mean that you can’t reposition the table at your convenience, but the table itself is going to be significantly more secure.

These tables are going to take a little bit of work to install, but it will be worth it if you are worried about the wind or theft. You can find in-ground picnic tables in various different styles, too. You will find in-ground picnic tables that are made of plastic and tables that are made of really heavy materials such as concrete. Go with the material and style that appeals to you the most.

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