IELTS Cue Card Sample 60 - Talk about a picnic spot /recreational public spot

IELTS Speaking Part 2: IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card.

Talk about a picnic spot /recreational public spot that you liked.

You should say:

  • What's it and the location
  • What are the attractive things for the visitors there
  • Why you liked it
  • Why people like it and who are the regular visitors there

and explain how does the place or spot influence people.

Follow-up Questions:

  • What's the importance of picnic spots as recreational places?
  • Say the names of recreational places/ spots you heard about?
  • Why do we need recreation?
  • Can you tell about some recreational spots that are absent in your country but are common in other countries?
  • What are the most recreational places in your country?

Sample Answer 1:
Picnics are a great way to get outside and socialise with friends. I’m lucky because there are lots of good places near me where people can relax, play, chat and have a picnic if they wish. I can think of one favourite place. I’ll tell you where it is and what it’s like and try and make you understand why it is so appealing to me and lots of other visitors too. I actually think the place has quite an important role in our local community, and maybe you will understand why after my little talk.

The place is Endcliffe Park in Sheffield. It is a city park, by which I mean it is close to urban areas, surrounded by residential streets and local shops. However, the park itself is lovely. It is quite big, about 37 acres, big enough to have streams running through it, patches of woodland, a duck pond, mown areas where people can play ball games and plenty of benches where you can sit and watch the world go by. It’s well maintained by the local council and has other facilities – including loos and a very nice independent café. In the summer months there is often an ice-cream van parked up, and at weekends and bank holidays a local guy puts up a bouncy castle and a miniature children’s carousel for children to play on. There is a small playground with swings and climbing frames, and recently, the council even incorporated a new parkour area. This is a special structure of climbing frames and walls where people can practise the sport of free running in urban areas. It is incredible to watch.

I love this park because it is really well used. I’m a great one for people watching. You can head down there with a sandwich, find yourself a bench and sit and watch the world go by. There are always families out feeding the ducks; children on their bikes or scooters; joggers sprinting by; dog-walkers. Sometimes you will see a school party pond-dipping or bravely crossing one of the sets of stepping stones. Often photographers will set up elaborate tripods there to try and get photos of the wildlife – there are lots of squirrels and birds, including a dramatic heron (a large stork like bird) which fishes in the pond, or the colourful tiny kingfishers that favour the running water of the streams. Local fitness instructors run outdoor boot-camps there, so you will see puffing people doing press-ups and looking like they’ve rather regretted signing up for their exercise class that morning! I think you can see why I like it so much and appreciate all the many attractions that are there for visitors of all ages and backgrounds to enjoy.

In terms of how the spot influences people, I think it just really brings the community together. Everyone who lives locally uses it. If ever I go out for a walk there, as I do quite often, I will always bump into someone I know. People use the café as a base for setting up community campaigns – like saving local trees, or fundraising for charities. It is also a great location for many local events, particularly running ones. Endcliffe Park hosts my local Parkrun (a 5km weekly jog each Saturday morning) as well as being the start of lots of off-road running races that are held throughout the year. Because it is a big open space, it even hosts funfairs, music festivals and circuses – I don’t really like circuses to be honest, but it illustrates the point of how well-used the space is as a venue.  On a daily basis, people use the park as a short cut to get to work in the city. It is great to be able to appreciate the trees and changing seasons on a walk to go to the shops or get to the office. This park is one of many that fall within the city boundaries. It is one of the reasons that Sheffield is known as the greenest city in the UK. You should come and visit and find out for yourself.

There are other more remote places you can go to enjoy the countryside and be alone in the heather and the hills. Those are beautiful destinations too. But for me, my local park is just brilliant, it’s practically on my doorstep and a window on the world. I am so lucky to have this picnic and recreation spot nearby, I try never to take it for granted, but always take the time to really look at what surrounds me when I pass through.

[ Written by - Lucy Marris:  Careers Adviser (UK), TEFL teacher (Vietnam) ]


Model answer 2:
I come from Kuala Lumpur and one of the great picnic spots or recreational places there is Taman Lembah Kiara. This place is located in Taman Tun Dr Islamia in Kuala Lumpur. This is a very popular recreational place spot for nearby residents and sometimes tourists come to visit the place as well.

In the morning the Joggers come to start their day with the exercises in the fresh air. This is a place with scenic beauty, fresh air, comfortable weather and everybody loves the well-paved walking path. The park also offers a shady place for picnic lovers under the shade and they can stay there for long and enjoy their picnic. You can see that the forest animals like monkey roam there freely and some birds will attract your attention. People mostly like this place for the scenic beauty and comfortable weather. You will have plenty of opportunities to enjoy your relaxed time there. The morning joggers are mainly the regular goers there but the nearby residents walk in the evening as well. This is a great place to relax and for recreation.

This is different than the busy metro life and people can enjoy the beautiful green surroundings without interruption and disturbance.

Tips for answering this Cue Card topic:

This cue card asks you to talk about a picnic spot or a recreational public place that you have been to and liked. Please note that the picnic spot can be any place where people can gather, enjoy and have their meals. This can be a historical place where picnics is allowed, a place near a sea, river, forest, lake where people usually go to have a picnic. This can be a private place which is a rented for the picnic and can also be a garden where people like to spend time.

On the other hand, the recreational place which comes as an alternative place of the picnic spot can be a place where people go to relax or walk; example a park, garden, river sil6de etc. Other public recreational place can be a theatre, cinema, park, amusement park etc. You can talk about any of the above-mentioned places for this cue card.
For the first question give the city name, then the nearby landmarks and easily spotable location of the picnic spot or recreational place you would like to talk about. You can actually talk about the location of a place either by taking about how to reach there from the bus stop in the city or by the nearby famous landmarks.

For the second question “What are the attractive things for the visitors there” talk about the place and what are the main attractions of this place. Some of the common attraction of a natural picnic spot which might help you to generate ideas:

1.    Large and full of natural beauty.
2.    Open and there are lots of places for playing
3.    Near water and the soft wind blow all the time.
4.    Not that much crowded and it was a scenic beauty.
5.    There was clean water and we swam there.
6.    We saw lots of birds, flowers, natural animals and wild animals.
7.    That was a historically famous place.
8.    The museum in that place had a good collection of cultural icons.
9.    Hill was nearby etc.

For the third question “why you liked it” pick some of the activities you had there and also mention some of the attractive things you did there. Following are some of the ideas to help you generate your own ideas:

1.    I was with my friends/ family members and I enjoyed a lot being with them.
2.    The place was a bit different from the place I live.
3.    I was a really attractive place at it had a great natural view.
4.    I swam in the water, caught fishes, played football and ran for a while.
5.    I enjoyed everything I did there and those activities reminded me my childhood.
6.    I had a busy deadline and after that, the picnic was very refreshing.
7.    The vacation along with the picnic arrangement was a much-needed vacation for me.
8.    I loved the place and the meal I had there.
9.    I participated in the competition of play/ game/ acting/ singing and that was a long since I last time did it.

You should mention three points to make the answer to your third question strong:
That was a very beautiful place. You enjoyed the activities and companies there. The activity and the place were very refreshing for you. For the final question ‘Why people like it and who are the regular visitor there”, talk some points mentioned above and then say that local and international tourists are the regular visitor there. To make your statement stronger say that, you have gone there several times and found many foreigners and local people who came to have a really good time and picnic there. Also, mention that you read some articles about this place and you did some Googling before coming here. Mentioning those points would make your last statement “i.e. international and local tourists visit that place” stronger.

Some very similar cue cards:

1.    Describe a worth visiting place in your town/ city.
2.    Describe a place worth visiting.
3.    Describe a recreational place you recently went to.
4.    Describe an interesting thing you did lately.
5.    Describe a place you recently visited.

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