"We're having a picnic," 10-year-old Ryan Parkin announced.

"And wine!" his 7-year-old sister chimed in.

Alas, Catherine Parkin was actually only having sparkling grape juice as she picnicked with four generations of family at the Bason Botanic Gardens yesterday.

The children and their aunt, grandmother, and great-aunt were making the most of the weather to enjoy a roast chicken under a tree, which only minutes earlier the children had been enthusiastically playing on.

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"We're going to play some games, and that's about it," grandmother Ann Owen said.

Aunt Justine Taylor said the gardens were a "beautiful setting", while Ms Owen spoke of what a "beautiful day" it was.

Ryan's favourite part of being at the gardens was that he could "go free".

Also out enjoying the sunshine were David and Pat Ogilvie, who had managed to squeeze a decent amount of leisure into one morning.

By 12.30pm the Ogilvies had been to Virginia Lake, Windermere's Cafe, the beach, and had set up a couple of camping chairs under a tree at the gardens to read books in the shade.

"We just set the car in one direction and just drove," Mrs Ogilvie said.

The couple, who had also enjoyed a sandwich and a cup of tea, didn't have plans for the rest of the day after their whirlwind morning.

Yesterday Whanganui saw a high of 25 degrees.