24 Best Views In London: From Panoramas To Stunning Cityscapes

Ready to see our capital in a whole new light? From the city's highest free viewing platform at a massive 245 metres up to adventure activities atop stadiums and restaurants or bars perfect for treating yourself, these are the best views London has to offer.

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Bars & Restaurants For The Best Rooftop Views of London

Sky Garden, The Walkie-Talkie

Views of: The Shard, Tower Of London, St Paul's, South Bank

You've seen it on your feed but have you experienced the rooftop vistas here IRL? Sky Garden is a must-visit and totally free to enter - with a limited number available each day. However, if you're willing to spend a little dough to get an elevated experience here, check out these events for sunrise sessions, music nights and more, or dine and drink at their restaurants and bars.

Sky Garden | DesignMyNight

From free entry to sky-high events, this staple has it all.

Sabine, EC4V

Views of: St Paul's, The Shard

Thanks to an outdoor terrace and glass roof with floor-to-ceiling windows, Sabine Rooftop Bar offers stunning vistas of its neighbouring landmark - St Paul's - while dishing up seasonally rotating British small plates and the cocktails to match. Plus, in the opposite direction and across the river, you'll see The Shard standing proud too. 

Sabine Rooftop Bar St Paul's | DesignMyNight

When the best views in London at night call, it's got to be the terrace of Sabine Rooftop Bar.

Wagtail, EC4N

Views of: Tower Bridge, St Paul's, The Shard

Wagtail's Monument location gives it a unique outlook of London across its multiple terraces, spanning St Paul's to the west alongside Tower Bridge and The Shard to the south. Their British menu is equally impressive, promising everything from slow-cooked Welsh lamb shoulder to steaks of rare breed beef from Lyons Hill farm in Dorset.

Wagtail | DesignMyNIght

Wagtail has the finest British meals and best views in equal measure.

BŇćkan, Canary Wharf

Views of: The Thames, London panoramas

Make your way to the top floors of Novotel Canary Wharf and you'll reach¬†BŇćkan, a stylish restaurant bar spread across three levels and a roof terrace. Inspired by the history of the Dockland's area, this slick venue's name means 'lighthouse' - and it's living up to that as a beacon of classic European dishes such as venison hunter's pie, seabass carpaccio and more.

Bokan Canary Wharf | DesignMyNight

Chow down while staring out of floor-to-ceiling windows here.

Aviary, Finsbury Square

Views of: City of London, The Shard, The Walkie-Talkie

A staple rooftop for views across the City of London, Aviary sits pretty on the 10th floor of the Montcalm Royal London House Hotel in Finsbury Square. The terrace faces south towards landmarks like The Shard and Walkie-Talkie, with opportunities to soak up the sun come summer or nab a cosy igloo in winter - perfect for popping bubbles and munching British meals.

Aviary London View | DesignMyNight

Aviary is an ideal pick whatever the weather.

The Rooftop St James, SW1A

Views of: Trafalgar Square, London Eye

The clue's in the name for the location of The Rooftop St James, which overlooks Trafalgar Square from its Spring Gardens perch, promising three small plates (including salmon arancini and Korean fried cauliflower) for £38, burgers and cocktails like The Magic Unicorn. Book this space for private hire or grab a hotel room too to make any occasion extra special.

The Rooftop At Trafalgar St James | DesignMyNight

The Rooftop St James lets you see Trafalgar Square like never before.

Madison, EC4M

Views of: St Paul's Cathedral, London Eye

Find award-winning rooftop terrace Madison at the penthouse of One New Change near St Paul's, with views of the cathedral and even the London Eye peeking out from behind it too. Two courses start at a surprisingly affordable £29 here, while Saturday and Sunday bottomless brunches are an equal hit.

Madison St Paul's View | DesignMyNight

If you're searching for the best views from a London rooftop, Madison is bound to pop up.

Savage Garden, EC3N

Views of: The Tower Of London, Tower Bridge, The Shard, The Gherkin

Views from many of London's best angles make Savage Garden a top choice in our list. Not only can you see The Tower of London, Tower Bridge and The Shard to the south, but also The Gherkin to the north. This rooftop at the DoubleTree by Hilton hotel also keeps you supplied with history-themed cocktails like Boleyn's Kiss and Raging Tudor.

Savage Garden Best Views London | DesignMyNight

Historic buildings look close enough to touch at Savage Garden.

Galvin At Windows, Mayfair

Views of: Hyde Park, London Eye, The Shard

When only 360-degree views will do, Galvin At Windows is coming in hot with a Mayfair location that provides vistas of Hyde Park, the London Eye, The Shard and London's general skyline for as far as the eye can see. But it's not just looks that this restaurant has, as tasting menus, a la carte and two courses for £38 per person boast Michelin-recommended British plates.

Galvin At Windows | DesignMyNight

The best London restaurants with a view? It doesn't get much better than this.

Searcys At The Gherkin, EC3A

Views of: The City of London, The Walkie-Talkie

Searcys At The Gherkin's Helix Restaurant takes sky-high dining to whole new heights (quite literally) with a circular-shaped space on the 39th floor for admiring panoramic views of London while munching afternoon tea. But that's not all, as another level higher is The Iris Bar - a rooftop space with a glass domed ceiling, alongside extensive cocktail, wine and Champagne lists.

Searcys At The Gherkin | DesignMyNight

Iconic views worthy of an equally iconic building.

Duck And Waffle, EC2N

Views of: The Gherkin, city skyline

For close-ups of The Gherkin and skyline for days, it has to be Duck and Waffle. The 40th floor of Heron Tower houses this beauty, offering 24/7 opening to include Sunday roasts, spicy ox cheek doughnuts and foie gras¬†cr√®me br√Ľl√©e - to name just some of the food highlights. Plus, Nikkei spot SUSHISAMBA¬†is from the same team and found in the same building for equally stunning views.¬†

Duck And Waffle Rooftop View London | DesignMyNight

With some of the best skyline views in London, Duck and Waffle is a beauty.

Frank's Cafe, Peckham

Views of: London skyline

With sweeping views from their southern outpost, Frank's Cafe is both a local and city-wide favourite. Although only open in the warmer months, this destination was voted Europe's best rooftop bar - beating venues in Madrid, Florence and Lisbon. Find it serving mango picantes and peaches 'n' cream cocktails at the highest level of a 10-storey car park on Rye Lane.

Frank's Cafe Peckham | DesignMyNight

This affordable and award-winning rooftop is ideal for mates or dates.

The Terrace At Alexandra Palace, N22

Views of: London skyline

The Terrace at Ally Pally had to make our list. While it's open all year round, the summer months are when London's largest beer garden really comes into its own. Hand-crafted stone-fired pizzas from Fuoco’s are on the cards, coming in tasty flavours like 'nduja, artichoke hearts and chilli honey, with everything from local craft beer to wine, an impressive gin list with suggested tonic pairings, and a range of whiskies washing your meal down.

The Terrace Ally Pally | DesignMyNight

Soak up the sun at The Terrace.

Attractions And Adventures With A London View

The View From The Shard, SE1

Views of: Pretty much everything...

Ascend to the The View From The Shard¬†for a unique outlook on London from one of its most iconic landmarks. General entry starts at ¬£28.50, with indoor viewing platforms at level 68 and 69 - alongside an open-air 'Skydeck' at level 72. To make things extra special, add on a glass of¬†Mo√ęt & Chandon or hire the space for wow-factor at a private event.

The View From The Shard | DesignMyNight

Not much can eclipse The Shard. 

The Dare Sky Walk, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Views of: London skyline

From London in the distance to a unique look at the stadium bowl from above, The Dare Sky Walk at Tottenham Hotspur promises views that nowhere else can. You'll be just under 47 metres above the pitch once you reach the full height of this experience, with 90 minutes on the clock to complete it. Prices start at £28 and you can add on 'The Edge' too, where you'll take a face-first, controlled decent towards the stadium below - eek.

The Dare Skywalk | DesignMyNight

The ultimate gift for a Spurs fan.

London Eye, SE1

Views of: The Thames, Westminster, Big Ben, city skyline

Now it wouldn't be a guide to sweeping views without the London Eye: a rite of passage for everyone setting foot in the capital. You'll be gazing out across the Thames in both directions, with prominent skyline features including Westminster and Big Ben. And if you want to elevate your experience even further? Make it special using packages that include bottles of bubbles. 

London Eye | DesignMyNight

Sip on Champers in your pod.

Lift 109, Battersea Power Station

Views of: City skyline

Further west at Battersea Power Station, Lift 109 is ready to take you to new heights. It's £17 for an adult ticket to the experience, which includes entry to the interactive multimedia exhibition as well. You'll begin in Art Deco Turbine Hall A, where you'll uncover the building's history, before making your way through an immersive infinity room. The highlight, though? An express lift through the north-west chimney to a 109 metre-high platform with 360-degree views.

Lift 109 Battersea Power Station | DesignMyNight

Combine views with an interactive exhibition at Lift 109.

Up At The O2, SE10

Views of: Greenwich, Olympic Park, Canary Wharf

Up At The O2 is that perfect combo of thrilling heights and stunning views that attracts swathes of participants every year. This outdoor trek over the O2 London's iconic roof can be done at daytime, sunset or twilight - the choice is yours - and has a starting price of £35 each. Better yet, if you think all that excitement will make you peckish, then nab a 'climb and dine' package to add on a meal at one of the venue's restaurants.

Up At The O2 | DesignMyNight

All that fun makes thirsty work.

The Garden Museum Tower, SE1

Views of: Palace of Westminster, The Thames, Big Ben, London Eye

Housed within the church-turned-museum of the same name in Lambeth, The Garden Museum Tower is a favourite for seeing Westminster, Big Ben and a side-view of the London Eye, all with the Thames at the forefront too. Tower-only tickets are a very pocket-friendly £4 and you can nab these on a walk-in basis. Otherwise, it's £14 for every adult to get the full museum experience including that all-important trip up the tower.

The Garden Museum Tower | DesignMyNight

The Garden Museum Tower is one of our cheapest choices.

The Best Free Views Of London

Horizon 22, Bishopsgate

Views of: London in panoramic view

Horizon 22 in Bishopsgate is London's highest free viewing platform - unsurprising from the city's second tallest building - and is your chance to see 300-degree views, covering landmarks like St Paul's, 20 Fenchurch Street, Tower Bridge and more, without spending a penny. The 254- metre platform also hosts a small cafe, so you can grab refreshments while taking in this whole new perspective on our capital.

Horizon 22 Bishopsgate | DesignMyNight

This new viewpoint is well worth a look.

The Lookout London, 8 Bishopsgate

Views of: The Shard, The Walkie-Talkie, Thames river, St Paul's

With free tickets released bi-weekly on a Monday, The Lookout is a public platform and private hire space sitting 50 storeys high at 8 Bishopsgate in the City of London - meaning panoramas visible from a position above nearby skyscrapers are a given. The viewing gallery is 2,500 square foot too, so you can ensure plenty of space for the best uninterrupted vistas by booking here.

The Lookout London | DesignMyNight

Whether you want to host an event or just get free admission to a viewing platform, The Lookout has you covered.

The Garden At 120, Fenchurch Street

Views of: The Gherkin, The Walkie-Talkie, The Shard

Over an acre of green space is hidden away in the City of London thanks to The Garden At 120. This public rooftop space is located atop 120 Fenchurch Street, with dedicated lifts taking you up for free and without need for prior booking. The stunning area was designed by German landscape architects Latz + Partner, featuring Italian wisteria trees, a 200ft-long flowing water feature and 360-degree views.

The Garden At 120 Fenchurch Street | DesignMyNight

With some of the best free rooftop views in London, The Garden at 120 is an undeniable favourite.

Primrose Hill, Chalk Farm

Views of: London skyline

A short distance from Camden, Primrose Hill makes the ideal outdoor stop-off when you fancy free views of the skyline to the south. We'd highly recommend the summer months for maximum time lounging here, when sunnier days and hotter climes see the green space filled with picnickers, music and even the odd performer.

Primrose Hill London Skyline | DesignMyNight

Stay after the sun sets for some of the best free views in London at night.

OXO Tower Viewing Platform, SE1

Views of: St Paul's, The Thames

If you don't fancy spending your cash at OXO Tower restaurant, bar and brasserie, this venue is also home to a free public viewing platform that's hidden in plain sight. Take the lift up to the 8th floor and you'll find a space with views across the river. Although not the highest or most sweeping in our guide, this outlook is popular with budding photographers looking to take snaps of St Paul's in the distance.

OXO Tower | DesignMyNight

Get this iconic building's viewing platform on your radar.

Greenwich Park And Observatory, SE10

Views of: Canary Wharf

Greenwich Park and Observatory is the ideal space for a stroll, especially when you consider that old-meets-new view. Check out Prime Meridian and different viewpoints around the park - with a firm favourite being that snap of the 16th century Queen's House mansion in front of Canary Wharf's glass skyscrapers.

Greenwich Observatory And Park | DesignMyNight

Swoon-worthy or what?

For more of the prettiest places with views, here's our full guide to must-visit rooftop bars. Sign up to our newsletter and stay in the know.