8 of the best Edinburgh restaurants with a view

Soak in the best of Edinburgh's food and iconic sights with these great restaurants and bars

Updated on • Written By Pete Dreyer

Map view
Close map
8 of the best Edinburgh restaurants with a view

Whichever way you look at it, Edinburgh is a beautiful place - without question one of the UK’s most aesthetically-pleasing cities. That is partly tied in with the Scottish capital’s history and iconic attractions like Edinburgh Castle and the Royal Mile, but even more so because Edinburgh is a city of grand views and sweeping vistas.


So, if you’re looking for restaurants with a view in Edinburgh, you’re in luck - this handsome lot all offer a place to sit with something delicious, a nice glass of wine and some of the best views in the city. In the centre of town you’ll find some restaurants with a view of Edinburgh Castle itself, but there are great views all over the city - a good rule of thumb is, as long as you’re heading up, you stand a good chance of finding somewhere with a nice view down over the skyline.

Edinburgh’s restaurants aren’t just one-trick-ponies either - the Scottish capital is one of the best food cities in the country, boasting a hatful of award-winning, highly regarded eateries, including a handful that made it into SquareMeal’s Top 100 UK Restaurants list. It’s no good having a great view if the food isn’t good, but thankfully this isn’t something you have to worry about in Edinburgh too often.

Whether you’re looking for breakfast, lunch, or dinner with a view in Edinburgh, scroll down for a few hand-picked suggestions of quality Edinburgh restaurants that tick all the boxes. Don’t forget that you can find lots more information on each of the restaurants by clicking through to the restaurant page, including booking information to reserve a table straight away.

Duck and Waffle

duck and waffle with a view

What: Duck and Waffle doesn’t need much introduction, and the Edinburgh outpost of this well-known high-rise London spot boasts equally excellent views (though only from a small section of the terrace, so perhaps specify where you want to sit when you book). The food is pretty good too - this is definitely the place we’d head if you’re looking for breakfast with a view in Edinburgh. You can’t say no to a deep-fried Mars Bar waffle can you?
Where: 400-402 St James Square, EH1 3AE
Book now: Duck and Waffle

The Lookout

dining room at the lookout

What: As the name suggests, The Lookout offers a spellbinding view over Edinburgh. The restaurant is, effectively, just a small glass box, so panoramic views extend in all directions, and the clean, Scandi decor and seasonal, low-intervention cooking is fantastic too. The best seat in the house is in the far corner, a table which is surrounded by floor-to-ceiling windows, to allows guests to look out to the sea in the east and over the city to the west.
Where: 38 Calton Hill, EH7 5AA
Book now: The Lookout

The Outsider

natural light at the outsider

What: The whitewashed walls, wood, glass and metal are very pleasing on the eye, but even better is what’s out of the window - the National Museum of Scotland and beyond, Edinburgh Castle and the Princes Street Gardens. The menu holds up too, with a mixture of easy-going skewers and burgers and some more cheffy ideas.
Where: 15-16 George IV Bridge, EH1 1EE
Book now: The Outsider

Forth Floor at Harvey Nichols

terrace at forth floor at harvey nichols

What: No, that isn’t a typo - the spacious eatery at this famous Edinburgh department store is so-called thanks to the glorious views over the city and the First of Forth. The cooking here is fairly simple, but deliberate, with provenance at the fore. It’s worth a visit, even if you hate shopping.
Where: 30-34 St Andrews Square, EH2 2AD
Book now: Forth Floor at Harvey Nichols

SKYbar Edinburgh

view from skybar edinburgh

What: If you’re looking for a restaurant with a view of Edinburgh Castle, SKYbar might just boast the best views in the whole city. Floor-to-ceiling windows look out over the city, making SKYbar ideal for lunch with a view in Edinburgh, or as a drinks spot later in the evening.
Where: 34 Bread Street, EH3 9AF
Book now: SKYbar Edinburgh

Twenty Princes Street

dining room at twenty princes street

What: This lavish Victorian restaurant is all oak floors, high ceilings and striking black leather upholstery. Nab a window seat and gaze out through triple-height sash windows onto some of Edinburgh’s iconic buildings, as you tuck into steaks and shellfish from the charcoal grill.
Where: 20 Princes Street, EH2 2AN
Book now: Twenty Princes Street

Chaophraya Edinburgh

What: Chaophraya has a rep for snazzy Thai food in big, grand settings, but the Edinburgh site might just take the cake with its magnificent city views.You can expect all the usual Thai favourites, alongside some more interesting dishes and a decent line in cocktails.
Where: 33 Castle Street, EH2 3DN
Book now: Chaophraya Edinburgh

Cold Town House

cold town house edinburgh castle view

What: This bar on the corner of the Grassmarket fills up quickly on sunny days with locals draining cold pints. Cold Town House brews much of its own beer on-site in a microbrewery, but there’s also a great restaurant downstairs, as well as a heated rooftop terrace that sits right in the shadow of the castle.
Where: 4-6 Grassmarket, EH1 2JU
Book now: Cold Town House

If you're sticking around in Edinburgh, we've got so much more for you to check out, including the best vegan restaurants in Edinburgh and the best vegetarian restaurants in Edinburgh. Or, why not zoom over to nearby Glasgow and check out the best restaurants in Glasgow

Join SquareMeal Rewards

Collect points, worth at least £1, every time you book online and dine at a participating restaurant.

Start Collecting Points

Already a member? Sign in