Best restaurants for views in London

What better way to absorb the sights, sounds and (hopefully) clear skies of the capital than while having dinner and drinks in a London restaurant with a view? If nothing but a tasty perch amid the skyline will do, pick one of these restaurants with a view in London. When it comes to the best London restaurants with a view, you’ll find them right here. If the weather is currently winning and you want to gaze upon the horizon as you eat, you’ll find striking scenic sights at all of these restaurants in London with great views. Scroll this way for our selection. 

Updated on 13 July 2018

The London bars and pubs featured in Squaremeal’s guide to the best bars and pubs in London for views all offer the most incredible of London vistas. Enjoy a drink at one of these fantastic venues and be impressed by the outstanding views of London, be it over one of London’s beautiful parks; over the majestic River Thames or over the stunning city skyline. There’s certainly no better way to enjoy the sights that London has to offer than with a drink in one of these bars or pubs.

Every bar or pub featured in the Squaremeal guide to the best London bars and pubs for views has been chosen because of the exceptional London views it offers along with its exceptional all round quality. If you can’t find the London bar or pub you are looking for here, also take a look at some of Squaremeal’s other lists such as bars and pubs in Covent GardenMayfairthe CityChelsea and Knightsbridge.

Every one of the top bars and pubs for views in London featured in Squaremeal’s list of London’s best bars and pubs for views have been tried and tested by critics and our own customers so check out the reviews with Squaremeal today. Each Squaremeal listing features an independent review, as well as reviews from those who have visited, together with unique special offers such as free drinks and discounts.

Galvin at Windows

Galvin at Windows

London Hilton, 22 Park Lane, London, W1K 1BE

“Nothing quite compares to Galvin at Windows”, declares one reader. With “unsurpassed” 28th-floor views adding something special to proceedings, seasoned chef-patron Chris Galvin heads up one of the slickest operations in the capital – a buzzy, handsome space overseen by Fred Sirieix (of TV’s First Dates fame) and underpinned by service that “never fails to leave you feeling pampered”. The kitchen adds a few Asian touches to the “excellent” Michelin-starred French food. Light mushroom tortellini in a tofu-laden unami broth is a delicate and well-balanced starter, while beef fillet accompanied by a wobbling slab of foie gras, braised short-rib and sticky bordelaise jus is no-holds-barred Gallic cooking at its best. A delightful sommelier globetrots to find the right match – full marks for the sweet, tropical New Zealand Riesling offered with a passion fruit and white chocolate soufflé. “Still our favourite place in London for a great night out”, concludes another fan.

£50 - £79
French
One michelin star
Park’s Edge Bar & Kitchen

Park’s Edge Bar & Kitchen

49-51 Norwood Road, London, SE24 9AA

£30 - £49
British
The Petersham Restaurant

The Petersham Restaurant

Nightingale Lane, London, TW10 6UZ

 

The Petersham Hotel’s restaurant makes the most of its fabulous pastoral view over the river Thames, complete with cows grazing in the field. The space is formal enough to please afternoon tea devotees, but younger, smiley staff seem to have encouraged a more informal crowd for lunches and dinners. Chef Adebola Adeshina’s menu has some all-time crowd pleasers – grilled dover sole with capers and brown butter, and duck breast with prunes – but there’s plenty there to entice the more culinary daring. Particular highlights for us included a beautifully put together steamed crab lasagne with capers and tarragon, and a tender beef fillet served with a slow-cooked Jacob’s ladder and a rich bordelaise sauce. To finish, a hot cherry soufflé with orange compote and sorbet is worth the wait. Happily, the dishes sophistication hasn't reached the prices, with the set lunch menu easily affordable.

 
Under £30
Modern European
OXO Tower Restaurant

OXO Tower Restaurant

Oxo Tower Wharf, Barge House Street, London, SE1 9PH

“Great place for the four Cs: celebrating, chilling, chatting and crowd-watching”, says a fan of the Oxo Tower’s restaurant – a perfectly located terrace venue on the eighth floor of the monolith, which still boasts “one of the best views in London”. The menu promises sophisticated dishes in the modern idiom, from seared peppered beef with smoked sweetcorn purée, tenderstem broccoli and roast asparagus to sea bream poached in vanilla anise accompanied by a stuffed courgette flower. To finish, why not share a cherry soufflé with vanilla ice cream and Black Forest gâteau. The wine list, from Harvey Nics, is a cracker (although you won't find many bargains) and afternoon tea also looks “very tempting” – no wonder fans say it’s “definitely a place to take a person you want to impress”.

£50 - £79
British
Afternoon tea
Min Jiang at the Royal Garden Hotel

Min Jiang at the Royal Garden Hotel

Royal Garden Hotel, 2-24 Kensington High Street, London, W8 4PT

It’s hard to talk about Min Jiang without mentioning the view: 10 floors up on the fringes of Hyde Park, it’s a mesmerising prospect. Now fast approaching its 10th birthday, this venue has become one of London’s slickest operators, a top-end Chinese decked out with mirrored panels, oriental screens and classical pottery, dealing in scrubbed-up but authentic Szechuan and Cantonese cuisine. The star of the show – and one of our guiltiest treats in the capital – is the Beijing duck, presented in three servings. No doctor is going to recommend the crispy skin dipped in fine sugar but, boy, is it good – likewise the traditional pancake wraps, lettuce parcels and alternatives such as salted vegetable soup with duck and tofu. Elsewhere, baskets of steamed dim sum are a beauty to behold, while rib-eye in a sticky black pepper sauce is sweet and soothing. To drink, put your trust in the sommelier’s pick from an Old World-leaning wine list.

£50 - £79
Chinese
Dim Sum
Sushisamba City

Sushisamba City

Heron Tower, 110 Bishopsgate (38-39th floor), London, EC2N 4AY

“It’s all about the experience” at Sushisamba, from the moment the lightning-quick glass elevator whisks you up to the 38th floor of the Heron Tower. Once inside, you can’t miss the incredible floor-to-ceiling views or the covens of noisy young City types splashing serious amounts of cash at the bar. The “fabulous atmosphere” spills over into the restaurant, where the menu promises a thrilling fusion of Japanese and Latino cuisine – from shrimp tempura with snap pea julienne, spicy mayo and black truffle vinaigrette to refreshing crispy lobster taquitos with avocado, aji amarillo, jalapeños and morado. Other standouts on our list include the multi-coloured sushi rolls, sweet potato noodles served with egg yolk and gold shavings, and a drool-worthy chocolate banana cake with maple butter, plantain chip and rum-spiked ice cream. Samba music blasts from the speakers, while innumerable staff are on hand to deliver “the best service ever”. It’s not everyone’s cup of saké, but high-octane Sushisamba is spot-on for City revellers with deep pockets.

£50 - £79
South American
Japanese
Portrait Restaurant at the National Portrait Gallery

Portrait Restaurant at the National Portrait Gallery

National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place, London, WC2H 0HE

This all-dayer at the top of the National Portrait Gallery wears its spectacular skyline view lightly, & it’s worth coming up just for the visual distractions. The main menu features rustic-sounding dishes such as homemade black pudding with devilled sauce, & confit duck with cassoulet. A set menu is linked to major exhibitions – although you won’t find much under £25 on the fairly interesting wine list. Plentiful, courteous staff also make it an ideal choice for afternoon tea with elderly friends or parents. The design is clean, modern & warm, but surprisingly light on portraits – though you can lock eyes with Cary Grant & Joan Crawford.

£30 - £49
British
Bo¯kan at Novotel Canary Wharf

Bo¯kan at Novotel Canary Wharf

Novotel Canary Wharf, 40 Marsh Wall , London, E14 9TP

£50 - £79
Bars
International
Madison

Madison

One New Change, London, EC4M 9AF

Spectacular views of St Paul’s and the lure of alfresco drinks high above the City ensure that queues for the lift to Madison build early on summer afternoons. Crowning Parisian architect Jean Nouvel’s One New Change development, this complex comprises a modest tapas and cocktail bar (beware the oppressive crush in fine weather) and – across the way – an altogether more spacious restaurant with flashy Murano glass, lots of shiny leather and a second terrace, complete with low couches. Sip wine or fizz by the glass, slurp a pornstar martini with vanilla vodka and passion fruit or explore the secret garden (Hendrick’s gin, cucumber and rosemary). The menu runs from small bites and charcuterie boards to salt-marsh lamb with roasted tomato and salsa verde – although quibbles over prices and service can dull Madison’s charms.

£50 - £79
Modern European
Coq d

Coq d'Argent

1 Poultry, London, EC2R 8EJ

Going for the gold standard on a street called Poultry, Coq d’Argent is near the top of the City’s pecking order. We reckon its status as an “all-time favourite” in business diaries is down to a considerable clutch of attractions including gorgeous roof gardens, a heavily diverting wine list and the good looks of a cruise liner in its pomp. The Coq also delivers “consistently good food” from breakfast onwards, taking in gluten-free and vegan menus plus a surprisingly mature children’s offer. Wherever you sit – in the restaurant, grill or bar – the French accent is as robust as the pricing, conjuring Gallic luxury with careful flourishes. Lunch in the Grill might mean cauliflower soup with a poached egg followed by spiced braised lamb shank with white coco beans and wild mushrooms, while the restaurant promises higher levels of complexity – perhaps black truffle and ricotta tortellini with Parmentier espuma or immaculately balanced wild roe deer with a plateful of silky seasonal trimmings. The service at Coq d’Argent is equal to the demands of a confident clientele.

£50 - £79
French
£30 - £49
Oblix at The Shard

Oblix at The Shard

Level 32, The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, London, SE1 9RY

High in the sky above the sweeping London landscape sits Oblix, one of a handful of restaurants in tourist magnet The Shard. Boasting truly stunning views of the capital, alongside a menu of “first class” food, it has long been a favourite among SquareMeal readers.

 

At Oblix, moody modern aesthetics (the reception desk is in almost complete darkness) soon give way to truly stunning panoramic vistas. Owner Rainer Becker is better known for Asian-themed Zuma and Roka, but Oblix is more firmly rooted in Western gastronomy. The menu kicks off with snacks and small plates, including a decadent and crisp truffled flatbread which is topped with shavings of pancetta and flakes of ricotta. Elsewhere, try springy crispy squid pepped up with chilli and lime, or perhaps a super fresh and creamy lobster and clam linguini.

 

Sizeable mains come from the in-house Josper grill, rotisserie and wood-fired oven – think steaks in various sizes served alongside thick-cut chips and helpings of rich mac ‘n’ cheese, and a tender helping of duck with a crispy skin, dipped in a vibrant mango sauce. For pudding, the dessert platter is surely the only way to go, featuring miniature versions of Oblix’s entire dessert menu, including a bar of chocolate topped with crunchy bourbon ice cream, and a fluffy slice of New York cheesecake.

 

If dinner reservations prove hard to book, Oblix also offers a weekend brunch menu complete with an extensive dessert station, and a luxe Sunday lunch featuring the likes of lamb rump with puy lentils, parsley and mint. For the budget minded, a “good value” set lunch menu offers an affordable way in.

 

 

£50 - £79
International
Hide Above

Hide Above

85 Piccadilly, London, W1J 7NB

Hiding in plain sight with a vast three-story location on Piccadilly, Hide is the hugely ambitious restaurant that chef Ollie Dabbous has seemed destined to open since his self-titled debut picked up every award going in 2012. Hide is actually three spaces – Above, Ground and Below – though it may as well be called Upstairs Downstairs for the hierarchies of exclusivity involved.

 

Below is a cocktail bar overseen by long-time collaborator Oskar Kinberg; Ground is an all-day modern British restaurant, affordable by Mayfair standards; while a swirling oak staircase leads to Above, which has the sylvan view through sound-muffling windows over the London bus rooftops to Green Park. Tables up here are spaced so you never need make eye-contact with your neighbour, let alone hear what they are saying, while inspired design touches include not only the expected handbag stools but mobile phone chargers hidden in the table and a leather-bound iPad that can access the 6,000 wines from Dabbous’ backers, Hedonism Wines, and have them delivered within 15 minutes and served with a £35 mark up. Well, what else would you expect in a restaurant rumoured to have cost more than £20m?

 

To eat, there’s a 10-course tasting menu for £95 (plus a four-course lunch for £42), bursting with inventive visuals such as charcuterie speared on the end of a feather, caviar-beaded tuna tartare prettily heaped at the centre of an ornamental, inedible leaf, and Dabbous’ signature ‘nest egg’ of coddled egg and smoked butter, a sort of savoury Creme Egg served in the shell on a bed of hay. Things didn’t get truly exciting for us until halfway through, though, with the arrival of a breathtakingly subtle red mullet in a bread and saffron sauce, and a gamey, dry-aged Goosnargh duck breast. Puddings were also best-in-class, from the ‘garden ripple ice cream’ that looked like a slice of Twister, to a swirl of coconut cream fashioned into a white rose petal.

 

Criticisms? Even allowing for 10 courses, we found the pace of the meal dragged, and while staff can’t be faulted for their enthusiasm and expertise, the constant interruptions and explanations a tasting menu necessitates does not make for the most relaxing experience. For make no mistake, this very much is an experience – albeit one that might remain in the once in a lifetime bracket.

 

Over £80
British
Hutong at The Shard

Hutong at The Shard

Level 33,The Shard, 31 St. Thomas Street, London, SE1 9RY

London flagship of the Hong Kong-based Aqua Group, this luxe eatery on Level 33 of The Shard is nigh on impossible beat for its beautiful interiors, glamorous vibes and “spectacular views”. Despite ‘hutong’ bringing to mind Beijing’s backstreets, the menu’s a sophisticated mix of Szechuan and Northern Chinese, with some “absolutely exquisite” Cantonese dim sum for good measure. Recent highlights have included Shandong shredded chicken (for stuffing into fluffy buns), boned lamb ribs (braised then stir-fried), and a plate of “soft, yielding and deeply savoury” braised beef in aged vinegar and ginger sauce. The full-on version of Peking duck is simply “fantastic”, and there’s also ma-po tofu, with a blend of chilli and Szechuan pepper giving it that distinctive numbing-hot effect known as ma-la. Spicing is considerably toned down from the full blast you’ll find in Chengdu, but that suits most of the suburban visitors and expense-account diners just fine. Prices are double what you’d pay in Chinatown, although readers are happy to shell out for such “phenomenal” food. “A real treat.”

£50 - £79
Chinese
Aqua Shard

Aqua Shard

Level 31 The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, , London, SE1 9RY

Swankily appointed Aqua Shard has one astonishing USP – 31 floors up on the Shard, with floor-to-ceiling windows offering spectacular views, mainly across the urban sprawl leading to the North Downs. The views and the location alone should just about guarantee a full house every night, but it would be remiss to minimise the sterling contribution made by current head chef Dale Osborne (ex-Terroirs). With some mains breaking the £40 barrier, eating here isn’t cheap, but in return you’ll be offered some skilfully rendered and reassuringly seasonal modern British food: jellied ham hock with pickled heritage carrots and parsley oil; fillet of John Dory with Scottish girolles, sea beet, pickled samphire and lentils; Merrifield Farm duck breast with seared duck hearts and slow-roasted Evesham beets; cherry Bakewell tart with cherry sauce. Useful tip: they’re also open for breakfast, weekend brunch and afternoon tea, though prices are as sky-high as the views. Readers also reckon that drinks are “somewhat expensive”.

£50 - £79
British
Darwin Brasserie at Sky Garden

Darwin Brasserie at Sky Garden

Level 36, 20 Fenchurch Street, London, EC3M 3BY

Sitting beneath Fenchurch Seafood Bar & Grill on level 36 of the ‘Walkie-Talkie’ building, this casual and bright new venture has the better views of London thanks to its position further back from the Sky Garden’s dramatic atrium roof. The ethos behind the entire building is purportedly environmental friendliness, which may explain why the brasserie is named after Darwin – although a menu that includes the (increasingly resurgent) Knickerbocker Glory doesn’t suggest evolution. The list of straightforward European dishes includes a superbly balanced shallot tarte Tatin with a silky scoop of goats’ cheese. British beef, pork or lamb might follow, or a generously filled, rich venison pie accompanied by jewel-like, piquant mustard fruits. Staff are clued up and experienced, but now that skyscraper dining is no longer a novelty in London, the Darwin needs to boost the quality of its menu if it’s to become the natural selection of high-rise fans.

£50 - £79
Modern European
City Social

City Social

24th Floor, Tower 42, 25 Old Broad Street, London, EC2N 1HQ

It may share the signature low-key glamour of Jason Atherton’s other Social restaurants, but the “most incredible views” from Tower 42 elevate City Social to statement status. With the fitting air of a 1920s boardroom, this dining room is custom-built for “business entertaining” – although it has a surprising intimacy given the scale of the setting. Minor grumbles, including music that’s “too loud” in the bar, are dwarfed by readers’ enthusiasm for executive chef Paul Walsh’s oh-so-pretty plates of Michelin-starred food – from cured Scottish salmon with watermelon, saké, cucumber carpaccio, soy and wasabi to tarte Tatin with caramel sauce for sharing. In between, he brings considerable experience to bear on interest-piquing main courses such as saddle of Lincolnshire rabbit with Parma ham, trompette mushrooms, spelt, lovage emulsion and black garlic, line-caught halibut with fondant potato, turnips, crispy prawns and tenderstem broccoli or heritage potato and caramelised onion terrine with Jerusalem artichoke and walnuts. Cocktails are classy, and the wine list is designed to accommodate high rollers – without putting everybody else off.

£50 - £79
Modern European
One michelin star
The Yacht London

The Yacht London

Temple Pier, Victoria Embankment, London, WC2R 2PN

£30 - £49
British
TING Restaurant & Lounge

TING Restaurant & Lounge

Shangri-La Hotel, 31 St Thomas Street, London, SE1 9QU

Soaring straight to the top of London’s skyscraper charts, Ting, the Shangri-La Hotel’s new eatery, is The Shard’s highest restaurant on Level 35. An oriental theme to the furniture and wall hangings is subtle, leaving the astounding cross-city vista to dazzle. The arresting skyline is matched by a menu that uses seasonal British ingredients in Euro-accented dishes: many peppered with bright Asian flavours. Plump scallops come prettily served with edible flowers on a creamy carrot purée lifted by ginger, mandarin and coriander, while meaty halibut responds well to the teriyaki treatment – but a robustly flavoured yet delicate rib-eye steak with truffle jus provided our standout gastronomic experience. Prices are as breathtaking as the views (£19 for that scallop starter); a slightly cheaper menu is served in the lounge, where a tuna sarnie costs a mere £14. Off-the-wall wine pairings from the charismatic sommelier make a big impression, too.

£50 - £79
Modern European
Afternoon tea
Duck & Waffle

Duck & Waffle

110 Bishopsgate, London, EC2N 4AY

Although it’s only two floors above Sushisamba, and shares the same incredible views, Duck & Waffle has a noticeably more relaxed vibe compared to its Japanese-fusion neighbour – and with 24/7 opening as its trump card, it’s also a shoo-in for “active Londoners” living la vida loca. Food-wise, the “creative menu” plays fast and loose with the world larder, and the daring, innovative flavours are guaranteed to please (and challenge) the taste buds. Irresistible snacks of sweet/savoury bacon-wrapped dates and crispy polenta with Parmesan and truffle get things rolling, while goat meatballs in thyme broth or warm ox-cheek doughnuts with apricot jam maintain the gutsy theme – although “nothing beats the eponymous house speciality”, a mouth-watering pile-up of waffles, confit duck leg and a fried egg. If you make it to dessert, we recommend the rich salted caramel choux buns. Chatty, knowledgeable staff are also happy to advise on the ‘wham-bam’ cocktail list: “Worth every penny”, concludes one fan of Duck and Waffle.

£50 - £79
International
Hide Ground

Hide Ground

85 Piccadilly, London, W1J 7NB

The latest venture of wunderkind chef Ollie Dabbous certainly lives up to its name. Despite its vast dimensions, occupying three storeys, Hide is easy to miss thanks to a discreet exterior featuring barely visible signage and a door that blends into the wall. Plenty of folk have already discovered it, mind: just look through the large windows and you’ll see a full complement of foodies, influencers and Mayfair suits tucking in to platefuls of visually arresting dishes – helping to confirm that this is one of 2018’s most talked-about openings.

 

With its three separate spaces, Hide aims to cater for all – or at least all who can afford it. Below is a cocktail bar overseen by long-time Dabbous collaborator, Oskar Kinberg; Above is the most formal room, where all diners must order the tasting menu. Between them is Ground: a more accessible, slightly more affordable all-day British restaurant. Taking centre stage here is the swirling oak staircase that connects all three floors, with the dining room’s brown colour scheme and oak furnishings providing neutral back-up.

 

Switched on, friendly staff suggest starting the meal with grazing dishes such as fried quisquilla prawns – so soft and delicate you don’t even have to remove their shells (though we opted to). To follow, both our starters impressed: a zesty, super-sweet crab tartlet given extra freshness by kaffir lime and smooth chunks of avocado; and a creamy burrata successfully paired with ripe apricot. Equally diverting was a main course of barbecued ibérico pork, elevated by slices of peach to produce a challenging yet effective contrast of textures.

 

After dipping into the colossal wine list (a truly exhaustive selection), move on to desserts: a treat for the eyes as much as the taste buds. Thrill to the likes of raspberry-flecked ice cream served on a bed of hay clouded by dry ice; or deconstructed strawberry millefeuille with pastry shaped like maple leaves.

 

There’s a palpable sense of occasion that goes along with dining here, and the accompanying feeling of exclusivity might lead some to limit this to a ‘one and done’ experience. That would be a pity, though: Hide needs to be seen to be believed.

 

£50 - £79
British