London is arguably one of the most scenic cities on Earth. With some incredible architecture, an iconic skyline and historic canals, not to mention the famous River Thames – with so many restaurants around the city offering great views, enjoying some delicious food isn’t the only reason to get a little dressed up and head out for a nice meal in London!
It should be noted that although a great view usually comes with a great price tag, a fair few of the restaurants featured in this article are affordable for the average Londoner, because a lovely meal with a beautiful view shouldn’t have to break the bank!
If having an amazing backdrop to match what’s on your plate sounds like an ideal setting for you, check out the list below for the best restaurants in London with a view.
You might be mistaken for thinking that all the restaurants in London with the best views are at the tops of skyscrapers. And while two of the establishments on this list do happen to be in the Shard, the good news for those with an aversion to heights, is that many more are actually at (or very near) ground level.
1. The Cross London, King's Cross
2. Seabird, Southwark
Boasting London’s biggest menu of oysters, Seabird features an array of sea-to-table offerings with Spanish and Portuguese influences.
With an obvious focus on seafood, specifically oysters, this restaurant is definitely the place to be if you’re a fan of the famous aphrodisiac – they even have an oyster happy hour and an in-house oyster professional! With the added bonus of views of the surrounding city, this place is not to be missed (unless you don’t like oysters, in which case, keep scrolling).
3. Forza Wine, Peckham
With views across the city, Forza Wine sits atop the bustle of Peckham, serving Italian inspired bites and affordable-for-London cocktails that shouldn’t be missed.
A spin-off of its older sibling Forza Win, this restaurant leans into the bar scene with more of a focus on the drinks, but with food-menu items including flatbread, and pork chops, as well as an option to order the whole menu for a mere £140, the food definitely deserves some credit!
4. Decimo at the Standard, King's Cross
It’s fair to say that a restaurant sitting at the top of a 5-star hotel, likely isn’t affordable for the average Londoner.
But splashing the pennies on this place is arguably worth it when you combine the eclectic retro decor, with the Spanish meets Mexican inspired food from the kitchen of Michelin star chef, Peter Sanchez-Iglesias, and the views of the skyline, with a close up of King’s Cross and St Pancras. If that wasn’t enough to draw you in, you get to enter the restaurant via an exterior lift, so you’ll enjoy the incredible views before you even sit down! The lift alone firmly places this restaurant as one of the best restaurants in London with a view.
5. Duck & Waffle, Financial District
Alright so this one is in a skyscraper, although it isn’t the Shard. On the 40th floor of the Heron Building you’ll find a playful take on comfort food. The menu is built around the restaurant’s namesake dish: crispy duck-leg confit with fluffy waffles and mustard maple syrup.
Mouth watering yet? The menu also includes a Sunday roast, and the restaurant is open 24 hours a day over the weekend, so you could enjoy the views over the iconic gherkin building during sunset and sunrise!
6. Fenchurch, Sky Garden
Offering a contemporary British menu with an award-winning wine list, Fenchurch at the Sky Garden in the Walking Talkie building maintains the Sky Garden’s nature-vibes, but with added sophistication.
As expected this is reflected in the pricing, with the average two course meal costing just shy of £65, before sides and drinks. However, for one of the fanciest restaurants in town, with perhaps the most iconic view in London, who can argue?
And if you’re looking for a deal on some of the best restaurants in London? Check out Living Social for food and drinks deal in London.
7. Sky Pod, Sky Garden
If the incredible views from the Sky Garden still sound appealing to you, but Fenchurch seems a little too fancy, there’s always the option to grab drinks at the Sky Pod bar.
Although technically not a restaurant, the extensive bar food menu features steak and ale pie, two different kinds of curry, baked camembert, vegetarian mezze and much more. Admittedly the cocktails aren’t cheap, but the view more than makes up for it.
8. Aqua Shard, The Shard
Part of a worldwide restaurant group with venues in Hong Kong, Beijing, Dubai and the USA, Aqua Shard is another luxury restaurant with views over the entire city. The building is iconic, which is why Aqua Shard had to make this list of the best restaurants with a view in London.
Being in the Shard, it’s inevitably on the expensive side, however the menu features weekend brunch as well as a Peter Pan Themed Afternoon Tea which includes a fairy dust cocktail! The kitchen is also proud to serve food made of great quality British ingredients, including butter from Glastonbury, and Neal’s Yard cheese. Dinner here after watching the sunset is the ultimate fancy evening in London.
And if you’d just like to see The View From The Shard? Get your tickets here, with tickets from £28.
9. Marsha, Gabriel's Wharf
If heights aren’t your thing but you still enjoy a lovely view while you dine, Marsha on South Bank is the place for you. They boast an affordable and minimal-waste menu, with a special focus on chicken which is carefully sourced from a specific sustainable farm in Yorkshire.
The upstairs terrace offers 180-degree views across the Thames in a warmly lit covered area. As well as a kids menu which offers more than the typical sausage and chips, there’s a bottomless brunch menu available on weekends with the option of bottomless beer, prosecco, mimosa, or brunch cocktail. It’s hard to find fault with this place.
10. Boundary Rooftop, Shoreditch
Offering a stunning view over the City and East London whatever the weather, the Rooftop restaurant of the Boundary Hotel is the perfect destination for lunch, dinner and cocktails.
The menu is surprisingly affordable for the rooftop restaurant of a 4-star hotel, with the mains costing an average of £24. The food also seems to be a mix of cultures with cheese fondue, lamb koftas and arancini all featuring – you could say there’s something for everyone!
11. The Library, County Hall
In the perfect location for a touristy-day-out, and boasting magnificent views over the Thames and the Houses of Parliament, The Library is just what it says it is, a library. Nestled amongst towering shelves of books, you can enjoy a traditional British afternoon tea, with a traditional British view.
The pastries are inspired by the surrounding landmarks, with a Big Ben shaped shortbread a notable favourite. And although Afternoon Tea is your only option here, there is a choice of traditional or vegan.
12. All Bar One, Butler's Wharf
If the views of nearby Tower Bridge from the wooden clad rooftop terrace weren’t enough, All Bar One offers a Tapas Tuesday deal, with a bottle of wine or two cocktails, plus four small plates for just £29.95.
There’s also a bottomless brunch deal and a cocktail making masterclass available too. The main menu has a decent variety with some comfort food and some healthy choices too, and a mix of cuisines to suit all tastes.
13. City Social, City of London
This restaurant impressively won a Michelin star within 6 months of opening in 2014! Head chef James Atherton is world-renowned for his expertise and accolades, and dining at City Social, it’s easy to see why.
Notable menu items are line-caught sea bass and Highland venison saddle, with an additional vegetarian menu. As well as some delectable food which showcases the best of British produce, the cocktail menu has drinks inspired by the various landmarks visible from the restaurant, including the Shard.
14. Swan, The Globe
Strategically located right next to the Globe, and a short walk from the Tate Modern and Borough Market, Swan has a rooftop beer garden; the perfect place to enjoy views of the Thames and St Paul’s Cathedral before or after taking in a show at Shakespeare’s theatre. The restaurant is light and airy, serving only British produce, and the Shakespeare inspired afternoon tea features a signature Love Potion cocktail.
15. Galvin at Windows, Mayfair
Offering panoramic views of London, including Hyde Park and skyscrapers in the background, the view from this Michelin-star restaurant is next level, giving Central Park West vibes.
The cuisine is modern and seasonally inspired, with a focus on British produce. While Michelin stars and Hilton hotels obviously come with hefty price tags, for a high end restaurant with one of the most impressive views, it’s worth it for a one off special occasion.
16. Riverside Cafe, Lambeth
If expensive and fancy isn’t your thing, head to Riverside Cafe on Lambeth Pier. Offering views toward Westminster and the London Eye while serving typical British comfort food at affordable prices, and with a friendly attitude, what more could you want?
We couldn’t not include a thrifty option on this list of best restaurants in London with a view. Menu items include fish and chips, fry ups and burgers, and they won’t break the bank!
17. High Timber, City of London
South African run High Timber preaches a synergy between soul and soul, particularly with respect to their wine menu. Views from the restaurant are of bustling Central London, and inside you’ll find South African artwork to be a feature.
Although the menu is only really geared toward meat-eaters, you will find three different kinds of steak on the menu, with a multitude of sizes and sauces.
18. Smith’s, Wapping
Smith’s motto is ‘Famous for Fish’, and their menu certainly lives up to it. All of their seafood comes from sustainable sources and they work closely with fishing communities to ensure the best possible quality available, making the effort for fish to be caught and delivered daily so it’s fresh.
If the great fish wasn’t enough to draw you in, the backdrop to your meal is the famous and iconic Tower Bridge.
And if you’re a fan of a fish supper? Be sure to check out our guide to the best fish and chips in London.
19. Min Jiang, Kensington
The first Asian restaurant to feature on this list, Min Jiang sits on the 10th floor of the Royal Garden Hotel, with views over Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park. The menu offers all of the Chinese restaurant classics, but in a more elegant setting – although they do have a takeaway option as well!
20. London Shell Co. Aboard The Prince Regent, Paddington
For something a little different, hop aboard The Prince Regent canal boat for dinner in style as you cruise the canals of Central and North London on a two and a half hour journey.
Menu options include the finest British seafood, with choices changing along with the seasons. This is truly a unique dining experience and with set menus offering 5 courses for £75, the prices aren’t too bad considering.
21. Portrait Restaurant, National Portrait Gallery
If enjoying the incredible artwork at the National Portrait Gallery isn’t enough for you, you can head to the rooftop restaurant to take in views over Central London as well. Meals are available all day, from breakfast to dinner, as well as afternoon tea.
The kitchen supports local London producers where possible, with everything else coming from further afield in the UK. There is a multitude of options on the menu and prices are quite reasonable considering the location.
22. Caffe Tropea, Fitzrovia
Sitting in the middle of Russel Square, not far from the British Museum, Caffe Tropea serves delectable Italian cuisine, with that heartwarming ‘mama’s cooking’ vibe.
If the family atmosphere wasn’t enough, the food is incredible, and the setting of the peaceful gardens in a busy part of the city tops it off. This place is a hidden gem!
23. Kilikyas Gastro, Cocktails & Lounge, St. Katherine’s
Not far from the Tower of London, Kilikyas Gastro sits in a rustic yet modern building in St Katharine’s Dockside marina, so on a warm sunny day, you may feel like you’re on the riviera somewhere.
The menu celebrates Turkish cuisine, with both hot and cold mezzes on offer, as well as seafood, tapas, and homemade burgers.
24. Ting, The Shard
Back up in the city’s most famous skyscraper, Ting offers a dynamic dining experience inspired by Asian cultures made with only the best seasonal ingredients. Here you can enjoy breakfast, lunch, dinner or afternoon tea. Sitting on the 35th floor of the Shard, it’s obvious that the views are out of this world.
And if you’d just like to see The View From The Shard? Get your tickets here, with tickets from £28.
25. GWR Pullman Dining, Paddington
Another amazing and unique dining experience, this restaurant is actually on a steam train, the Great Western Railway’s Pullman. The menu features fillet steak and paired wines, and with destinations all over the country to choose from, you could enjoy a different view every time you dine!
26. Wagtail Rooftop Bar & Restaurant, City of London
Split over two floors, Wagtail includes two private terraces as well as a heated and covered rooftop terrace bar which boasts 360 degree views of all of the city’s most iconic skyscrapers.
The terrace also offers diners private igloos throughout the winter months, where the fancy food at fancy prices can be enjoyed in style. There’s also a separate weekend brunch menu for when you’re feeling fancy on the weekends!
27. Aviary, Finsbury Square
Another amazing restaurant with impressive views of Central London is Aviary. The perfect palace to sip cocktails or enjoy a meal on a special occasion, this restaurant also has winter igloos outdoors for that seasonal cosy feel, where friends can gather to enjoy a fondue. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Aviary has a modern and trendy feel.
28. Vintry & Mercer, Barbican
Vintry & Mercer’s large rooftop terrace, with indoor and outdoor options, has views spanning from the Shard to St Paul’s, and if the two previous options with winter igloos weren’t to your liking, this establishment offers them too, as well as cabins for the ultimate cosy feeling.
The menu is reasonably priced considering what’s on offer, and the mains are quaintly divvied up into Land, Sea and Earth, depending upon your preferences.
29. VICINITY, The Tower Hotel
Tower Bridge is so close to this restaurant that from inside it looks like they’re one and the same! VICINITY has it all, a stone pizza oven, afternoon tea, a bar, and a children’s menu, as well as a perfectly curated wine and spirit menu. And with such an iconic view of London, what more could you want?
30. Doggett’s Coat and Badge, Southbank
Named for an 18th century London sporting organiser, this pub restaurant has an interesting history, not to mention its rooftop views over the city and the river. With traditional pub food and live sports on offer and a great view to soak in, it’s hard to go wrong here.
31. Gaucho, Tower Bridge
Another amazing restaurant with close up views of the iconic Tower Bridge, Gaucho specialises in steak, showcasing Argentinian beef alongside Latin American cuisine. If that’s not enough, the dessert menu features tray-baked cookie dough and three amazing bespoke dessert cocktails.
32. Searcy’s, The Gherkin
What if instead of having the iconic Gherkin building in your restaurant view, you were inside the Gherkin looking out? Perched high above the city, at Searcy’s you can enjoy some of the best seasonal produce in town, with a great view to match. As well as afternoon tea being an option, you can also learn while you dine with the Champagne Masterclass Dinner.
33. Beit el Zaytoun, Park Royal
Taking a break from the Thames, this Lebanese restaurant overlooks the River Brent. The breakfast is particularly good and the interior has a cosy countryside vibe. Beit El Zaytoun, meaning House of Olives, celebrates Lebanese cuisine and represents true Mediterranean culture; community driven, raw ingredients and authentic food around a table with family and friends.
34. Rotunda Bar & Restaurant, York Way
A stone’s throw from King’s Cross Station with amazing views of Regents Canal, Rotunda has its very own farm in Northumberland which provides produce for the restaurant. Reducing carbon emissions is important at Rotunda, who practice sustainable farming and embrace seasonal produce. The dishes on offer are reasonably priced, include vegan options, fillet steak and signature cocktails.
35. Lockside, Camden
With a Mexican inspired menu, generous portions and reasonable prices, Lockside is a great place to chill out and enjoy the hippy vibes of Camden Town, with views over the canal and famous Camden Lock. There’s also an extensive drinks menu with more than one signature cocktail to sip on as you watch the boats go by.
36. Allegra at the Stratford, Stratford
Voted 53rd best restaurant in the UK in 2022, Allegra offers an innovative and contemporary European cuisine. Located on the 7th floor of Manhattan Loft Gardens in the Stratford Hotel, there are views of the city skyline to be enjoyed while you tuck into some pretty fancy food.
Admittedly this is the sort of restaurant that puts more flowers and jus on your plate than actual food, but there’s a lot to be said for the elegance and impeccable service that accompanies it, not to mention the view. Being on the pricey side, this is perhaps another one to be saved for a special occasion, but definitely worth the wait!
37. London in the Sky, The o2
If you’re afraid of heights, you might prefer eating at the top of the Shard than at this place. Dining at London in the Sky is much more than your typical dinner experience, with each reservation referred to as a flight!
A 22 seat table, complete with server and harnessed chairs is hoisted into the air by a crane, where you can enjoy breakfast, brunch, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, cocktails, or a Freixenet Wine tasting with uninterrupted views of the East End. It’s only open in the summer though (thankfully).
38. Scoff & Banter, Canary Wharf
If you like the sound of views of the iconic O2 arena, but the idea of being hoisted up by a crane makes you queasy, Scoff & Banter sits down on the riverside across from the dome, making a lovely backdrop for a meal of British soul food. Dishes are made with carefully sourced ingredients from handpicked farms and suppliers, the decor is modern and sleek, and there’s outdoor seating right by the river.
39. Bōkan 37, Canary Wharf
Bōkan considers themselves to be a dockside beacon for artisanal food and drink, and we’re inclined to agree. They celebrate history with a menu inspired by rich European cultural cuisines that have flowed along the Thames since ancient times. Prices are in the upper-middle of the scale, but the views from the 39th floor rooftop terrace are worth every penny!
40. Capeesh, Canary Wharf
A quaint family restaurant in the hustle of Canary Wharf, Capeesh serves quality Italian food made from authentic ingredients, and that classic heartwarming Italian atmosphere. The restaurant overlooks the Millwall Inner Dock on the Isle of Dogs, with a peaceful vibe being right on the water.
41. Plateau, Canada Place
The Plateau claims to have views reminiscent of the cityscapes of New York and Tokyo, showing a backdrop of London’s skyscrapers from its fourth floor restaurant and two outdoor terraces.
While the menu is only a little overpriced, with limited options for those with dietary requirements, there is a bottomless champagne brunch menu for £65pp, or with Prosecco for £25pp, and there’s also a children’s menu too (sans champagne of course!).
42. The Cutty Sark, Greenwich
The Cutty Sark pub, sits not far from its namesake ship which has attracted visitors to the area for over 200 years. With views over the Thames, and an interior inspired by the ship and its history, this pub restaurant offers premium British produce accompanied by wine from around the world and locally brewed ales. If you’re looking for a bit of culture while you eat, this is the place to be.
43. The Mayflower, Rotherhithe
This traditional English pub has an outdoor decked area with lovely views of the Thames. Surrounded by cobbled streets and with an open fire inside during colder months, dining here is like going back in time. You can even see the original mooring point from the 17th century outside where the famous Mayflower ship moored before leaving for America.
On the menu are classic British dishes made with fresh, seasonal food, to be enjoyed in the laid back and cosy atmosphere of an authentic British pub.
44. OXO Tower, Waterloo
The Oxo Tower restaurant somehow mixes upmarket with inclusive, offering a tasting menu, afternoon tea, and a kids menu, alongside their regular menu. Using only the best seasonal British produce, with wine matched by the restaurant’s team of sommeliers, you can enjoy the perfect celebratory meal with classic views of the Thames and St Paul’s Cathedral.
45. Skylon, Southbank
Situated on the third floor of the Royal Festival Hall in the Southbank Centre, the restaurant has incredible views of the city scape. Featuring modern British cuisine in a relaxed atmosphere, the menu offers dishes of amazing quality at realistic prices, with the braised beef costing less than £29.
The building also has an interesting history, having been built for the 1951 Festival of Britain, so you can enjoy a bit of culture as you dine.
46. Sea Containers, Southbank
With an unexpectedly light focus on fish, Sea Containers offers an all-day dining experience with a variety of dishes, as well as a brunch menu and a kids’ menu so it’s suitable for any occasion. It’s a relaxed and intimate atmosphere with views over the Thames an outside terrace, and attentive staff. The pricing is also fairly reasonable, which is a bonus!
47. Sam’s Riverside, Hammersmith
Another fancy restaurant with an oyster happy hour, Sam’s Riverside has lovely views of the Thames near Hammersmith Bridge. The kitchen is passionate about working with our small artisan suppliers, from meat, fish and seafood to fruit and vegetables, and everything on the wine menu has been handpicked by the owner.
For a truly wholesome experience, check out Sam’s Larder on your way home to stock up on produce from local grocers, as well as pre-made meals to enjoy at home.
48. The Lyric Bar, Hammersmith
Attached to the Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith, the Lyric Bar sits in a roof garden with views of the surrounding area, serving lunch, dinner and cocktails. Menu items are wholesome, affordable and simple, in a good way. Whilst the view is fairly modest, the space is very popular and the perfect place for dinner and a show!
49. Fenn, Fulham
The UK only sourced ingredients and wine from 120 different wineries to complement the menu may set you back a pretty penny, but dining at Fenn comes with a relaxed and modern vibe.
Fenn are big on sustainability and carefully select the sources of their produce to make sure it’s the very best quality. Offering an alternative to the traditional restaurant-with-a-view, Fenn has windows on every wall for the perfect people-watching opportunity.
50. The Skylark Cafe, Wandsworth Common
Despite classing itself as a cafe, The Skylark carefully sources their food and has a wine list, so definitely deserves to be on this list. With views over the beautiful green scape of the Common, dining here has a sense of peace about it that doesn’t come with the swanky expensive restaurants. As an added bonus, they serve an all-day brunch!
51. The Bell & Crown, Chiswick
Originally established in 1787, this pub has a rich history and even rumours that there used to be a ghost in the bar who would turn on the beer taps in the night. Ghosts aside, the outdoor seating area is right on the Thames, and the only thing haunting it is the peaceful atmosphere. The menu offers traditional pub grub, with veggie and vegan options, as well as a typical Sunday roast, as well as brunch. It couldn’t get more British.
It has to be said that London is a beautiful city, with many incredible views on offer. Whether they’re high in the sky or down on the river, with so many choices, both expensive and otherwise, there’s sure to be something that takes your fancy!