Summer is right around the corner, and so is the hunt for the best al fresco dining spots to catch whatever sun the weather has to offer.
From elegant afternoon teas to beach club-inspired terraces and rooftop riveras, we’ve got you covered. Scroll through to find the best fresh air dining spot near you.
The Lucky Club
Northyard, Camden Market
The new hip rooftop terrace in town, this Camden Market spot features unique and exciting food and drink options, from elevated Mexican classics such as sea bass cevihce and lobster tacos, to fancy mezcal margaritas. Take your chances during the “Lucky Hours” (Mon-Thu, 5-6pm) by trying to roll a seven on the dice to get your cocktail on the house.
Camden Market Buck Street, Camden High Street
With what started back in 2014 as converted horse trailer bars, The Spirited now has a gorgeous rooftop cocktail bar entwining artisan gins and alcoholic milkshakes with timeless tapas dishes. With unique cocktails such as the “Groot”, inspired by the Guardians of the Galaxy character, you are sure to find something different to try.
Hope and Anchor
Situated between Brixton and Clapham, the Hope and Anchor is renowned for its dirty Burger Shack burgers and Insta-worthy cocktails. The stunning fairy-lit garden, fully covered and heated for all seasons, comes with 12 bookable huts, all equipped with TVs and heaters.
North Yard, Camden Market
This neighbourhood restaurant, pub and wine shop focuses on modern rustic cuisine while working to remain as local as possible using ingredients from the sea and British countryside. The Farrier’s rustic design gives the restaurant the perfect cosy feel… and that’s not all. The restaurant also welcomes local and respected DJ’s every weekend, performing everything from jazz to disco. Top this off with a delicious meal of elevated british classics and you’re in for the perfect night.
Ombra’s Canalside Terrace
Fresh pasta and wine? Try out Ombra’s canalside terrace in Hackney “Riviera”. Open for both lunch and dinner, the menu uses the best local produce to recreate an al fresco Italian dining experience. If you’re worried about the cold, it’s also fully equipped with heaters and a windshield.
Borough’s Bankside, South London
Audrey’s is the ultimate all-day cafe to relax and enjoy the historical views of Bankside. Morning or evening, Audrey’s is open for guests looking to enjoy elevated cafe classics in this informal modern bistro. In the mood for breakfast? Come try a classic such as the full English or the elevated avocado toast. Coming a little later? The menu features various sharable options or small plates. There’s truly something for everyone.
Lancashire Court, London
Elegant, fresh, clean… this is Hush Mayfair. Whether you attend to enjoy the indoor or out, you are in for an experience. This restaurant has it all, from afternoon tea and dinner to drinks, private dining and even private masterclasses to take your cocktail making skills to the next level. With a lengthy cocktail menu, you will be able to sip away while deciding whether to try the parmesan wheel cacio e pepe or any of the other delicious dishes on the menu.
The Refinery Bankside
Southwark Street, London
This Bankside restaurant is bright, airy and summery from breakfast ’til dinner. With a wide range of cocktails and dishes, this is the perfect restaurant for summer in London. With the terrace full of plants and colours, it’s the ideal pitstop during a day out in town. With a menu ranging from scotch eggs to Indian spiced chicken skewers, everyone in the group will be happy.
New Change, London
Taking inspiration from the New York City dining scene, Madison focuses on American classics and dishes from the grill, along with steaks from all around the world. Sitting on the top floor of One New Change, this restaurant comes with jaw-dropping views of the London skyline. While it’s known for its amazing atmosphere, complete with live musicians and DJs, the food and drinks offered are equally impressive. The menu is stacked with various options for all your cravings, as well as a plant-based section and specific brunch menus for both Saturday and Sunday. Complete the pairing with a gourmet cocktail and you’re in for the complete New York experience.
Colwell Chine Road, Colwell Bay
Buzzy beachfront restaurant The Hut, in the heart of Colwell Bay, puts long lunches and alfresco dining back on the menu. One of the UK’s most iconic coastal destinations, The Hut has built an impressive reputation as the Isle of Wight’s hotspot with its chic casual dining, delicious menu with the freshest of ingredients plus a live DJ. It’s also the place to see one of the best sunsets in the UK with a spectacular panoramic ocean view that stretches across the Solent.
Pop-up restaurants, a margarita menu and fire performers. That’s what’s on offer at Pergola Paraiso, Paddington’s summertime pop-up inspired by a Tulum beach club. An oasis of free-spirited partying in west London, Pergola Paraíso is inspired by the balmy beaches of Mexico, complete with pop-up from Crudo Cevicheria and Dos Mas Tacos, an extensive menu of margaritas, a centrepiece dance floor and much more.
La Pont de la Tour
Shad Thames, London
Beautiful French bistro overlooking the Tower Bridge
Inspired by French bistros and brasseries, La Pont de la Tour is located right next to the Thames, offering gorgeous views alongside a delicious menu, featuring dishes such as foie gras, fruits de mer and more. They also offer a range of cocktails such as the Winter Margarita and the Bitter Parrot, alongside classics such as Vesper Martinin and White Caramel Russian.
Sitting at the former site of the Dickens and Jones department store, this classy Spanish restaurant delivers breathtaking views of Oxford Street and beyond. Featuring a shareable tapas menu, the offering changes with the seasons and is currently showcasing dishes such as cod tempura with basil and red pepper sauce and roasted delica pumpkin with artichoke mayo.
Located on the rooftop of the Hoxton in Southwark, Seabird boasts London’s longest oyster list, an impressive marble raw bar and sprawling city views. Featuring an array of sea-to-table offerings with Spanish and Portugese influences, happy hour and Sunday brunch, dine in style from dawn ’till dusk.
Notting Hill, London
The word Mazi means “together” in Greek, and that is exactly the goal for this quaint Notting Hill restaurant. A refreshing and contemporary take on modern Greek cuisine, the menu breaks outside the box with unique takes on classic dishes like feta tempura. The terrace, featuring whites, blues and plenty of greenery, is the perfect spot to achieve holiday vibes. All you need is the sunshine.
London Bridge, London
Italian and aperitivo restaurant Tavolino offers an expansive terrace with stunning views of Tower Bridge and the Thames. In fact, if it weren’t for the bridge, you’d think you were in Italy. The menu offers a variety of antipasti, pasta, pizzas and more, and almost everything is made from scratch, from the pastas to the dough and even the ice cream. There is also a expertly curated cocktail list to complete the experience.
Bloomberg Arcade, London
Meaning real or genuine in Norwegian, Etke brings the country’s simplistic yet gorgeous cuisine to London, with plenty of vegan and vegetarian options to boot. There’s plenty of fish, meat and vegetarian smørrebrød, the traditional open-faced sandwiches found in Norway. Pair your authentic meal with a Nordic-based cocktail.
Aviary Rooftop Restaurant and Terrace Bar
Finsbury Square, London
Whether you go for the rooftop or the restaurant itself, you’re in for a treat at the Aviary. This modern British restaurant offers plenty of delicious cocktails and dishes and one of the best rooftop views in the city. The menu highlights include beef tartare and wild Cornish turbot, and extensive drinks list. You’re guaranteed an unforgettable experience.