From rooftop terraces and riverside balconies to hidden courtyards and outside restaurants in parks, there are plenty of places to eat outdoors in London. Find the best outdoor restaurants London has to offer in 2023 below.
Best London rooftop restaurants
You can see London landmarks for miles around from Sushisamba London's terrace with its floor-to-ceiling windows. Perched on the 39th floor of 110 Bishopsgate, it's one of the highest outdoor dining terraces in Europe. Sample fusion cuisine combining flavours from Japan, Brazil and Peru at this stylish restaurant that has some of the best views in London.
Take in the cool vibes at Pergola Paddington, which changes its line-up of food traders, drinks and decor each season. Tucked away behind Paddington Station, this lively hangout is sure to be a hit again this summer. You can even order food straight to your table using its app.
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Alfresco restaurants in London by area
Heddon Street and Regent Street
Explore peaceful Heddon Street, a hidden gem just off iconic shopping spot Regent Street in London's West End. This pedestrianised foodie hub is home to a range of outdoor restaurants, including Gordon Ramsay's Heddon Street Kitchen and sustainable eatery Fallow.
If you still have room for dessert, reserve a spot on the Cakes & Bubbles terrace at nearby Hotel Café Royal. Albert Adrià's Insta-worthy creations can be paired with a glass of champagne for an extra-special treat.
St Christopher's Place and Oxford Street
Head just off Oxford Street and you'll find an eclectic mix of bars, restaurants and coffee shops at St Christopher's Place. The area boasts one of London's largest concentrations of pavement dining, from pizza at Homeslice andramen at Bone Daddies to Italian fare at Harry's Bar.
On Oxford Street itself, take a break from shopping at Selfridges to fuel up on Italian fare in top-floor terrace restaurant Alto by San Carlo.
Carnaby and Soho
Get a bite to eat from one of Kingly Court’s eateries and sit in its charming courtyard off Carnaby Street. Venues with outdoor seating include brunch spot The Good Egg, ramen gurus Shoryu Carnaby and chicken-loving Whyte & Brown.
You'll also find plenty of choice in surrounding Soho, as outdoor seating pops up across the neighbourhood this year. Try Ceviche Soho, Bao Soho and The Palomar for starters.
Covent Garden and The Yards
Relax and refuel between shopping in one of the many Covent Garden outdoor restaurants. Spoilt for choice, choose from multiple alfresco seating areas spread across seven streets, including Japanese-Brazilian fusion at Sushisamba, modern French fare at Frenchie and Italian cicchetti at La Goccia at Petersham Nurseries.
Explore more options in the pedestrianised Piazza and don't miss The Yards, a collection of open-air courtyards home to mouth-watering mezze at Maison Bab and must-try signature corn tacos by Temper.
St James's and Leicester Square
Historic St James's is renowned for its stylish fashion, but it also applies to its foodie hangouts. Swanky all-day restaurant 45 Jermyn Street is a great place to people-watch from its outdoor tables. Or soak up the buzzing atmosphere of nearby Leicester Square, where Mexico meets Peru in the form of small plates at Leicester Square Kitchen's covered terrace.
If it's views you're after, order Japanese and Korean bites and a cocktail, and gaze out over Trafalgar Square from The Rooftop at The Trafalgar St James..
Mayfair and Belgravia
The South Bank has plenty of places to watch the world go by on the river. Tuck into award-winning Mexican street food served from recycled shipping containers at Wahaca at Southbank Centre. Or head up a few levels for panoramic views from Skylon, which serves modern British dishes on its suntrap of a terrace.
A short walk away, Sea Containers Restaurant offers relaxed all-day dining on its ground-level Thames-side terrace.
Greenwich and the Docklands
Riverside Greenwich is a great place to relax outdoors. As well as pubs with beer gardens, many of its restaurants have outside areas. Lose yourself on Greenwich Kitchen's leafy terrace with views of The O2.
Just across the river, Scoff & Banter, Royal China and Gaucho steakhouse are among the alfresco options in Canary Wharf; while Browns and Manhattan Grill await in West India Quay.
Dine among former Victorian coal stores at Coal Drops Yard, with its glut of outdoor dining spaces. Find views of Regent's Canal on the terrace at Spanish-style Parrillan, or watch the sun set as you nibble on wood-fired fare at Hicce.
Pair seasonal dishes with panoramic canal views at The Lighterman on nearby Granary Square, or head to Lewis Cubitt Square to sample Italian delicacies at Lina in Piazza.
Visit Wembley Park in north-west London for some alfresco foodie fun in the shadows of iconic Wembley Stadium. Dine outdoors while tucking into food from pop-up mall Boxpark Wembley or book into some of the area's most popular restaurants, including Pasta Remoli, Big Moe’s and more.
Find more outdoor food and drink ideas with these tips for London beer gardens, cool rooftop bars and peaceful picnic spots.
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