Aerial dining experiences around the world (2024)

There is something exciting about discovering new cuisine, but some destinations literally take dining to soaring heights. From cliffside caves to steel skyscrapers, these sky-high restaurants around the world are sure to be memorable. Here are seven breathtaking experiences you won’t want to miss.

Soneva Kiri Resort

Koh Kood, Thailand

On Koh Kood, Thailand’s fifth largest (but least populated) island, visitors can dine in a suspended bamboo pod 20 feet off the ground at the Soneva Kiri Resort. The pods are made from locally-sourced rattan woven by a resident craftsman and designed based on weaverbirds’ intricate nests. One-hour tea sessions and two-hour gourmet meals are delivered by a personal waiter versed in zip line acrobatics. (Here are nine tree houses you can actually sleep in.)

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Morey’s Piers

New Jersey, United States

Located on the Wildwood boardwalk, Morey’s Piers’ 156-foot Giant Wheel is one of the largest Ferris wheels on the East Coast, and hot breakfasts are served wheel-side, complete with white linens and fine china. The 2019 season marks the 50th anniversary of Morey’s Piers, and to celebrate the occasion, Executive Chef Wally Jurus is at the restaurant’s helm. This year’s menu includes smoked brisket, Jersey tomato BLT with fried egg, seafood omelet, and Belgian waffles with fresh Jersey fruit.

Banff Sky Bistro

Banff, Canada

The futuristic Banff Gondola summit building has four unique floors, and on the third level, visitors can dine on the summit of Banff’s Sulphur Mountain. Perched at 7,510 feet above sea level, Sky Bistro offers a 360-degree view of six majestic mountain ranges and the Bow Valley. The summit building boasts a state-of-the-art interpretive floor, theater, and rooftop observation deck where guests can walk to the highest point for stargazing after dinner. (Read our guide to Banff National Park.)

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Burj Khalifa

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Located in the world’s tallest tower, At.Mosphere restaurant is on the 122nd floor of the Burj Khalifa, rising 1,450 feet above downtown Dubai. The Burj Khalifa was completed in 2004, and underwent 40 tests to examine the effects of wind on the tower and its neighboring skyscrapers. The world’s tallest restaurant offers breakfast, lunch, afternoon delights, and dinner menus. Dine in style over a 5-course meal, which includes specialties like cauliflower brioche, roasted sea bass, and pear sorbet. (These photos reveal the splendors of Abu Dhabi.)

Dinner in the Sky

Brussels, Belgium

At Belgium’s Dinner in the Sky, guests are strapped into chairs 150 feet in the air. The five-ton, suspended aerial table hangs from a 120-ton crane that can accomodate staff and 22 guests—a design that received an ultra-rigorous German safety certification from TÜV Rheinland. The dining setup is similar to Japanese hibachi, except diners wear safety belts and the chef is strapped into a harness. Dinner in the Sky tours cities around the world.

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Yichang, China

In Yichang in China’s Happy Valley, the Fangweng hanging restaurant is built into a cliffside cave overhanging the Yangtze River. Guests enter through the natural cave lobby via a long plank pathway that molds against the cliff. The lobby opens into the dining room, another natural cave adorned with elegant Chinese décor. Visitors can also rent a boat on the river, go zip lining, or bungee jump from a nearby platform. (Discover 21 of China’s beautiful World Heritage sites.)

Tower of the Americas

Texas, United States

In downtown San Antonio, Texas, the 750-foot-high Tower of the Americas is the tallest building in the city. The revolving Chart House Restaurant on top of the tower is a fine dining restaurant that offers lunch, dinner, and happy hour menus with scrumptious specialties like filet mignon, Alaskan king crab, and lemon herb-crusted salmon. The Chart House Restaurant overlooks one of Texas’s main attractions: Alamo City, known for its role in the War of Texas Independence and its history as a Spanish mission. There is also an observation deck where you can take in sunset views post dining.

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Sicily, Italy"I shot this picture in Sicily, with my drone. Those waves of lava are from Etna's big eruption back in 2002, this eruption was so spectacular that was recorded by Lucasfilm and integrated into the landscape of the planet Mustafar in the 2005 film Star Wars: Episode III"

Photograph by Placido Faranda, National Geographic Your Shot

Adrienne Jordan, who has traveled to more than 30 countries, has been writing about her journeys since 2011. Her work apears in USA Today, Forbes, Men’s Journal, Architectural Digest, Essence, and AFAR.

Aerial dining experiences around the world (2024)
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