Drinks taste better at high altitude. We don’t have any scientific proof for this statement, but sipping on a cocktail at one of Melbourne’s many rooftop bars presents some pretty compelling anecdotal evidence. On a warm summer’s evening, there’s nothing better than watching the sun go down over the city with a drink in hand. These are our favourites.

Naked In The Sky

Restaurant

This is the place where you bring anyone visiting Melbourne from out of town. So why do people brave the crowds, the uncertainty about actually getting a seat and the uncomfortably small elevator? Because this Fitzroy classic has some truly gobsmacking panaromic views of our city.

285 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy

Rooftop Bar

Bar

This is one of the CBD's quintessential rooftops. It's appeared in Melbourne-set movies, has great outlooks, good drinks and vibey music. Plus, in summer, it morphs into a rooftop cinema screening cult movies and classic blockbusters.

Level 7, Curtin House 252 Swanston Street, Melbourne

The Espy

Bar

After a profound redevelopment, this legendary seaside pub is going strong, offering the live music, drinks, food, good times and views it always has, albeit in far more polished fashion.

11 The Esplanade, St Kilda

Johnny’s Green Room

Bar

This rooftop bar is the crown jewel of the King and Godfree complex. Come here for amazing views out over Carlton and the CBD; modern Italian food and drinks; all soundtracked to Italo disco tunes.

Level 3, 293-297 Lygon Street, Carlton

Harlow

Bar

The former Great Britain Hotel is now a pub with a 250-person outdoor courtyard, and a kitchen doling out cheeseburger empanadas, crab doughnuts, and duck sausage rolls.

447 Church Street, Richmond

The Cornish Arms

Bar

This pub is renowned for two reasons. One: it's got one of the most vegan-friendly menus in Melbourne – meaning meat-eaters and herbivores alike can enjoy whatever pub classic they feel like. Two: its sunny and expansive rooftop bar is surely one of the best in Brunswick. With its great view of the skyline, it definitely has the best view.

163A Sydney Road, Brunswick

Good Heavens

Bar

This Palm Springs-inspired rooftop from the guys behind Fancy Hanks (which is downstairs) is one of the best spots for a drink on Bourke Street. Visit for a snacky bar menu and classic tropical cocktails, including Mai Tais and Piña Coladas.

Level 2 79 Bourke Street, Melbourne

Loop Project Space & Bar

Bar

Downstairs, it's a versatile arts, film and drinking hub. Upstairs, it's all about the rooftop – which is a bit more like a balcony – with views out over the highrises. The food and drinks are simple, but well executed.

23 Meyers Place, Melbourne

Corner Hotel

Bar

You're not a live music fan in Melbourne unless you've been to the Corner. The room – and its infamous solitary column – is rightfully an icon. But did you know it also has a killer rooftop and beer garden upstairs?

57 Swan Street, Richmond

Bomba

Restaurant

Thanks to Jesse Gerner (Green Park, Añada), the old Aylesbury is all about tapas now. Plus, there are spectacular views out over the city to enjoy while you eat. It's no surprise this place is held dear by so many Melburnians.

103 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne

Marquis of Lorne

Bar

This classic pub – which has stood on its corner for over 150 years – is one of Melbourne's best. The three-level hotel is the ideal place for a good feed or a knock-off pint in the sun, whether you're downstairs in the front bar, upstairs in the dining room, or soaking in rays on the rooftop.

411 George street, Fitzroy

Easey's

Restaurant

Fancy a no-nonsense burger for, served five storeys up, inside a train carriage? This is the place for you. This eye-catching spot in Collingwood's backstreets doesn't coast by on its looks though – these are some of the best burgers you'll find anywhere in town.

48 Easey Street, Collingwood

Union Electric Bar

Bar

It's not the biggest, or the highest. And there's no real view to speak of. But it has 300 gins and a super-friendly atmosphere.

13 Heffernan Lane, Melbourne

Feast of Merit

Cafe

This Richmond diner serves hearty Middle Eastern fare, including massive salads and big roasts. Upstairs, it's all about the lush rooftop, which serves vegetarian-friendly snacks and cocktails.

Restaurant 117 Swan Street, Richmond

Goldilocks Bar

Bar

At this long-running hidden rooftop bar, there's an emphasis on cocktails and comfort. Unlike many rooftops, this spot is understated; the team here let the cocktails and the view do the talkings. The retractable rooftop means that this a great all-weather option, too.

Level 4 264 Swanston Street, Melbourne

Siglo

Bar

This rooftop bar, which sits above the Melbourne Supper Club, has unrivalled views of Spring Street and Parliament House. It's also one of the few spots in Melbourne that has its own cigar menu – there's even a humidor full of hard-to-find Cubans. If that's not your style, the cocktails are equally excellent.

Level 2 161 Spring Street, Melbourne

Union House

Bar

At this big, relaxed pub by the team behind The Marquis of Lorne, there are a lot of spaces to choose from. There's the downstairs front bar, with 10 taps serving crafts and classics. Upstairs, a dining room with a pub and bistro menu. And on the roof, a terrace bar with views out over Richmond.

270 Swan Street, Richmond

The Local Taphouse

Bar

This bar, influenced by European taverns and drinking halls, has one of the best beer lists in town. If you're a beer lover in Melbourne, you need to come here. It's non-negotiable. Pair those drinks with a friendly, relaxed atmosphere – either inside or on the killer rooftop – and you have an absolute winner.

184 Carlisle Street, St Kilda East

Mr Brownie

Bar

This pub has a bar on each eclectic level including one on the roof with city views – with more than 1000 beers, pét-nat on tap, and curry chips, vindaloo pies, samosa burgers and butter chicken-stuffed rolls on the menu.

343 Clarendon Street, South Melbourne

Heroes

Bar

It's hard to describe this place. Is it a karaoke bar? Is it a Southeast Asian barbeque restaurant? Is it a great rooftop bar? Yes, to all of the above. Either way, odds are you'll find yourself with a lamb skewer in one hand and a mic in the other at some point during an evening here.

Level 1–3 188 Bourke St, Melbourne

Captain Baxter

Restaurant

This beachside bar has stunning views out over the bay, a tight and fun drinks list filled with classic cocktails and local wines, and a kitchen doing big steaks and serious snacks. It's all set within a space that feels like a Bahamas bungalow.

10/18 Jacka Boulevard, St Kilda

Fargo and Co.

Bar

This former Commonwealth Bank branch is now 200-seat double-level bar. Come here for classic pub grub and beers. It's also well known for its rooftop terrace, which plays host to bottomless brunches during the day and boozy cocktail session in the evenings.

216 Swan Street, Richmond

Tetto di Carolina

Bar

Nab a spot on the terrazzo-tiled terrace for grown-up Espresso Martinis and an Italian homage to the KFC Zinger burger. All from the man behind Il Bacaro, Sarti and Bar Carolina.

48 Toorak Road, South Yarra

Fable

Bar

Thirteen floors up, the stunning venue boasts uninterrupted city views and a retractable roof for year-round dining. Inspired by its heritage, it’s serving Greek-inspired fare from an ex-Press Club chef.

13 168 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne

The Rooftop Bar

Bar

This rooftop bar above Ichi Ni Nana and Cappo Sociale is the perfect place to start an evening in Fitzroy, perched as it is at the top of Brunswick Street. Come here Asian-inspired cocktails or some good value wines.

Level 2 127 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy
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