21 Best Rooftop Bars In Sydney: Visual Map Included
Looking for the best rooftop bars in Sydney? The epic Sydney skyline and year round sunshine undoubtedly make it one of the best cities in the world to enjoy delicious drinks at a rooftop bar.
However, I have found it is notoriously difficult to actually find decent bars in Sydney with epic rooftops! So, after extensive research and trial and error, I can’t wait to bring you the best rooftop bars in Sydney guide. Which one will you try first?
When finding the best Sydney rooftop bars, we’ve broken this guide out into different areas so you can find the best Sydney rooftop bar according to where you’re based.
Read until the end to check out our visual map to help you plan your rooftop pub crawl!
Table of Contents
Rooftop bars in Sydney CBD
1. Step back in time at Old Mate’s speakeasy cocktail bar
Hidden in a neglected office building on Sydney’s Clarence Street, you will almost certainly think you are in the wrong place when you arrive at Old Mate’s Place. Step inside and take the dodgy looking lift up to Level 4 and you won’t be disappointed by Old Mate’s Place dual level cocktail bar in Sydney CBD.
On a nice sunny day you’ll want to head up to the outdoor terrace garden bar with lots of greenery and brilliant views across the city. The dark indoor speakeasy style cocktail bar inside Old Mate’s place is also a really cool date spot with comfy booths and signature cocktails.
2. Visit The Glenmore, a great Sydney institution in the Rocks
The Glenmore Hotel is a real traditional Sydney pub downstairs with lots of different rooms and bars and a nice roadside terrace on the ground floor. However, you’ll want to head upstairs to the sun drenched rooftop terrace which always seems to be pumping, whatever the time of day.
Soak in epic views of the Sydney Harbour and Sydney Opera House from the best rooftop bars in Sydney, whilst you enjoy some craft beers and a great menu of Australian pub classics. The Glenmore also has a retractable roof so you can enjoy this spot whatever the weather.
3. Pretend you’re on your holidays at Cabana Bar
Part of the new 25 Martin Place Precinct development, Cabana Bar boasts the CBD’s largest outdoor terrace. The food and drinks menu are both extensive (and very well priced for a CBD rooftop bar!). Right next to Martin Place train station, it would be rude not to stop in to this sunny rooftop bar for a cheeky one on your way home – it’s also the perfect people-watching spot!
4. Pool party at The Ivy Pool Club
The Ivy precinct by Merivale combines more than 10 bars, restaurants and shops right in the centre of George Street in the Sydney CBD! Expect the well-known Bar Totti’s and bustling Jimmy’s Falafel, but by far the best part is the iconic Ivy Pool Club – you’ll forget you’re in the centre of the city with this oasis away from the outside world.
To really make the most of a day here, reserve a poolside cabana for cocktails and book a long lunch at uccello, the Italian restaurant next to the pool. On Sundays, the iconic Ivy Pool Club transforms into a huge pool party – think floaties, dancing, signature cocktails and disco DJs late into the night making it one of those rooftop bars you won’t forget anytime soon.
5. Watch the sunset over the city skyline at Shell House
Located in one of the CBD’s most iconic buildings, Shell House opened it’s doors in 2021, providing Sydneysiders with sweeping views over the city skyline. There are four different venues in one, each with a unique theme.
Menzie’s Bar on the ground floor offers a European bistro-style menu and great bespoke cocktails. On Level 9 sits the Clocktower Bar with 1930s style smoke bar decor, cosy chairs and classic cocktails. Above is the luxury Dining Room & Terrace with a delicious Mediterranean inspired menu with something for everyone.
But the jewel in the crown is the 10th floor open-air Sky Bar with a share plate menu and extensive bar menu with panoramic views over the city. This rooftop bar has views which any other bar in Sydney would find hard to compete with. Interested in more fine dining restaurants in Sydney? Check out our 10 Best Fine Dining Restaurants Guide.
6. Soak up a slice of history at the Hotel Palisade
As the main watering hole for the maritime workers who built the Sydney Harbour Bridge in the 1920s, you can now drink, dine and even stay at this newly renovated Hotel Palisade.
Set over five floors, Hotel Palisade is part-pub, part-hotel and part-rooftop. The rooftop bar, Henry Deane, is named after the engineer responsible for electrifying Sydney’s tramway system and is far from your average hotel bar.
Henry Deane rooftop bar has amazing views of the stunning harbour and Harbour Bridge and also has an extensive wine menu with bespoke cocktails.
7. Head to the Hanging Gardens of Babylon for an after work drink
Inspired by the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, Babylon rooftop is a surprising find on the top of the Westfield shopping centre in the Sydney CBD. With both indoor and outdoor terraces, the Babylon rooftop is a great spot whatever the weather. It can get pretty busy for after work drinks but groups of less than 4 are walk-ins only, no bookings, so you shouldn’t have to wait too long for a table.
Babylon rooftop also runs a ‘Meze & Mimosa’ bottomless brunch at weekends which includes a chef’s selection of meze and bottomless mimosas for $68! Looking for more bottomless brunch ideas? Why not check out our best bottomless brunch spots in Sydney.
8. Watch the Saturday night fireworks at Café Del Mar, Darling Harbour
You may not know, but Darling Harbour have a weekly Saturday night firework show at 9pm in Cockle Bay. The waterfront bars are the best spots to watch and Café Del Mar has the perfect terrace for viewing. Their resident DJs also perform every Friday and Saturday night, hosting Sydney’s Sunset Sessions parties. There’s also a great Happy Hour 4-7pm Wednesday to Friday with $7 beer, wine and spirits.
Rooftop bars in Eastern Suburbs
9. Enjoy a few sundowners with an iconic view at Bondi Icebergs Club, Bondi
Ok so not strictly a ‘rooftop’ bar, but the Icebergs Club has undoubtedly one of the best outdoor terraces in the country. Overlooking the infamous pool and Bondi Beach, you can watch both the influencers and the surfers whilst enjoying a few sundowners.
You would think this view might come at a price, but the Icebergs Club actually has very reasonably priced drinks and food, as well as a great happy hour with $7 wines and schooners 4-6pm for members!
Being a Club, you will need a form of ID (regardless of age!) and to sign in on entry. Be aware that if your address is lucky enough to be within 5km of Icebergs you will need to pay to become a member (~$20 for the year and you can take in one non-member guest). Fear not, that’s easily paid back from the member’s discounts you get on food and drinks. A sneaky trick if you don’t want to become a member… take your UK ID instead.
10. Peep a view of the Harbour Bridge at The Royal, Paddington
Although not very well signposted, The Royal has a great little rooftop bar with great views of the Sydney skyline and the Harbour Bridge in the distance. You’ll want to buy your drink downstairs before you climb the stairs right to the top! You can also hire the whole rooftop for events or bottomless brunch at the weekends.
With three different floors to choose from, the Coogee Pavilion is a well-known institution and a leader in Sydney’s rooftop bar game. Perfect for a rewarding beer after finishing the Bondi-Coogee coastal walk, a bite to eat after a day at the beach or a full blown Sunday session.
If you’re heading here for sunset drinks and into the evening, you’ll want to get a bit more dressed up than the usual beach attire to avoid looking out of place! Head round to the side entrance to get straight up to the rooftop and also make sure you bring your ID as the bouncers are pretty strict on not letting anyone in without it.
12. Enjoy city views rain or shine at the East Village Hotel, Darlinghurst
You can enjoy East Village Hotel’s signature cocktails with sweeping views of the city skyline from the rooftop terrace. With a retractable roof and heaters, this is a great spot even in winter or on wet days courtesy of La Nina!
East Village Hotel mix it up with different seasonal themes throughout the year! You’ll want to arrive early to nab a table as it does fill up quickly.
13. Get the gang together for a day session at Sweethearts Rooftop, Potts Point
Located on the top floor of the Potts Point Hotel, Sweethearts Rooftop is perfect for a long day session in the sun. Wine is available by the litre and cocktails by the jug with great tunes played all day long, making it the perfect place to settle in with a group of mates. Be sure to check out the comedy nights and live jazz events too.
14. Head over to The Light Brigade rooftop for post-game drinks, Paddington
Head upstairs to the Light Brigade’s leafy rooftop cocktail bar above Oxford Street which has stunning views out across the city skyline. The Light Brigade is also a great sports bar to watch a game or to head to before or after watching a game at the nearby SCG or new Allianz Stadium. You’ll probably want to book in advance to make sure you get a good spot as it can get very busy, especially on game days.
15. Watch the sunset over the harbour at Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel
Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel is the perfect spot to watch the sunset over Sydney Harbour – you can see why this was Voted Sydney’s Most Instagrammable Bar.
The Hermitage Foreshore Walk from Rose Bay to Watsons Bay is a great way to earn your drinks or catch the ferry over from Circular Quay, Manly or Rose Bay to really arrive in style. This place gets particularly busy with day sessioners on weekends but is huge so you can usually walk-in and find a table.
Rooftop bars in Inner West
16. Step back into the 80s at Marrickville Springs
Philter Brewing is one of many breweries in Marrickville – you can spend a full day brewery tour hopping round this area. But Philter stands out for two reasons:
(1) they offer the opportunity for a 30 minute brewery tour and beer tasting; and
This rooftop oasis has a retractable roof making it a great spot rain or shine and they even serve unique frozen beer cocktails!
17. Pizzas with a side of retro at Imperial UP
You’ve probably heard of the iconic Imperial Hotel, famous for its weekly Drag N’ Dine show at their Pricillas restaurant /which delivers a dazzling drag show alongside a yummy three course vegetarian menu.
However, what you may not know is that the rooftop courtyard, known as Imperial UP, boasts a quirky Italian restaurant and extensive cocktail menu too. Styled with a nod to the Miami Art Deco scene with retro furnishings including an incredible golden pizza oven!
Websters Bar has three bars in one – the ground floor venue, King Street Bar, is a rustic tribute to outback Australia with a pumping dancefloor on Friday and Saturday nights. Upstairs, you will find a speakeasy, prohibition style whisky bar with over 700 whiskys to choose from making it a great little date spot.
But the best bit is the laidback Websters Rooftop with industrial wooden tables and even a BBQ pit. You wont want to miss the yummy wings to help line the stomach whilst sipping cocktails.
19. Panoramic views out to the Blue Mountains as Lady Banks rooftop
Located on the 10th floor of the Flinders Centre, the new Lady Banks Rooftop Baris the biggest rooftop bar in Sydney with 360 views of the Sydney skyline, all the way out as far as the Blue Mountains. The seasonal menu is made from local produce and is made for sharing. You wont want to miss the creative cocktails including their signature cocktail – the limoncello margarita.
Rooftop bars in North Sydney
20. Grab a post-work drink at North Sydney’s newest rooftop bar
RAFI is North Sydney’s newest bar and is the perfect spot to enjoy a post-work drink with colleagues. With indoor and outdoor seating options and a great Mediterranean share plates menu, you’ll feel like you’re on the Amalfi Coast rather than in Sydney’s tech district!
21. Start the weekend off right at the Greenwood Hotel
The Greenwood is a North Sydney institution located on top of the Greenwood shopping centre and conveniently located by the train station on your way home for a drink. With a unique location inside a converted chapel, the sundrenched Greenwood courtyard has DJs playing from 5pm every Friday and a fantastic $7 beer and wine Happy Hour 4-6pm daily.
Rooftop bars in Sydney map!
Check out our map to help you plan your rooftop bar crawl!
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Hi, I’m Lucy, originally from Manchester, UK! I was lucky enough to be able to swap London life for Bondi’s beaches in 2019. I love exploring as many places in Australia as possible and have become an avid hiker since moving to Sydney. Follow me on Instagram: @lucytimperley