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The ice is thawing, the buds are poking up out of the soil, and the temperature is slowly but surely increasing. The world is coming back to life, and it can only mean one thing: spring is coming, and with it, the promise of warm, lazy evenings. What better way to spend them than exploring some of Europe’s best rooftop bars? To help fuel your wanderlust, here are some of our all-time favourites here at Celebrity Cruises. Each of these bars has worked hard to get into our top six and has something extra-special to recommend it – whether that’s an Instagram-worthy view or cocktails that will have your mouth watering for weeks afterwards.
We love Lisbon, with its ancient castles and hilly streets. On your Lisbon break, don’t miss out on a visit to the award-winning Terrace BA bar on the rooftop of the five-star Bairro Alto Hotel. It’s situated in the heart of the city, so is pretty convenient after a day of exploring. The terrace offers views out across the sepia rooftops and to the twinkling blue waters of the Tagus River beyond.
The bar has a cosy, intimate and rustic feel – think comfortable wicker chairs, plump cushions, and low lighting. It's also pretty small and a big hit with the locals, so prepare for it to be busy if you're planning on visiting for a sundowner. For the fiery oranges and yellows reflected in the river, though, it's completely worth it – just consider coming an hour early to get a table.
Image courtesy of Terrace BA
Want a perfect view of the Acropolis without the crowds? Head to the 360 Cocktail Bar, where a sun-soaked garden terrace looks out over the majestic, crumbling ruins of the Acropolis. Come in the early afternoon to enjoy a Greek coffee and some octopus with honey, or lamb in vine leaves. Design lovers will also love 360 – the interiors are the height of industrial chic, with heavy wooden tables and a focus on sleek metals, copper, and candlelight.
We love the unusual mixture of cocktails waiting to tempt your taste-buds here. If you're feeling daring, try a "Heat Weave," which is made of vodka, lime, mezcal, oregano and jalapeno chillies. Alternatively, broaden your horizons with "The Journey of Chivalry" – Chivas Regal, Vermouth, smoked salt and coconut water. You’ll find 360 close to the Plaka neighbourhood, the oldest part of Athens, which has a villagey, authentically Greek feel.
Image courtesy of 360 Cocktail Bar
Oslo’s Bar Vulkan is open from May to September, making the summer the perfect time to visit the Norwegian capital. The large rooftop terrace seats 250 people, meaning you shouldn’t have to worry about getting a table, and offers photogenic views overlooking the city. Even if the weather isn’t on your side, the indoor restaurant is a stylishly cosy haven, with wooden, chrome and velvet accents.
The eating and drinking experience at Bar Vulkan is like nowhere else – the cocktails are exciting and diverse, and the chefs draw inspiration from destinations around the world to create innovative cuisine. There’s a big focus on sharing, so bring along your travel partner and tuck in. It’s nestled in the hip and happening Grünerløkka region of Oslo, a once-gritty area that’s had a trendy, edgy makeover in recent years.
Image courtesy of Bar Vulkan
Södra is a rooftop bar above the oldest theatre in Stockholm, the Södra Teaturn -- a stunningly ornate 19th-century building. These days it’s used for a variety of events and concerts. Take the stairs from the theatre up one more level, and you’ll emerge out onto the terrace (there are a total of three terraces open here during the summer). Live music creates an electric atmosphere – we wouldn’t blame you if you wanted to linger here all evening.
You’ll find the Södra Bar in the heart of the city’s most bohemian area, Södermalm, in the middle of the city. The vibe here is creative, laidback and arty – explore the neighbourhood to find vintage boutiques, galleries, and eclectic fashion stores, before finishing the day with a cocktail and some light plates at Södra Bar.
Image courtesy of Södra Bar
This bar sits atop the luxurious Adriana Hotel. The terrace wraps around, offering you panoramic views of the old city of Hvar, as well as the bay, harbour and across to the Paklinski Islands. The bar is multi-level and brims with lush plant-life, and has a luxurious and sophisticated feel with plush furnishings and atmospheric lighting.
It’s the ultimate place to chill out after a day spent exploring the towering fortresses and ancient, 13th-century walls of one of Croatia's most popular tourist destinations. You'll find the Adriana Hotel in the northwest of the old port, a picturesque little corner of charming architecture and quaint, winding streets. As well as wines, beers, and cocktails, you can tuck into lunch and dinner here – try the hand-rolled pasta with beef tagliata.
Image courtesy of The Top Bar
The REM Eiland is unlike any other cocktail bar. It’s on a 22m high metal structure above the IJ waterfront, offering unique 360-degree views of the surrounding docks, city, and traffic. It was originally built in the 1960's as a pirate radio station, and can still only be reached by a steep set of stairs or a lift. The terrace bar also sits atop the roof of what used to be a helipad (we told you it was different!)
They’re open for lunch and dinner, and have a pretty extensive cocktail menu, too. It can get busy here, so we recommend making a reservation to get a good table. Due to the nature of the building, REM Eiland is situated a little way away from the city centre, in an industrial area next to the Docklands best reached by taxi.
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