10 incredible panoramic viewpoints

Skylines, natural landscapes, urban horizons, panoramic views can give you a new perspective on travelling. Every time I go travelling I always make sure to visit a spot from which I can see the whole city or landscape, whether it’s from a mountain or a bell tower (these are extremely useful) or even a hot air balloon ride. Here’s a list of some of my favourite breathtaking views from around the world and the spots from which you can see the same views!

1) burj khalifa

Crowned the tallest building in the world by the Guinness Book of World Records, the view of Dubai from the top floor of the Burj Khalifa definitely takes first spot on my list! The observation deck, located on the 148th floor is the highest man made viewing platform on earth. I loved the views from the top, even the tallest skyscrapers in Dubai looked like toy houses from that height! I’d definitely recommend visiting at night as well just because I didn’t and really regret not being able to see this view of the city at night.

2) florence bell tower

Giotto’s Campanile (the bell tower) will provide you with the most adorable panoramic views of Florence and you will be able to see that iconic view of the cathedral that feature on most postcards! I will warn you though, there are a total of 414 steps, no elevators and the staircase itself is very narrow, so if you suffer from heart conditions, claustrophobia or vertigo the climb might not be ideal for you!

3) leaning tower of pisa

While we’re on the topic of Italy, I can’t miss out the Leaning Tower of Pisa. After taking all the funny and quirky photos with the tower itself, don’t miss the chance to climb the 300 spiralling steps to the top of the tower for some breathtaking photos of Pisa. The landscape may look quite similar to Florence due to the orange roofed houses. I would highly recommend booking tickets in advance otherwise you might potentially be waiting in queue for hours, especially during summer!

4) old town bridge tower, prague

Located at the entrance to Prague’s old town and Charles Bridge, climbing the 138 steps to the top of the tower will give you panoramic views of the Vltava River, the Lesser Town, the Old Town and Prague Castle. There are several other towers in Prague which are definitely worth a visit: St Vitus’s South Tower, Petrin Hill and Tower, Powder Tower and Old Town Hall Tower. Since Prague is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, you wouldn’t want to miss the opportunity of seeing the city from as many viewpoints as possible.

5) sighisoara clock tower, romania

My trip to Romania confirmed my belief that there are too many underrated countries and cities in the world and my goal is to specifically visit those! Sighisoara was like a painting. Sighisoara Clock Tower, is a symbol of Sighisoara City and of Transylvania itself. Complete with multi-coloured tiles and museum inside showcasing a collection of antiques, is the perfect place to get a panoramic view of Old Town Sighisoara.

6) fisherman’s bastion, budapest

The Fisherman’s Bastion, located in Buda Castle, is one of the best known monuments in Budapest. If you’ve heard of Budapest being described as a “fairy tale place” its because of this. Fisherman’s Bastion is open 24/7 and entrance is free to the lower terraces. You can actually get some amazing views from the lower turrets. Tickets to the upper terraces vary depending on season. You’ll get the best view of the Hungarian Parliament Building, one of the most beautiful parliament buildings in the world, not to mention stunning views of the Danube and the famous chain bridge.

7) patkuli viewing platform, tallinn, estonia

Tallinn in Estonia is a remarkably well-preserved medieval city, complete with ancient walls made from limestone, a picturesque town hall and brightly coloured buildings lining cobbled streets. Definitely one of the most underrated cities I’ve visited. Although the city has several viewing points, the Patkuli viewing platform situated in one of the most ancient parts of the city was my favourite.

8) st mark’s campanile, venice

Located in St Mark’s Square, Venice Bell Tower is not only the tallest building in Venice but is also symbolic of Venice itself. Climbing to the top will provide you with some amazing views of Venice complete with its many bridges, canals and islets. A lift will take you to the top of the tower and entry was 6 euros. I’d also recommend visiting San Giorgio Maggiore Tower which, although isn’t as high, is less crowded and gives a different perspective on Venice.

9) fairy chimneys, cappadocia

So there are thousands of fairy chimneys in Cappadocia and mainly located in the valleys of Avanos, Uchisar and Urgrup. I particularly loved the views from Pasabag Valley. Aside from the fairy chimneys you will also find lots of cave dwellings located within the mountains. However, be careful when climbing to the upper levels as the sandstone is quite slippery. I particularly enjoyed taking photos in my dress at the top, the wind really added some drama to the photos!

10) calton hill, edinburgh

Ending the list with a place closer to home – Scotland! Calton Hill is the perfect place to get a superb panoramic view of pretty much the whole of Edinburgh. You can see both Arthur’s Seat and Edinburgh Castle from Calton Hill, the two most famous landmarks in Edinburgh. With the famous Dugald Steward Monument in the foreground, Edinburgh looks its prettiest from Calton Hill. In fact, I love Edinburgh and Calton Hill so much I got my post-wedding done there as well!

final thoughts…

I think travel photography is all about the right mixture of focusing on the details but also being able to zoom out and absorb the full picture. I definitely think this is a blog I’ll expand later on after I’ve travelled to a few more places and discovered more panoramic beauties but for now….what and where is your favourite panoramic viewpoint?

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