In Gallivanting the Globe

THE BEST LOOKOUT POINTS IN BARCELONA, SYDNEY & VIENNA

Rooftops, hill peaks, skyscrapers, bridges and yes, even luxury cruise ships, all have one thing in common: they make fantastic vantage points for taking in vistas of some of the world’s most beautiful destinations. And while there is no one absolute best spot to enjoy the best views in most locales, there are some places situated so perfectly that their stunning visual gifts cannot be denied. With the determination of beauty set firmly within the eye of the beholder, we submit to you some of our recommendations for catching the most stunning views on your next Crystal vacation.

Behold…

Barcelona lies at the base of the La Sagrada Familia, towering above.
Barcelona lies at the base of the La Sagrada Familia, towering above.

BARCELONA

Spectacular visuals were kind of architect Antoni Gaudí’s thing. This is evident in the fact that his masterful structures dotting the Spanish city’s landscape are, themselves, sights meant to be marveled, but also in that those very structures provide some of the best vantage points from which to marvel at this beautiful city. Approximately three and half miles west of sea is Park Güell, full of fantastical surroundings that might make you forget to look outward. But once you ascend the Dragon’s Steps and peer over the winding wall, you’ll be treated with a city view that seems to stretch forever. Likewise, Gaudí’s famed La Sagrada Familia boasts spired towers whose exterior will take your breath away with their intricately bent details. But a climb to the astonishing (and equally breathtaking) height of the towers’ interiors grants you a perspective of Barcelona that is unparalleled.

Sydney's famous Harbour Bridge as seen from Luna Park, across the bay.
Sydney’s famous Harbour Bridge as seen from Luna Park, across the bay.

SYDNEY

At 440 feet, the Sydney Harbour Bridge is perhaps your best bet for an unobstructed view of the city’s numerous landmarks. And while the climb is not for the faint of heart, this summit belongs at the top of any list of great Sydney viewpoints. Looking a bit lower – in elevation, not magnificence – we recommend Luna Park, located at Milsons Point underneath the northern end of the bridge. This contrasting perspective reaches across the bay to the stunning Sydney Opera House and a skyline that is beautifully illuminated at sunset.

The rooftops of Vienna, as seen from the tower of St. Stephens Cathedral (© Lipskiy | Dreamstime.com)
The rooftops of Vienna, as seen from the tower of St. Stephens Cathedral (© Lipskiy | Dreamstime.com)

VIENNA

It’s 225 meters to the north tower of St. Stephen’s Cathedral, 450 feet to the top of the south tower. Ironically, an elevator can carry you up the comparatively short north tower, or you can get your cardio in by climbing the 343 steps up the south tower. Whichever tower you choose, you’ll be positioned in the heart of the beautiful Austrian capital’s historic city center. Tiled multicolored rooftops can be seen for miles, including the dome at the Imperial Palace, with the Vienna hillside setting a distant green backdrop. For a sweeping city view that includes St. Stephen’s Cathedral, head to the top of the Sofitel Vienna Stephansdom at sunset and take in the beauty, as well as a decidedly stylish cocktail.

Of course, the view from your private verandah on a Crystal ship, virtually anywhere in the world, is hard to beat.

Don’t miss these views, and countless others on 2017 Crystal Mozart and Crystal Symphony voyages. Did we skip your favorite? Share your ‘best view’ in the comments!

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