Active + Adventure

The World's Highest Destinations

by Jonathan Trew

360 Bar and Dining at Sydney Tower, Sydney, Australia

High Notes: Revolving restaurants atop space-age observation towers aren't usually our gig, but the long-esteemed 360, recently revamped by Michael McCann of Dreamtime Design, is a refined exception to the cheese-ball rule. Located atop Sydney Tower, the highest restaurant in the southern hemisphere is just over 1,000 feet above ground, and the views of the Opera House and Harbour Bridge are spectacular. But chef George Diamond does his best to distract visitors, presenting plate after plate of culinary eye candy: Tasmanian oysters with Champagne granita, harissa-spiced tataki of tuna. (Make sure your booking is for the fine-dining restaurant on level one, not the level two self-service buffet.) Alternatively, hop on a stool at the 20-foot-long tortoiseshell bar, order a martini, and admire the pendant light sculptures. Masochistic types looking to burn some calories in advance of the poached veal loin can take the 1,504 stairs to the restaurant; in fact, there's an official race up those stairs every year (the current record is 6 minutes, 52 seconds). The high-speed elevators, on the other hand, take 40 seconds and will leave you looking distinctly less disheveled for your date.

Where to Catch Your Breath: If you haven't had your fill of the Sydney skyline, check into the InterContinental, a 360-feet-tall landmark with rooms overlooking the Harbour.

Doubles at the InterContinental Hotel from $276

Next: Ecuador's sky-high haven >

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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