Literally looking down and watching the world move on is nothing short of a sweet pleasure for most humans. That moment of feeling on top of the world (literally), relishing a birds-eye view of the surroundings is sure to leave a lasting impression on your memory. The human infatuation for heights dates back to the historic age of North America. To satiate the curiosity of knowing how the world looks like from the top, people created observation decks. This obsession mushroomed into creating observation decks on skyscrapers. Observation decks have become an integral part of skyscrapers owing to the vast number of visitors flocking to the decks, just to live the precious moment of being on top of the world. Let’s skim through ten of the highest observation decks built in the history of mankind.
1. Eiffel Tower
Located in Paris and recording close to six million visitors every year, Eiffel tower takes center stage when it comes to being the best tourist spots of France. The height of the observatory deck is at 906 feet. Said to be among the most romantic places in the world, the tower has featured in quite a number of classic movies and shows.
2. Jeddah Tower
Towering at a magnificent height of 2092 feet and situated in Saudi Arabia, this tower was constructed by the Jeddah Economic Company and Kingdom Real Estate Development. It is among the first buildings to have crossed the one-kilometer mark and stands about 180 meters taller than the famous Burj Khalifa. Touted as the highest tower in the world, the observation deck here would render once in a lifetime experience.
3. Shanghai Tower
One of the most sustainable buildings in the world, this tower was constructed in a short span of six years. Ranked as the second tallest in the world and tallest in China, this 623-meter skyscraper’s observation deck sits on the 119th floor, and rises high over the skyline and gives you a view of the entire city and beyond. The Shanghai World Financial Center (ranked as the 10th tallest building in the world) is located nearby measuring about 494 meter high.
4. Washington Monument
The voyage towards the sky began with the Washington Monument that ruled the category of the tallest observation decks at 152m during the second half of the 1800’s. Constructed for observation purpose and situated in the United States, the tower construction took a whopping 36 years for completion. The obelisk structure of the tower is the world’s tallest stone construction built to commemorate George Washington.
5. Empire State Building
The striking feature of this well-known US building is that you can witness the four state lines – Connecticut, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. It took over the American skies from 1931 to 1973 as the tallest building in the world. Considered to be one of the most well-known skyscrapers of the 20th century, the building stands 431 meters high. However, today, the building is a minnow known more for its distinctive Art Deco silhouette and has become a cultural icon featured in many Hollywood classics. The observation deck stands on the 86th floor and remains one of the most visited places in America.
6. Canton Tower
Playing a vital role as the venue for the opening ceremony of the Asian Games held in 2010, the Canton Tower is the second tallest tower in the world. Also known as the Guangzhou tower, it took five years for its construction. Standing tall at a height of 1954 feet, it was essentially constructed for observational purposes. Measuring 600 meters and having the observation deck set at 488 meters, the Canton Towers held the position of being the tallest towers in the world until the Burj Khalifa was constructed.
7. Lotte World Tower
Also known as the super tall skyscraper, it is one of the most recently constructed skyscrapers and is situated in Seoul, South Korea. With a height of 1821 feet, it is touted as the fifth tallest building in the world. The building boasts of 123 floors and was opened for public in April 2017. The observation deck is set on the 118th floor and gives a bird’s eye view of the city.
8. Petronas Towers, Kuala Lumpur
The 452 meter high Petronas Towers of Kuala Lumpur has recently become popular due to the bridge that unites the towers and allows free movement from one building to another. The bridge is fully packed and features a metal and glass construction. Opened in 1998, the towers jointly held the title for the tallest tower in Malaysia. The building was also scaled by the well-known French “Spiderman” aka Alain Robert with his bare hands and feet. The observation deck sits on the 86th floor, at a height of about 370 meters.
9. Taipei 101, Taipei
The 509 meter high Taipei tower is structured like a lotus blossom and is celebrated as one of the first buildings to break the half-kilometer mark in 2004. Combining the best of post-modern architecture and traditional designs, the building also said to have (for a short while) the fastest elevator traveling at a speed of 17 meters per second. The observation deck is set on the 91st floor and is open to the public on good-weather days. Set at a height of 391 kilometers, the deck gives you a panoramic view of the city and beyond on a clear day.
10. Burj Khalifa, Dubai
Burj Khalifa is said to be the world’s tallest skyscraper measuring 828 meters and has about 163 floors. Located in Dubai, the tallest ever man-made structure has already collected 4 world records to its name. The observation deck has recently been shifted on to the 148th floor (about 555.7 meters, its previous position was at the 125th floor.) It is also said to house the highest restaurant as certified by the Guinness World Record. The 555 meters high observation deck is almost equivalent to 10 Leaning Tower of Pisa stacked on top of one another. Now, how cool is that!