How the world’s highest observation decks stack up

Shanghai Tower, lower right, is the second-tallest building in the world and one of the most complex buildings ever engineered.
(Nick May / For The Times)

Not all super-tall buildings have observation decks for visitors to get their thrills. New York City’s newest entry into the high-stakes landmarks is Edge, a scary, glassy perch on the 100th floor of a building at the tony Hudson Yards complex.

So how does Edge stack up to others? Not so high, but its views of NYC are unparalleled.

Several of the world’s highest observations decks are in China.

The Shanghai Tower, right, stands 2,073 feet tall, with 128 floors. It was completed in 2015.
(Johannes Eisele / AFP / Getty Images)


This list of the world’s tallest decks is not for the vertically challenged. You may want to skip it if you’re afraid of heights. Everyone else, go for it.

Shanghai Tower, at 2,073 feet tall, is the second-tallest building in the world and the tallest in Asia. It ranks first in observation decks, however, with one called Top of Shanghai at 1,844 feet.

Visitors take in the view from the observation deck at Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the world's tallest building.
(Aaamir Qureshi / AFP / Getty Images)

Of course, the tallest building in the world is Burj Khalifa at 2,723 feet in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. However, its deck tops out at 1,823, which takes second place as far as observation decks are concerned.

The Shanghai World Financial Center is 1,622 feet tall, has 101 floors and was completed in 2008.
(Johannes Eisele / AFP/Getty Images)

Another Shanghai skyscraper, the 101-story Shanghai World Financial Center, is 1,622 feet tall. Its deck tops out at 1,555 feet and has an observation bridge on the 97th floor, where visitors will feel as if they are floating in midair.

Canton Tower, shown here lighted up for the opening ceremony of the 16th Asian Games in 2010.
(Mike Clarke / AFP/Getty Images)

Guangzhou, China, is home to the 1,982-foot-tall Canton Tower. It has a deck at the 1,601 foot level and holds an odd record: It houses the highest Ferris wheel in the world.

The CN Tower in Toronto, Ontario, stands at 1,815 feet tall.
(Kevin Frayer / Associated Press)

Canada has an entry too. The CN Tower has long dominated the Toronto skyline. Standing at 1,815 feet tall, the tower has an outdoor glass floor and Sky Terrace at 1,122 feet, 9 feet shy of the new Edge outdoor observation deck in New York City.