14 Relaxingly Beautiful and Productive Urban Rooftop Gardens

Hidden from the street, high above the heads of pedestrians, are lush green getaways filled with flowers, shaded nooks, fountains, flowing streams – and even flamingos. Rooftop gardens offer an unexpected retreat in even the busiest of big cities like New York, Hong Kong and London. These 14 urban rooftop gardens range from small plots that grow food or help make buildings more energy-efficient to sprawling multiple-acre parks.

Place Royale, Quebec

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This colorful rooftop garden brings not just greenery but also fountains and public art, high above the streets of Quebec City, Canada.

Rockefeller Center Gardens, New York

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Off-limits to the public for most of the year, the three secluded rooftop gardens of Rockefeller Center can be seen from nearby observation decks. Landscaped in a formal style, the gardens include lush carpets of grass and carefully sculpted topiaries.

National Museum of Scotland

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Though it’s often overlooked by visitors, the rooftop garden of the National Museum of Scotland is an ideal detour for those who want to enjoy a bit of greenery and look down at the stunning historic city of Edinburgh. Topping the 7th floor of the museum, the garden is planted with native Scottish plants.

VivoCity, Singapore

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After a long day of shopping at Singapore’s VivoCity mall, visitors can head up to the large landscaped roof garden called Sky Park, which offers panoramic views of the harbor and Sentosa Island, and a knee-deep wading pool.

Kaiser Garage, Oakland, California

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The first roof garden built in the United States after World War II, the Kaiser Center Roof Garden is located on top of the parking garage and is open to the public five days a week. Known as one of Oakland’s hidden gems, the garden features a wooden bridge, a pond, lawns, trees and lots of lounging space.