As Scotland’s largest city, Glasgow is just waiting to be uncovered. Here’s a look at what to do in the Dear Green Place.
One of Scotland’s biggest cities and cultural hubs, Glasgow offers plenty to do. From centuries-old impressive architecture, a thriving art scene to magical castles in the nearby countryside, here are eight reasons you should visit Glasgow.
1. Visit Glasgow Cathedral
This magnificent Gothic cathedral built between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries is the only cathedral to have survived the Protestant Reformation without significant damage. It’s believed to be the original burial site of the Saint Kentigern (612 A.D), otherwise known as Saint Mungo, the first bishop in the British kingdom of Strathclyde. Discover the beautifully complex Gothic stained glass windows and visit the ancient crypt beneath the cathedral. Plus, there’s no admission fee, which is always nice.
2. Taste some Scotch whisky
It would be a pity not to sample some authentic Scotch in Scotland, the land of whisky! So, as you make your way around the city, sit down in a cozy Scottish pub and sip some world-class whisky like Lagavulin, Glenmorangie Signet, Glen Grant, Glenturrett and Talisker. Or, head out to the stunning Scottish countryside and visit; the Glenturret Distillery, Scotland’s oldest, where you can learn the whisky making process.
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3. Relax in the Glasgow Botanic Gardens
Have the little ones in tow? Take them to this urban sanctuary in the heart of Glasgow. Glasgow Botanic Gardens boasts lovely landscapes, a glass house filled with colorful plants and green open spaces perfect for picnics. Unwind at the tearoom while while enjoying a traditional afternoon tea, or choose from the delicious breakfast, lunch and dessert options. Free admission.
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4. Explore the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
A definite must-see, the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum has been a local favorite for over a century! First opened in 1901, Kelvingrove contains twenty-two galleries of art, animals, ancient treasures, Scottish collections and much more! Open every day including the weekends, it’s a great way to spend the day with your family. Free admission.
5. Be inspired in the Glasgow Science Centre
Fun for kids and adults alike, the Glasgow Science Centre sparks curiosity in everyone. The Bodyworks exhibit focuses on the important organs and processes in the human body while the Planetarium takes you on an astronomical journey through space, time, the Milky Way Galaxy and beyond with film in the fifteen-meter, 360° hemispherical dome.
6. Wander through The Necropolis
An eerie but fascinating site, Glasgow’s Necropolis is a nineteenth-century cemetery that sits on a hill beside Glasgow Cathedral. Fifty thousand bodies have been buried within its thirty-seven acres of land. Walk through a true ‘city of the dead’ and admire the intricately designed tombs where many souls lay to rest. Be sure to spot the ‘Bridge of Sighs’ at the entrance, the former entrance point of local funeral processions.
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7. Discover the University of Glasgow
Originally established in 1451, the University of Glasgow was part of the Scottish Enlightenment alongside the University of Edinburgh in the eighteenth century. Take a self-guided tour through a world-class educational institution and walk the footsteps of historic intellectuals like the economist Adam Smith, Presbyterian Church of Scotland founder John Knox or the famous contemporary Scottish actor Gerard Butler.
8. Take a day trip to the Scottish Highlands
No trip to Scotland would be complete without journeying into the Scottish Highlands. Discover the fairytale-like castles that adorn the countryside, visit the majestic Inveraray Castle about a two-hour drive from the city of Glasgow, or take a photo of Kilchurn Castle nestled into a valley among the mountains overlooking the beautiful Loch Awe. Also be sure to visit Loch Ness and see if you can spot its legendary native inhabitant, the Loch Ness Monster, also known as ‘Nessie’.