A city of history, culture and fun
Find out why Glasgow is such a great destination for a short break with our handy guide to the best of the city.
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Welcome to Scotland’s style capital and one of Europe’s most vibrant cities. Where else can you find stunning architecture, world-class art and culture, the biggest shopping scene outside of London and a year-round calendar of exciting events in a city with a history that stretches back to the Stone Age?
And that’s not all – Glasgow is surrounded by some of the best countryside in Scotland, from the dramatic scenery of the Clyde Valley to Loch Lomond, an adventure seeker’s paradise. Book your flight to Glasgow today to experience this sassy Scottish city for yourself.
If you’re a tea lover, you’ll love Glasgow. Delightful tea rooms are dotted all over the city, but we suggest you combine your afternoon tea with a visit to one of Glasgow’s architectural gems. The Willow Tea Rooms and the Art Lovers Café at House for an Art Lover were both designed by famous Glasgow architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh, and both serve cracking food and drink.
Theatre lovers and novice theatre-goers alike will love this unusual concept. A Play, a Pie and a Pint is a ground-breaking theatre programme showing 50 minute lunchtime plays at the Oran Mor pub in Glasgow’s West End. The plays cover a range of genres from tragedies and monologues to comedies and musicals, and feature the work of some of the UK's most well-known writers as well as new and exciting theatrical voices. As you may have guessed, you get a drink and a pie with your theatre ticket.
Frankly, it’d be rude to visit anywhere in Scotland and not visit a local distillery for a taste of the finest local whisky. Head to the Glengoyne Distillery, where the whisky is distilled slower than any other single malt Scotch whisky, giving it a subtle, complex flavour. Distillery tours start at just £7, but true whisky lovers won’t want to miss The Masterclass – the most in depth and comprehensive distillery tour in Scotland.
The Ubiquitous Chip is a Glasgow favourite and multi award-winning restaurant (most recently it was named Restaurant of the Year for Scotland 2013). Proud to be Scottish, the food is inspired by Scotland’s natural larder and traditional regional dishes, and the menu changes with the seasons. Visit the brasserie, mezzanine or roof terrace for a light meal, or enjoy a romantic meal from the fine dining menu in the magical courtyard dining room.
King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut is one of Glasgow’s most famous music venues, and a great place to watch live music. It’s here that Oasis were famously spotted and signed in 1993, and the venue supported the likes of Radiohead, Florence & The Machine, and Biffy Clyro from the start of their careers. If all that talent spotting works up an appetite, you’ll be pleased to hear they have a pretty impressive food menu too.
The Britannia Panopticon Music Hall is a city gem with a fascinating history – it’s where Stan Laurel made his debut aged 16 in 1906. Today, the music hall is home to exhibitions, bazaars and movie nights, as well as traditional music hall nights including with music, magic, comedy and sing-a-longs. Shows are generally free admission, but you’re encouraged to leave a donation for the hall.
If you fancy a night out with a difference, head to the Grand Ole Opry, the largest Country & Western club in the UK. Saturday nights mean live music, line dancing, (fake) shootouts and even a fast-paced game of bingo. If line dancing isn’t for you, pull up a stool at the saloon bar, grab a burger from the chuck wagon and enjoy a night of cowboy-watching you’ll never forget.
Bored of industrially brewed lagers and stuffy ales? So were BrewDog – that’s why they started brewing their own craft beers. Now, they’re Scotland’s largest independent brewery, and have opened bars all over Britain. The Glasgow branch is tucked in the shadow of the Kelvingrove Gallery, making it the perfect pit-stop after a day of exploring. As well as showcasing BrewDog beers, the bar is a library of beery masterpieces from the likes of Stone, Mikkeller, Struise, Alesmith and many more.
Glasgow’s bar and pub scene is second to none, and with so many to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. Where better than ‘Pub Mile’ in Glasgow’s West End, where you can sample everything from old traditional pubs to vibrant bars and clubs. You’ll also find some of the city’s best bistros, restaurants and cafes on this side of the city – the perfect ingredients for a great night out.
The UK's third largest city offers a wealth of things to do. Whether on a short break or longer holiday, discover unmissable experiences.
You’ll never have to worry about finding a place to be fed and watered in Glasgow – the Scots know how to put on a great spread.
Great shopping is not just the preserve of London. Find out more about where to shop on your visit to Glasgow.
Whether day tripping to Loch Lomond or striking out into the highlands, Glasgow is the perfect place to start your Scottish adventure.