What to see in Glasgow
Glasgow Attractions: Top 20 Attractions & Things to Do
You're planning Scotland to travel and Visiting Glasgow?
You will be glasgow one of the most dynamic and modern cities in Scotland sure love. It was even recently called a "City of Culture", "City of Architecture and Design" and "City of Sports" excellent.
Around help you plan your stay, I have this travel guide with the 20 best things to see and do in Glasgow that you should definitely see and do.
In addition to this list of must-see attractions, I'll also give you Itineraries to visit Glasgow in 1, 2 or 3 days as my selection of the best accommodationsdepending on your budget.
And like always this guide contains all of my best tipsto make the most of your stay.
What can you so to do in glasgow?Where is the best place to stay?
Sightseeing in Glasgow: Top 20 Must-See Attractions
1. Georges Square
The George Square is the heart of Glasgow and the city's main square.
This downtown Pedestrian area was named after King Georges III. named. There you can beautiful statues of historical figures admire, have a coffee, take a walk or just relax on the bench or on the lawn.
You can also find it in George Square the town hall (Glasgow City Chambers), which is famous for its Renaissance architecture.
Both the outside and the inside of the building are gorgeous!Free tours are organized during the week.
George Square is one of the most touristic places in Glasgow and really a great base for visiting the city.
2. Glasgow Cathedral
Glasgow Cathedral, which sits on a hill in the East End neighborhood, is the city's most famous monument.
This great Gothic cathedral that was built in the 12th and 13th centuries and also St. Mungo's’S Cathedral or High Kirk of Glasgow will surely impress you! Personally, I found their architecture wonderful.
Inside (free entry) you can see beautiful Stained glass window admire and visit the crypt, in which the tomb of Saint Mungo, the patron saint of the city, is located.
You can find opening times and more information about the cathedral on official website.
3. The necropolis
The necropolis is a small one victorian graveyardwhich is located on a hill near St. Mungo's Cathedral.
There you can about 3500 monumental tombs and mausoleums from the Victorian era and one too beautiful view over the whole city enjoy.
This cemetery is open daily from 7 a.m. to dusk.
It's one of the most original places to visit in Glasgow!
4. Buchanan Street
If you want to shop or just in one of the busiest streets in Glasgow want to stroll, you should go to the Buchanan Street walk.
These nice pedestrian zone consists of a charming Mixture of Victorian and modern buildings, with many various shops for every budget.
And if you're looking for a mall, you should go to the Princes Square Shopping Center go.
5. The GoMA, the gallery for modern art
The GoMA is located on Buchanan Street and is Glasgow's Museum of Modern Art. This museum is well worth a visit if you enjoy doing cultural tourism!
The building in which the museum is housed was successively used as a residential building, as a library and, from 1996, as a museum. Lots Works by local and international artists can be discovered there.
As with most museums in Glasgow admission is free.
Don't miss this Statue of the Duke of Wellington, which is crowned with a traffic cone, directly in front of the entrance of the GoMA gallery. Little anecdote: this cone was set up there by pranksters who put it back in place every time the community removed it. The city then decided to leave him there.
The Duke of Wellington statue and its traffic cone hat then became too one of the most famous symbols of Glasgow!
You can find the opening times on the official website.
6. The Riverside Museum
The Riverside Museum, built on a former shipyard and opened in 2011, is the Transport Museum of Scotland.
The building itself, designed by the contemporary architect Zaha Hadid (who also designed the Guangzhou Opera House in China, for example) is very original and well worth seeing.
In this free museum learn more about the history of the transportation industry in Scotland and around the world. You can do many during your visit Original vehicles as well as admire replicas and enjoy the interactive exhibitions.
The visit is really interesting and it's impressive in the same showroom, seeing the first bicycles of the 19th century, along with F1 cars, trams, steam trains or even ... skateboards!
Outside you can too visit the tall ship, a 19th century sailboat moored along the River Clyde.
You can find more information on how to organize your visit atthe official website.
7. Kelvingrove Park
Where do you go in Glasgow to enjoy some greenery?
Of course in the Kelvingrove Park!
There are tons of museums to explore in Glasgow, as well some large public parkswhere you can enjoy some fresh air.
The Kelvingrove Park, a wooded park that is crossed by the Kelvin River, is the perfect place to take a walk and to enjoy a wonderful view over the university. Children can also use the designated Playgrounds pleasure.
From the park you can walk along the river on the "Kelvin Walkway" to the Glasgow Botanic Garden (No. 15 of this travel guide).
8. Kelvingrove Art Museum
If all you want to do is visit one museum in Glasgow, you should Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, one of the most important museums in Scotland, visit.
it is located in Kelvingrove Park and entry is free.
In this museum you can find a rich collection of paintings, sculptures, art nouveau objects and furniture. Overall there is 22 thematic galleries, from natural history to medieval weapons. A little bit of everything!
The Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum is really well done and educational so it is definitely a great idea for a family outing if you are visiting Glasgow with your kids.
A happy mix of culture in a remarkable building, outside and inside, just beautiful!
You can find the opening times on the official website.
9. Glasgow Science Center
As I told you in the introduction to this guide, Glasgow is real the city of culture, with many world class museums.
The one built on the south bank of the River Clyde Glasgow Science Center opened in 2001 and is a great place to visit if you are traveling with kids. This science museum offers many interactive exhibitions, a bit like the “Cité des Sciences” in Paris.
During your visit you can take part in the interactive workshops learn more about all areas of science and have fun doing it.
There is also on the premises a planetarium, a 3D cinema as well as the Glasgow Tower, a panoramic platform with a great view over the city.
Unlike other museums in Glasgow, this one is a museum not free. You can find information about the admission price and opening times on theofficial website.
10. The lighthouse
Glasgow became the "City of Design and Architecture" elected and opened in 1999 The Lighthouse, the national center for design and architecture.
The lighthouse is located on Buchanan Street, right next to the GoMA, and is dedicated to the two arts (design and architecture), but also very special Charles Rennie Mackintosh, a famous Scottish architect, the many buildings in glasgow designed.
Inside you can also click climb to the top of the lighthouse for a 360 ° view of the city center.
The visit is free, so you should really go there during your stay in Glasgow, even if you just want to enjoy the panorama (360 °)!
To learn more about the lighthouse take a look atthe official website.
11. Glasgow Green
Glasgow Green is another large public park in Glasgow that is on the north bank of the River Clyde, not far from the city center.
The 15th century Glasgow Green is the oldest park in the city. The first soccer games took place here in the 19th century!
It's a great place to take a walk, rest and admire the beautiful statues and monumentsthat are in the park. In summer you can even Bagpipe concerts visit.
You can too at Glasgow Green Park the People’s Palace Museum visit. I'll tell you more about this below.
12. The People’s Palace
The Glasgow Green Park is where the People’s Palace and Winter Gardens.
This free museum allows you to learn more about the History of the people of Glasgow and to find out their living conditions over the centuries.
The People’s Palaces Museum is located in a very beautiful building. In front of this building you can also see the famous Doulton Fountain admire.
This magnificent terracotta fountainwhich represents the former colonies of the United Kingdom such as South Africa or Australia is the largest fountain of its kind in the world.
When you leave the palace again, you should get the former carpet factory next to the museum not to be missed: its multi-colored facade is really beautiful, especially on a sunny day!
Outside the museum you can too take a stroll through the winter gardens. You can watch the beautiful tropical greenhouses with palm trees and other exotic plants watch and enjoy a coffee or lunch in these unusual surroundings.
13. The University of Glasgow
Let's share this guide of the best things to do in Glasgow with the University of Glasgow continue.
She is considered one of the most beautiful and prestigious universities in the world and is an absolute must during your stay.
You're sure to be surprised by its stunning Gothic architecture that JK Rowling designed the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry inspired. Harry Potter atmosphere guaranteed!
This university is a true architectural masterpiece, and the neo-Gothic building take us back several centuries.
One can some of the buildings, the courtyards as well as some small museums (Hunterian Museum, Hunterian Art Gallery, Mackintosh House and Hunterian Zoology Museum) are free to visit.
And if you want to get to know more details about the history of the place and have access to more rooms, you can you also opt for a guided tour (to be booked on site).
14. Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery
In Glasgow you can too the Hunterian Museum visit which I mentioned in the section above.
This museum consists of an art gallery and a science museum, both of which are on the university campus, and is divided into two parts.
The Hunterian Museum shows an impressive collection of Objects from the fields of natural history, anatomy and medicine.
It is the oldest public museum of the country and opened in 1807 thanks to a gift from William Hunter, a famous anatomist and former university student.
Organs in formaldehyde jars, skeletons, deformed animals - the collection is quite unusual and you will feel like you are in a school for wizards. The architecture of the museum alone is worth a visit.
The art gallery is located across the street, next to the university library. In a completely different style, it shows the university's art collection, including Works by Rembrandt, Rubens, Chardin, Whistler and Stubbs.
For more details about the Hunterian Museum, seethe official website.
15. Glasgow Botanic Gardens
If you are already in this city, you should take advantage of it to get the Glasgow Botanic Gardens.
This beautiful garden near the university allows you to strolling among the flowers for a few hours or the magnificent tropical Greenhouses Victorian style to visit.
In cold or rainy weather it is especially comforting to have that covered and heated greenhouses to visit!
16. Pollok Park
With its 146 hectares is the Pollok Park the largest green space in Glasgow.
This park is south of the city center but it is easy to get to by train from Queen Street Station out.
It is the ideal place to enjoy peace and quiet in the Scottish countryside, just minutes from town. There you can pleasant walks through the meadows, the undergrowth and do the flower gardens.
And when you are out with your children, they can let off steam in the playgrounds, ride bicycles and the famous "Highland Cows“Discover!
In the park you can do that too Visit the Pollok house, the family home of the former park owners. Lovers of English classic novels will come to visit this one quaint house and the various living areas at their own expense.
Inside you should get the Burrel Collection With over 8000 works of art from all over the world also not to be missed.
17. Walk along the Forth and Clyde Canal
For a bike tour, a jogging tour, a nature photo session or simply for a pleasant walk, this is the Path along the Forth and Clyde Canal the ideal place in glasgow.
One of the starting points of the hike is in the Maryhill neighborhood. You can get there from Kelvingrove Park by following the river.
The canal connects the River Forth in the east with the River Clyde in the west. If you feel like it, you can Take the bike path from Glasgow to Edinburgh (105 km!), Or, likewise from Glasgow, reach the village of bowling (15 km).
A great way to get in some exercise while in Glasgow!
18. Hampden Park and Celtic Park
Are you a football fan?
Then maybe you should the stages ofHampden Park or Celtic Park visit!
Hampden Park is Scotland's national sports stadium. It is also the home of Queen’s Park FC, of the oldest football club in the country.
Inside the stadium, you can do that too Scottish Football Museum visit, a great place to learn more about the history of football in Scotland. It has a collection of 2,500 exhibits, including the Scottish Cup, the oldest national trophy in the world.
Around Book your visit to Hampden Park and the Football Museum, just click the following button:
In Glasgow you can too visit a second stadium: Celtic Park, where the Celtic Football Club plays.
It is one of the largest football stadiums in Europe. Here you can get one Guided tour of the stadium participate with Access to the changing rooms and the football field.
You have to book your tour in advance by clicking here!
19. Glasgow nightlife
If you are lucky enough to be in Glasgow for a few days, don't return to your hotel after dark and enjoy the unique atmosphere of the city at night for a few more hours!
Glasgow is famous for its lively nightlife and is the perfect city to go to in the evening to go out and party. Whether for dinner, concerts, street entertainment or having fun in the pubs and clubs, Glasgow's nightlife is something that has to be experienced!
Activities in Glasgow in the evening:
- Stroll through Ashton Lane: This charming cobblestone street is full of bars, pubs and restaurants. There is also a small cinema.
- Discover the Finnestion district and its very good restaurants.
- Have fun in the Merchant City with its trendy wine bars, restaurants, pubs and clubs.
- Watch a live concert in the SSE Hydro, the Royal Concert Hall or in King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut.
20. A "subcrawl" with friends
Did you know the underground from Glasgow to London and Budapest the third oldest in Europe is?
Rather small and a circular one shape following, it doesn't allow you to go beyond the West End neighborhood, but it's perfect for a pub crawl. There's even a specific term for it: the subcrawl!
As you might have guessed, the name is "Subcrawl" a mixture of 2 words: It's a pub crawl (Pub crawl)where to go from pub to pub with the Subway moves.
In case you've never heard of it, a pub crawl is one Anglo-Saxon traditionwhich consists of drinking in several pubs or bars in a single night.
So if you are visiting Glasgow with friends this is the opportunity a fun evening, full of discoveries and encounters, to spend!
You findhere is the list of the best pubswhich are located near the metro stops.
Best places to visit around Glasgow
If you are planning to spend some time in Glasgow, be sure to check out the surrounding area as well.
Here are some of my favorite spots less than 2 hours from town:
Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park
Even if the two big cities of Scotland (Glasgow and Edinburgh) are wonderful to visit, many tourists also go to Scotland to see the wonderful Landscape and nature to enjoy.
Loch Lomond (Scotland's largest lake) and the Trossachs National Park there are only a few Kilometers north of Glasgow and are well worth a visit.
For example, you can go to the small town of Balloch drive, which lies on the shores of Loch Lomond, in the heart of the Trossachs National Park. From Glasgow you can in only 50 minutes by car get there.
There you can beautiful walks along Loch Lomond Shores company that Ruins of a castle discover or even a little go shopping at Loch Lomond Shores shopping center.
If you don't want to rent a car, you can also visit Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park with a guided tour. The best tour can be booked here.
This day trip also includes the option a one hour boat trip on the lake and one Visit to Stirling Castle.
The island of Arran
It is approximately a 2 hour drive from Glasgow the Isle of Arran a great place to spend a weekend or more away from the other tourists on a very authentic Scottish island.
To get there you have to go after Ardrossan go. From Port of this small town, you can take the ferry to Arran Island (also with his rental car).
The Island is easy to visit by car: you can go around the whole island in 2 hours and cross it from east to west in just 20 minutes.
Attractions on the Isle of Arran near Glasgow:
- Brodick Castle
- Arran Historical Museum
- The ruins of Lochranza Castle
- Lochranza village
- The Arran distillery.
On the island you can too many sporting activities exercise: Hiking, climbing, kayaking, diving…
3 other attractions near Glasgow
- Stirling: A medieval town steeped in history with beautiful cobbled streets, a castle and a tower-museum. You can spend a few hours in Stirling and return to Glasgow the same day as the city is only 50 minutes away by car.
- New Lanark: This beautiful village, 4 km from Glasgow, is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. You can get there by car in 40 minutes. There is an 18th century cotton mill in New Lanark that you can visit. But you can also take a walk through the beautiful forest around the village.
- Edinburgh: If you are in Glasgow and have not yet visited the capital, you should of course spend a day or two in Edinburgh. This city is only an hour from Glasgow. To plan your visit to the Scottish capital, you can take a look at my detailed travel guide: Top 20 sights in Edinburgh.
The best 2- or 3-day organized tours from Glasgow
If you don't want to rent a car, I've selected the 3 best organized tours from Glasgow for you.
For more details about these tours and to book them, just click click the orange links below:
Glasgow in rainy weather
Scotland and rain, that's a true love story!
And of course Glasgow stays with us an average of 200 rainy days a year not spared! 😱
But don't panic, no matter whether it rains for a short time or all day, you will find yourself here without any problems employ can.
There are so many cultural sightsso that you always have the option to enter the nearest museum or monument until it stops raining.
With his countless free museums Glasgow is definitely a city with plenty to do even when it rains!
And if you don't like going to museums, you can of course do something else: you can shopwalk or warm up in a tea house or pub.
Glasgow with the family
As we've seen before, Glasgow is first and foremost one Cultural city.
Small children will not necessarily be enthusiastic about all the museums and may be bored. On the other hand, most museums are free. So if they're old enough to enjoy these type of visits, you can do many Discover things together with you, without breaking the bank.
Ideas for families:
- The numerous art museums may not appeal to everyone, but if you're visiting Glasgow with your family, you should Glasgow Science Center, the most educational museum in town, not to be missed.
- Aside from cultural visits, you can also spend some time in the city's green spaces spend. Above all, you should Pollok Country Park visit, a place that all family members will like!
- A visit to Glasgow University is also a great thing to do with your kids. It will delight the young Harry Potter fans!
Glasgow on foot
You can Glasgow city center light in a day's walk visit.
To help you plan your visit, I am giving you here the best itinerary to visit Glasgow in a day on foot and to get a good overview of the city.
If you have to spend more than a day in Glasgow, you can follow this itinerary Spread over 2 or 3 days and extend as needed.. I'll tell you more about this later in this guide.
Start with one Stroll in Glasgow Green Park, where you People’s Palace and the Winter gardens can visit.
Then go to the famous St. Mungo's Cathedral and their Victorian graveyard, the necropolis.
You achieve the city center on the George Square (about a 15 minute walk from the cathedral). Definitely don't miss it the magnificent Glasgow City Chambers.
You can then go to the GoMA pass by and climb to the top of the lighthouseto enjoy a beautiful view over Glasgow.
Take your time in the Buchanan Street strolling around or doing some shopping.
Then go west to the Kelvingrove Parkwhere the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum and then on to University of Glasgow.
At the end of the day, you should still be in the charming and picturesque Ashton Lane (only 500 meters from the university) where you can spend a pleasant evening.
Best length of stay to visit Glasgow
As I mentioned earlier the main attractions of Glasgow are quite close together, and you can easily explore the city on foot in one day.
However, if you love art and culture and want to soak up the atmosphere of the city, plan a whole weekend or even 3 days in Glasgow.
In my opinion are 2 or 3 days in Glasgow the ideal length of stay to make the most of all that Glasgow has to offer.
1 day in Glasgow
If you only have one day to discover Glasgow, I recommend the following Itinerary:
- Walk to the Glasgow Green Park, where you the People’s Palace and the Winter gardens can visit.
- Visits the Saint Mungo Cathedral.
- Visits the necropolis cemetery, which is located near the cathedral.
- Past the George Square and City Hall (Glasgow City Chambers)
- Lunch break!
- Visit the GoMA.
- Get on the Lighthouse.
- Do some shopping in the Buchanan Street.
- Spend your evening in the Merchant City district.
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