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Visit Glasgow: Your travel guide

Glasgow’s an ex-industrial powerhouse turned cutting-edge klaxon of culture. C.R. Mackintosh’s landmark School of Art building is its hub. Here, peruse his unique designs and dig the new breed's stylings. Then, head to King Tut's for fresh indie sounds or Subclub for a belter night out.

Things to do in Glasgow

Buchanan Street
Buchanan Street measures up for designer shoppers. Browse the House of Fraser for brands like Ralph Lauren and Donna Karan. Set across five finely kept Victorian buildings, the store is a Glasgow institution. Opposite it sits a wrought iron, Art Nouveau peacock, which beckons you into Princes Square Mall to seek chic threads by Vivienne Westwood and the like. Suits you, sir!
Buchanan St, Glasgow G1, UK
George Square
To quote poet Robert Burns, this square is full of “Scots wha hae” – in other words, national heroes. Statues of Burns, author Walter Scott and engineer James Watt dominate a site first built for an English king. No wonder independence debates got heated here! On Hogmanay (New Year’s Eve), Glaswegians put politics aside and link arms to belt out Burns’ song, “Auld Lang Syne”.
George St, Glasgow G2 1DU, UK
Glasgow City Chambers
Don’t let the grey façade fool you – the city council’s HQ springs to life inside. Its grand foyer dazzles from all angles, with mosaic floors and gold-leaf ceilings. Join a tour and climb the Italian marble staircase up to the Banqueting Hall. Trace the story of Glasgow in murals and paintings: from the granting of the city charter to the old shipyards on the River Clyde.
George Square, Glasgow G2 1DU, UK
Open Monday-Friday 09:00-17:00
Glasgow Cathedral
A true survivor. This is the only medieval cathedral to have escaped destruction during the Scottish Reformation. It’s built on the burial site of St Mungo, Glasgow’s patron saint. His tomb sits in the dimly lit crypt on the lower floor. Upstairs, the Gothic-arched roof soars above you, and the stained-glass windows bathe the nave in kaleidoscopic light.
Glasgow Cathedral, Castle Street, Glasgow G4, UK
Open Monday-Saturday 09:30-17:30, Sunday 13:00-17:00
Merchant City
This area became a boomtown in the mid-18th century. Tobacco barons and shipping magnates built grand residences here. Stroll past Ingram Street’s Georgian façades, then duck into the Corinthian Club, whose opulent Victorian setting is spiffing for afternoon tea. Finally, swing by the Italian Centre’s Palazzos to browse flagship stores by Versace and Armani.
27-29 Trongate, Glasgow G1 5EZ, UK
Kelvingrove Museum and Park
This museum is a real head turner, from the floating-face sculptures in the foyer to the century-old pipe organ that bellows out lunchtime recitals. In the Glasgow Style gallery, Charles Mackintosh’s “The Wassail” is the star attraction. Admire the gesso panel's blend of Japonism and Art Nouveau styles – subtle reliefs of plaster, glass beads and tin enrich the plain canvas.
Argyle St, Glasgow G3 8AG, UK
Open Monday-Sunday 10:00-17:00
Glasgow Necropolis
This Victorian graveyard is built on the hill where St Mungo first founded the city. He called it “glaschu” – Scots Gaelic for “dear green place”. It’s a sad yet beautiful spot where grey tombstones and mausolea line the grassy inclines. Scale the hill for glorious Glaswegian sunsets, but don’t stay too long – the “City of the Dead” is rather spooky after dark!
Wishard Street, Glasgow, Glasgow G4 0UZ, UK
Open Monday-Sunday 08:30-16:30
People's Palace and Winter Gardens
In 1765, James Watt conceived his world-changing steam engine here on Glasgow Green. Today, it’s the site of a museum that details Glasgow’s boom-and-bust history through photos, films and cultural curios. Delve into 1930s working-class life and 1950s dancehall culture. See the “banana boots” and whiskey-box guitar of Billy Connolly, the local ship welder-turned-star comedian.
Glasgow Green, Glasgow G40 1AT, UK
Open Tuesday-Saturday 10:00-17:00, Sunday 11:00-17:00
University of Glasgow
This imposing institution looks like Harry Potter’s Hogwarts. It’s seen wizardry of its own – the uni is the alma mater of John Logie Baird, inventor of the telly. It was here that the ultrasound image was born, too. Roam the ghostly, neo-Gothic arcade beneath Bute Hall. Then visit the Hunterian, Scotland’s oldest museum. It covers everything from art to zoology.
University Ave, Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK
Check website for details.
Botanic Gardens and Kibble Palace
These gardens have attracted plant enthusiasts and picnickers since 1842. Kibble Palace is the largest greenhouse on site – it’s a classic Victorian winter garden of wrought iron and glass. Step inside to see its prize 120-year-old Australian and New Zealand ferns. During fine weather, wander the River Kelvin walkway or lounge with sun-bathing students on the main lawn.
730 Great Western Rd, Glasgow G12 0UE, UK
Open Monday-Sunday 10:00-16:00. Check website for details.
Bobar
Bobar is known for its friendly and knowledgeable bar staff. Chat to them about the single malts on offer and they’ll help find one that’s right for you. If you’re after a specific cocktail that’s not on the menu, don’t worry – they’ll mix it up in a flash, and always with a smile on the side.
Bar Home
This bar certainly lives up to its name. With its friendly bar staff, unpretentious vibe and happy-go-lucky clientele, you’ll feel right at home in no time. Even as the cosy space fills up and the queues at the bar grow, the staff keep on smiling that Bar Home smile as they pour pints for thirsty customers.
The Horseshoe Bar
Many 9-to-5ers make the Horseshoe their first stop after clocking off. Unwinding after the rigors of the day always brings about a fair bit of banter – so heading down in the early evening is a great way to get to grips with Glasgow’s famous wit and notoriously impenetrable dialect.

When to go to Glasgow

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Traveller's reviews and photos

8
Very good
In 24 hours I enjoyed the Glasgow Film Theatre, a great meal at one of the Sarti bros restaurants, saw the historic Tenement House and the kinetic sculptures above the Russian cafe on Trongate. Oh and a bit of shopping! Sauchiehall st looked very tired and run down.
Vivienne
United Kingdom
15 October 2017
10
Exceptional
The people in Glasgow are the friendliest in the world, lovely vibrant place with some lovely buildings
Hazel
United Kingdom
15 October 2017
8
Very good
It's my home town so I love it ! Lots to do including theatre cinema and super restaurants. Easy to get round glasgow with bus and trains.
Natalie
United Kingdom
15 October 2017
10
Exceptional
Travel to Glasgow a lot usually for concerts and occasionally to meet with friends . Have had a lovely fish tea in the Blue Lagon
Susan
United Kingdom
15 October 2017
8
Very good
Always enjoy Glasgow , friendly people , lovely architecture, good cafes restaurants and pubs with music. Plenty of good shops museums.
Paul
United Kingdom
15 October 2017

Accommodation and hotels in Glasgow

Victorian House

7.5 Good

Score from 2,111 reviews

£21

Average price per night
  • “location was great”
    340 related reviews
  • “excellent quality of food”
    273 related reviews
  • “wonderful staff”
    245 related reviews
Heritage Hotel

8.3 Very good

Score from 1,113 reviews

£27

Average price per night
  • “location was great”
    201 related reviews
  • “wonderful staff”
    140 related reviews
  • “very clean and tidy”
    106 related reviews
Charing Cross Guest House

7 Good

Score from 995 reviews

£28

Average price per night
  • “location was great”
    177 related reviews
  • “wonderful staff”
    112 related reviews
  • “excellent quality of food”
    105 related reviews
citizenM Glasgow

9.1 Superb

Score from 5,863 reviews

£71

Average price per night
  • “beautiful building”
    951 related reviews
  • “wonderful staff”
    663 related reviews
  • “comfortable beds”
    482 related reviews
Holiday Inn Express - Glasgow - City Ctr Theatreland

8.8 Fabulous

Score from 1,920 reviews

£68

Average price per night
  • “location was great”
    378 related reviews
  • “wonderful staff”
    372 related reviews
  • “excellent quality of food”
    134 related reviews
Premier Inn Glasgow City Centre - Argyle Street

8 Very good

Score from 859 reviews

£58

Average price per night
  • “location was great”
    171 related reviews
  • “wonderful staff”
    169 related reviews
  • “comfortable beds”
    87 related reviews
Jurys Inn Glasgow

8.5 Very good

Score from 3,488 reviews

£63

Average price per night
  • “wonderful staff”
    604 related reviews
  • “location was great”
    594 related reviews
  • “very clean and tidy”
    216 related reviews
Premier Inn Glasgow City - George Square

8.6 Fabulous

Score from 1,474 reviews

£62

Average price per night
  • “location was great”
    423 related reviews
  • “wonderful staff”
    403 related reviews
  • “very clean and tidy”
    138 related reviews
The Grand Central Hotel

8.6 Fabulous

Score from 6,465 reviews

£71

Average price per night
  • “location was great”
    995 related reviews
  • “wonderful staff”
    787 related reviews
  • “very clean and tidy”
    512 related reviews
Discover Glasgow

Popular neighbourhoods in Glasgow

Glasgow City Centre

125 properties

The historic centre is a medley of architectural styles. Gaze upon the Italianate city hall on George Square, then head to Little Italy to chomp on top-notch pizza. Spot Doric columns and Palladian windows while bar-hopping in the Merchant City area. Then sip on a cuppa at the Art Nouveau Willow Tea Rooms, designed by Charles Mackintosh himself.

North West

100 properties

Glasgow University lends this area a youthful, bohemian vibe. Fresh-faced whippersnappers wander its illustrious campus, and kooky art lovers browse Kelvingrove Park’s galleries. Stop off in a student bar on Ashton Lane – this quaint, cobbled street is the perfect place to debate the Glasgow School’s contribution to Art Nouveau into the wee hours.

South

62 properties

A green belt of possibilities. Among the gardens of Pollok Park lies a gallery with paintings by El Greco and Goya. Then there’s the Burrell Collection – it displays Chinese art in a quiet woodland setting. In Queen’s Park, go “quackers” for duck ponds and nature walks. Or, trace the history of Scottish “fitba” (football) at Hampden Park stadium.

East End

18 properties

The East End’s gritty yet charming. Head to Barras Market for classic Glaswegian shopping. Its independent traders sell everything from antiques to kilts. Pop into the Blue Lagoon chip shop to taste a deep-fried Mars bar (at your own risk!). Wash it down with a pint among raucous Celtic FC fans – their green-and-white pubs line Gallowgate Street.

Local tips for Glasgow

Wander around the West End’s shops
Emma by Emma

Emma’s lived in 5 different European cities but loves returning to her fun and friendly hometown.

One of my favourite things about the West End is its quirky shops. Just off Byers Road, Ruthven Lane brims over with vintage wares, while De Courcy’s Arcade packs in cute boutiques. Stop off in one of the area’s many cafés and take a wander up to Glasgow University’s beautiful campus.

  • Ruthven Lane, Glasgow, G12
  • Open Monday-Sunday 09:00-17:00
The Lighthouse, Mitchell Lane
Jayne by Jayne

Jayne grew up in the countryside but can appreciate the bustle of big cities.

Formerly the Glasgow Herald newspaper’s HQ, this gem of a building was Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s first public commission. Inside, learn about his life and work in the Mackintosh Interpretation Centre, or take the spiral stairs up to the top floor for skyline views.

  • 11 Mitchell Lane, Glasgow G1 3NU
  • www.thelighthouse.co.uk
  • Open Monday–Saturday 10:30–17:00, Sunday 12:00–17:00
Loch Lomond day trip
Sarah Murphy by Sarah Murphy

Irish-born Sarah lives in London but finds inner peace by travelling in the countryside.

Take a day trip to Loch Lomond’s famous bonny banks! The scenic Balmaha village is within 50 minutes’ drive. Here, hire a rowing boat in the shadow of the Trossachs hills. Or, catch a train to Balloch and take the ferry over to Luss Pier on the western side of the lake.

Butterfly and Pig Tearooms
Corina Platt by Corina Platt

Raised in nearby Greenock, Corina came of age in Glasgow – she lived and studied there for 6 years.

After a night out back home, this is my go-to café for a hearty, cooked breakfast. Its shabby chic, vintage interior is adorable, too. Swing by for a cosy afternoon of tea, sandwiches and homemade cakes!

Read our FAQ on this destination >

Recommendations for Glasgow

Kelvingrove is a must , s o much to see, also Galley of Modern Art easy to find in the City Center, a bit further out is the People's Palace in Glasgow Green . also the Science Centre across the river.

travelling around the city and exploring places from the past history to modern living.

There is a conversation waiting to happen around every corner in Glasgow.

various shopping areas including Buchanan Street and Sauchiehall Street

A violinist playing the violin while walking on a tight rope.

A lot of impressionist famous painting

Di Maggios for Italian

Booking.com asked travellers...

Why would you recommend Glasgow for food?

Great choice.

Transport

Glasgow transport

Air - Glasgow International Airport

Glasgow Airport is 11 km west of the city. The quickest way to town is by express bus. First Glasgow Shuttle departs every 10 minutes, 24 hours a day. The journey takes 15 minutes and costs GBP 6.50 one way. Free WiFi is included. You can buy a ticket on board or via First’s mTickets mobile app. The airport is easily accessed by car or taxi thanks to the adjoining M8 motorway. Only official taxis are permitted to pick up passengers outside the arrivals hall.

Air - Glasgow Prestwick Airport

Glasgow Prestwick Airport is 53 km south of Glasgow. It offers a direct train to Glasgow Central that takes under an hour. Single fares usually cost GBP 7.80, but show your official flight confirmation and photo ID to receive a half-price discount. Trains run every 20-30 minutes until 23:00. Stagecoach's X77 direct bus reaches Buchanan Street in 45 minutes and costs GBP 5.80 one way. Buses run until 22:40 Monday-Thursday, 02:40 Friday-Saturday and 20:55 on Sunday.

Train

Glasgow’s two main stations offer access to extensive suburban and regional networks. Queen Street Station is in the north inner city. It operates services to both Edinburgh and northern Scotland. The station also lies adjacent to Buchanan Street metro station. Glasgow Central Station, on Argyle Street, connects Glasgow with southern Scotland and the rest of the UK via the West Coast Main Line. A single ticket in greater Glasgow costs between GBP 1.50 and GBP 3.00.

Bus

There are four main bus stations serving Greater Glasgow. Buchanan Bus Station is in the north city centre, opposite the Royal Concert Hall. A single journey costs between GBP 1.20 and GBP 2.00, and tickets are purchased on board – but exact change is required. A one-day ticket is also sold on board and costs between GBP 4.30 and GBP 5.75 – it’s also valid for the 747 service to and from Glasgow Airport. Weekend night buses operate from 12:30-04:30.

Underground

Glasgow’s circle-line underground is known locally as “Clockwork Orange”. A loop around its 15 stations takes 24 minutes. St Enoch and Buchanan Street are the central hubs; the latter connects with Queen Street Station's suburban and regional lines. The underground runs from approx. 06:30-23:30 on Monday-Saturday and from 10:00-18:00 on Sunday. A single journey costs GBP 1.40, and all-day tickets are GBP 2.70. Weekly tickets cost GBP 13.00. Under 16s pay half price.

Taxi

Glasgow's famous black cabs can be hailed on the street if their orange light is on. Official taxi ranks are found outside transport hubs like Glasgow Central, Queen Street and Buchanan Street stations. In the West End, there's a rank on Byres Road, outside Hillhead subway station. Queues can be quite long after midnight on weekends. Fares are metered but often include a surcharge after midnight or if travelling outside certain city boundaries.

Car

If you're not a confident driver, avoid driving in Glasgow city centre: there are many one-way streets, bus lanes and pedestrian zones. Glaswegians are not the most patient of drivers, and they particularly dislike hesitancy. Parking restrictions are strictly enforced, and vehicles parked illegally or in an obstructive manner will be towed away. Fines of up to GBP 150 apply.

Food in Glasgow

Top restaurants in Glasgow

High-end dining
Local
Two Fat Ladies
High-end dining
European
Brian Maule at Chardon d'Or
High-end dining
Seafood
Gamba
  • 225A West George Street, Glasgow G2 2ND, UK
  • Open Monday-Saturday 12:00-14:15 and 17:00-22:00, Sunday 17:00-21:00
  • 0044 1415720899
High-end dining
Seafood
Rogano
Good value
Indian
Dakhin
  • 89 Candleriggs, Glasgow, Lanarkshire G1 1NP, UK
  • Open Monday-Friday 12:00-14:00 and 17:00-23:00, Saturday-Sunday 13:00-23:00
  • www.dakhin.com
  • 0044 1415532585
Good value
Japanese
The Hug and Pint
Good value
Japanese
Pickled Ginger
Good value
Indian
Mother India
Good value
Seafood
Nanakusa
Good value
Seafood
Crabshakk
  • 1114 Argyle Street, Finneston, Glasgow G3 8TD, UK
  • Open Tuesday-Sunday 12:00-00:00
  • 0044 1413346127
Good value
Seafood
The Finnieston
Good value
Mediterranean
Ox and Finch
Good value
Indian
Ashoka
Cheap 'n' tasty
Vietnamese
The Hanai Bike Shop
  • 8 Ruthven Lane, Glasgow, Lanarkshire G12 9BG, UK
  • Open Monday-Wednesday 12:00-23:00, Thursday-Saturday 12:00-00:30, Sunday 11:00-23:00
  • hanoibikeshop.co.uk
  • 0044 1413347165
High-end dining
International
Number 16
  • 16 Byres Road, Glasgow G11 5JY, UK
  • Open Monday-Saturday 12:00-14:30 and 17:30-20:30, Sunday 13:00-14:30 and 17:30-20:30
  • number16.co.uk
  • 0044 1413392544
High-end dining
European
Bistro Du vin
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