Glasgow's city parks and gardens

With over 90 parks and formal gardens in and within the city boundaries, there is a great selection of beautiful gardens and parks in Glasgow. Whether you’re looking to explore its attractions, want to take up an outdoor activity, or simply want to enjoy a quiet walk, follow this itinerary for a great day out with fun, explore the many museums, stately homes and gardens and learn about the Glasgow’s history and arts and culture.

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  • A summer's day in the Botanic Gardens in the city centre of Glasgow
    Botanic Gardens
  • Al fresco lunch at the House for an Art Lover, Glasgow
    Al fresco lunch at the House for an Art Lover, Glasgow
  • A detail of an ornate embellishment in one of the rooms of the House for an Art Lover, built to the designs of Mackintosh.
    House for an Art Lover embellishment
  • The restored Doulton Fountain in front of the People's Palace in the east end of the city of Glasgow.
    People's Palace
  • Couple walk through the Burrell Collection
    The Burrell Collection

Begin your day with a visit to Bellahouston Park which is about three miles to the south west of the city. With many features and facilities, the park tempts visitors and local residents to its ground making it a popular place for a day out. Explore the formal gardens and open parkland in which to relax and take views over the city and beyond.

Quite contemplation can also be had at the Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s House for an Art Lover. The house has been realised in materials and craftsmanship as closely as possible to Mackintosh’s 1902 designs, and is also home to a popular Art Lovers cafe, gallery and shop.

Before you head out of the park, pay a quick visit to Bellahouston Park’s horticultural highlights, including the walled garden with its fine collection of ferns and daffodils as well as the sunken garden and horseshoe garden.

Make Pollok Country Park your next stop today. Being Glasgow’s largest park and the only Country Park within Glasgow, it offers extensive woodlands and the garden provides a quiet sanctuary for both visitors and wildlife. Visit the impressive Pollock House, one of Glasgow’s most elegant family homes that was built by successive generations of the Maxwell, and which contains an outstanding collection of Spanish art as well as the renowned Burrell Collection. Named after its donor, the shipping magnate Sir William Burrell, the collection features artworks from all corners of the globe and its range and diversity is impressive.

Just before you set off further, explore the park’s walled garden, the Old Stable Courtyard and Sawmill, or take a relaxing riverside walk.

Did you know that Pollok Country Park has been voted Britain’s Best Park in 2007 and Europe’s Best Park in 2008?

Finish your day with a visit to Queen’s Park, a creation by the world-renowned Joseph Paxton, and which is dedicated to the memory of Mary Queens of Scots. From manicured lawns and bedding areas for the gardening enthusiasts to peaceful naturalised walks rich in wildlife, the park offers something for everyone.

With a good range of sport and recreational facilities as well as a boating pond and a smaller nature pond, the park attracts great number of visitors. Explore great views across Glasgow from the top of the hill and on a clear day you can even see as far as the Campsie Fells and Ben Lomond.

Begin your journey at classic Victorian park by the River Kelvin - the Kelvingrove Park. Designed by Sir Joseph Paxton, it’s situated next to the renowned Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum only about 1.5 miles west of the city centre. With an overarching feel of Victorian grandeur, the park is a peaceful natural haven within a densely populated area of the city and is home to a diverse range of wildlife.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, which have recently underwent a £27.9m refurbishment to restore its magnificent Victorian interior, is one of Scotland’s most popular free attractions and features 22 themed, state-of-the-art galleries displaying an astonishing 8,000 objects wide-ranging and of international significance, including Salvador Dali masterpiece Christ of St John of the Cross.

The park offers a great range of recreation facilities, including bowlilng greens, tennis courts, a skateboard park and children’s play areas.

From there, head to Glasgow Botanic Gardens. Located in the heart of the city’s West End, the garden is dominated by the recently restored Kibble Palace. This magnificent glasshouse designed by John Kibble houses the national collection of tree ferns as well as various plants from tropical rainforests can be found in the palm house.

Grab a lunch at the Botanic Gardens Tearoom which is the latest addition to the gardens. It can be found in the former curator’s house near Kibble Palace and there is children’s play area within the gardens too.

Continue your journey with a short drive to Glasgow’s East End and explore the fabulous Tollcross Park. Renowned for its world-class Rose Garden and its Winter Gardens, the park hosts the International Rose Trials each year and is best visited in July and August to fully appreciate the bloom and fragrances.

The Winter Gardens are in an exquisite B-listed 19th century iron structure which has been recently refurbished and now offers hothouses with many colourful and exotic plant species. Secret Garden is the most recent addition to the park which has been developed as a place for quiet contemplation.

With many points of interest, the park offers a welcome retreat from the busy surrounding streets and some of the hidden gems include the Glen Nature Walk, Children’s Farm and Courtyard Visitor Centre.

Finish the day with a visit to the city’s by far oldest park, the Glasgow Green. Situated east of the Saltmarket on the north bank of the River Clyde, it’s within easy walking distance of the city centre. Among the park’s highlights is the People’s Palace, a fascinating social history museum where you can learn the story of Glasgow and its people.

Don’s miss the Winter Gardens with an exotic collection of plants and shrubs, outside of which is the Doulton Fountain. You will find also impressive grade A-listed column erected which commemorates the naval victories of Viscount Horation Nelson. This is the first monument in Britain to be erected in his honour.