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Kibble Palace, Glasgow Botanic Gardens

Cities

One day in Glasgow

Glasgow is one of the most exciting cities in Europe. Its architecture is grandiose and eclectic in equal measure, while its music scene is the stuff of legend. Among its world-class museums, venues and other offerings, discover a tantalising array of bars, pubs and restaurants where you can experience a city famous for its friendliness, nightlife and multicultural cuisine. 

Discover how to experience the music, art, famous hospitality and beauty of Glasgow in just 24 hours.

Getting there

Glasgow is well served by both rail and flights. Scotrail's Caledonian Sleeper is a comfortable way of travelling overnight from London.

Transport

Bus Walk

Days

1

Miles

20

Route

Around the city centre and beyond, from the Merchant City to the banks of the River Clyde; to characterful districts and beautiful greenspaces like Kelvingrove Park.

Highlights

Dazzling museums like Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum, the trendy West End and a night out at one of the city's favourite and most beautiful music venues.

Areas Covered

West

Day 1

overview

Explore Glasgow

Spend a day exploring this grandiose but fun-loving city which helped shaped the modern world. Uncover a bustling city centre home to cultural riches galore and lively pubs and bars; splendid green spaces, leafy districts and more.

  • Miles

    20

  • Km

    32

  • Stops

    6

  • Transport

    Bus Walk

Glasgow Botanic Gardens

Begin the day with a refreshing stroll through the leafy lanes and lawns of the Botanic Gardens. Step inside the Victorian glasshouses to see exotic tree ferns, rare orchids and the national collection of begonias. If the weather is fine there is usually a kiosk serving coffee and ice cream. There is also a tearoom.

Look for signs in the gardens to the 'Riverside Walk' and follow a footpath that meanders down to the River Kelvin and a traffic-free promenade along the banks of the river. Follow this route for just over a mile to Kelvingrove Park and discover a green oasis in the middle of the city. 

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Walk the short distance to Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, a Victorian masterpiece brimming with a vast and eclectic collection of 8,000 exhibits spanning everything from dinosaur skeletons to a World War II Spitfire; to mesmerising paintings by the Dutch Old Masters and French Impressionists.

Glasgow University and Òran Mór

Set on a hillside towering above the city's west end lies the splendid neo-gothic campus of the University of Glasgow. Admire its magnificent buildings and historic quadrangles, including the famous Cloisters, and soak up the Hogwarts-esque ambience.

Return in the direction of the Botanic Gardens via University Avenue and Byres Road and stop for a bite at Òran Mór. This restaurant, bar and performance venue presents a daily lunchtime play as part of its 'A Play, a Pie, and a Pint' offering.

Tip: Don't forget to gaze up at the stunning mural which adorns the ceiling of the auditorium of Òran Mór by Glaswegian writer and artist Alasdair Gray.

The Riverside Museum

Are you old enough to remember tramcars, steam locomotives, boneshaker buses, and vintage cars? Whether you are or not, take a trip down memory lane and find them all here at the Museum of Transport, housed inside the striking Zaha Hadid-inspired Riverside Museum on the banks of the River Clyde.

Tip: One of the museum's most prized exhibits is located outside. Step aboard the Glenlee, a three-masted barque (sailing ship) built at the turn of the last century.

The West End

Return to the West End and spend some time exploring the myriad of cafés, vintage and independent shops that line Byers Road and its surrounds. Wander the cobbled Ashton Lane beneath a canopy of draped fairy lights and peruse yet more unique shops, bars and restaurants. 

Check out The Grosvenor, a café with an adjoining boutique cinema which screens both the latest blockbuster and arthouse flicks.

Book a table at one of the restaurants ranked the best in the world by Condé Nast Traveller, The Gannet. Located in the hip west-end enclave of Finnieston, its tantalising menu reimagines traditional Scottish cuisine with a thoroughly modern approach and only the finest locally sourced ingredients.

The Old Fruitmarket

As a UNESCO City of Music, Glasgow has more than its fair share of venues where you can catch all the latest up-and-coming acts alongside some of the biggest names in music in the evening. But of all of them, the most atmospheric and uniquely Glaswegian has to be the Old Fruitmarket.

Nestled away in the glamorous Merchant City, this versatile space boasts superb acoustics and retains many of its orignal period features, including its cathedral-like roof, balcony and cast-iron columns. Throughout the year, it plays host to the Celtic Connections festival, rock, folk, pop and jazz concerts, theatre, comedy, and plenty more.

Tip: Mingle with the locals while enjoying traditional Scottish music in one of the city's old-fashioned pubs. The Park Bar has ceilidh bands playing at weekends, the Islay Inn has live rockabilly music, while the Ben Nevis is the perfect spot to enjoy a wee dram and listen to stirring Celtic tunes.

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