After moving to Scotland in 2010, I ended up staying in the country for over six years. Scotland is simply a beautiful country with extremely nice people and amazing scenery along with great architecture and events – there’s always something nice to do.
Over the course of the six years I have lived in Glasgow, I had the chance to see the city re-transformed into a cosmopolitan city with huge events and cultural interest whilst keeping its authenticity.
Scotland will always be my second home so I’m glad to share with you my local top 5 things to do in Glasgow.
#1 – Visit one of the numerous high profile museums
My favourite museum in Glasgow would have to the newly reopened Riverside Museum (previously called the Transport Museum). The museum is home to wide a variety of cars, bicycles, trains, locomotives, ships that are well explained though interactive displays. You can also find a reconstitution of an old Glasgow street and a subway station to get a real feel of how it was to live during these times. The museum was announced as the winner of the 2013 European Museum of the Year Award.
The Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum has always been one of Scotland’s most visited tourist attractions. It houses a great collection of art including paintings (Dutch, French, Scottish art) and sculptures from different era and genre. It also has an interesting section on Glasgow’s most famous architect and designer, Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Finally, I personally love the Natural History section which includes dinosaurs and other prehistoric mammals.
Other museums of interest are the Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA), the Burrell Collection and the Hunterian Museum.
It’s worth noticing than most of the museums in Scotland are free of charge which means there’s literally no reason why you should not pop in and have a look.
#2 – Indulge in some Scottish cuisine
Glasgow is definitely one of the most vibrant city in Scotland for the food and drink scene. With something to suit all tastes and new eateries opening monthly, you will have an awesome time discovering new food in Glasgow.
You cannot leave Scotland and not try the national speciality, the haggis. I better not tell you what’s inside but you have to try it, it’s delicious! Another tasty speciality are the mince and tatties (i.e meat with potatoes) and for dessert you can try shortbread or a cheesecake.
For Italian food, then look no further than Antipasti which is by far my favourite restaurant which does not break the bank. For a more homely experience, The Black Sheep Bistro is a must (their mini trio of desserts are worth dying for!) and they have a large menu with traditional Scottish food and European dishes. Finally, if you want to spice things up with an Indian meal, I would recommend Akbar which was voted Scotland’s best Indian restaurant numerous times.
#3 – Have a drink on me!
This is a fact, Scottish people like to drink! I dare you to walk into a pub, have a drink and soak up the atmosphere – you will see how friendly Glaswegian people really are!
The local beer is the Tennent’s, a lager with a crisp taste and refreshing finish. Their brewery is located in the east side of Glasgow if you’re interested to visit.
For whisky-lovers, you can try the Glengoyne whisky or the Tallisker which I believe are great choices (I’m not a whisky drinker myself haha). Recently, we’ve also seen the rise of the gin and we have one distillery in Glasgow called Makar (Gin71 is the place to be to try all sort of gins).
No matter what you decide to have, I’m sure you’ll have a great drinking experience in Glasgow so have one for me!
#4 – One of the most vibrant music scene in the world
Glasgow’s music scene is one of the best in the world as it was named one of the UNESCO City of Music! Artists love to come here as the public is always very welcoming and you’re never really far from a gig or concert in the city
There’s a lot of places around the city where you can enjoy a gig in some very cool venues such as King Tuts, Oran Mor, The Barrowlands and the O2 Academy for examples but if you’re looking for the big acts then the SSE Hydro is the place for you to go. The venue, one of the biggest in Europe, has welcome the biggest music acts in the world since it opened in 2013.
#5 – Experience the atmosphere of live sports
Whether you’re a fan of football, rugby or any other sports, you can be sure to find a spot to enjoy it.
I’m not a massive fan of football but I went to see a couple of football games at the Celtic Park and the Ibrox Stadium and I have to say the atmosphere is pretty electric. If you’re looking for a more friendly atmosphere, then go and watch a match of rugby at the Hampden Park – this was definitely a great surprise for me as I really enjoyed it!
Glasgow was recently a host for some Olympics Games 2012 events and also the Commonwealth Games 2014. Since then the sporting events have been booming within the city.
So here you have it – my top 5 things to do in Glasgow, Scotland! Glasgow is the biggest city in Scotland and one the most interesting in terms of culture, music and events. Hope you’ll have a brilliant time there. Drop be a message if you have any questions, I’d be happy to help out.
Websites to look at