Scotland City Guides »


The city of Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and the third most populous city in the United Kingdom. Situated in the west central lowlands of Scotland, it first rose up from a medieval Bishopric in the 15th century and quickly grew into a sizable settlement thanks to the University of Glasgow, which was established soon afterwards. It grew in importance in the 18th century, during which it was a major centre for the Scottish Enlightenment as well as a major hub of British transatlantic trade. However it was not until the industrial revolution in the 19th century that it grew into the “Second City of the British Empire”, largely thanks to its many shipbuilding and marine engineering industries. Although it suffered from economic decline after the Second World War, it has since recovered to become one of the top twenty financial centres of the world and the main economic hub of Scotland. While it ensures that a large portion of visitors to Glasgow are business travellers, there are nonetheless a good number of tourists stopping by every year.

The city of Glasgow’s historical legacy is readily available to the curious in the many historic buildings, garden and parks that are littered throughout the city. Of these the Glasgow Cathedral, the Glasgow City Chambers, the Toolboth Clock Tower, St. Mungo’s Cathedral and the Provand’s Lordship are of particular interest. More in-depth information on the time different time periods of Glasgow can be found alongside relevant artefacts in one of the city’s many museums that are dedicated to local history and heritage. The People’s Palace, St. Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art, the Tall Ship at Glasgow Harbour and The Hunterian Museum all feature glimpses of Glasgow’s pasts. Such exhibitions aside, many of these museums also have vast and impressive displays of prehistoric relics and modern and classic art.

For more live culture, head to the retail and theatre district of the city centre. Music, traditional theatre, Scottish ballet and other performances can be found in one of the many theatres, concert halls and live music pubs and clubs that are located in the area. Good shopping can be found in the very same district. Just head over to Argyle Street, Sauchiehall Street or Buchanan Street and spend away. For cheaper and more authentic Glasgow shopping, head to the East End and the old Barras Market.

For accommodation, consider the bohemian West End. Not only may both upmarket and budget hotels be found here, but on account of the nearby universities there are also plenty of bars, cafes, clubs and restaurants in the area. It is particularly lively in June, what with the annual West End Festival attracting Glaswegians and outsiders alike.