Located on the banks of the River Clyde, Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and teems with character, culture, and sites of both historical and modern significance. From the contemporary charm of the West End to the Victorian beauty of the Merchant City district, there's much to explore in this vibrant city. This comprehensive guide lists some must-visit neighborhoods and highlights in Glasgow. Plan your journey on a rented car to conveniently traverse the city at your own pace.
1. The West End
The West End, easily accessible from the center of Glasgow, is known for its bohemian charm. The epicenter of Glasgow's arts scene, it hosts an assortment of trendy bars, boutique shops, and avant-garde galleries. Its highlighting features include a visit to the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, one of the most popular tourist attractions in Scotland. A walk around the University of Glasgow's Gothic campus is bound to leave you charmed. Visiting without a tracksuit? Unleash your active side by running along the Kelvin Walkway, or simply have a relaxing picnic in the Kelvingrove Park. (See Map)
2. City Center
The City Center is a powerhouse of Glaswegian culture, teeming with a variety of points of interest. Indulge in some retail therapy in the Buchanan Street and the Sauchiehall Street, referred to as the ‘Style Mile’ by locals. Visit the Gallery of Modern Art and be mesmerised by the stunning architecture of the City Chambers. You may also visit the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, a major music and arts venue. (See Map)
3. Merchant City
Glasgow's historic Merchant City district symbolizes the city's rich past. Once the wealthy quarter of Victorian merchants, the district is now a satisfying fusion of the old and new, featuring chic bars, swanky restaurants, and independent boutiques within historic Victorian buildings. A walking tour of this district is heavenly, especially if you're fascinated by architecture. Don't forget to check out the Tron Theatre and the Gallery of Modern Art.
4. South Side
The South Side is a multicultural hub with a blend of contemporary and Victorian architecture. The Hampton Park and the Queen’s Park offer splendid views of the city, and the nightlife is diverse, with numerous bars, clubs, and restaurants. Visit the Scotland Street School Museum, previously a school designed by the world-renowned architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
5. The East End
The East End dates back to the city's earliest days and teems with hidden treasures. The Glasgow Cathedral, St. Mungo Museum, and the Glasgow Necropolis are all well worth a visit. The area is also home to the city's largest park, the Celtic Park and is the location of the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, an iconic symbol of Glasgow's athletic pride.
No matter where you go in Glasgow, to truly experience the city we recommend hiring professional guides. And of course, there are countless excursions in UK you can take. Get ready, pack your bags, and savor the multifaceted flavors of Glasgow.