From fascinating history to a vibrant club scene, delicious food options and elegant architecture, Glasgow wears many hats, and all of them make for a fantastic trip away. No matter what your interest or vibe is, Glasgow has something hidden away down a side street or in one of its beautiful green spaces, just waiting to be discovered.
Whether you’re a new visitor to Glasgow, or a seasoned lover of the city, we’ve gathered together a list of the best things to do in Glasgow for your next break away. From whiskey to street art, museums to gardens, we hope you’ll find something you love.
1. Scottish Football Museum
While football can be a passionate subject here in Glasgow, the history of the sport in the city is fascinating, no matter who your team is. Based within the National Stadium at Hampden, the Scottish Football Museum boasts an extensive collection of memorabilia from the beautiful game, including the Scottish Cup, the world’s oldest surviving football trophy. If you’ve got any football-crazed kids in your group, this is the perfect thing to do in Glasgow with teenagers.
2. Glengoyne Distillery
There’s no need to head for the highlands to find fantastic whiskey in Scotland – just under an hour from Glasgow city centre, you’ll find the historic Glengoyne Distillery. Dating back to 1833, Glengoyne is renowned for its ‘unhurried’ approach to whiskey – for every minute another whiskey spends in its stills, Glengoyne’s spends three. Take the tour and see exactly how the process works from beginning to end, topped off with a tutored tasting of 2 Glengoyne Highland Single Malt Whiskies.
3. Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
One of the most-visited museums in the UK, Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum first opened its doors in 1901 and has continued to delight the public with its extensive range of exhibitions ever since. With free entry, this is the perfect way to while away the hours in Glasgow, browsing artefacts and art pieces in every area from ancient Egypt to Charles Rennie Mackintosh, famed Glaswegian architect. To make your visit truly special, time it to coincide with the museum’s daily organ recitals at 1pm (or 3 pm on Sundays) – with a different organist performing each day.
4. City Centre Mural Trail
The street art of a city is a truly unique way to get a feel for its culture, its residents, and where its beating heart lies, and Glasgow is no different. On your next trip to Glasgow, take a day to explore the trail of 28 murals around the city, giving an insight into some of Glasgow’s top artistic talent, and also taking you to some of its top attractions, from the University of Strathclyde to St. Andrew’s Cathedral.
5. Glasgow Botanic Gardens
While the weather in Glasgow can be just a tad temperamental, don’t let it put you off a visit to the stunning Glasgow Botanic Gardens. The gardens were acquired from the University of Glasgow by the city in 1891 and have been open to the public ever since, boasting a collection of over 9000 plants within its lush gardens and glasshouses. On a sunny day, take some time to soak in the views on the green, or even if it’s raining, explore the fascinating plant life inside the tropical glasshouses.
6. Tenement House
If you want an authentic view of Glasgow’s social history, The Tenement House in Garnethill in Glasgow is like stepping into a time machine. The faithfully-restored four-room museum was the home of shorthand typist Miss Agnes Toward from 1911 until 1965, who kept many everyday items and memorabilia that are now part of this fantastic archive of the early 20th century. A fun and unusual way to see Glasgow in a new light, this is a great way to immerse yourself in Scottish history.
7. Glasgow Cathedral & Necropolis
Hitting not one but two fantastic Glasgow attractions is easy when they’re so close. Glasgow Cathedral’s Gothic architecture took over 350 years to complete and is now Scotland’s largest place of worship. Sitting high above the cathedral, and boasting fantastic views of the city, you’ll find the famed Necropolis. This Victorian labyrinth of a garden cemetery is the final resting place of over 50,000 Glasgow residents throughout the ages, including many notable names. If you’re brave enough, this is one of the best things to do in Glasgow at night, especially moving towards Halloween, or Samhain.
8. Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre
To wrap up our list, we wanted to shine a light of a particularly unique thing to do in Glasgow. Built as a home for the life works of Eduard Bersudsky, a Russian-born mechanic and sculptor, the Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre treats its visitors to fantastical theatrical shows and exhibitions, set to eerie music and dark storytelling. There seems to be something new to look at from every angle, with the works of Bersudsky famous all over the world for their unique phantasmagoric scenes and contraptions. A must-see for a memorable day in the centre of Glasgow.
With such a bustling list of things to do and see in Glasgow, you’ll be spoiled for choice on your next visit. But when it comes to accommodation, a comfortable, central location with delicious dining options is essential – and Clayton Hotel Glasgow has it all. Check out our seasonal special offers or find more recommendations for Glasgow with our Clayton Concierge – for every kind of booking, we can help to make your holiday memorable.