With busy streets and loud characters, Scotland’s largest city never fails to make a big impression. Yet, under all its bravado, Glasgow is one of the friendliest, most sophisticated destinations in Europe.
From its frenetic city centre to its quiet, leafy neighbourhoods, Glasgow has more than enough to keep you entertained on a long weekend break. Discover how to make the most of your 72 hours in the Merchant City.
Where to stay
If it’s luxury you’re after, look no further than the grand Hotel du Vin at One Devonshire Gardens. Situated in Glasgow’s West End, down a tree-lined Victorian terrace, this charming hotel features 49 unique bedrooms, plus a bistro, bar, cigar shack and whisky room to relax in after a day of sightseeing.
A more budget-friendly option is the stylish citizenM hotel in Glasgow’s city centre. The budget boutique hotel is part of a Dutch hotel chain known for its trendy interiors and all-around cool vibe. The citizenM Glasgow offers fantastic views over the city’s skyline, and its in-house bar serves up some of the tastiest cocktails in the area.
What to do
With its rich history, renowned arts scene and three major universities, Glasgow is the ideal destination for a cultural getaway.
During your visit, be sure to check out the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, which houses a collection of famous pieces from different eras, including French impressionism and Dutch renaissance. Perhaps its most famous piece is Salvador Dalí’s ‘Christ of Saint John of the Cross’.
You’ll also enjoy walking through the grounds of Glasgow University, said to be one of the inspirations behind the fictional Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The university campus is home to another must-see attraction, the Hunterian Museum, the oldest museum in Scotland.
In addition to its many museums, Glasgow boasts an incredible shopping scene. Whether you’re in the market for souvenirs or simply window-shopping, a walk down the famous Buchanan Street is a quintessential Glaswegian experience. The bustling, pedestrianised thoroughfare is always a spectacle, with large crowds, street performers and buskers making their presence known.
Where to eat
Scottish cuisine gets an unfair wrap, but the reality is that there’s far more to Scottish food than haggis and deep-fried Mars bars (a pudding reserved for tourists only). Nowhere is this more evident than in Glasgow, where fine dining restaurants, artisan bakeries and trendy foodie hot-spots make choosing a dinner destination incredibly difficult.
If you’re willing to splash the cash, head to the award-winning Cail Bruich on Great Western Road. The fine dining restaurant serves up classic British dishes, with a focus on seasonal, locally sourced ingredients. It’s one of the best dining experiences in the city.
For a less fancy, but equally tasty, option, grab dinner at Number 16. The cosy restaurant offers incredible value, but make sure to book in advance, as it’s one of the most popular spots in the city.
Finally, for a taste of Glasgow’s quirkier culinary scene, try The Butterfly and The Pig, a shabby-chic eatery serving up classic comfort food like steak pie, burgers and fish ‘n chips. The restaurant ranks high on the hipster scale, but offers just as much substance as it does style.
Would you enjoy a weekend break in Glasgow?