Glasgow has the complete package. Classy, welcoming and primed to set Scotland alight during the 2014 Commonwealth Games, this cracking destination is a UNESCO City of Music, an artistic innovator, and a dream for shopaholics and pub-crawlers.
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Top 5 sights for first-timers
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
Housing a whopping 8,000 exhibits across 22 galleries, Glasgow’s grandiose showpiece museum displays a tremendous collection of Glaswegian and international art, arms and armour and natural history objects. Highlights include a real Spitfire suspended from the ceiling and much-loved Roger the Asian elephant.
In an eye-catching, glistening 21st-century Zaha Hadid-designed building on the banks of the Clyde, Glasgow’s transport museum celebrates the city’s industrial heritage through a dynamic assortment of vehicles. Explore a recreated Glasgow street and gaze at the restored South African locomotive, built in Glasgow in 1944-45. Outside, step aboard the Tall Ship Glenlee.
100 Pointhouse Place
Gallery of Modern Art
Bang in the heart of Glasgow, yet originally a country house, GoMA’s graceful building is home to a wonderful selection of contemporary art, along with a superb library. The gallery’s varied programme includes regularly changing exhibitions, artists’ talks and workshops.
Royal Exchange Square
Glasgow Science Centre
This waterfront titanium-and-glass complex is crammed with three floors of thrilling hands-on exhibits and captivating live science shows, plus a planetarium and IMAX cinema. The new Bodyworks exhibit lets you boogie in a DNA disco, run in a giant hamster wheel and perform a virtual autopsy.
50 Pacific Quay
Set amid Pollok Country Park’s picturesque woodland, the Burrell Collection comprises a staggering 8,000 artworks bequeathed to the city by shipping magnate Sir William Burrell. Exhibits include medieval European art, Oriental ceramics, tapestries, Greek and Roman sculptures, and works by Rodin and Cézanne.
Pollok Country Park, 2060 Pollokshaws Road
Top 5 sights for old hands
Glasgow School of Art
Renowned as one of Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s greatest creations, the Glasgow School of Art is a striking example of pioneering, turn-of-the-20th-century architecture. The building is still a working art school, but you can join a student-led guided tour or learn about Glasgow style and contemporary art on a summer city walking tour.
167 Renfrew Street
Scotland’s hub for architecture and design is housed in the Mackintosh-designed former Glasgow Herald building and incorporates FOUNDATION Glasgow (a history of the city), the Mackintosh Interpretation Centre, a digital design gallery, and regularly changing exhibitions. The views from the top are fantastic.
11 Mitchell Lane
House for an Art Lover
Built in the 1990s based on a Mackintosh competition entry of 1901, this exquisite house in beautiful Bellahouston Park is just 10 minutes from the city centre. Intricately designed features showcase the architect’s painstaking attention to detail and remarkable innovation.
Bellahouston Park, 10 Dumbreck Road
One of several artist-run enterprises to hit Glasgow’s cultural scene recently, this creative hub houses art, print and photography studios along with a kinetic theatre and Russian café. Visitors can check out exhibitions, talks and installations or sign up to woodcutting and printmaking workshops.
Constructed in 1471, the oldest house in Glasgow is one of only four medieval buildings remaining in the city. The house itself has been extensively restored and contains a collection of 17th-century furniture donated by Sir William Burrell. In adjacent St Nicholas Garden, spot the Tontine Heads, a curious collection of carved stone faces.
3 Castle Street
Written by World Travel Guide