Scotland’s largest city has long been overlooked in favor of its more genteel neighbor, Edinburgh. But recent years have seen a dizzying transformation, and the onetime industrial powerhouse has quickly emerged as one of Britain’s most interesting cities. With its stately architecture, impressive museums and galleries, and great restaurants, there’s plenty to fill a day, so here’s how to make the most of 24 hours in Glasgow.
Morning: See the Sights
Glasgow’s atmospheric streets, lined with interesting architectural gems, make the city a pleasure to explore on foot, so start your day with a guided walking tour of the main sights. Private and group walking tours take you to such top attractions as George Square, Glasgow Cathedral and Necropolis, and the People’s Palace. Bicycle tours, on the other hand, head off the beaten path along canal towpaths and cycle lanes. Alternatively, booking a hop-on hop-off bus tour allows you the flexibility to create your own itinerary and spend as much time at each of the stops as you wish.
Afternoon: Sample Some Scotch
Scotch whisky is world renowned, and Glasgow is home to some of Scotland’s best whisky bars and pubs, so join a guided tour that takes you to a handful of different bars across the city. In a small group, you’ll visit bars missed by most visitors, sample a variety of single-malt whiskies, and learn about whisky-making, popular Scottish distilleries, Glasgow drinking culture, and whisky’s role in the history of the city. Some tours are focused on the West End, while others take place throughout the city center.
Night: Check Out the Dining Scene
Finnieston, between the West End and city center, is Glasgow’s hottest foodie neighborhood, filled with top-class dining. The area’s numerous restaurants serve everything from contemporary Scottish cuisine to tapas, seafood, steak, and curries. Head down there and take your pick among the numerous eateries and cocktail bars clustered around “the strip” on Argyle Street. Alternatively, you can combine dinner with a unique form of sightseeing aboard a classic red 1966 double-decker Routemaster bus on a dinner tour that includes a gourmet burger and drink, enjoyed as you experience the streets of Glasgow by night.