An industrial hub of art and innovation, Glasgow takes the crown for Scotland’s biggest city, with an ever-growing population and cultural scene that is developing year after year. Home to the River Clyde, which runs through the city centre, Glasgow isn’t just for those who love urban settings. It’s packed full of green spaces and parks, and its extensive travel links make it easy to commute and work in and around the city.
Best known for its character and culture, Glasgow is home to numerous world-renowned museums and art galleries, including the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum and the Glasgow Science Centre. Its oldest public museum, the Hunterian Museum, opened in 1807 and is home to the first ultrasound machine.
Much like its sister city, Edinburgh, Glasgow has a rich cultural scene, with many exhibitions and events held throughout the city every year. It also has a thriving musical background, with the iconic Barrowland Ballroom serving as a backdrop for many famous and up-and-coming music acts. Crowned the UK’s only UNESCO city of music, Glasgow has hosted the likes of Franz Ferdinand, Lewis Capaldi and Gerry Cinnamon, to name just a few.
Shopaholics needn’t head to Edinburgh to get their fill. There are plenty of shopping opportunities right on your doorstep, with the popular Style Mile being one of Glasgow’s premium shopping destinations. Centred around Buchanan Street, the area is ideal for lovers of big-name brands, such as John Lewis, The White Company and Hobbs. West End’s Cresswell Lane is also worth swinging by for a range of one-off clothes shops. If you venture down this way, then pop into one of the excellent antique stores in the area as well.
As well as being home to four universities, Glasgow has 149 primary schools and 29 high schools, along with a range of private schools. Families can also benefit from the 90 parks dotted across the city, which provide ample green space for nature lovers. Those who love to spend their weekends outdoors will also enjoy the city’s local nature reserves. The Bishop Loch Local Nature Reserve, located in the East End, features a wide range of woodland bird species, perfect for twitchers and those who love going on long weekend dog walks. Activity lovers should also take note of Glasgow’s Snow Factor, where you can experience skiing and snowboarding, regardless of the season.
Travelling around the city is relatively easy. Rent one of the city bikes or visit Glasgow’s underground station (affectionately known as The Clockwork Orange), the third-oldest underground train system in the world, with a service that runs every four minutes. Glasgow also has its own International Airport, which is just a 30-minute car journey away from the city centre.