Being the largest and most populated city in Scotland, Glasgow has much to offer tourists coming from all over the world and can be a great escape in the UK for backpackers wanting to do things on a budget. Glasgow is certainly budget friendly and not as hard on the purse as other large UK cities like London and Edinburgh, so if you want a taste of UK city life without breaking the bank, then this is the place for you.
From the price of food and drink to the cost of accommodation, Glasgow offers loads of options to suit those on a shoestring. For accommodation, there are plenty of hostels available if you want to just turn up in the city and find your favourite, or you could use a website like www.zoover.co.uk where you can check hotel reviews and see if anything stands out to book in advance.
Once you’ve sorted out all the boring things, Glasgow has loads to see and explore. Below are 5 hotspots that you shouldn’t miss when traveling to this vibrant city:
Most likely arriving in the centre by train or bus at either Queen Street Station or Central Station, the visit will naturally start in Buchanan Street, which is a central shopping street lined with cultural buildings and many opportunities to dine. Arriving in the north end of the street, one has the chance of visiting the Gallery of Modern Art located closely at the Royal Exchange Square. Further up the street end sits the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall which is the performance base of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.
Glasgow City Chambers:
The Glasgow City Chambers located at George Square are a pleasure to the eye. Entering the hall, everyone will be mesmerized by the Italian marble interiors which have more than once served as film settings in the past. Moving up the majestic stairwell, one will be eyed by chief figures of bygone days sitting on the wall in portraits. Participating in a guided tour through the building, everyone has the chance to sit on a chair which was once occupied by Queen Victoria!
As the Scottish Centre for Design and Architecture, the Lighthouse underlines the fact that Glasgow is Scotland’s centre of modern art. It offers exhibitions, installations and allows every visitor to overview the whole city of Glasgow from its Mackintosh Tower, which is named after its father-architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh. After moving up the spiral stairs, one sees a silhouette of chimney pots resisting the storm pelting through industrial and historical rooftops.
Glasgow Green/People’s Palace:
It would be advisable to check the weather in Glasgow in advance because if it is sunny it is enjoyable to visit the city’s east end for recreation and to have a shortcake. As the oldest park in Glasgow, it holds a number of sculptures and monuments, such as Nelsons Monument, reminiscent of Scotland’s history. The People’s Palace and Winter Gardens is the highlight of the park. It is the residence of the museum of social history which gives an impression of Scottish people’s lives from the middle of the eighteenth century until today
It is a nice idea to close the day with a visit to the Glasgow Cathedral, which dates back to medieval times. Beside the impressive architecture, there may be the chance to listen to the church choir and a concert. Those who like it creepy might even consider visiting the “Glasgow Necropolis” – the main cemetery.
Glasgow is a proper place to get a taste of British culture, so why not travel further south, to the north of England, to enjoy even more? Or check out other destinations in the UK and Europe here on Top Backpacking Destinations.
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