Glasgow’s Miles Better

26 January, 2022|Destinations, Europe, United Kingdom|
Glasgow’s Miles Better The Travel Psychologist

Let Glasgow surprise you

By Dr Jill Dunbar, Clinical Psychologist

Having been fortunate enough to live in both Glasgow and Edinburgh, people often ask me “which do you prefer?”. I tell them this is an unanswerable question! It is simply not possible to compare these two very different cities! While many visitors are drawn to Edinburgh whose beauty is clear as soon as you arrive, Glasgow does not lay it’s wares out on a platter – you need to go searching for the best bits. The city vibrates with an energy unlike any other place I’ve been and I’m excited to share with you some of my highlights from my home, a place that I will always return to, and a place where you will always be welcome!

Glasgow is perfect if:

• You have a true sense of curiosity. Many of the most noteworthy bars are in basements, so make sure you tear your eyes away from the amazing architecture every now and again and look down.

• You are a music lover interested in exploring lesser known and up-and-coming artists.

• You are interested history, particularly of how working class industry has had to adapt in modern day times.

• You have a wicked sense of humour and love a spontaneous conversation with someone at a bus stop.

My top recommendations for Glasgow

Places to visit

The Necropolis – this Victorian cemetery is a beautiful place to walk around and admire the sculptures and architecture, and also provides incredible views of the city. For movie buffs, it was also used as a location in “The Batman”.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum – The Kelvingrove is one of the “must-see” museums in the city and is famous for its floating heads exhibition. With exhibitions ranging from animals to Charles Rennie Macintosh, there’s something for everyone!

Glasgow’s Miles Better The Travel Psychologist

Enjoy some quiet time in the west end

Tennents Brewery – Tennents was born and bred in Glasgow, so what better way to immerse yourself in Glasgow culture than a visit to the Tennents Brewery. Here you can book a tour, visit the heritage centre, and of course sample the goods! If you’ve still for a thirst, the Drygate Brewery is right next door where you can learn about another one of Scotland’s home grown beers.

The Lighthouse – The Lighthouse is handily located right in the centre of Glasgow, hidden down a little alley off Buchanan Street. It showcases architecture and design and often hosts ever changing exhibitions and events. Make your way up to the very top via a spiralling staircase and your curiosity will be rewarded by stunning views of the city!

West on the Green – <ahref=”” rel=””>West on the Green is an old carpet factory which has been turned into a bar, restaurant and brewery. It has retained it’s original colourful facade and is definitely worth a visit to see the old architecture of Glasgow shining through. Stop for some hearty pub grub and walk it off with a stroll through Glasgow Green, one of the oldest parks in Glasgow.


Bars and restaurants

Stravaigin – If you are looking for a great place for a full Scottish breakfast, head to Stravaigin. Its got it all – great food, friendly staff and all in lovely surroundings. They even have vegan haggis!

Glasgow’s Miles Better The Travel Psychologist

There is no end of places to enjoy great food & drink

The Ben Nevis – This is the spot if you want to spend a cozy afternoon sampling different whiskies and chatting with locals. They even host traditional live music nights three times a week. Check out their website for details.

Red Sky Bar – If you’re looking for a rooftop bar with a view, head to the Red Sky Bar located at the top of the Radisson Red hotel at Finnieston Quay. With views of the Clyde and the iconic Finnieston Crane, you can soak in the shipbuilding history of Glasgow while enjoying a cocktail or two!

Glasgow’s Miles Better The Travel Psychologist

Cocktails with a fabulous view at Red Sky Bar

University Cafe – For a piece of history, head to The University Cafe. Taking pride of place on Byres Road, the cafe has never gone out of style, serving hearty traditional meals and ice cream to students and locals alike since 1918! Even Anthony Bourdain has sampled their fish and chips!

Loop and Scoop – If you’re in the mood for something sweet, I totally recommend heading to Loop and Scoop. The specialise in freshly made churros and handmade gelato and is perfect for kids, families, adults, and anyone who likes churros and ice cream. And that’s everyone right?! They also have fabulous vegan options. There may also be a slightly cringe YouTube video made by yours truly from many years ago, so feel free to check that out!

Glasgow’s Miles Better The Travel Psychologist

Try the delicious black ice cream at Loop and Scoop


Glasgow is known as one of the best shopping destinations in the UK. In the city centre, Buchanan Street is the main shopping Street and is bookended by the Buchanan Galleries at the top and the St Enoch Centre at the bottom. In the middle you will find the beautiful Princes Square which is considered one of the most stylish places for shopping and dining.

Glasgow’s Miles Better The Travel Psychologist

Buchanan Street is great for city centre shopping

Music Scene

Glasgow prides itself on a vibrant music scene with a plethora of small independent music venues scattered throughout the city. If you are looking to find new music by genuinely passionate and talented new artists, I suggest checking out what’s on at venues such as

King Tuts Wah Wah Hut13th Note and Nice N Sleazy.

Glasgow’s Miles Better The Travel Psychologist

The music scene in Glasgow has something for everyone

Last but not least:

If you’re feeling hedonistic – spend a whole afternoon and well into the evening in Ashton Lane. This little lane is so picturesque both during the day and at night so it’s worth investing the time to see it in both its states of glory. The lane flourishes both in the summer with its beer gardens and outdoor seating and in the colder months with its cozy little bars. Have a dram in The Wee Whisky Bar, fondue in Brel, and a few pints and top notch banter in Jinty M’Guinty’s.

If you want a sense of accomplishment – complete a mural trail! The city is full of incredible, colourful murals, some of which you will find easily in the city centre, while others require a bit more searching. Find a guide to all the murals here.

Reasons to be optimistic – Glasgow is an incredibly welcoming and friendly city, despite it’s inaccurate reputation! Check out the incredible work of Refuweegee – an organisation set up to help refugees settle into their new life in Scotland.

Glasgow’s Miles Better The Travel Psychologist

Enjoy a great night out in Ashton Lane

Please note our destination guides contain personal recommendations and not professional advice