Glasgow

Scotland largest city, and the UK’s third most populated, Glasgow is a city bursting with character! In it’s darkest times it has seen the worst crime statisics in Europe, and in it’s best it has been known for some of the friendliest people you will ever meet. Life in Glasgow is not the cold, hard existence some feel in some of the UK’s other big cities. The people of Glasgow in my experience are some of the most friendly you will ever meet, always willing to help a stranger in need.

Often over shaddowed aesthetically by it’s neighbour Edinburgh, Glasgow can appear ugly in comparison with it’s industrial routes. I personally feel it is of equal aesthetic value but of a completely different nature. Regardless, if you leave the banality of the populated city centre shopping precincts, and head out to the more bohemian West End, you’ll find a vibrant cosmopolitan area of the city full of shops, boutiques, cafe’s, resuraunts, pubs, clubs, and thriving with students and travellers alike.

Dominating the West End skyline and area in general is Glasgow Univeristy and the Kelvingrove Park, including Scotland’s most popular visitor attraction the Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery. The West End is quite simply the cool side of Glasgow. It’s a great place to hang out, socialise, and have a good time. I would bypass the very over rated shopping distrcit to hang out here anytime.

In great contrast to the West End though, Glasgow’s East End is home to some of the most deprived areas not just in Scotland, but the entire UK. It disapoints me to see the state of some parts of the east end, and makes me feel like not one local governent over the last 50 years has really made any bit of difference. That being said there are some real gems of the East End! The Barrowland Market, or “the barras”, is the largest and most frequented market by local people. The vibrant, lively atmosphere, and fast talking traders are the best way to give yourself an insight into Glasgow life, and also a lesson in local Glasgwegian dialect! If you want to mix with the locals and get a real feel for Glasgow life then this is the place to be.

Also situated in the East End is Glasgow Green. It’s the oldest public park in Britain and is great on a summers day for peaceful strolls or an idylic bike ride. It also has a great focal point in the People’s Palace. The East End is also home to Celtic Park, home of Celtic Football Club, one half of the football legendary that is Glasgow’s Old Firm. If you’re not a football(soccer) fan then you probably have no idea what i’m talking about, but football is a huge part of Scottish life, and by far the dominant sport in the country, no more so than in Glasgow. If you want to mix with the local people, and find out more about Glasgow life then try get along to a game either here, Ibrox (home to Glasgow Rangers), Hampden Park (the Scottish national stadium), or even a local Partick Thistle game (a smaller local side) if you are looking for something a little cheaper in price but equal in value.

Some really great events you can attend in Glasgow are the Glasgow Comedy Festival, and Glasgow Film Festival. There are events all year round though depending on what suits your interests, such as the World Pipe Band Championships and the Glasgay amongst others. There is also a thriving music scence and some great music venue’s. From local independand bands, to the more art school, or internationally established, Glasgow plays host with it’s many venue’s such as the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, SECC, King Tut’s Wha Wha Hut (where Oasis were found and signed), Queen Margaret Union (they have Kurt Cobains footprint!), and the Barrowland Ballroom. Also some more recent smaller venue’s such as the ABC and O2 Underground are also very good.

Home to several national and independent tv and radio stations, the set of many Scottish and UK based tv programmes such as Taggart, Rab C Nesbitt, Chewin’ The Fat, and with so many internationally aclaimed theatres, Glasgow really is a creative and cultural melting pot. The Lighthouse Museum and Art Gallery is a partiuclar highlight and favourite of mine, and venue’s such as the King’s Theatre, Theatre Royal, and Glasgow Royal Concert Hall are also world renowned. The Glasgow School of Art, and the Royal Academy of Music and Drama are some of the most prestigious higher education facilites in the world dedicated to the creative industries and arts.

Glasgow is a city full of life. I couldn’t possibly mention all it has to offer in one post, but if you are looking for a vibrant, lively city, with down to earth people or just a great night out, Glasgow is the place to be.

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  1. […] course bad things can happen, but they can just as much in your home country. I come from a part of Glasgow which is the murder capital of Europe, from an area of the city where the life expectancy is only 62 […]


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