Postcard of the Week: Glasgow
Not a city that typically features on the tourist trail of the UK, Glasgow never particularly grabbed me as a city break destination. I won’t beat around the bush – Glasgow has a terrible reputation. Films made there, such as Danny Boyle’s Trainspotting, portray it as a harsh city of crime and druggies, and in comparison, Glasgow’s fairer sister Edinburgh wins every time. (If you’re interested in Edinburgh then definitely read my tips to the city from my trip there last September).
But this year I’ve travelled to Glasgow twice for work, once for 12 hours and once for 24 hours – whistlestops! Finding myself with 2 hours to spare before I needed to be back at Glasgow airport, I decided to explore the city that I knew so little about. I headed for the tourist office where they armed me with a map and pencilled in a 90-minute walking route that I could follow to see the main highlights of the city. And to my great surprise, this route didn’t show me any of the stereotypes about Glasgow – not a homeless, bearded druggie in sight! I jest, but that is honestly what Glasgow is reputed to be like! Instead however, I found Georgian architecture, a cute Cathedral, sweeping views from the Necropolis cemetery atop a hill, sophisticated restaurants pouring out onto cobbled and fairylight-adorned streets, the grand City Chambers and various art galleries. I was speechless – how on earth had this lovely part of Glasgow never reached my ears before now? I posted the photo above on Instagram and Facebook and I got a similar reaction of disbelief from others. Lots of proud Glaswegians chimed in on Twitter to defend their beautiful city, glad that I had pointed out its charms rather than its imperfections.
Having only spent less than a day in Glasgow, I don’t know whether it would merit a full weekend break, but the next time you’re in Scotland, definitely give it a second thought and remember not to read a book by its cover!