When most people think of Scotland, they will probably think of Edinburgh; the nation’s capital and home of such sites as Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood Palace, the Scottish Parliament and also Princes Street Gardens. But less than an hour away from Edinburgh lies Glasgow, the largest city in Scotland, and the former “Second City of the British Empire”, and as like Edinburgh’s sites, a visit to Glasgow is not soon forgotten.
Situated next to the River Clyde in the lowlands of the country, Glasgow is a hub of cultural, artistic and social activity, with so many venues, places to visit and even people to meet. Visitors can choose from a number of theatres, cinemas, restaurants and great places to visit when they arrive, it all depends on when and where they want to go. Glasgow is a former European City of Culture, and there are a number of world-leading venues and theatres that have raised Glasgow’s status, including the Tron Theatre and The Tramway, which is one of Scotland’s most internationally acclaimed theatres, and premièred Peter Brook’s seminal theatrical odyssey, The Mahabharata within hours of it first opening. Other theatre’s include the Theatre Royal, the home of Scottish Opera, and the Citizens Theatre, which is affectionately known locally as ‘The Citz.’
If theatre isn’t your thing, then Glasgow, like its near neighbour, Edinburgh, has a rich film history, and holds a popular film festival in February every year. As well as a large cinema multiplex in the heart of the city, Glasgow also has the Glasgow Film Theatre, a historical and beautiful old cinema, that was once known as Mr Cosmo’s, which is now the name of the cinema’s café luxury homes in miami.
Theatre and film aside, Glasgow is also well-known for its shopping opportunities, as the city houses some shops and stores that Edinburgh can only dream of, including great independent clothing and jewellery boutiques, and much larger high street stores that offer more choice and value than some other shops in the country might. The restaurant seen in Glasgow is also growing, with celebrity chef, Jamie Oliver opting to open his successful Jamie’s Kitchen franchise in Glasgow at least one year before he opened the Edinburgh branch.
For sports, rallying against the national stereotype that Scots have unhealthy lifestyles, and gorge on unhealthy food, Glasgow is set to host the 2014 Commonwealth games, which will be a huge boost for the city. Glasgow is also much easier to navigate than some of the other Scottish cities as it was built using a grid system, so streets are very easy to find. Public transport is very regular, with buses, trains and the Glasgow Underground available for all commuters for good prices.