(CNN) — A former industrial powerhouse, Glasgow could not have the image postcard allure of Edinburgh, its debonair neighbor to the east.

However what the largest metropolis in Scotland could lack in storybook castles and manicured vistas, it greater than makes up for with its gallus perspective, type and ambiance.

Scratch the floor and Glasgow is on the forefront of Britain’s arts and cultural scene, residence to famend museums and structure (outdated and new) in addition to being certainly one of solely 31 UNESCO Cities of Music worldwide.

The bars and nightlife are a notoriously good time too, whereas its popularity as certainly one of Europe’s most sporting-mad cities precedes it.

But with tourism figures exhibiting that roughly a million extra individuals visited Edinburgh than did Glasgow in 2016, these are evidently charms many touring to Scotland are lacking out on.

We requested some in-the-know Glaswegians to focus on what these spending their travel time within the Scottish capital are lacking out on.

Naturally, most have been blissful to concur with town’s well-known 1990s slogan: “Glasgow’s miles higher!”

Historical past

Historical past is in every single place in Edinburgh, from the slender wynds of the Outdated City to the Palace of Holyroodhouse — the Queen’s official residence when she visits town.

In Glasgow, guests may need to look a bit of tougher for his or her historic repair. However not too laborious. More than 1,800 buildings within the metropolis are listed for his or her historic significance.

A color print depicting Glasgow Cathedral in the early 1900s.

Glasgow Cathedral harks again to town’s medieval previous.

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“Glasgow has numerous historical past that individuals would not essentially understand,” says Bruce Cochrane of the Scottish Tourist Guides Association (STGA).

The oldest house in Glasgow dates to 1471 and is a stalwart of town’s quite a few historic excursions whereas the spectacular Glasgow Cathedral, constructed between the 13th and 15th centuries, affords an enchanting perception into town’s medieval previous.

Elsewhere, Cochrane highlights the Govan Stones, a group of viking-age monuments from the ninth to 11th extensively thought to be among the many greatest surviving medieval sculptures within the UK.

Simply exterior the Glasgow the Antonine Wall as soon as marked essentially the most northerly level of the Roman Empire and was acknowledged as a UNESCO World Heritage website in 2008. An unassuming church within the former slum space of The Gorbals, in the meantime, claims to contain the bones of St. Valentine.

Handily, few of those places are saturated with vacationers in the best way that Edinburgh’s hottest websites are.


Franz Ferdinand, Easy Minds, Mogwai, Primal Scream, Belle and Sebastian, Arab Strap, Chvrches, Teenage Fanclub, The Delgados, The Jesus and the Mary Chain — Glasgow has been an incubator for numerous bands who would go on to make the big-time over time.

The well-known Barrowland Ballroom continues to play host to the very best within the enterprise whereas smaller venues similar to King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut — the place Oasis have been famously found by Creation Data boss Alan McGee — Nice N Sleazy, Stereo and SWG3 promote the easiest thrilling new acts.

“There is a robust various scene within the metropolis,” says Fiona Shepherd, a music journalist based mostly within the metropolis and co-founder of Glasgow Music Metropolis Excursions.

The truth that it is troublesome to pinpoint precisely what makes the Glasgow sound is a testomony to its eclectic nature, she provides.

The Celtic Connections festival takes place every January.

The Celtic Connections pageant takes place each January.

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This sonic range is emphasised by the likes of the Glasgow Jazz Competition, held each summer season, and the world famend Celtic Connections which takes place every January.

Scottish folks acts are given middle stage at Celtic Connections however the pageant additionally seems out in direction of worldwide and world music genres. Main performers to make the journey over time embody Joan Baez, Bob Geldof, Sinead O’Connor and Shane McGowan.

Edinburgh may be residence to thrilling younger bands like Younger Fathers and outdated hats similar to Idlewild, however Glasgow dances to its personal tune.

Structure outdated and new

The shipyards on the River Clyde as soon as employed 1000’s of expert artisans and gave start to legendary British ships just like the HMS Hood and the QE2. Additionally they helped form a lot beloved personalities like former Manchester United supervisor Alex Ferguson and comic Billy Connolly.

As of late, only a fraction of the outdated business stays. However the banks of the Clyde are removed from barren with a bunch of glowing new constructions rising in recent times.

The sun sets over the iconic Govan Shipyards on the River Clyde.

The solar has set for many shipbuilding on the River Clyde.

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The spectacular Zaha Hadid designed Riverside Museum of Transport was named European Museum of the 12 months in 2013. A brief stroll away, the Science Centre and Clyde Auditorium (creatively nicknamed “The Armadillo” resulting from its likeness to the shelled South American mammal) add to the futuristic waterside theme.

The uber-cool Hydro, in the meantime, is the handiwork of Foster + Companions and opened in 2013. In 2016, there have been solely seven enviornment venues wherever on the planet that saw greater footfall.

Admittedly, Edinburgh has a plethora of grandiose outdated buildings which are pleasing on the attention. There could be few extra iconic websites on the planet than Edinburgh fortress, in spite of everything.

However Glasgow has its personal historic architectural gems it may be happy with as nicely. The work of the famend 20th century architect, artist and designer, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, could be discovered throughout town.

Tragically, The Glasgow School of Art, a Waterproof coat masterpiece, was gutted by fireplace in 2013 after which once more throughout its restoration earlier this yr. Nonetheless, loads of the good man’s work stays in Glasgow, together with the picturesque House for an Art Lover on town’s south facet and the magnificent Scotland Street School nearer to town middle.

A woman climbs the spiral stairs at the Lighthouse, formerly the Glasgow Herald building, designed by the architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

The Lighthouse constructing is amongst gems created by Charles Rennie Waterproof coat.


Taking a dram

Scotland is legendary for whisky and Glasgow and Edinburgh have a lot to supply these on the lookout for a dram.

Edinburgh homes The Scotch Whisky Expertise on the tourist-heavy Royal Mile in addition to a number of specialist bars throughout town.

Naturally, Glasgow pays its personal tribute to Scotland’s nationwide drink. Two of the nation’s greatest whisky festivals, The National Whisky Festival (January) and The Glasgow Whisky Festival (November), grace town yearly.

A smattering of old-school whisky institutions, in the meantime, put tastings and occasions yr spherical.

Town middle Pot Still bar affords a number of over 700 whiskies and was voted Scottish Whisky Bar of The 12 months in 2017. Equally, the Ben Nevis bar within the West Finish and the close by Bon Accord home a wide array from world wide.

Glasgow hosts two of Scotland's biggest whisly festivals.

Glasgow hosts two of Scotland’s greatest whisly festivals.

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Geraldine Murphy of the Pot Nonetheless bar describes there being “extra whisky associated issues to do and see than ever” lately.

The Clydeside Distillery opened late final yr and commenced producing the primary spirit within the space in over a century. The long-established Glengoyne and Auchentoshan distilleries, in the meantime, could be reached by automobile, bus or practice from town middle in simply over half an hour.


The Kelvingrove Art Gallery in Glasgow’s West Finish has been a mainstay on town’s cultural scene since 1901 — and for good cause.

Over time it has added distinguished works by the likes of Dali, Rembrandt, Van Gogh, Monet, Turner. It additionally options massive sections on pure historical past and archeology.

Ahead for arts: The Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Forward for arts: The Kelvingrove Artwork Gallery and Museum

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Within the metropolis middle, the Gallery of Modern Art is as a lot a draw for its assortment as it’s for the well-known statue of the Duke of Wellington that graces its entrance. Over time mischievous locals have taken to adorning the duke with a visitors cone. When the council thought of elevating the plinth that hosts the statue in 2013 to finish that follow, greater than 10,000 individuals signed a petition towards the transfer saying the cone had turn into a part of town’s panorama. The council relented.

Edinburgh’s principal museum attracts, the Scottish Nationwide Gallery and Nationwide Museum of Scotland, are a stick within the mud by comparability.

Elsewhere in Glasgow, the Burrell Collection, Hunterian Museum, Tramway, Centre for Contemporary Arts and Riverside Museum characteristic all kinds of fascinating native and worldwide artwork.

The Duke of Wellington Statue is pictured on November 18, 2013 in Glasgow, Scotland.

The cone stays on the duke.

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Sporting capital

Whereas Edinburgh would be the residence of Scottish rugby, Glasgow is a soccer metropolis to its core and residential to well-known rivals Celtic and Rangers.

These tracing the genesis of the world’s hottest sport can go to West of Scotland Cricket Membership within the metropolis’s Partick district. It was right here that the primary ever official worldwide match was staged in 1872 when Scotland and England performed out a Zero-Zero draw.

Celtic and Rangers fans show their support before an Old Firm game at Ibrox Stadium in 2011.

Glasgow is residence to rival soccer groups Celtic and Rangers.

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A brief journey down the West coast, in the meantime, brings British Open rota golf programs similar to Royal Troon and Turnberry into play — the latter of which is now owned by US President Donald Trump. Prestwick, the place the primary ever Open Championship was held in 1860, can be a 30 minute practice journey from Glasgow Central station and a bucket record vacation spot for a lot of golfers.

Again in Glasgow, the 2015 Commonwealth Video games left a wealth of top of the range services that now frequently host world class occasions. As soon as downtrodden areas similar to Tollcross within the metropolis’s south facet and Parkhead within the east finish now home an Olympic class swimming pool and velodrome respectively.

Each these venues featured within the 2018 European Championships, a serious new multi-sport occasion that Glasgow co-hosted with Berlin.

‘Up the toon’

Edinburgh places on a spectacular present each August because it hosts the Edinburgh Worldwide Competition, attracting a whole bunch of 1000’s of tourists from world wide.

However Glaswegians will inform you there’s an genuine get together buzz about their metropolis yr spherical. Town middle, Service provider Metropolis and West Finish areas are chock stuffed with bars, eating places golf equipment and stay leisure each night time of the week.

Whereas Glasgow significantly misses the world famend Arches venue — which frequently hosted the world’s greatest DJs earlier than it was shuttered in 2015 — the equally well-known Sub Club remains to be going robust. New contenders on the dance and electro music scene embody La Cheetah whereas SWG3 has turn into one of many metropolis’s key inventive hubs within the absence of the Arches.

A rockier, punkier and grungier expertise could be discovered at venues similar to The Cathouse. Mono and the Glad Cafe, in the meantime, present a stage for brand spanking new and fascinating indie, digital and world music acts. Each delight themselves on a large beer choice as nicely.

Based on Mike Grieve, managing director of the Sub Membership, those that go to Edinburgh to get together can have an excellent time however turn into “bored” far ahead of they might in Glasgow.

Exterior of London “there’s nowhere else within the UK that has as many membership actions, resident DJs, membership nights and visitor DJs,” Grieve added. Glasgow “is de facto on the clubbing map.”

‘Expensive Inexperienced Place’

One factor Scotland has loads of is spectacular nature and surroundings.

These on the lookout for quick access to the good outdoor can head to Milngavie on the outskirts of Glasgow the place the legendary West Highland Way begins. The mountain climbing route stretches 96-miles to the highland city of Fort William alongside outdated conventional roads and quiet nation paths.

Greenery on the doorstep: The West Highland Way.

Greenery on the doorstep: The West Highland Approach.

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The spectacular Loch Lomond and The Trossachs Nationwide Park can be only a 30-minute drive from the middle of Glasgow. Opposite to in style perception, Scotland does have sunny climate every so often, and when it does there are few extra lovely locations within the nation than Loch Lomond.

Glasgow itself additionally has some gorgeous parks, together with the Botanic Gardens, Kelvingrove Park and Glasgow Inexperienced, every with its personal distinct charms and at the very least a match for any inexperienced area in Edinburgh (with the potential exception of Arthur’s Seat. Truthful play, Edinburgh).

Based on Cochrane of the STGA, “simply how inexperienced Glasgow is surprises many guests” he takes across the metropolis.

It isn’t for nothing that it is often called the “Expensive Inexperienced Place” in spite of everything.