1 day in Glasgow itinerary – the complete travel guide to what to see in Glasgow in one day.
How much time do you need to see Glasgow
From one to two days. Although Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland, you don’t need much time to explore it. One day is enough to see most of the tourist sites if you aren’t into museums. To save time use the hop-on-hop-off sightseeing bus.
How much time I spent
When I was planning my trip to Scotland I wasn’t sure how much time I would need to see Glasgow. I was wondering between one or two days.
Finally, I decided to go with one day, because I wanted to spend more time in Edinburgh. However, with so little time I had to skip few interesting museums. Thus if you are flexible with time, I suggest you spend 2 days in Glasgow.
Yet, if you have only one day, check out my itinerary 1 day in Glasgow to get the best of the city.
Where to stay in Glasgow for sightseeing
Luxury option – Dakota Glasgow – located in the western part of the city centre, the hotel is a great base to explore the centre and West End.
9.3/10 Rating – See hotel images and 1,370+ guest reviews
Mid-range – Grasshopper Hotel Glasgow – is the best choice if you are looking for something near George Square and the Central train station.
9.3/10 Rating – See hotel images and 720+ guest reviews
Apartment – Fraser Suites Glasgow – awesome apartments housed in a beautifully-renovated Victorian building in the Merchant City.
9.1/10 Rating – See apartment images and 1,930+ guest reviews
If you haven’t picked a hotel yet, find out what are the best places to stay in Glasgow.
Glasgow 1 day itinerary
What to see in Glasgow in one day? What are the highlights of Glasgow?
Morning – Tour the city centre of Glasgow
08:30 AM – 09:30 AM
Start the day with a breakfast at The Wilson Street Pantry or iCafe. I love the toast with avocado and salmon at The Wilson Street Pantry. The porridge is also good.
There is some great street art just next to iCafe. Don’t miss to take a look if you have a breakfast there. In fact, you can find amazing examples of street art all over the city.
09:45 AM – 10:30 AM
The Glasgow Cathedral is one of the most famous sites in the city. It is a stunning Gothic cathedral from the 12th century. In its crypt, you can see the tomb of Saint Mungo, the patron saint of the city. The saint founded Glasgow in the 6th century AD. The name of Saint Mungo is, in fact, a nickname. The latter means “my dear one”. The real name of the saint is Kentigern.
The cathedral is also one of the shooting locations of the Outlander series.
Glasgow once had a castle. The Bishop’s Castle stood right next to the Glasgow Cathedral. From here comes the name of “Castle Street”. Unfortunately, the castle was demolished in 1792.
10:30 AM – 11:00 AM
Right next to the cathedral is the Necropolis, an old Victorian cemetery. The bridge that connects the cathedral and the cemetery, is known as the Bridge of sighs. The name comes from the fact that this bridge was a part of the route of funeral processions. As the Necropolis is located on a hill, the views over the Glasgow cathedral are quite beautiful.
11:15 AM – 12:00 PM
Provand’s Lordship is the oldest remaining medieval house in Glasgow. It dates from 15th century. The house is small but charming and free to visit!
12:15 PM – 12:30 PM
George Square and City Chambers
The George Square is named after King George III. Initially, the square was a muddy hollow used for slaughtering horses. The square started to get its current look during 18th and 19th century. The building of the City Chambers is a great example of the Victorian architecture.
12:30 PM – 12:45 PM
Gallery of Modern Art and Duke of Wellington Statue
While passing along the Gallery of Modern Art, stop and take a look at the Duke of Wellington Statue.
This is one of the symbols of Glasgow – an orange traffic cone on the statue’s head. The cone was placed here around 1980 by some local residents. The authorities removed it many times, but in vain. It appeared again and again. At the end, the authorities decided to leave it there for good. During my visit to Glasgow, the cone was on the horse’s head.
01:00 PM – 03:00 PM
Stop for a lunch at Martha’s or Singl-end.
Afternoon – Explore West End and see the University of Glasgow
03:00 PM – 03:30 PM
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
Pass along the building of Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. The museum is free, so if you are into art, spare some time to see the exhibitions.
If you are in a mood for something sweet after the gallery, go to Tantrum Doughnuts.
03:45 PM – 04:15 PM
University of Glasgow
This is the place where you will feel like in one of the Harry Potter movies. The movies weren’t shot here in fact. However, it is a magical place.
04:30 PM – 06:00 PM
The Botanic Gardens is the ideal place to finish a day of sightseeing. Take a walk or just sit on a bench and enjoy the sun (if it is sunny). I was very lucky with the weather during the first days of my trip – sunny without a single drop of rain. Something not very common in Scotland.
Finish the itinerary 1 day in Glasgow with a dinner at Bothy or Stravaigin. Both restaurants offer traditional Scottish food.
If you love Indian food try Obsession Of India, a great restaurant in the Merchant City.
For fish and chips go to Merchant Chippie.
After sunset, take a walk along the river. There are some spectacular views. I took the photo below from the bridge on Crown St.
Try some whisky at Òran Mór, a bar located in a church.
To taste some awesome gin, go to Gin71. There are two bars in the city centre. If you are into beer, Brewdog Bar is your place.
What else to do in Glasgow
The Tolbooth Steeple once was a part of the Glasgow Town Hall.
People’s Palace and Winter Gardens
Take a walk in the Winter Gardens. If you are interested in the history of the city and its people, visit People’s Palace.
St Andrew’s Cathedral
St Andrew’s Cathedral is a small beautiful cathedral from the beginning of the 19th century.
Hunterian Museum and Hunterian Art Gallery
The Hunterian is the oldest museum in Scotland. It is opened in 1807.
Take a day trip
Take a day tour to Loch Ness and Loch Lomond and discover the magnificent beauty of the Scottish Highlands.
Visit Stirling Castle or Edinburgh Castle by taking some day trips from Glasgow by train.
Getting around Glasgow
You can easily explore Glasgow by foot. I stayed in the Merchant City and didn’t use any public transport at all. However, if you need any, there are underground and regular buses.
The underground runs in a double circle around the city centre. In fact, this is the only city in Scotland that has an underground. The latter is named Clockwork Orange because of the colour of the carriages.
The First Group buses serve the city of Glasgow.
What to see in Glasgow in 1 day itinerary – map
Have you been to Glasgow? What else is a must if you have only 1 day in Glasgow?
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About the author
|I'm a travel blogger based in Sofia, Bulgaria. Travelling has always been my passion and I love to discover new places and cultures. I want to show you how easy it is to organize your vacation all by yourself.|
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