Five things to do around Glasgow

Most tourists love their time in Scotland’s largest city – many are quick to return. Whether you are into your urban history or prefer to relax and do a spot of shopping, the city suits people of all ages and gender. Visitors should get out and explore Glasgow and its surrounds. Here are five places to start with:

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Glasgow Cathedral

A testament to the historic roots of the city, there has been a church here since 1136. The distinctive architecture has featured in television series like Outlander and remains one of the most visited landmarks in Scotland.

Located right in the centre of the city, there is a real buzz in the surrounding area and there are other historic sites linked to St Mungo and the beginnings of the Glasgow story. This year, there are events here to celebrate the anniversary of the birth of Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

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Hamilton Park Racecourse

Venture beyond the confines of Glasgow and visit Hamilton Park a relatively small racecourse but locals are very proud of its place in horse racing history. Open from May to October, this venue is a haven for flat racing. The Glasgow Stakes, held in July, is the racecourse’s big event – people travel from all over the United Kingdom to attend.

And, Hamilton Park could take inspiration from another of the UK’s biggest flat racing events. The Cheltenham Festival takes place this week and punters are backing plenty of horses, including Apple’s Shakira – who is the favourite here at 9/4 – and the Gloucestershire town thrives due to the Festival’s success.

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SSE Hydro Arena

A magnificent building, the SSE Hydro Arena is an excellent venue for live music. Any bands who come to visit Glasgow will tend to play this arena; there is always something going on here. Shania Twain, Katy Perry and Kylie Minogue will all visit in 2018.

For those who prefer smaller, intimate venues, check out King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut, St Luke’s, The Cathouse, 13th Note, Broadcast, the Barrowlands or any of the other gig spaces in Glasgow, big or small.

Tolbooth Steeple

The distinctive Tolbooth Steeple was built in 1626 at Glasgow Cross, although all that remains in the steeple and clock tower following the pulling down of the Tolbooth buildings in 1921. When the structure was originally erected, the city had a population of little over 7,000, giving an idea of the development that had gone on around the famous old landmark.

One of the most famous uses of the building was a place of execution, specifically the hanging of witches. As a warning, the structure was ‘decorated’ with the heads of those who were hung on spikes on the building’s exterior.

Duke of Wellington Statue

Finally, we couldn’t end this list on anything else other than the famous Duke of Wellington Statue. Famous, not because of what the statue stands for, but because of Glaswegian’s tradition of placing a cone on top of the Duke’s head.

After initially warning those who dare place a cone on top of the structure with criminal proceedings, Glasgow City Council have pretty much admitted defeat, with a cone remaining upon the statue most days. It makes for one of the most recognisable images of modern-day Glasgow.