The Best Outdoor Activities in Glasgow, UK
Leave the bustling city centre behind to explore Glasgow’s Necropolis | © Arcaid Images / Alamy Stock Photo
While we love a good museum day, when the weather’s warm or when you’ve spent a long day indoors, getting some fresh air is the only thing on your mind. Luckily, Glasgow is a city that’s packed with outdoor parks, walks, sports and all sorts of other activities to help blow away the cobwebs. Read on for some local favourites.
Hiking Trail, Natural Feature
Looking for a quick, green escape from the craziness of the Glasgow city centre? Take an afternoon walk along the Kelvin Walkway which takes a pleasant, leafy route out of the city with opportunities to spot nesting swans, squirrels and other wildlife. Make a day trip of it by walking the whole 14km (9mi) to picturesque Milngavie, or just take a quick hour’s stroll to clear your head. Recommended by local insider Austin Yuill
Glasgow Music City Tours
Glasgow eats, sleeps and breathes music, which is just as well, being a UNESCO City of Music. You don’t have to travel far at all to stumble across an interesting venue with an exciting line-up of talent, whether that’s a large-capacity arena or a fiercely independent smaller venue. Explore the best and most notable with Glasgow Music City Tours, whose guides will talk to you in-depth about the history of the city’s music scene and tell you a couple of local legends along the way. Did they really happen? That’s for you to decide. Recommended by local insider Austin Yuill
Glasgow’s Necropolis, the city cemetery, makes for an atmospheric walk at any time of day – though it’s naturally spectacularly spooky in the evenings. Look out for graves and monuments dedicated to the city’s great and good, plus no end of stunning mausolea from Glasgow’s most famous architects. Once you reach the top of the site, you’ll be rewarded with unrivalled panoramas across the Glasgow skyline – this one’s a must. Recommended by local insider Austin Yuill
Partick Thistle FC
You’ll probably have heard of Glasgow’s two major football teams and the passion and rivalry they inspire. Still, the Rangers and Celtic are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the city’s famous love of football, so venture away from the big names for a glimpse into the grassroots of the sport. Partick Thistle is Glasgow’s much-beloved third team – simply turn up at their home ground of Firhill for a spirited 90 minutes of the beautiful game, a welcoming party atmosphere and a mascot that confuses and inspires in equal measure. Recommended by local insider Austin Yuill
Bard in the Botanics
Outdoor theatre settings don’t come more evocative than this. The Bard in the Botanics festival takes place every summer in Glasgow’s famous Botanic Gardens, offering a handful of performances to punters who’ll turn up rain or shine, picnic basket in hand, to enjoy some of Shakespeare’s best-loved works. Bring food, chairs, an umbrella and perhaps some bug repellant for the city’s notorious biting midges. Recommended by local insider Austin Yuill
Glasgow Bike Tours
Glasgow is big, so cycling is a great way to see more of the city quickly. Of course, you could hire a bike and make your own way round, but if you’re interested in learning more about the area’s history and famous landmarks, you could also book onto one of Glasgow’s many cycling tours. Qualified guides will take you all over the city on comfortable bikes, and with both half- and full-day options (including lunch) available, there’s something for everyone. Recommended by local insider Austin Yuill
These recommendations were updated on July 14, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.