City Centre

Cathedral (Townhead) -- This is where St. Mungo apparently settled in A.D. 543 and built his little church in what's now the northeastern corner of the city center. Glasgow Cathedral was once surrounded by a variety of prebendal manses (residences), and the so-called Bishop's Castle stood between the Cathedral's west facade and the Provand's Lordship, which still exists largely in its original form. East of the Cathedral is one of Britain's largest Victorian cemeteries, Glasgow's Central Necropolis.

Merchant City -- The city's first New Town development - today southeast of the city's core - Merchant City extends from the boulevard called the Trongate and Argyle Street in the south to George Street in the north. As the medieval lanes and alleys off High Street were regarded as festering sores, the affluent moved to develop areas to the west. Merchant's warehouses largely replaced the houses, and everyone was shifted out. Ironically, now the district has become one of the few inner-city areas of Glasgow where people reside in any density.

Gallowgate -- The Gallowgate, the principal street running east from the Trongate and Glasgow Cross, and its surrounding district is best known for the Barras weekend flea markets; Barrowland, a one-time ballroom that now is a popular live-music venue for rock groups; and Glasgow Green public park. The street was once one where prosperous city businessmen strolled. The Saracen's Head Inn stood here and received such distinguished guests as Dr. Samuel Johnson and James Boswell in 1774 after the duo's famous tour of the Hebrides.

Saltmarket -- While the first settlements in Glasgow were on the hill by the Cathedral, almost as early were dwellings in this area at the opposite end of High Street along the banks of the Clyde. It served as the trading post where the river could be forded. The Bridgegate (the road to the bridge) leads to Victoria Bridge - constructed in the 1850s and the oldest Clyde crossing in Glasgow.

Commercial Center -- The biggest of the central districts of Glasgow, it includes areas of 19th-century development such as Blythswood and Charing Cross (although the latter was severed by the M8 freeway). This area offers Victorian architecture at its finest, although the city once had a mind to tear it down before realizing that the buildings had international importance.

Broomielaw -- It has been said: "The Clyde made Glasgow." From the docks that once existed here, Glasgow imported tobacco, cotton, and rum, and shipped its manufactured goods around the world. Today the Broomielaw, after becoming a rather lost and neglected part of the city center, is targeted for renewal.

Garnethill -- Up the steep slopes north of Sauchiehall Street, this neighborhood is best known for the Charles Rennie Mackintosh-designed Glasgow School of Art. Developed in the late 1800s, Garnethill offers good views of the city and is also home to the first proper synagogue built in Scotland. A prosperous late 19th-century suburb, Garnethill is now one of the few concentrations of residential properties in Glasgow city center.

West End

Woodlands -- Centering on Park Circus at the crown of Woodlands Hill, this neighborhood is a mix of residential tenements and retail stretches, particularly on Woodlands and Great Western roads. South of the river lies the district of Finnieston. Its most visible landmark is the old shipbuilding crane, standing like some giant dinosaur. Along the Clyde is the Scottish Exhibition Centre. West of Woodlands is Kelvingrove, with the Art Gallery and Museum and the impressive park. Glasgow allegedly has more green spaces per resident than any other European city.

Hillhead -- With the Gilmorehill campus of the University of Glasgow, Hillhead is rather dominated by academia. Its main boulevard is Byres Road, which is the Main Street of the West End.

Partick -- The railway station at Partick is one of the few in the city to translate the stop's name into Gaelic: Partaig. Indeed there is a bit of Highland pride to the neighborhood, although no particular evidence that Highland people have settled here in great masses. Partick is one of the less pretentious districts of the central West End. To the north are leafy and affluent Hyndland and Dowanhill.


Gorbals -- This neighborhood, just across the Clyde from the city center, developed a reputation for mean streets and unsanitary tenements; so, the city demolished it in the early 1960s, erecting sets of modern high-rise apartment towers, which, in turn, developed a reputation for unsavory and unpleasant conditions. Today they are gradually coming down and a New Gorbals has been developed on a more human scale, although the fabric of the place still seems torn and frayed. It is home to the Citizens Theatre, one of the most innovative and democratic in the U.K.

Govan -- Until 1912, Govan (guv-an) was an independent burgh and one of the key shipbuilding districts on the south banks of the Clyde. It was settled as early as the 10th century - another ecclesiastical focal point along with St. Kentigern's north of the river. The first shipyard, Mackie & Thomson, opened in 1840. But with the demise of shipbuilding, the fortunes of Govan fell too. Today, it is hoped that the Science Centre and other developments, such as a new Transport Museum and BBC Scotland's headquarters, will revive Govan's fortunes.

Pollokshaws -- Along with Strathbungo, Queens Park, Pollokshields, and Crosshill, these neighborhoods form the heart of the city's more modern Southside suburbs. Pollok Park and the Burrell Collection are the primary tourist attractions, and Queens Park is perhaps better and more verdant than Kelvingrove Park, even if it lacks the monuments and statues of the West End's oasis.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.