A Scottish Streak: Glasgow

Sunday, February 15, 2015

After a dip into Dublin and an Edinburgh Christmas, we made our way via CityLink bus to Glasgow.

Pros: The Kelvingrove Museum and meeting friends in the center for shopping and Italian food
Cons: Lots of orange teenage girls running around in bellyshirts in 3-degree weather (?)

We were only in Glasgow a couple of nights and they were, regrettably, in a hostel that needed dire disinfecting. However, what we saw of the city was remarkable!

Everyone's favorite was the eclectic Kelvingrove Museum - much like a zany, mixed-up Smithsonian. It has 22 themed galleries on everything from French Impressionists to the Scottish ecosystem to Oceanic cultures. Just a fascinating place where a few hours felt like a handful of minutes.

Just a jump down the road was a real-life Hogwarts, the University of Glasgow. Most of it was closed but we had a good wander around in the quiet. I half-expected a golden snitch to whiz past us.

Another stop was a bar. In a church. Yes - a bar in a church! I come from the Midwest where it's not uncommon to see beer at a church-sponsored Lenten fish fry. But this was a whole new experience. To be fair, this structure formerly known as Kelvinside Parish has long since ceased to be a house of worship and is now an arts and entertainment venue called Oran Mor.

The following day, we met up with Scottish and Czech friends in the center for Italian at a place whose name escapes me and some serious shopping at post-Christmas sales. At dusk, the half-naked, sprayed-orange youth appeared in droves, tottering around on go-go heels and sporting huge front-bouffant hairdos. (Caveat: In my own teen years, I wore XL flannels; we all have our hiccups.)

On public transit back to our hostel, I saw this, probably left by one of the pumpkin-colored teens. It's a strange high-alcohol, caffeinated, fortified wine produced by Benedictine monks that is known as a "hooligan" drink here. Such an oddity... and our last memory of Glasgow.

Linking up with Bonnie Rose and her new co-hosts for Travel Tuesday! (Working on adding a link-back; this iPad won't let me...)


  1. uhh, it's been forever since i last was in glasgow, and this is really making me want to revisit! i'll definitely need to check out the kelvingrove museum next time, it sounds interesting! x

  2. That University!! Amazing. How cool would it have been to go to school there? Totally Hogwarts.

    Did you have any haggis while you were there? Love a bit of haggis...and neeps & tatties!


  3. That's another place l need to visit. It is so lovely. Yes, it looks like Hogwarts country for sure..

  4. Really interesting-- that museum looks like a whole lot of (random, chaotic) fun! I'll have to look it up next time when I'm in Glasgow. I really loved that photo of the main shopping street you posted... it reminds me of absolutely Day 1 of living in Europe when our flight arrived at 5:30am so we spent a long, tired morning wandering around those streets a hundred times (accidentally looking a lot like gutter punks). I have never heard of Buckfast, so naturally I am now fascinated after hearing the description of it. I suppose you didn't try any..... ? ;)

  5. Lovely photos! I went to Glasgow for a day once but I didn't see much of it, it looks like I missed lots of nice things! It made me laugh about the girls in not many clothes, even in the winter, us Brits have that reputation... but it's true, hehe!

  6. These photos are GORGEOUS! Especially that of the university! That does definitely look like Hogwarts haha. Actually, I'm pretty sure that second photo was in one of the later movies!

  7. I loved this post! So reminds me of when we lived in Glasgow! And yes the girls ate all orange :-)

  8. I didn't realize you'd lived there - how cool! I wish we'd had more time there.

  9. Cheers :) If only Harry and the crew had actually been around... sigh :)

  10. Many thanks, Marcella! I just wanted to put my coat on those girls. They were barhopping and probably wouldn't have appreciated it, though ;)

  11. You spent your first real day living in Europe in the center of Glasgow? What an intro! :) We walked a long way down that area, too, upon arriving at night and making our way to accommodation. Lugging roll-y carry-ons through roving hordes of club-goers was quite a feat. I didn't try Buckfast but all of my Scottish coworkers are now saying it's a must-do. I'm scared.

  12. The problem is there are way too many cool places to visit. #firstworldproblems!

  13. Didn't have any haggis there but did on a subsequent Burns Night in Prague. I think it's actually decent-tasting! Yes, neeps and tatties :) (Funniest-sounding food ever)

  14. Cheers and thanks for stopping by, Laura!


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