Escape To Glasgow For A Perfect Winter Break

Mandy D Charles discovers that striking architecture, fantastic restaurants and a few wee drams of whisky make Glasgow the perfect destination for an out-of-season staycation... 

Glasgow's River Clyde.

Bursting with art galleries, quirky shops and cool places to eat, Glasgow is at its most atmospheric at this time of year, and shines all the brighter with a nip in the air. Here’s how to make the most of your weekend break...

Venture down to the Queen’s Dock on the banks of the Clyde and watch craftsmen distil pure spirit by hand at the Clydeside Single Malt Scotch Whisky Distillery. Take a tour and immerse yourself in Glasgow’s fascinating Dockside Story before savouring Three Wee Drams. Be sure to take home a bottle of Scotland’s whisky heritage from the Whisky Shop. 

Clydeside Single Malt Scotch Whisky Distillery.

Follow the cool kids to the achingly hip Finnieston, situated between the city centre and the West End. For fine dining that doesn’t break the bank, The Gannet, housed in a sympathetically restored 108-year old tenement building, sources ingredients as locally and sustainably as possible, and this wonderful restaurant represents the best of Scottish cuisine. This is thoughtful, inventive cooking that explores an evolving food culture. A Shetland-landed turbot is complemented by a fragrant, well-balanced porcini sauce, and a decadent, silky Chocolate Delice is simply divine. The Gannet is the local restaurant you'd wish you had in your neighbourhood. 

The Gannet.

Celebrate the 150th anniversary of the celebrated Glaswegian architect, artist and designer, Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s birth by visiting the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. Home to the Mackintosh and the Glasgow Style Gallery, it houses the largest permanent display of work by the key names in the Glasgow Style movement. There are 21 other galleries to explore but don’t miss the stunning Christ of St John of the Cross by Salvador Dali. Then head across the road for a mezzo metro pizza at Baffo, while enjoying the view of this monumentally impressive building. 

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum.

There are plenty of free examples of Mackintosh's work to see as you wander the city (look up!), but if you're into design, a visit to Mackintosh House at the Hunterian Art Gallery, is well worth a visit. The architect lived here with his wife, the artist Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh. The principal interiors were decorated in his distinctive style, remarkable then and now, for the disciplined austerity of the furnishings and decoration. The interiors, completed in 1981, have been furnished with the Mackintoshes' own furniture – all to Mackintosh's design – and decorated as closely as possible to the original.

Mackintosh House at The Hunterian.

There's plenty for music lovers, too. Join the Music Mile City Tour for a whistle-stop jaunt around Glasgow city centre, an area teeming with music venues. From the Royal Concert Hall to the legendary King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut, you'll learn about the beating heart of the city’s vibrant music history. Then, for a laid-back lunch before you head for home, visit Singl-end, an excellent community café and bakehouse. Treat yourself to the hearty baked eggs with sourdough for brunch. It’s a treasure, much like Glasgow itself. 

Barrowlands Music Tour.

For further information on booking your trip to Glasgow visit

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