Wednesday, September 9, 2015


Did you know that the citizens of Glasgow are called Glaswegians?

Now you know.

I don't have a good reason for sharing that little tidbit - other than it felt like a good lead-in to my next destination.


The train ride north from my brother's home in England was very long. When you look at a map of the UK, it doesn't seem very big - but it's actually deceptively long (from north to south.) Plus the roads that aren't freeways tend to be quite narrow and windy with low speed limits - but I suppose that doesn't apply to a rail journey.

Anyways, it took a good eight hours to get to Glasgow. And when I saw my hostel up close, I immediately turned around and headed back south.

...Ok, no, that didn't actually happen. But man, that hostel was ugly, and worn-down, and kind of gross.

(A note for potential European hostellers: The hostels in Europe tend to get progressively worse the further west you go. The best hostels I stayed at were all - with one Italian exception - in the Balkans. The hostels in the UK - and Ireland, and Germany, and etc., were all pretty scuzzy.) (Yes, I said scuzzy. Deal with it.)

And boy am I ever getting sidetracked.


Glasgow is Edinburgh's smaller, dingier little brother.

[Ducks tomatoes thrown by indignant Glaswegians]

Nevertheless, it's a pretty cool city.

[Gets back up, brushes self off, gets hit squarely in the face by fruit hurled by an Edinburger]

It's got some cool architecture, and the city center is a nice area to walk around (just don't go far past that point if you're not looking to get stabbed in the Murder Capital of Europe.)

["Boo! Shut up and show us some pictures!"]

Ok, fine.

Glasgow Cathedral
The Glasgow Necropolis

I wandered around for several hours, and passed the imposing Glasgow Cathedral and the surprisingly beautiful Glasgow Necropolis (which unfortunately closed shortly before I got there - it looked like a fascinating place to walk around.)

I also passed a giant hospital complex and the "Royal Infirmary" - both of which looked like they had seen better days. In fact, the latter was actually rather frightening, and I kind of worry for those who have to stay there. I'm pretty sure it was haunted. (But alas, I didn't take any pictures.)

A bridge over the River Clyde

The view from my hostel room.

On my second day in the city, I took off in a different direction and ended up walking through a very nice park and passing Glasgow University on my way to the Kelvingrove Art Gallery, where I got a chance to view some Scottish art (and artifacts.)
The Kelvingrove Museum/Gallery
Yes, this dignified old horseman does in fact have a construction cone on his head.
On my last morning there I took a (free) tour of the City Chambers - one of the most distinctive and architecturally impressive buildings in the downtown area.

The exterior was nice - but I loved the arches and marble stairways of the inside. The geometric layers of arches reminded me of some of the Moorish architecture of southern Spain (though someone who actually knows anything about architecture may find that comparison ridiculous.)

They even let us visit the Council Chambers, where the Glasgow city councillors and Lord Provost meet to discuss and vote on very important matters (like whether or not The Proclaimers really were the best Scottish band.)
Sitting in the Lord Provost's chair

Of course, no trip to Scotland would be complete without visiting some lochs and the Highlands - but you'll have to wait until my next post to read about that. 


  1. A dreary and dingy old UK industrial down. Really not very pretty. I really much prefer majestic Edinborough with it beautiful capital and parliament at the top of the hill. Glasgow is so grey and dismal that it looks haunted.

  2. They certainly do have some interesting architecture in Glasgow. And it's so cool that you were
    Able to sit in their parliament chair. You look like you belong in the halls of government. Just too bad your hostel was yucky.