Updated: Mar 3, 2020
Glasgow is a city of iron and steel that is made vibrant and colourful by the intricate murals that grace its walls and the incredibly friendly people that inhabit its streets. Tourists in Glasgow are a rare sighting, which is why most Glaswegians will take you in with the most open of arms and do everything possible to make sure you feel welcome and valued here. This city also has youth culture flowing through its concrete veins, and a thriving live music, theatre and arts scene ensure there are always a million and one things to do here at any given time.
So, here’s a round-up of why Glasgow is great for young solo-travellers looking for an adventure to give you an insight into this incredible yet underrated city:
1. It’s full of young locals who keep a thriving culture scene going
Glasgow has a reputation for its live music scene which is by far the best in Scotland and the second best after London. Not only that, but contemporary arts, theatre and independent cinema have all found a home in Glasgow due to the large student population here that are very culturally engaged. Pop to King Tut’s for some live music (https://www.kingtuts.co.uk/), then to the CCA for some visual arts (http://www.cca-glasgow.com/programme) and then top it off with the best of indy cinema at the GFT (http://glasgowfilm.org/)!
2. It’s far less touristy than Edinburgh so expect authentic and spontaneous adventures
You don’t see many tourists around Glasgow so expect an experience far more local than any you will have in the massive tourist hubs of Edinburgh and Inverness. The locals love tourists so they’ll help you out as much as they can, and expect genuine advice here rather than commission-based tips that send you in the wrong direction.
3. Glasgow is a safe place to solo-travel in despite what they say
Glasgow has received a reputation over the years (and unnecessarily so) regarding crime rates in the city, however, like most western European cities, over-all it’s a safe option for solo-travellers. For females, street harassment, i.e. catcalling, rarely happens here so you can be reassured that you won’t have to deal with constant, exhausting slurs. And in general, the murder rate is now half of what it was in 2013 whilst all crime is down by 30% thanks to efforts by our local police force and recent regeneration of our city.
4. Glasgow is the perfect portal to the Highlands and the Islands
Due to Glasgow’s advantageous position on the west coast of the country, it’s far easier to access the highlands and islands from here than it is from Edinburgh. Companies such as Rabbie’s (https://www.rabbies.com/en) offer 3 day tours of the islands from Glasgow, or you can go it alone to any of the islands, with many ferries leaving from Oban which is 3 hours north of Glasgow.
So, that’s why you should make sure Glasgow is on your solo-travelling list for this summer, alongside all the other treasures Scotland has to offer. Of course, there is only one way to test if our slogan ‘People Make Glasgow’ is really true, and that’s by coming along, sipping our delicious craft beer and having a chat with our gloriously friendly people. See Glasgow for your own eyes this summer, and hopefully we’ll meet you soon in this charming concrete jungle!
For our walking tours around the city, head to www.walkingtoursin.com for more information.