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Top Rated Attractions in Glasgow

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Glasgow Botanic Gardens

Wander through this tranquil urban park and admire Kibble Palace, dating back to 1873 to provide Glasgow University's botany students with hot-house plants. The domed glasshouse and statues are attractive and hard to miss. If you're there before 4.30p, take the opportunity to look around the glasshouses and study their stunning collection of orchids and rare tropical plants. Children seem to enjoy the huge exotic cacti in particular. In summer, locals and tourists alike flock here for picnics and sunbathing on the lawns. You can also take a walk along the riverside and watch the squirrels. The Glasgow Botanic Gardens is a great place to spend a day outside when the weather is favorable.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

In 1901, the splendid Kelvingrove Gallery was built to house the International Exhibition. In 2007 a major remodel was completed, making Kelvingrove even more of a must-see Glasgow attraction than it was before. This red sandstone building on Glasgow's Argyle Street immediately captures attention, as do the 22 themed galleries and remarkably curated 8000-odd objects inside it. According to a local legend, the gallery was built back to front by mistake, but this is just a myth - it was intended to face the river rather than the road. The collection within ranges from local historical art to Rodin sculptures, natural history specimens of varying interest, and a Stormtrooper costume from the original Star Wars films. There is also an emphasis on the King of Surrealism, Salvador Dali's 'Christ of St John of the Cross'. Exciting exhibitions, a special emphasis on involving youngsters and a timeless devotion to art deems the Kelvingrove Gallery one of the most noteworthy artistic repositories in Scotland.

Pollok Country Park

Welcome to a wonderful slice of the countryside just outside the city center that you can wander peacefully. This is a large park in the south of Glasgow and home to a huge array of birds and small animals. Woodland walks and meadow trails make lovely afternoon pursuits and if you wander along the riverside you may catch a glimpse of an otter or mink. The stunning gardens were created by Sir John Stirling Maxwell and offer a more formal vision of natural beauty. Don't miss the herd of Highland cattle, shire-horses, the Burrell Collection and Pollok House. Park rangers run guided tours through the grounds at various times. There is also a mountain biking circuit.

The Necropolis

Dominated by the statue of John Knox, this is an old cemetery on a small hill right behind Glasgow Cathedral. Its design was based on the Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris and the elaborate tombs are home to many obscure Glasgow Victorian dignitaries and a few famous ones. It was established in 1831 by the Merchants' House of Glasgow and several well-known local architects such as Alexander 'Greek' Thomson had a hand in the design of memorials and mausoleums. On weekdays, guides are available to show visitors around the cemetery. Excellent views of the cathedral and beyond can be enjoyed from the top of the hill.

Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery

Opened in 1807 with funds and artifacts bequeathed to the Glasgow University by William Hunter, this was the first public museum in Scotland. It was originally sited on High Street but in 1870 the university moved to Gilmorehill and the Hunterian moved too. Since 1980, the art collection has been housed in a separate, purpose-built gallery across the road. The permanent collection in the museum includes exhibitions on the Romans in Scotland, the ancient Egyptians, Captain Cook, dinosaurs and fossils, human evolution and a vast collection of coins and medals. The gallery is probably most noted for the collection of works by Whistler but there's also a good array of 19th and 20th Century Scottish art, works by Rembrandt and Chardin as well as Scotland's largest print collection. A gift shop can be found on the museum premises. Some parts of the museum may have an entrance fee.

Glasgow Cathedral

Glasgow's patron saint, St Mungo, founded this cathedral on the site of a Christian burial ground. One of Scotland's oldest medieval churches, Glasgow Cathedral is a stunning embodiment of Scottish Gothic architecture. Built on the ground where St Kentigern is said to have been buried, the cathedral is also said to have functioned as a genesis of Glasgow. Glasgow cathedral has an arsenal of stunning features to boast, including sharp spires, archways, elongated windows fashioned out of stained glass, and a brilliantly-patterned ceiling. Dating back to the 13th century, the cathedral has valiantly braved myriad ravages and stands today as one of Scotland's most revered cathedrals and a stirring piece of architectural greatness. A prized landmark of the city, the cathedral has also birthed Glasgow University within its depths.

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