Glasgow is the most populous city in Scotland.
The city is located on the banks of the River Clyde, in West Central Scotland.
As of February 2020, the population of Glasgow is about 630,000 people. It is the third most populous city in the United Kingdom.
The city covers a total area of 68 square kilometers (175 square miles).
The average altitude is 40 meters (131 feet) above sea level.
The area around Glasgow has hosted communities for millennia, with the River Clyde providing a natural location for fishing.
The Romans later built outposts in the area and, to keep Roman Britannia separate from the Celtic and Pictish Caledonia, constructed the Antonine Wall. Items from the wall, such as altars from Roman forts like Balmuildy, can be found at the Hunterian Museum today.
Glasgow did not begin to develop until about 550 A.D. with the arrival of St. Kentigern (Mungo), who established a religious community there.
By the 12th century Glasgow had been granted the status of what can now be called a city and the cathedral was the seat of the Bishops and (after 1472) the Archbishops of Glasgow.
Expanding from the medieval bishopric and royal burgh, and the later establishment of the University of Glasgow in the 15th century, it became a major centre of the Scottish Enlightenment in the 18th century.
From the 18th century onwards, the city also grew as one of Great Britain’s main hubs of transatlantic trade with North America and the West Indies.
With the Industrial Revolution came coal mining, iron founding, chemical manufacturing, and, especially, shipbuilding, which developed in Glasgow early in the 19th century.
Glasgow was the “Second City of the British Empire” for much of the Victorian era and Edwardian period, although many cities argue the title was theirs.
Today, Glasgow has a diverse architectural scene, one of the key factors leading visitors to the city.
Glasgow Cathedral, also called the High Kirk of Glasgow or St Kentigern’s or St Mungo’s Cathedral, is the oldest cathedral on mainland Scotland and is the oldest building in Glasgow. The history of the cathedral is linked with that of the city, and is allegedly located where the patron saint of Glasgow, Saint Mungo, built his church. The tomb of the saint is in the lower crypt. Walter Scott’s novel Rob Roy gives an account of the kirk.
The Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum is a museum and art gallery in Glasgow, Scotland. It reopened in 2006 after a three-year refurbishment and since then has been one of Scotland’s most popular visitor attractions. The museum has 22 galleries, housing a range of exhibits, including Renaissance art, taxidermy, and artifacts from ancient Egypt.
The Riverside Museum is the location of the Glasgow Museum of Transport, at Pointhouse Quay in the Glasgow Harbour regeneration district of Glasgow, Scotland. The building opened in June 2011. The museum won the 2013 European Museum of the Year Award.
The People’s Palace and Winter Gardens in Glasgow, is a museum and glasshouse situated in Glasgow Green, and was opened on 22 January 1898 by the Earl of Rosebery. At the time, the East End of Glasgow was one of the most and overcrowded parts of the city, and the People’s Palace was intended to provide a cultural centre for the people.
George Square is the principal civic square in the city of Glasgow. It is one of six squares in the city centre. Named after King George III and initially laid out in 1781 but not developed for another twenty years, George Square is surrounded by architecturally important buildings including on the east side the palatial Municipal Chambers, also known as the City Chambers, whose foundation stone was laid in 1883, and on the west side by the Merchants House.
Glasgow Botanic Gardens is a botanical garden located in the West End of Glasgow. It contains a variety of plant collections, woodland copses and riverside walks as well as the famous Kibble Palace. Kibble Palace is a magnificent glasshouse designed by John Kibble and houses the national collection of tree ferns. Plants from tropical rainforests grow in the palm house.
Glasgow Science Centre is one of Scotland’s must-see visitor attractions. Queen Elizabeth II opened Glasgow Science Centre on 5 July 2001. It is a purpose-built science centre composed of three principal buildings: Science Mall, Glasgow Tower and an IMAX cinema.
The Lighthouse in Glasgow is Scotland’s Centre for Design and Architecture. It was opened as part of Glasgow’s status as UK City of Architecture and Design in 1999. The Lighthouse is the renamed conversion of the former offices of the Glasgow Herald newspaper. Completed in 1895, it was designed by the architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh. The centre’s vision is to develop the links between design, architecture, and the creative industries, seeing these as interconnected social, educational, economic and cultural issues of concern to everyone.
Glasgow is the fifth most visited city in the UK.
Inhabitants of the city are referred to as “Glaswegians” or, informally, as “Weegies”.
Glasgow is also known for the Glasgow patter, a distinct dialect of the Scots language that is noted for being difficult to understand by those from outside the city.
Daniel Defoe visited the city in the early 18th century and famously opined in his book A tour thro’ the whole island of Great Britain, that Glasgow was “the cleanest and beautifullest, and best built city in Britain, London excepted”.