Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland, with plenty of centuries-old spots and sights to keep history buffs amused. The streets are peppered with impressive ancient architecture, historic parks, and amusing statues, so much so that it can be hard knowing where to start. Explore some of the city’s most fascinating historical landmarks when you visit and fall deeper in love with the rugged Scottish gem.
Glasgow gets its Gaelic name, Glaschu, from ‘Glen Green’. There’s evidence of a prehistoric village in the area. Still, the earliest date we have is the year 550 when a religious community was established. The first stone bridge over the Clyde was built in 1350, while the university was founded in 1451.
After the union of Scotland and England in 1603, Glasgow started to grow. By the 18th century, the city was trading coal, wool, and herring with Europe and the Americas. The Industrial Revolution brought coal, iron, and chemical production to Glasgow. Not to mention shipbuilding. The city’s engineering and manufacturing continues into the 21st century.
Glasgow City Chambers was built between 1882 and 1888 by Scottish architect William Young. Step inside and ascend the lofty marble staircase, check out the high mosaic ceiling and pass through the elegant banquet hall. There are plenty of little details to catch your eye while you tour, making the City Chambers a perfect first stop on any long weekend in Glasgow.
A Glaswegian icon, The Duke of Wellington Statue is the work of Carlo Marochetti and hails back to 1844. Hilariously, the statue now sits with an orange traffic cone on its head most of the time. The cone is the work of the city’s locals, who gathered over 72,000 signatures on a petition named ‘Keep the Cone’ in 2013 to stop the council from removing their addition.
Historic, peaceful, a little creepy? The Glasgow Necropolis is a Victorian cemetery that’s packed with history. Stroll through masterfully crafted headstones, monuments, and statues, and check out some of the more unusual inscriptions on an official cemetery tour.
The oldest of the city’s parks, Glasgow Green is located within walking distance of the city centre. Thanks to its 136 acres of beautifully maintained gardens, Glasgow Green was awarded a Green Flag – the national award for quality parks and green spaces – in 2011.
Explore the network of footpaths and viewing platforms or make your way to the People’s Palace and Winter Gardens to delve a little deeper into the history of the park.
The People’s Palace is home to a collection of historical objects, photographs, prints, and film which allow visitors a unique glimpse into the local life of the past. Outside the Winter Gardens, the Doulton Fountain stands on the Green, marking the oldest public space in the city.
If you’re planning a trip to Glasgow, make sure you choose a hotel that sits in the heart of the action. Browse our several Accor hotels in Glasgow and discover the one that’s perfect for you.
Choose the swish ibis Styles Glasgow Centre West for a laid back and trendy stay. Or, book with Mercure Glasgow City for a perfect family or business stay. When you stay with us, comfort and consideration are served as standard, so you can rest easy and focus on planning for your trip!