The largest city in Scotland has not always been its biggest tourist draw, but Glasgow is catching up to its neighbor, Edinburgh, with a revitalized city center and more cultural offerings than you can shake a stick at. If you had to choose one or the other, many would still recommend Edinburgh, but the best plan is to see both, as they are complete contrasts despite being only 70 km apart.

What to do

Just as has happened throughout the UK, the city center of Glasgow has been transformed from gritty and dilapidated to chic and trendy in the past decade or two. Just a stroll around the main shopping areas is a treat these days, but the city is also loaded with many interesting museums, most of which are free, and also art galleries that are well worth a look.

The city's two main football clubs, Rangers and Celtic, have a famous and fierce rivalry known throughout Europe. Getting a ticket might not be easy, but being in the city during one of the matches can be electrifying.

Getting there

You can book a flight into Glasgow International Airport (code: GLA), which is about 14 km outside of the city. It's the larger of the two airports in the area, and handles most of the longer flights. You can also fly into Glasgow Prestwick International Airport (code: PIK), which is further away, but is popular with Ryanair and other discount airlines.

You can arrive by train from Edinburgh in under an hour for around 10 pounds, and from London on an expensive express train or a cheaper train that takes about 8 hours. Train travel in the UK is not cheap, especially if you book at the last minute, so you might find flights to actually be cheaper much of the time.

Where to stay

There are plenty of hotels in Glasgow, and a growing number of hostels in Glasgow as well. Prices tend to be high, and especially if you are coming during the busy summer travel season it's a good idea to book well in advance if you find a cheap place.