How to spend an 18th birthday in Glasgow, Scotland

So I recently turned 18, which means that I am now a super old responsible adult. At the time of writing, I've only been this insanely elderly for two days and yet am pretty sure my face is already wrinkling up, and I'm definitely feeling the aches and pains of old life. Regardless of this, to celebrate my big day in style my incredible friend Jaimie took me to Glasgow, in Scotland. No joke. He literally took me to Scotland. Insane.

Technically, I spent four days having walked on Scottish land, but as we decided to travel through the night I basically just spent two full days there. I live in London, and Jaimie doesn't like flying, so we decided to spend the nine hour journey on the coach, meaning we could sleep and save money on hotels. I also adore coaches, and easily spend the four/ five hour journeys I often take to Wales just listening to music and staring out the window. However, is it fun to do that at 2am when you have approximately ten inches of leg space? No. Not at all. Really, badly, awful idea. Don't do it. Especially in my old age the journey darn nearly killed me.


We booked to stay with EasyHotel for the duration of our time in Scotland, because whilst there were many other options we could choose for a similar price range, this hotel was very central, only a couple minutes walk from the main city center. However, it was only when we arrived that I clocked they were just an off-branch from the aeroplane company EasyJet - and let me just say, you get more legroom on a flight than you do in their hotel. 

It was clean and all, but holy moly was it tiny, and added expenses were everywhere so you couldn't even make tea or turn on the TV or use the internet. Quite frankly, any other hotel in Glasgow would have probably been a lot better, but then again we were only there to sleep in the evenings so it wasn't much of a big deal. The people at reception had such thick Scottish accents that I could barely make out a single word, at one point going completely blank that they could possibly be speaking my mother tongue. I soon found that this was a recurring theme, and I just can't for the life of me understand a vast majority of the Scottish accent. It's a massive hindrance, I know, especially as on the day of my birthday I wore this big "18 today" badge because I love drawing attention to myself evidently - as so many adorable people came to wish me a happy birthday, by the end of it I completely tuned out and Jaimie had to tell me people were communicating with me in their beautiful, but extremely thick accents. And they are beautiful - I felt like I was on the movie set of Brave the whole time (and saw a child that was even actually called Merida, no kidding).


Things to See and Do in Glasgow





The SightSeeing Bus

As a tourist, I felt it my duty to go on the Glasgow city sightseeing bus, the best way of seeing any city. The idea is, you get on the bus, and they give you a little guided tour of the place, and at all the best destinations you have the option to get off to go and see them. This means that you can get off at a cool museum, look around, and get back on the bus two hours later and resume the tour. It's literally such a brilliant idea, I don't know why they don't have them in smaller places like Swansea and Dusseldorf. So anyway, we went on the city sightseeing bus and saw a bunch of amazing places that I otherwise would not have been able to see, such as The Tall Ship, the Royal Concert Hall, St Vincent Place, and Glasgow Green. They're all places I wouldn't have wanted to spend a long time at, but am glad to have seen nonetheless.


Glasgow Cathedral

Also referred to as St Kentigurn's and consecrated in 1197, this cathedral was absolutely beautiful and definitely one of the top five I've ever seen. I adore cathedrals, as they can be absolutely gorgeous, and are so seeped in culture and history that even though I don't share the same religion as those who built these places, I can really appreciate them. For cathedral lovers like me, I can't recommend Glasgow enough, especially as it has a little crypt and everything underneath. Truly fabulous.

The Necropolis

The best graveyard I've ever visited in my life. That's not a sentence I ever planned on saying, but during my *gulp* 18 years on this earth I have seen pure white marble graveyards to indoor cathedral ones, and whilst they've all been insane in their own way, this one really tops it. It's right by the cathedral, and you weave your way walking up this massive hill to end up overlooking the whole city, with impressively massive monuments surrounding you. We went up relatively early one morning so the sky still had that post-sunrise look to it, and the brewery by the side was spewing smoke into the air, which just made it even more beautiful. It's a tad off the beaten track and a bit niche, but if you want to see something beautiful, if a little spooky, you absolutely must go to the Necropolis. 

St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art

When I was researching Glasgow, one of the places I found to go to were St Mungo, which was this very little museum that was focused on how different cultures and the like deal with religion and art. Me, being someone who's deeply in love with travel (can you tell?) and learning about other societies had to visit, and it was oh so worth it. I drank everything in, as it tells you about marriage and death and beliefs in all these other countries and communities, and it was insanely interesting. It's the sort of wacky, yet pretty darn awesome you wouldn't think about going to but would fall in love with if you did. Also, there's a pretty decent view from the third floor, which is worth checking out.





Provan's Lordship - the Oldest House in Glasgow

Funnily enough, this place was recommended to us by a guy at St Mungo, and so we went to check it out. Whilst the oldest building in Glasgow is the cathedral itself, the oldest actual house is this place, which was built in 1471 as part of the hospital. You go inside with the free entry, and whilst it smells pretty grim and the floorboard ceiling overhead looks extremely dodgy, it's super cute. We didn't spend long there, but the time we spent was worth it. 

George Square

Very similar to Trafalgar Square in London, George Square is a little place full of beautiful buildings and food places, and it's a very central place to catch buses and the like from. It's a cute square, and on our final night we had time to have a proper look around the place (and not just because I'd booked the return coach for 10:30pm when all the shops closed at like 5). In the evening of our first night, Jaimie took me out for dinner at a cute Italian place called Bella Italia which was right by the square and I fell in love with the place almost instantly. The food was incredible, the setting was wonderful, and I got to wear my favourite burgundy dress whilst Jaimie wore suspenders and a bow tie. We were exceedingly overdressed, and I loved it. And the waiter was the nicest person ever, like all tht Scottish lads and lasses I met.

People's Palace

Not only is this place a super lovely museum, but it also houses a 'winter garden' which is basically this massive greenhouse where you can sit and chill and drink hot beverages. It tells you all about the history of Glasgow, and has little exhibitions on what it was like back in the day. It was nice, and the winter gardens are literally adorable - and meant that I got a super badass Instagram photo.


Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

This was the best museum ever, I adore it so much. They have elephants and mummies and a floating head installation, and it's badass and brilliant and I could have spent a solid week there. It's one of the most popular attractions in the whole of Scotland, and it's not hard to see why. And they have a little indoor cafe where they sell the most beautiful orange and chocolate cake, which ended up being my birthday cake. Honestly, the best thing ever. Also, they sell these little bagpipe magnets that sing when you press them, and if that doesn't win you over then I'm not sure what will.


Cineworld (yes, really)

Remember I mentioned the shops closed at 5pm and we had a coach at 10:30? Well we ended up spending our final hours drinking hot beverages and watching Passengers, an adorable movie that I cannot recommend enough, at the tallest cinema in the world. It has 18 screens that are glossed around six different levels, and it's so lovely in there I can't even tell you. And the film? Had me blubbering like a baby. Which I guess makes sense, as 18 years ago I was also doing just that.




I came to the conclusion at the end of my trip that Glasgow is Edinburgh's slightly overlooked brother, with just as much culture and cuteness (although with a maybe thicker accent). It also seems like it's a lot easier to go budget in Glasgow, as all the tourists flood to Edinburgh - another plus, as there's basically none around at all. Bar me. Which is a massive plus, as if we ignore the fact that I am the ultimate tourist, tourists are exceedingly irritating in every way and I much prefer to be surrounded by just locals. I think Glasgow's a tad more metropolitan than Swansea, with a mix of buildings that look like they'd been transported straight out of Barcelona and London. It's a good comparison, honestly. 

All in all, I had a fabulous time, and I'd love to go back to Scotland someday soon. Whilst I'd never do the nine hour overnight coach journey ever again (ever), my time in Glasgow was flawless, filled with awesome places and beautiful accents and the feeling like I was in a very elaborate and exceedingly wacky Disney movie. I hope ya'll have enjoyed my stories, and if so, let me know below - and as always,

Have a good month, y'all!

- Amy

91 comments:

  1. Wonderful post and photos!
    Happy New year and Happy Birthday!!!
    kisses
    www.recklessdiary.ru

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  2. Happy Birthday!! And looks like you had an awesome time in Scotland!
    Adi xx
    fancycorrectitude.com
    instagram.com/fancycorrectitude

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    1. Thanks dude! And it was literally awesome!

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  3. Scotland looks awesome!! Going to put this on my travel list now!

    Tina
    www.justatinabit.com

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  4. So crazy I feel like everyone is going to Scotland recently!! Happy belated birthday though!! And so cool that you got to go :) I'll be going around the end of may so maybe I can use your tour guide if we run out of things to do since everything has already been planned haha

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    1. I actually noticed that too omg, and ty! Heck yes, have funnn c:

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  5. I've always wanted to go to Scotland! Birthdays should always be filled with sundaes!

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  6. Happy birthday! Thanks for sharing this cool post! I've been to Glasgow only one day, I'd love to visit this city more :)

    xx

    Claire from Dresscape
    www.dresscape.com

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    1. Dude I was only there for a couple too, I could easily have spent a good two weeks there haha.

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  7. Oh thanks for share your amazing pics about your trip with us
    xx

    www.sakuranko.com

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  8. Happy birhtday (I'm a little bit latte sorryyy)! Glasgow seems amazing, hope some day I can visit United States :D

    http://ayellowrain.blogspot.com/

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    Replies
    1. It's chill, tysm! And yes... I adore Glasgow... in the US....

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  9. Nice photos!
    xx

    http://losaway.blogspot.com.es

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  10. So amazing and what great pics! One day I will make it there. ;) Thanks so much for sharing this with us!

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  11. Wonderful post, love it! ♥
    Maybe follow for follow? :)

    veronicalucy.blogspot.com

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  12. Wonderful post, love it! ♥
    Maybe follow for follow? :)

    veronicalucy.blogspot.com

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  13. Hope you had a lovely birthday, I live near Edinburgh but I've never been to Glasgow. Gorgeous pictures.

    Rosy | Sparkles of Light Blog
    My Instagram | Instagram

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  14. I ve never been in Glasgow but i would like to visit this amazing city.
    Kisses

    www.angelswearheels.com

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  15. Belated happy birthday! To be 18 again...sigh....:D And your comment about the Scottish accent made me LOL. I had a Scottish manager before so I totally understand.
    So much to see in Glasgow for sure. Thanks for this guide!
    PS Unfortunately, The Little Prince is not available in Netflix Canada yet....booo!

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    1. Thank you! And gosh it's so old c,: and omg no that sucks! You'd adore it so much!

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  16. Now that is a cathedral. Dang. Happy belated birthday! It seems like so long ago that I turned 18, but it's only been a year and a half. On a separate point, what exactly do you mean by a "coach"? I'm familiar with the term being attached to a vehicle, but I'm not quite sure what it is in this case.

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    1. Dude it was stunning. And whaaaat, how come??? It's basically like a bus but typically just made up of a bunch of seats for long journeys.

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    2. I'm exaggerating a bit. College is weird though. It seems really fast at the time, but looking back it feels like it's been longer than it's actually been. Ah, in America we typically call them Greyhounds (which is a particular coach company).

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    3. Yesss we have that coach brand in Wales haha!

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  17. Thanks a lot :D

    So incredible pics. This place seems to be awesome!

    NEW FASHION POST | Must Haves To Use Until Winter End.
    InstagramFacebook Oficial PageMiguel Gouveia / Blog Pieces Of Me :D

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  18. What I'd give to be turning 18 again! Hehehe. Spending any kind of birthday in Glasgow would be incredible, especially a visit to that graveyard. I have such a fascination with graveyards and old, ornate headstones.

    Sxx
    www.daringcoco.com

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  19. wow there are so beautiful:) amazing photos:)
    kisses

    http://irreplaceable-fashion.blogspot.com

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  20. ¡¡Muchísimas felicidades Amy!! ¡¡Y qué mejor plan que ir a celebrarlo a Escocia!! Ya me hubiera gustado a mi cualquier cumpleaños ir a celebrarlo allí, ja, ja. Sin duda, es ideal, me encantan las fotografías que has sacado, me dan ganas de ir a hacer las maletas y viajar allí ahora mismo. Besitos.

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    1. Yo se, es muy genial! ah, tu vas, es necesito!

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  21. I love Glasgow, I think it's such an underrated city! My best friend lives there so I have an excuse to visit luckily - I love the People's Palace and the botanical gardens are really lovely!
    Amy xx
    www.callmeamy.co.uk

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    1. It is, and woah that is super lucky dude c:

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  22. I love this post, Glasgow looks gorgeous. Thanks for sharing. Do you want to support each others blog by following each other? Please let me know so I can follow you right back:)

    xoxo
    www.theclosetelf.com

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  23. such a fantastic post!

    Bloglovin
    STYLEFORMANKIND.COM

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  24. Nice foto https://bysinkj.blogspot.com

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  25. Hi Amy-Anne,
    beautiful pictures and lovely post
    kisses
    Maggie Dallospedale
    Indiansavage.com

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  26. Hello dear,
    fantastic post! The photos look nice :) I dream of visiting Scotland one day <3
    Hugs,
    LIANA LAURIE

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  27. I love this post! Beautiful photo! <3
    Shkvo

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  28. Thank you dear! Looks like you had a great time :D The photos look great! Will def look back at this post if I ever go to Glasgow :)
    xxxxx
    http://www.julieverafter.blogspot.com

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  29. Happy Belated Birthday ! Look like you have had an amazing time there.. I shall visit Glasglow the next time I am in UK...

    Keep in touch ya. :)
    www.smallnhot.com

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  30. Excellent post (as always)!Thank you very much :)

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  31. How sweet of your friend to whisk you off to Scotland for your 18th birthday - speaking of which, happy belated birthday!! I hope this year is a fab one of you Amy :)

    aglassofice.com
    x

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  32. Happy Birthday! What an awesome way to spend a birthday! Love your photos! =)


    - Cielo
    Mermaid in Heels

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  33. hi dear, your blog is really cool!
    great post and photos :)
    ❤ The Photoholic Girl by Michela M.

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  34. Ahaha you are fun and write beautifully Amy! Buon compleanno :-) is that any more understandable than Scottish? Well, it's Italian. Your post is an exhaustive travel guide of Glasgow, great job! Baci, Valeria - Coco et La vie en rose FASHION & BEAUTY

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    1. Coco this is so nice of you, thank you so much! And being a Spanish speaker myself I definitely understand italian more than Scottish! Grazie mille c:

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  35. Gorgeous post! Happy belated birthday lovely

    Alya / MoorizZLA xx

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  36. Che posto incantevole!
    Bellissime anche le foto!
    Un bacione Manu <3

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  37. Awesome travel post, dear! Love to visit some day too! xoxo

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  38. awesome pictures
    NEW REVIEW ON MY BLOG <<< fashion blogger >>>
    have an happy day
    kisses

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  39. Woow I always love your photographs :O They are so magicaal <3 and I'd love to visit those places

    www.infashionchains.com

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    1. Ohmygod thank you so much <3 and you must!!

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