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Glasgow: Top ten things to do
  • If Glasgow’s favourite Vietnamese restaurant is good enough for Beyonce, it’s good enough for the rest of us. While she was on her worldwide tour earlier this year, the Drunk in Love singer popped into The Hanoi Bike Shop on Ruthven Lane, a colourful spot filled with Asian lanterns and fairy lights, quickly instagramming her experience to her millions of followers. But did she go for the Chilli Ox tongue? 

  • Slick members club 29 Glasgow will be transformed into a celebration of Jamaican culture during the Commonwealth Games. From July 31 until August 3, the temporary Jamaica House on Royal Exchange Square will be decked out in black, gold and green balloons and bunting, and will serve Jamaican chicken, rum cocktails and screen live coverage of the track and field events. A makeshift Jamaican Sporting Museum will also display kits and memorabilia from when the Commonwealth Games were held on the island in 1966. 

  • Look away, Londoners! For a mere £4 you can purchase an All-Day Discovery ticket to ride Glasgow’s subway – the third oldest in the world, no less -  a circular route that covers nearly seven miles and 15 stations. The world-famous subcrawl involves getting off at each stop and drinking at the nearest pub. The end goal is having your last drink in the pub you started in. Unsurprisingly, it’s a feat few have succeeded. 
  • For a spot of Japanese-style zen, swing by Britain’s first permanent Zen Garden. You’ll find the leafy haven, built in 1993, hidden at the back of St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art, which is named after Glasgow's patron saint who was so revered the city’s cathedral was built in his honour. Order a coffee from the museum’s café, find a nice spot among the sand, pebbles, stone and moss, and enjoy sitting very still.
  • The new Drygate building, which serves 24 on-tap beers and 200 bottled craft beers, is not just a brewery: it is an experiential brewery. Inside you will find a beer hall, a shop, a gallery space, and an outpost of Edinburgh’s gastropub Vintage. Throughout August, Drygate will also host a selection of events including a vintage beer club, an urban market showcasing Scotland’s artisian food and drink producers, designers and artists. 
  • Drive north out of Glasgow and within one hour you will find yourself on the south banks of the majestic Loch Lomond, the largest expanse of freshwater in Britain.  Explore its coastline in kayaks, sink into the glimmering depths for a bracing swim, or cycle along the Loch’s new bike trail transformed from an old 18th century road. If you can’t bear to leave too soon, stay in a converted church at the Inversnaid Bunkhouse for less than £20 per night. 
  • Timorous Beasties studio, which takes its name from the Robert Burns’ poem ‘To a Mouse’, is owned by textile designers Alistair McAuley and Paul Simmon. Their surreal work has been described as ‘William Morris on acid’ and can be perused or purchased at their two showrooms in London and Glasgow. Inside you will find everything from, cushions, lampshades and rugs depicting everything from naturalistic images to edgy modern prints.
  • The Zaha Hadid-designed museum, with its unmistakable zinc-clad zig-zagged roof, has become one of the city’s most beloved institutions.  Since 2011 it has sat proudly on the banks of the River Clyde, showcasing Glasgow's engineering, transport, shipbuilding heritage - among its 3,000 objects is a giant steam train built in the 1950s for South African Railways. Last year it was given the prestigious title of European Museum of the Year.
  • Most of the action in the Ubiquitous Chip – a nod to the city’s preference for the deep-fried sliced potato - takes place in the jungle-style courtyard. The restaurant, which first opened in 1971, is still one of the few spots in the city that serves original-recipe venison haggis. To celebrate its recent 40th milestone commissioned a mural by local artist Michael Lacey that depicts local scenes including the now-demolished Ross’s Dairy and fishing boats on the Clyde.
  • You would have a tough job comparing Glasgow with Paris but the two cities share at least one similarity: Scotland’s largest city has a mystical 37-acre Victorian cemetery, full of tombs, obelisks, and ornate sculptures, which is modelled on the Père Lachaise. To reach the main entrance of the Necropolis, you have to cross a bridge known as the ‘Bridge of Sighs’ so-named because it forms part the funeral procession route.