Well over a million can’t be wrong – that’s how many visitors flock to the red-sandstone, Spanish Baroque-style jewel in Glasgow’s cultural crown every year. Open since 1901, and given a £28 million facelift in the early 2000s, this mammoth institution is neatly divided into two wings. To the right, one of Europe’s greatest displays of civic art. To the left, a weird and wonderful museum collection that starts with a Supermarine Spitfire suspended dramatically from the ceiling above a menagerie of stuffed animals, including much-loved Sir Roger the Indian Elephant.
Glasgow has given so much to the world over the centuries. From the television to the first-ever international football match – not to mention a whole host of pioneering figures in art, music and literature – you can learn much about this heritage at the city’s array of brilliant museums. Major general interest institutions such as the Kelvingrove, the Riverside Museum and the Hunterian are housed in striking buildings that are attractions in themselves, while smaller, more specialised galleries are dedicated to everything from policing to piping. Most of them, too, are free.
To help get you started, we’ve picked out some of the best museums in Glasgow right now. You’ll be able to trace not just the story of the city itself, but also find out how it’s helped shape the world in ways that are often under-appreciated. Expect surprises, discoveries, wonderment – and a whole lot of Charles Rennie Mackintosh.
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