The Glasgow series – 12 hours in the West End

We’re taking you through some of our favourite haunts in the city’s West End – where it all began for Arnold Clark.

The best days often begin with coffee, so we would advise you head directly to Meadow Road in Partick and grab a couple of smooth lattes and their out-of-this-world salted caramel brownies. We think cake for breakfast is perfectly acceptable when you’re on your holidays.

Cosy coffee in hand, make your way up Dumbarton Road and turn left at the cross onto Hyndland Street, where, you’ll find The Owen Bisset Boutique. This tiny shop is a packed treasure trove of jewellery, candles and Moroccan-imported lanterns and rugs at reasonable prices. It’s the perfect place to find that thoughtful birthday present you forgot all about.

Carrying on up this road past the atmospheric Cottiers Theatre, you’ll arrive at Cassiopeia , incidentally named after a vain queen of Greek mythology, who boasted about her unrivalled beauty. The owners of this captivating boutique have every reason to blow their own trumpet however – it’s a fantastic gift shop that has a Scottish collection, and champions beautiful pieces from local designers and artists.

If all this shopping means you’ve worked up an appetite, there’s an abundance of excellent eateries this side of town. A few doors down from Cassiopeia you’ll find Epicures of Hyndland which has a nice mix of traditional Scottish and French bistro-style cuisine. You’ll also be tripping over brunch spots with The Hyndland Fox , Delizique/Cafezique, and Roastit Bubbly Jocks all spread across Partick and Hyndland.

Fancy something a bit different than the usual poached eggs and smashed avocado affair? Head to Kimchi Cult or Hanoi Bike Shop for some authentic Korean and Vietnamese food, respectively. Rumour has it Beyoncé once visited Hanoi so if it’s good enough for Queen B, it’s good enough for us.

Refreshed and well-fed, you can take your pick from a plethora of fun afternoon activities. Catch a flick at the comfortable independent cinema The Grosvenor , head up the road to the Òran Mór for their legendary theatre performances in the afternoon or marvel at the vintage and antique pieces in the shops down Ruthven Lane and in the Granny Would Be Proud market at Hillhead Bookclub, if it’s on during your adventure. If the weather’s on your side, the Botanic Gardens or Kelvingrove Park are perfect places to sunbathe, dog-spot and be at one with nature…

If you’re keen for something a bit more educational, the majestic Kelvingrove Art Gallery isn’t too far and it’s right across the road from the dreamy Tantrum Doughnuts . Alternatively, you could head down the Clyde to the Science Centre or the Riverside Museum.

Of course, if you’re in the west neck of the woods you can’t miss the University of Glasgow . Established in 1451, it’s one of the oldest universities in the world. The famous (they’ve appeared in Cloud Atlas and Taggart!) cloisters are a must-see, in addition to all the intricate architecture. The university is often compared to Hogwarts so an absolute treat for those fanatical about Harry Potter.

Finally, round off your packed day with some chilled out food and drinks. Depending on your last activity, we’d suggest Number 16 , Cail Bruich or the Ubiquitous Chip if you’d like something premium and locally sourced. For something a bit more laid back, the newly refurbished Little Italy serves up cracking pizza and pasta and Bar Soba is your go-to place for pan-Asian street food.


Photos courtesy of Wikipedia, Hanoi Bike Shop, Owen Bisset Boutique, Daily Record, Hyndland Fox, The Whisky Ambassador and Glasgow Botanic Gardens.

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