Culture of Scotland: Castles and Architecture of Glasgow – Road.Travel

Culture of Scotland: Castles and Architecture of Glasgow

Road Trip Route. Explore the castles of Scotland, Get to know the beautiful architecture of Glasgow, Drive along the coast .

Scotland is famous for its castle culture, which holds precious works of art, endless beaches, golf courses, and excellent cuisine. One gets the feeling that they are everywhere. That is why most of the attractions that you are going to visit will be beautiful, completely different castles that will surprise with its greatness and beauty. Glasgow is considered a city with a rich history, cultural and religious values, it is from it your journey and familiarity with the architecture of this city will begin. You will visit many museums of the city, including the Museum of Science. Also you will go to the University of Glasgow, which is included in the ranking of the best universities in England.

History and Culture. From: Glasgow

Anastasia Omelchuk. Traveller.

Travel Itinerary and Road Trip Route

Day 1: First look at the city

Today you will begin exploring the city with a visit to the park which was made from a swamp in the 15th century.

Glasgow Green

Glasgow Green is a park located in the eastern part of Glasgow on the north bank of the Clyde River. This is the oldest park of the city founded in the middle of the 15th century. In 1450 King Jacob II donated a plot of land to Bishop William Turnbull and residents of the city. In 1806 one year after the death of Admiral Nelson a monument in his honor was erected in the park. It was the first monument to Nelson in Great Britain. The Nelson column in Dublin appeared only two years later and in London three decades later.

Bill's Restaurant

You'll like the amazing sea bass, fish pie and squid. According to the guests, here you can try mouth-watering pancakes on kefir, donuts with cinnamon and a chocolate bomb. This place is very comfortable, you can relax here.

Day 2: Major Glasgow attractions

Your day will begin with a visit to the main square of the city and you will also see the cathedral in which wooden structures and floors have been preserved from the 14th century. You can also enjoy a visit to a small mansion with a garden in which medical herbs grow.

George Square

The picturesque architectural monument of the XIX century, built by the project of W. Young. Here sits the city council of Glasgow, as well as the museum, art gallery and banquet hall for the reception of the royal family. The building is interesting with a richly decorated sculpture with a central gable and mosaic inclusions dominate the interior. In 1996, the City Chambers opened for ordinary guests, and since then everyone can visit their delightful rooms and be impressed with the historical wealth of the city. Looking here at the weekend, guests can be at a fashion show or some special event.

Cathedral Square

The temple was built in the 11th century on the site of the chapel of St. Mungo, the patron saint of the city. The building of the cathedral was built in the style of "Scottish Gothic", come by some severity of architectural forms from the earlier Romanesque style. Most wooden structures and floors date from the 14th century. The cathedral is located on a slope and therefore consists of two parts - the Upper Church and the Lower Church. Formally, the cathedral has not been a cathedral since 1690, since there is no episcopal chair here. Now in the cathedral the Presbyterian Church of Scotland conducts services, and the building of the cathedral itself belongs to the crown.

Provand's Lordship

The Provand mansion was built in 1471 and then was part of the St. Nicholas Hospital. Most likely, the house was provided with temporary accommodation for the priests of the cathedral and the attendants. The house is furnished with unique wooden furniture of the 15-17th centuries and some unique objects of use. Behind the house is the garden of St. Nicholas, an oasis of peace and tranquility, where medicinal herbs are grown, and a small but very beautiful regular garden is set up. Here you can see a collection of stone masks, carved in 1737 and once adorned the building in the oldest district of Glasgow, Trongate.


Here you can taste Italian cuisine. Amore is worth a visit to try the delicious shrimp cocktails, spaghetti carbonara and vegetable pizza. Have a nice lunch here and order a good strawberry cheesecake, toffee pudding and tiramisu. Order a good espresso, milkshake or lemonade.

Saint Andrew's Cathedral

This monastery belongs to the Roman Catholic Diocese, it was erected in 1814, and in 2011 survived a large-scale reconstruction. But the updates affected only the interior decoration. The appearance of the building, made in the graceful Gothic style, remained unchanged. In the courtyard of the cathedral there is a large bell tower, whose belfry consists of seven bells, having an original tubular form. The interior of the cathedral is notable for its special grandeur: the main hall is decorated in golden tones, ancient canvases with images of holy martyrs hang on the walls.

Glasgow Botanic Gardens

Urban Botanical Gardens opened two centuries ago. Since then, its natural diversity has increased quite strongly. The plant collection is so diverse and extensive that even species are specially grown for sale in gardens throughout the country. The architecture of the Glasgow Botanical Garden is also of considerable interest. The most elegant building is the Kibble Palace conservatory. The botanical gardens of Glasgow are famous for the fact that the plants inhabiting their territory were brought not only from the United Kingdom, but from all over the globe.

Southern Necropolis

On the high hill, not far from the Cathedral and almost in the heart of Glasgow, is the place of eternal rest of many citizens - the famous Necropolis. It is a cemetery of the Victorian era with more than 50,000 ancient graves. The need for a large graveyard in Glasgow arose at the beginning of the nineteenth century, when churches in Europe buried only Christians and had no idea what to do with atheists. After passing into the Necropolis itself, the guests seem to fall into the architectural museum, where every headstone is a work of art. Many monuments were created by prominent Scottish architects. So, here you can see the work of Alexander Thomson, David Hamilton and John Bruce.

Hutchesons Glasgow

Here you can enjoy Scottish specialties. In this place, visitors can taste delicious cooked venison, scallops and sirloin. Many guests recommend ordering a nice white chocolate cheesecake, butterscotch pudding and tart tatin for dessert. The wine list is very diverse. Most of the guests write that the staff at this place is wonderful. According to customer reviews, the service is excellent.

Day 3: Museums as a way to get to know the city

Today the day will be filled with visits to various museums which together will help to get a picture of the city and its history. You will also see a house that seems to have disappeared from the pages of works by Charlotte Bronte.

People's Palace

The People’s Palace and the adjacent Winter Garden are a museum and a greenhouse. They were opened in 1898 by Count Rosebery. At that time, this area was considered to be very unfavorable, and the People’s Palace was designed to improve the general environment, as well as to provide residents with a new cultural center. The architecture of this palace deserves special attention. It is made in classic style with some elements of Baroque. Initially, there were reading rooms and lounges on the first floor of the building, a museum on the second, and an art gallery on the third. But in the 40s of the 20th century, the palace became a museum of history.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

The building in the Spanish Baroque style was built in 1901 from the traditional Glasgow architecture of red sandstone. The opening of the gallery was held in preparation for the International Exhibition in Glasgow. The basis of the Kelvingrove art collection was a collection of paintings, which was transferred to the museum from the McLellan Gallery. There is a city legend that the building was built backwards, and the architect jumped off one of the towers when he saw that the facades were intertwined. However, this is just a myth.

Glasgow Science Centre

The opening of the national center took place in 2001. The complex has interactive exhibits from different scientific areas, here you can dive into the fascinating world of modern digital technologies, as well as chemistry, physics, astronomy and medicine. The ground floor of the building occupies the largest planetarium in Great Britain, where you will see stars as they appear before astronauts in the windows of the international space station. Under the dome of the sky you can see 9,000 celestial bodies.


It is worth visiting Crabshakk to try delicious scallops on the grill, squid with pepper and anchovies. Many guests recommend ordering good pudding, panna cotta and affogato for the dessert. Customers love the amazing service and believe that prices are attractive.

Pollok House

Back in 1752 in the southern part of Glasgow, the famous Scottish architect William Adam erected a luxurious estate in the Georgian style. For two centuries, it served as the family nest of the Maxwell family, and in 1966 it was acquired by the National Trust of Scotland. This house seems to have disappeared from the pages of Jane Austen's novels or the Bronte sisters. Visitors will see here an exhibition of Spanish painting, figurines of porcelain, silver and glass. The real attraction of the green park is an old beech, numbering more than a quarter century.

Queen's Park

Queens - a park in Scotland, designed by Joseph Paxton and founded in 1857. Queen's Park was presented in a variety of English beauties and luxury. In the park, surrounded by amazing trees and flowers, there is a large lake, near which tourists and city residents feed waterfowl every day.

Two Fat Ladies

This place is famous for its amazing scallops, fish and smoked haddock chowder. For dessert, take a good ice cream and delicious pudding. In this place you should order wine, as it is good here. Most of the guests think that the staff is friendly. According to visitors, the service is excellent. You will appreciate the calm atmosphere and first-class interior.

Day 4: Castles - each with their own personality

A varied day on which you will visit the abbey, various and very interesting castles that have a unique personality. And at the end of the day you will find yourself on the beach enjoying the beautiful view and sound of the surf.

Paisley Abbey

The abbey was founded in 1163 by Walter Fitzalan, First Lord Seneschale of Scotland. Paisley was originally a monastery in which 13 monks lived. In 1219, Paisley became a full abbey. During the 13th century, the abbey accepted many young people for study, among them was William Wallis, later the national hero of Scotland. Among the important historical relics kept in the church, an important place is occupied by the Celtic cross, dating back to the 10th century.

Dumbarton Castle

This building is only the palace of the governor of the castle, Governor's House, built in the 18th century. In fact, it was not a castle but rather a fortress, the main structures of which were located between the two peaks of the rock. It is believed that Dumbarton is the oldest fortification in Britain, whose history dates back to the middle of the 5th century. The name “Dambarton” comes from “Dun Breatann”, which means “fortress of the Britons”. The fortification here was still at the beginning of the first millennium. From here the Romans began to build the wall of Anthony.

Newark Castle

Newark Castle - a beautiful and well-preserved building, located on the southern bank of the Firth of Clyde. It is all the more surprising to find that before the 1980s, another shipyard occupied comfortable areas to the east of Newark Castle and to the south of it: virtually completely blocking it from internal review. It looked completely different in 1478, when George Maxwell inherited "Barony of Finlastoun" and built a castle for six years. Parts of George Maxwell’s castle remain visible in the structure you see today. There is something to explore, impressions of the embankment of the Clyde River, views from the tower and an unusual history and surroundings.

One Cove Road

Customer review about this place: "It’s always busy with great energy and the staff are very friendly. The views are fantastic and I’ve actually just visited today having my favourite coffee with a slice of homemade cappuccino cake which was freshly baked in the cafe this morning..."

The Pencil Monument

In memory of the Battle of Largs, an obelisk in the form of a traditional Gaelic-Irish round tower was installed on the battlefield, which was informally called the Pencil. This is a tribute to the Scots morale - pushing the Vikings back and forcing them to retreat, this time. It is also located on a beautiful cape - it is worth staying on one of the benches to admire the stunning view of the Firth of Clyde. Also this is a high pointed tower, which is higher than you think until you get close.

Kelburn Castle

One of the oldest Scottish castles. It attracts attention with its colorful decoration because the ancient facade of the mansion, built in the 13th century, is densely covered with bright graffiti. When the building began to collapse, there was no money for its reconstruction, and then the owner of the castle, Patrick Boyle, Count of Glasgow, not without the help of his children, made a brilliant and bold decision - to give the facade "at the mercy" to street artists. For this, masters from Brazil were invited, who, along with Scottish artists, painted the ancient castle with bright modern graffiti.

Irvine Beach

One of the visitors writes: "The scenery is just stunning, we could see snow capped mountains in the distance over the water. And, as on our previous visit there were a number of horse riders on the beach, nothing more beautiful than watching horses walking through the surf. Highly recommended."


Visit this restaurant and discover Mediterranean cuisine. In the menu, pay attention to good pizza, spaghetti carbonara and rib-eye. The chefs cook good lemon meringue, ice cream and lemon pie. The wine list is very diverse in Lido. From the point of view of visitors, the staff here is helpful. According to guest reviews, the service is superb.

Day 5: Impressive castles

Another day of enjoying the castles. Today you will see three different castles of the 13th, 14th and 16th centuries. You will also visit a house that has an interesting fate with its owners.

Dundonald Castle

There is nothing subtle in Dundonald Castle. The building the remains of which can be seen today can be traced back to the ascension of Robert II to the Scottish throne in 1371. It was his favorite home and he died here in 1390. The main room is the remarkably preserved Laigh Hall or Lower Hall. In this impressive vaulted room were held the public affairs of the king. After the restoration in the corridor there is a passage at a higher level which would be at the level of the original floor. Recent archaeological excavations show that the castle which remains are visible today was only the last in a long series of fortresses on the top of this hill. The superb visitor center and cafes run by the Friends of Dundonald Castle have a variety of models showing the development stages of the castle.

Dunure Castle

China is not the only place where you can go through the maze, contemplating the ruins. It is a 13th century fortress and the castle of the Kennedy clan, at that time controlling most of southwest Scotland. The stone labyrinth is located on the coast and is facing down to the coastline, so as you walk along the route, you can admire a stunning view of the castle. On the boards, it is written in the castle that efforts will be made to restore it in the future, so that guests cannot access parts of the castle that are now blocked for security purposes.

Culzean Castle and Country Park

In the 16th century, a small tower was located on this site, around which, over the course of several years, a beautiful ensemble in the style of Robert Adam, which was popular at that time, grew. Culzean Castle one of several castles, in connection with which they mention not the name of the owner, but the name of the architect. The unusual design of the architect turned out to be implemented and preserved for descendants by the National Trust of Scotland, to whom the castle was handed over by the former owners. In 1987, an image of the castle appeared on the back of a £ 5 banknote issued by the Royal Bank of Scotland.


According to review: "I’ve eaten lunch here twice, after realising it was once the Cecchinis that I had been looking for. Both times we chose the Italian tapas menu - £15 for 5 sharing plates. Good value! And appeared to be freshly cooked. Two people can each choose their favourites & an 8 inch pizza with a good base counts as one of the sharing plates. Add a big 250ml glass of wine at less than £7 & the bill is less than £30. The tapas format is excellent for a chatty lunch."

Dumfries House

In April 2007, one of the most significant buildings in Britain, Dumfries House, a Palladian-style mansion, created by the Adam brothers for the fifth count of Dumfries, had to be sold along with a collection of furniture designed specifically for him, since the appeal to the National Fund of Scotland was not gave no results. Two months before the alleged sale of James Knox, an Ayrshire resident, delivered a heartfelt address at the Prince of Wales Conference on the Protection of Ancient Monuments at Holyrood Palace. Afterwards, the prince reportedly asked him: “How do we save this house?”. Having never seen this house, the prince set to work and offered a price of £ 45 million. The house was saved.

Brig O' Doon

Brig O'Dun is an ancient medieval steep mountain bridge with a single arched bridge in Ayrshire. Since the beginning of the 15th century, this evocative structure is famous for playing a role in the last verse of Scottish Bard Robert Burns 'famous poem Tam o' Shanter. This landmark must be visited by every poetry lover of the 18th century.


One of the reviews says: "We had haddock and chips on a Saturday night, the food was freshly cooked for us, and more importantly was amongst the best that we had ever had. The menu is incredible, with a lot more than the normal cod and haddock (lemon sole, whiting, sea bass, scallops), all locally landed and freshly caught. The good thing is they have a wet fish shop next door so you can see the fresh fish they land".

Day 6: Great trip to different spots

Today will be a day full of long journeys. Your day begins with a visit to an unusual triangular-shaped castle one of the few in the world.

Caerlaverock Castle

Caerlaverock castle has a triangular shape. The only one in the UK and one of the very few in Europe and the world. Moreover, if the triangle is divided in half, both its parts were initially completely identical. Now, however, one of the towers has been completely destroyed, and additional buildings have been erected in the courtyard that break the symmetry. Nevertheless, even now, when one of the towers is missing, and there is no opposition from the defenders, it is not so easy to get into the castle, passing the set entrance. The castle is surrounded by a deep moat, so it seems as if it grows out of the water.

Dean Castle Country Park

The history of the castle is inseparably linked with the history of its owners, the Boyd family, who owned it since the beginning of the 19th century. In 1899, the castle inherited the 8th Lord Howard de Walden. In 1908, the restoration of the Main Tower was completed, and in the 1930s the palace was completely restored. He was a very diversified man and over the years of his life he collected an excellent collection of knives and armor from different countries, which is located in the castle today. In 1974 he bestowed the castle and its priceless collections on the city of Kilmarnock, and two years later, the castle was open to public visits.

Si! Cafe:Bar:Restaurant

From the visitor's review: "First visit today for lunch, food amazing, good portions, service fast efficient, service with a smile Stephanie my server had loads, great menu choices, I didn't have alcohol on this trip but they have a great list of cocktails, wines etc, a great place to eat, child friendly, cosy atmosphere very welcoming, I cannot praise it highly enough, a little gem of a place cannot Wait to return, give it a try you will not be disappointed, cheers to all the staff you all do an amazing job"

Bruce's Stone

The Bruce Stone stands in a beautiful location overlooking the lake and the hills beyond. In memory of Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland, and the battle of Trool in 1307. It is hard to imagine, looking at this landscape, that such a fierce battle took place here 700 years ago. The mighty Merrick, the highest mountain in the Southern Highlands, guards Lough Troul. The views from the top are amazing, but this is a serious route for well-trained pedestrians. You can find more information about the route to WalkHighlands.

Varyag Monument

It is an Orthodox bronze cross. This memorial was the first monument to Russian soldiers in the United Kingdom. The place for the monument was not chosen by chance, it was here in the Firth of Clyde Bay in 1920, the ship rested on the bottom just 500 m from the shore. The Scots were afraid that the monument would not fit into the landscape, but everyone liked the memorial. The feat of "Varyag" is immortalized not only in Russian, but also in world history as a symbol of military valor and glory. Russian sailors deserve respect not only in their homeland, but also among their opponents.

Custom House

If you like British dishes visit this place. In the menu, check out the amazing fish & chips, haddock and chicken. Here you can order delicious pudding, ice cream and fudge for dessert. Here you can try a good beer, wine or ale. Most visitors says that the staff in this place is pleasant.

Day 7: Scottish сulture

Today you will see a ruined castle with a history that began in the 15th century. Then you will get acquainted with the abbey of the 11th century which was visited by Mary Stuart.

Castle Kennedy

Kennedy Castle was first founded in 1482. In 1608, John F. Kennedy built a modern castle, which in 1677 went to James Dalrymplu along with the lands, and his heirs laid out gardens here. In 1867, another Lochinch Castle was built in front of the ruins. It is a large and comfortable Victorian house, equipped with the latest technology. There are many delicate plants in the garden, including rare rhododendrons that bloom in spring, and at an altitude of 17 meters the highest in the British Isles is the New Zealand Kalanchoe (Pittosporumtenuifolium).

Glenluce Abbey

The abbey was founded in the 11th century. It was visited by the ruling persons of Scotland (Mary Stuart, Robert the Bruce, etc.). In the process of reformation it was abolished. Buildings gradually collapsed. Currently you can see only the ruins. Officially the abbey is open only in summer you can easily view everything. There is some small museum room that closed for fall, but everything else can be safely seen. Around the abbey picturesque surroundings.

Mr Basrai's World Buffet

This restaurant specializes in Chinese and Indian cuisines. Many visitors are advised to order mouth-watering Mexican steaks, sushi and pizza. For dessert, try delicious pudding, ice cream and apple crumble. According to customer reviews, chocolate frappe is not bad here.

Scottish Maritime Museum

Learn about the importance of Scotland for maritime history, as well as the people who built and sailed on Scottish ships around the world. Build and test your own boat model or learn how to maneuver a remote-controlled boat in our inner pond. A wonderful museum that will interest visitors of all ages. Well presented and shown information about the exhibits.

University of Glasgow

The largest university in Scotland, which is included in the list of leading educational institutions in the UK, as well as 1% of the best places to study in the world. The university was founded in 1451, its graduates are seven Nobel laureates. The university consists of four colleges, each of which, in turn, includes several faculties. The institution owns an outstanding library, which stores rare works written in the era of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The university has students from dozens of countries. You can get inside freely, moreover, there is a free museum with a variety of exhibits.

Ox and Finch

Ox and Finch offers Scottish and Spanish cuisine. Order amazing ox meat, sea trout and scallops here. For dessert they offer a good orange pudding, orange parfait and coconut ice cream. The wine list is very diverse in this institution. Great service is a big plus of this restaurant.

Day 8: Modern Art

Today is the last day of travel in the wonderful Scotland and you will have to complete it in the Museum of Modern Art, the building of this museum used to be a bank and then a library.

Gallery of Modern Art

This historic building was built back in 1778 by a wealthy tobacco lord, and it served nothing more than a bank, a stock exchange, and a library. During this time, the neoclassical structure has repeatedly changed its appearance. The contemporary art gallery occupied this building in 1996. The collection of the gallery consists of works of recognizable and beginning masters working in the style of avant-garde, mosaic, figurines, unusual photographs. From time to time, workshops and creative evenings with local artists and writers are organized in the halls.