Hidden Gems

On the look out for the new and unusual? Take a look at some of the hidden gems off the beaten track in Glasgow!

Hidden Gems

If you're always on the look out for the new and unusual, take a look at some of the hidden gems off the beaten track in Glasgow!

Arlington Swimming Pool

ArlingtonBaths-995 2
Credit: © Arlington Baths

Founded in 1870, Arlington Baths are the oldest surviving Victorian bathing complex in the world and comprises a 21 metre skylit swimming pool, a unique Turkish suite, saunas, steam room, free standing slipper baths, hot tubs and more.

The Britannia Panopticon Music Hall


Founded in 1857, the Britannia quickly became the most popular place of amusement and entertainment in the city, with 1,500 people cramming themselves onto the wooden benches for every show. Today, the auditorium is the world's oldest surviving music hall and holds regular viewings, exhibitions, bazaars and traditional music shows.

Glasgow Central Station Tours

Credit: © Glasgow Central Station Tours

The exclusive, behind the scenes tours of Glasgow Central Station, include visits to the subterranean passageways beneath Glasgow’s streets, the railway vaults that drove Glasgow’s industrial expansion to become ‘The Second City of The British Empire’, as well as tales of the famous and infamous who have travelled the tracks and stood on the platforms of Glasgow Central Station.

Glasgow Museums Resource Centre


The Glasgow Museums Resource Centre (GMRC) is a store for the collections of the museums when they're not on display at venues across the city. With the purpose built facility housing around 1.4 million objects, book a tour today to discover some amazing unseen objects!

Glasgow Necropolis


The Necropolis is a one of Europe's most significant cemeteries, full of wonderful architecture, sculptures and fascinating stories. Located adjacent to Glasgow Cathedral, the Necropolis was modelled after the Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris, and is a must-visit for those looking for something a little bit different.

The Hidden Gardens

Credit: © The Hidden Gardens

Tucked away behind Tramway, The Hidden Gardens are not only a tranquil retreat in the city's Southside but also a community space where a variety of events are held.  

Holmwood House


Holmwood House is a magnificent 19th century villa built by Alexander 'Greek' Thomson for local businessman James Cooper and is located next to Linn Park in the city's southside. Make sure you organise a tour to truly appreciate the history of the house!

The Lanes of the West End

AshtonLaneCredit: © Nils Hasenau

Ruthven and Dowanside lane have a multitude of quirky shops, trinkets and oddities to find. Many of the traders specialise in vintage clothing, Bric-à-brac, retro furniture, comics, vinyl records and antiques. Similarly, Cresswell Lane houses De Courcy's Arcade, which has cluster of around fifteen curious boutiques, galleries, gift shops, cafés and specialist services. Get to know this trendy neighbourhood like a local in the trendy West End and Lanes neighbourhood.

Maryhill Burgh Halls - Walking & Cycling Heritage Tours 

MaryhillBurghHalls995Credit: © Maryhill Burgh Halls

Maryhill Burgh Hall have produced three walking trails outlining the rich heritage of the local area which includes many local attractions such as Queen's Cross, Dawsholm Park and Garscube Estate. Alternatively, get on your bike and discover the mysteries and heritage of Glasgow on a gentle heritage lead ride along the Forth and Clyde Canal and River Kelvin (bikes available on request).

Mackintosh Queens Cross

Credit: Dave Souza, CC-BY-SA

Mackintosh Queen's Cross is one of Glasgow's hidden architectural gems. The only church in the world designed by the great Scottish architect, designer and artist, Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Commissioned in 1896, the Church offers a unique insight into the spirit of Mackintosh from the Gothic inspired windows to the floral motifs throughout. As well as tours of the venue, visitors can enjoy one of the many events throughout the year from concerts to exhibitions and much more. 

Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre

Credit: © Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre

Founded in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1989, the Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre was brought to the Trongate 103 in 1996 by Eduard Bersudsky. The theatre brings inanimate objects to life, as sculptured pieces of scrap and tiny carved figures perform humorous and tragic stories of the human spirit, set to haunting music.


Credit: © SWG3

Located in an archway in Glasgow's Yorkhill district, SWG3 (aka the Studio Warehouse) houses artists' studios, a gallery, a gig venue and even occasional bar, used to showcase the work of new artists, launch parties, and much more. With something on all the time, take a look at their schedule and get yourself along.

The Empire & Mitre Bar signs, Tontine Lane


Hidden away down Tontine Lane is the Empire sign, which can be spotted illuminated on occassion. Designed by Glaswegian Turner Prize winner Douglas Gordon, inspiration for the piece came from Hitchcock's Vertigo, and when lit, one of the 'Es' even flicker to give it a real vintage look. 

To the left, there is another neon sign on Tontine Lane. Originally from the Mitre Bar, which used to be on nearby Brunswick Street, the sign reads 'Mitre Bar Sandwich Buffet'. Although the Mitre Bar is now closed, you can still see the original Victorian bar on the Riverside Museum's Main Street; a recreation of city shop units between 1895 and 1930.

Zen Garden at St Mungo's Museum of Religious Life and Art


Find inner peace in the first purpose built Zen Garden in the UK. Relax outdoors with a coffee from the café, or just soak in the atmosphere and simple forms, which symbolise the harmony between people and nature.

Discover more of Glasgow's hidden gems in each of the city's neighbourhoods and districts!

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