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Get back into the heart of it all

The wait is finally over! Glasgow's amazing restaurants, bars, hotels, museums, galleries and shops are now open and ready to welcome you back, safely. 

Have you missed grabbing a bite to eat in the city's best restaurants, drinks with friends outdoors, browsing the amazing city centre shops or experiencing the city's culture in person? It's time to reconnect with the places and people that you’ve missed and get back into the heart of it all.

Great food in great surroundings (we’ll do the washing up)

A meal out with friends or family is high on the list of things that people have missed the most. So let the experts take care of the cooking and cleaning so that you can enjoy the best things about eating out - delicious food prepared by chefs, the great atmosphere and the company of loved ones. The only challenge will be choosing where to go as Glasgow has such a celebrated and wide-ranging foodie scene for brunch, lunch and dinner. 

Looking to return to dining in style? Book Mamasan for a tasty meal with flavours inspired by South East Asia, enjoy excellent seafood in plush surroundings by booking at Anchor Line, sample innovative Indian dishes by an award-winning chef by reserving a table at Swadish, be one of the first to try out some of the new dishes on the menu at Ox and Finch by booking a lunch or dinner slot or support a Glasgow-institution by booking Cafe Gandolfi for some traditional Scottish cuisine with a modern twist. Looking to try somewhere completely new? Check out our 'Top 10 new places to eat and drink article' for some inspiration.

A man and a woman walk through the spacious and grand Royal Exchange Square chatting while carrying take-away coffees

If you don't want to book in advance, then TripAdvisor favourite, Paesano Pizza, is for you. They are operating a first-come-first-served basis for their authentic Neapolitan pizzas - check out the full Paesano Pizza menu here. If you're not quite ready to eat indoors, then grab some takeaway food and coffee and enjoy a picnic at one of the many spacious squares and green spaces of the city, such as Royal Exchange Square and Glasgow Green. For food and drinks on the move, there are plenty of options, including Sprigg on Ingram Street for fresh salads and snack boxes that are jam-packed with colour and taste - preorder from Sprigg's website or simply order at the door

Drinks with friends in Glasgow’s best bars (we’ll pour the pints)

A man and a woman enjoy drinks today outside on a sunny day on the Clydeside with the backdrop of the Finnieston Crane and Rotunda

A pint with a pal? Something that we used to do without a second thought is now a great event to cherish. Glasgow's restaurants, bars and pubs can now serve alcohol outdoors, with the guidelines set to relax further on May 17 to allow for indoor drinking. There are lots of city beer gardens and even the odd rooftop garden - and just in time for that spring sunshine! Get booked and don't miss out on the great atmosphere of a city bar and an overdue catch-up with a friend. 

Glasgow's biggest beer garden and open-air dining, Cranside Kitchen have 9 city favourite restaurants taking up residence, including Yuzu's Japanese street food and Nori's sushi and sashimi. Their large outdoor space, which includes a pergola structure to keep dry if it rains, will serve food and alcoholic beverages from noon - 10pm daily. Book a table via their website at www.cransidekitchen.co.uk

Another great spot to enjoy Clydeside views of iconic city buildings, such as SSE Hydro and Clyde Auditorium is from the rooftop Red Sky Bar at the Radisson Red Hotel. Book a table at Red Sky Bar and look forward to savouring the view with a signature Glas-Vegas Fizz or Clydeside Spritz cocktail. A brand new rooftop terrace is opening on April 30 at the historic Mackintosh at the Willow. Visit www.mackintoshatthewillow.com for more information on this south-facing terrace or to book their 'SDL afternoon tea' in their stunning Salon De Luxe room, which also includes a talk by a Mackintosh expert and entry to the interactive exhibition.

Many of the city's most stylish bars have al-fresco spaces, from Ardnamurchan's new pop-up outdoor spot on Hope Street (email [email protected] to make bookings) to Merchant City Brewdog, where their beer garden is surrounded by historic buildings in the oldest quarter of the city (visit brewdog.com to book) to one of the city's favourite street food markets, Platform, which has opened a new outdoor space in the lane (book via platformgla.co.uk).

Browse the shelves and rails (we’re all stocked up)

A couple look at one another whilst walking down the middle of the spacious Buchanan Street with shops on either side, including the city's famous House of Frasers

The city centre is a shopper’s paradise, with its combination of designer, high street, vintage and independent stores. And it's time to hit the shops once again and enjoy shopping without a screen. The city centre shopping malls of Buchanan Galleries, Princes Square, St. Enoch Centre and Argyle Arcade, all found on the spacious Buchanan Street and Argyle Street, have been preparing behind the scenes and are eagerly awaiting the return of both old and new customers.

 

There are so many independent stores to discover in the city centre also. Maia Gifts is now open with its range of unique and quirky gifts, cards, jewellery and homeware. Have a look at Maia's website to see what treats to expect when visiting their Bath Street store. Support local artists who have had a difficult year with a visit to the Scottish Design Exchange in Buchanan Galleries, where 100% of profits go directly to creators and makers. Browse the shop to discover art, beauty and skincare products, furniture and much more - check out their website to see which artists have stock at Scottish Design Exchange.

Revisit old favourites (we'll show you a different view)

Step into the city's galleries and museums and enjoy a very different four walls from your own! Glasgow is home to some of the country's top attractions and many are open now.

Be wowed as you walk into the grand hall of Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum and challenge yourself with some world-leading art in the Gallery of Modern Art. Visit glasgowlife.org.uk for information on booking free tickets to Glasgow Museums. Combine a visit to the medieval masterpiece that is Glasgow Cathedral (open to visitors from April 30, book via Historic Environment Scotland's website) with a walk around the neighbouring Glasgow Necropolis, a stunning Victorian cemetery with panaromic city views.

Two friends stand beside Glasgow Next Bikes with helmets on preparing to set off on a cycle in Glasgow Green. Cherry Blossom trees are in bloom behind them

Glasgow is a city where you can easily combine the excitement of city life with exploring the wide-open green spaces and amazing parks. Whether by foot, bike or bus - there are great options for exploring the city centre in the fresh air. 

Visit Glasgow Bike Tours online and choose from a range of two-wheeled city tours, book a trip aboard the City Sightseeing Bus Tour for an open-top tour of the city’s top sights, or take a leisurely walk with expert guides and find out more about the city's legendary music scene, stunning street art and historic architecture. Visit glasgowmusiccitytours.com (tours resume on May 1) or walkingtoursin.com for information on walking tours. If you'd rather explore freely with friends, then hire a Next Bike and set off an adventure - visit Nextbike Glasgow to see where their many city centre stations are located.

Plan your visit in advance and check opening times and booking requirements to avoid disappointment and visit the Scottish Government website for the latest guidelines.

Visit our Glasgow Now section for more inspiration on what to do in the city.

Article last updated: April 2021