Family activities in Glasgow
Family activities in Glasgow
Glasgow is a family-friendly city with top attractions and activities. Check out our list of just some of the experiences to keep the whole family entertained.
Fun-filled attractions for all the family
Family friendly places to visit by the river
Step aboard The Tall Ship on the River Clyde and have an adventure on the water in this Clyde-built ship. The Tall Ship is berthed beside the Riverside Museum, where you can enjoy through-the-ages displays of bikes, trains, buses and cars. Be sure to take a walk down the recreated old Glasgow street and feel like you've been transported back in time to the early 1900s. Visit The Tall Ship's website for updates and visit glasgowlife.org.uk for info on the Riverside Museum.
On the opposite side of the River Clyde is the Glasgow Science Centre. The little ones (and the big ones!) will be wowed by the amazing displays and exhibits on life, science and the universe. The centre is also home to a planetarium, The Imax, Scotland's largest cinema screen, and Newton Flight Academy, where you can pilot simulators (12+). Visit glasgowsciencecentre.org to book tickets in advance.
Kid friendly museum collections
Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum has great displays for all the family, including animals and Ancient Egypt. Have great fun trying to recreate the expressions of The Floating Heads installation! There are plenty of displays to explore at the Gallery of Modern Art, as well as a 'create space' where kids can make their own artwork. Visit Glasgow Life's museum pages for details.
Following a major refurbishment, The Burrell Collection is more accessible than ever before. There are lots of hands-on and interactive displays bringing the stories behind the Collection to life. Visit burrellcollection.com to plan a day out at the museum and its parkland setting, which includes a playpark, fairy garden and woodland walks.
The Hunterian Museum at the University of Glasgow has collections of fossils and dinosaur bones. It also has a 330 million-year-old shark that was found in Bearsden in the north of the city! While visiting, check out the university campus, said to be the inspiration behind Hogwarts! Visit gla.ac.uk/hunterian for opening hours.
For something completely different, visit the Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre at Trongate 103. Scrap metal sculptures and tiny figures perform to haunting music. Find out showtimes at sharmanka.com. Discover stories about the crimes and characters that impacted Britain's first-ever police force at the Glasgow Police Museum. Visit policemuseum.org.uk for more info.
Adventure sports by the canal
Three sports attractions have teamed up to create Play Port, an urban playground along the Forth and Clyde Canal. Pinkston Watersports, Glasgow Wake Park and The Loading Bay Skatepark offer a range of experiences for all ages. There is something for everyone including kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, skateboarding, BMXing and wakeboarding. Visit the Play Port website to find the right adventure for you.
For white water rafting and river tubing head to Outdoor Pursuits at the Glasgow Canal. Visit Outdoor Pursuits website to book.
Cycling in the city
Credit: Free Wheel North
Cycling enthusiasts of every level are well catered for with facilities like Free Wheel North Cycle Centre. Kids can have fun on trikes, tandems and go-karts, visit freewheelnorth.org.uk to book. For those with their own wheels, head to Cathkin Braes Mountain Bike Trails for some cycling with beautiful city views.
Climbing for all ages
Clip 'n Climb
Clip 'n Climb at Kelvin Hall is a fun and thrilling climbing experience for all abilities. Only those brave enough should try the 'Leap of Faith'! Those 12 and under can also enjoy the Circus in the Park themed soft play. Visit kelvinhall.org.uk to book.
The Newsroom is another brilliant place for kids who love to scale heights, with a dedicated children's area (visit the Climbing Academy for details).
Sporty family fun
Ready for some jumpin' and rollin' and slidin'? Take to the slopes at Glasgow Ski and Snowboard Centre (check out their range of activities online) or jump around at kids’ favourite, Flip Out adventure and trampoline park (book via the Flip Out website). For wheelie-good fun for all the family, book a session at Roller Stop roller-skating rink.
Tours and trails for all the family
You can't go far in Glasgow without spotting colourful and quirky street art. Check out our City Centre Mural Trail page for where to find these urban pieces of art and see who can spot them first on your walk.
The open-topped city bus tour is a great way to take in many top attractions in the fresh air - visit the City Sightseeing Bus Tour website to book a trip. For details on city tours, covering everything from music to cycling, visit our tours in Glasgow page.
Outdoor time at city parks
Glasgow has plenty of options for getting outdoor time in green spaces with over 90 parks and gardens. Enjoy a woodland walk at Cathkin Braes, adventure play at Glasgow Green or the skatepark at Kelvingrove Park. Or try the children’s farm at Tollcross Park or take in the Highland cows, a maze and a miniature fairy trail at Pollok Country Park. Visit our parks and gardens page for more information.
Dumbreck Outdoor Playbarn at Pollok Country Park is a brilliant place for families with pre-schoolers. A former horses' hay barn is now a sensory play zone with both outdoor and indoor spaces. Visit outdoorplaybarn.co.uk for more details.
Family shopping and entertainment
The city's shopping malls are great for family shopping, eating and entertainment. At the top of Buchanan Street is Buchanan Galleries, home to The Lego Store and The Entertainer toy shop. You can also find Flying Tiger Copenhagen and the always popular Smiggle stationery store.
At the bottom of Buchanan Street is St. Enoch Centre, home to Hamleys, Vue Cinema and Boom Battle Bar - a fun day or evening out for families, with ping pong, mini-golf and more. Book an activity at boombattlebar.com.
If you prefer a more intimate cinema experience, then try a family-friendly movie at the independent Glasgow Film Theatre - check out their film schedule online. Or visit Princes Square for the boutique Everyman Cinema and a trip to Hotel Chocolat for an indulgent hot chocolate. Find out more at princessquare.co.uk.
Many independent retailers offer fantastic kids shopping, entertainment or both! Gamers of all ages will love retro gaming store and social space R-cade. Buy a pass at rcadeglasgow.com and enjoy access to over 1,500 games for an hour!
The Root of Magic run a children’s potions and science class, which is perfect for fans of Harry Potter! While arty kids can enjoy making their own decorated ceramics at The Craft Pottery. Visit Root of Magic's website for details and The Craft Pottery's website for details.
Article last updated: August 2022