21 things to do in Glasgow this winter
21 things to do in Glasgow this winter
With events, shopping and fantastic places to eat and drink, here is our guide to the top 21 things to do in Glasgow this winter.
1. Princes Square is a brilliant destination during the festive period. Check out their impressive 42-foot Christmas tree, sign up to a wreath making class or enjoy festive menus at their many restaurants. There will also be carol singing daily from December 11- 23 and a special NHS Choir by Candlelight evening on November 26. Follow Princes Square’s Instagram page for updates.
2. Pick up unique gifts at some of the city’s best markets and fairs. From House for an Art Lover's Christmas Fayre to Tea Green Festive Market at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum to The Night Market at Cottiers, there are lots to choose from. Visit our weekend market page for more information.
3. Don't miss Winterfest at George Square (25 November-7 January) and St Enoch Square (13 November-30 December). At George Square, there will be an ice rink, big wheel, as well as the City Chambers lit up with a light show every evening. Both fairs will have festive stalls, offering seasonal treats and gifts as well as fairground rides. Find out more at glasgowlife.org and book ice skating tickets at glasgowwinterfest.com.
4. Spend the afternoon at The Glasgow Style Mile Christmas Carnival on the 26 November. The the city centre will be the host of festive performances and entertainment. Go to glasgowlife.org for more details.
5. Grab tickets to The Muppet Christmas Carol Live in Concert on 26 November at the SEC Armadillo. Join Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Ebenezer Scrooge and Gonzo in this joyful show. Visit sec.co.uk to book your spot.
6. Shout ‘they’re behind you’ at a pantomime. This year it’s Aganeza Scrooge at Tron Theatre, Treasure Island at the Pavilion Theatre and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the King’s Theatre. To book tickets, visit tron.co.uk, visit paviliontheatre.co.uk and atgtickets.com.
7. It wouldn’t be Christmas without Jools Holland coming to Glasgow. Join Jools and the Rhythm & Blues Orchestra at the OVO Hydro on 1 December with special guest stars Pauline Black and Arthur Hendrickson of the Selecter, Ruby Turner and Louise Marshall. Get your tickets at sec.co.uk.
8. Go and see a film at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. Love Actually (1 December) and The Holiday (3 December) are showing with a live orchestra. Or go to a magical screening of the festive classic, The Snowman (23 December), accompanied by the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. Check out what’s on at glasgowconcerthalls.com.
9. If you love Strictly Come Dancing, join former pro dancers Janette and Aljaz in Dancing in a Winter Wonderland on 3 December. Expect sparkling costumes, amazing sets and world-class choreography. To buy tickets, go to sec.co.uk.
10. Theatre Royal are hosting a day of creative play and participation for kids on 6 December. Favourite stories will be brought to life with drama games, live music, songs, and craft. Go to atgtickets.com to get tickets.
11. Take the kids to Tramway to see Ginger by Tortoise in a Nutshell between 6-16 December. Puppetry, performance, and play will be featured in this interactive show. Visit tramway.org to book.
12. Feeling creative? Bee Wild Blooms are hosting a group Christmas wreath masterclass between 8-10 December. To find out more, visit beewildblooms.co.uk.
13. The Science Centre has lots on this season. Adults can enjoy experiments, shows, a festive market and tunes from the resident DJ at the Science Lates: Winter Wonderland (December 9). Meanwhile for all the family, on selected dates throughout December, is the Festive Day Out package. This includes, choice of festive film at the IMAX, Elf or The Polar Express, a snack pack for the cinema and entry to the Science Galleries. Visit glasgowsciencecentre.org for more details.
14. Hoolie in the Hydro is returning to the Hydro on 9 December with an all-star line-up featuring some of the top names on the Scottish music scene. Find out more about the line up at ovo.com.
15. Scottish Ballet returns to Theatre Royal with their new show, Cinders! There are shows between 9-31 December, visit atgtickets.com to book tickets.
16. Every Friday night, Sloans hosts their famous ceilidh in their grand ballroom. Ceilidh band Chitterybite will have guests on the dancefloor with favourite dances including the Gay Gordons, Strip the Willow and The Dashing White Sergeant. From ceilidh's, piano playing elves to a Christmas films, there is something for everyone. To find out more, visit sloansglasgow.com
17. For a fun thrill-seeking festive day out for all the family, go to the Irn Bru Carnival at the SEC (23 December-15 January). Enjoy rides, games, stalls and play areas for the little ones, it really is the perfect day out. Buy tickets at sec.co.uk.
18. Get into the festive spirit with some cocktails or mocktails! Whether you want a stylish or speakeasy vibe, Glasgow has somewhere for everyone. Check out our top picks of cocktail bars.
19. Glasgow-based retailers Crystal Craft, Och Vegan Cosmetics, Hunky Dory, Heritage Accessories and Calendar Club, have new pop-up stores at Buchanan Galleries. From glassware to rock ‘n’ roll clothing, these new shops are fantastic Christmas shopping destinations. Find out more at buchanangalleries.co.uk.
20. Film buffs should visit the Glasgow Film Theatre for specialised titles including movies and documentaries from around the globe. Christmas films include It's a Wonderful Life (from 15 December) and Meet Me In St Louis (21 December). To see a full list of showings visit glasgowfilm.org
Image: Gaëlle Beri
21. Join in with Europe’s biggest celebration of roots and folk music at Celtic Connections from 18 January-4 February. Acts include Angélique Kidjo, Edgar Meyer, Sarah Jarosz, Teddy Thompson and many more. Visit celticconnections.com to explore the full line up.
Article last updated: October 2023