Glasgow is a city with a colorful night scene, good restaurants, great pubs, and excellent music – there are more than 130 music events in the city every week, ranging from classical music, opera and ballet to the latest music sounds.
The Glasgow night scene is focused on the city center, the West End, the atmospheric cobbled Ashton Lane, and Merchant City.
1. The City Hall
This elegant Victorian building that was built in 1841 is home to the Scottish Symphony Orchestra and also the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. Performances of both can be truly enjoyed as the building is well known for its excellent acoustics. The City Hall also incorporates the Victorian Old Fruit Market which has been completely refurbished with its high vaulted ceilings. It regularly hosts classical and jazz concerts.
2. Merchant City
This is an area with great pubs and restaurants that is conveniently under one roof! There is something for everyone to enjoy including a large central courtyard where you can just sit and enjoy the night air. It is the perfect place to relax over a drink and enjoy some ‘people watching’. There is a big screen for coverage of big sporting events and such things as fashion shows. Merchant City regularly hosts really good arts and craft fairs.
3. The Sub Club
This is said to be the longest-running underground dance club in the world and has been attracting fans of electronic music since 1987. On Saturday nights it is amazingly popular. The Sub Club regularly hosts live bands and its long-serving DJs certainly know how to get everyone dancing!
4. The Wee Pub
The Wee Pub in Ashton Lane is certainly very small – it is thought to be the smallest pub in Scotland! You will certainly get a warm welcome there and some really good beer as the pub has been selling its label for more than 30 years. The pub also specializes in some excellent whiskeys and some really good locally made gins.
5. Enjoy a jam night at Boteco do Brasil
This is the place to be on a Thursday evening to enjoy a colorful combination of the city’s best sounds carefully blended with the sound of South America including the Caribbean with a soft African influence. Boteco is great fun and very quirky.
6. Waxy O’Connor
This is a quirky pub that although it is in the center of Glasgow is distinctly Irish! Its interior is like that of a grand old church with plenty of beautifully hand-carved wooden features. It has unusual lighting and ceiling decoration that has the effect that everyone thinks that they are drinking outside in a forest. There are three floors with six bars and plenty of good food and drinks.
7. The Theatre Royal
If you enjoy going to the theatre, the Theatre Royal is not to be missed as it has a beautiful Victorian auditorium. Built in 1867 it is the longest-running theatre and has all types of excellent performances including drama, comedies, opera, and ballet. The Theatre Royal is home to both the Scottish Opera (the largest performing organization) and the Scottish Ballet.
8. The Scotia Bar
Built in 1792 this is the city’s oldest pub and it stands on Stockwell Street – one of Glasgow’s oldest streets. It has been known as one of the best music venues in the city for more than 40 years and is particularly famous for its great folk music concerts. Billy Connolly started his career at the Scotia. The bar has both resident and non-resident bands performing music that ranges from rock to blues.
9. King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut
This place is certainly the hub of the city’s music scene and with just 300 seats it is always packed out – but well worth a visit. This is the best place to see up and coming bands and over the years it has certainly helped launch some major names such as the Manchester-based group Oasis, The Manic Street Preachers and more recently, Snow Patrol.
10. The Glasgow Royal Concert Hall
The Concert Hall is home to the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the country’s leading symphony orchestra. There are many concerts to enjoy there throughout the year covering all music genre. Each summer The Last Night of the Proms takes place at the Royal Concert Hall and in the winter, the world’s largest winter music festival.
Updated: August 7, 2019