Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and is characterized as much by its warm and friendly residents, as it is by its awe-inspiring examples of 19th-century architecture, flourishing cultural, theatrical, arts and music scene, and of course its various bars and drinking establishments that run the range from the trendy to the traditional. The city has grown from the medieval Bishopric of Glasgow and the establishment of the University of Glasgow. The Industrial Revolution had engineered the city into a center for excellence for engineering and shipbuilding which expanded the transatlantic trade route with the Americas.
The city has a remarkably efficient and extensive public transport system comprised of buses and subway trains that make exploring the city a breeze even if it is your first time to visit. Some of the more worthwhile attractions in the city are the newly reopened Kelvingrove Art Museum, the Victorian Necropolis, the majestic Glasgow Cathedral, and the St. Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art.
The city’s virtues were extolled in a post at the Britain Expat Forum last September 20, 2009:
Hi, you don't say what you do, but if you can work anywhere, why not have a few months more in Scotland and then test out England, Ireland and Wales? Depending on the weather, you might find employment prospects in Aviemore. There's always Aberdeen or Inverness. Glasgow's a great city.
Residential Places in Glasgow
Unlike in the rest of the United Kingdom, real estate prices in Glasgow–and indeed in the rest of Scotland–have maintained their slow but steady price growth. A report released in September of 2004 showed that the average price of residential property in Glasgow was just a little more than £120,000–which is the average price for property in the rest of the country. Glasgow is one of the cities in the United Kingdom known for its tenements. This system has become common in Glasgow, especially in the Hyndland area. The design has become the inspiration for later construction of the high rise housing in tower blocks through the 1960s.
Obviouslythe city center is the place to search if you want to be close to the various commercial and cultural establishments. Of course, property prices here will tend towards the high side, not to mention that the fact that all the hustle and bustle can get quite overbearing.
The West End is a much better choice for quiet residential living and this has made the area a popular choice for both professionals and students. Some of the more sought after neighborhoods in this district are areas such as Kelvinside, Broomhill, Hyndland and Woodlands.
Hospitals and Universities of Glasgow
Glasgow has a wide array of tertiary learning institutions, of which the Glasgow University is the most renowned. Established in 1451, the university enjoys a stellar reputation worldwide for its excellence in education and research. It is one of the oldest learning institutions in Scotland, and is in fact the fourth oldest in the English speaking world. One of the most prestigious universities in the United Kingdom–and indeed in the whole world–Glasgow University was named the Scottish University of the Year for 2007 to 2008 by the Sunday Times.
Glasgow is also home to the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow Caledonian University, and University of Paisley, all of which are respectable learning institutions in their own right. The University of Strathclyde currently services more than 25,000 full-time and part-time students, and is organized into 5 faculties: Law Arts & Social Sciences, Education, Engineering, Science, and the Strathclyde Business School.
Glasgow Caledonian University has grown immensely from its humble beginnings as a small college with only a little more than one hundred students, into one of the largest universities in Scotland, registering more than 16,000 students by 2007.
Other educational institutions in the city include the University of the West of Scotland, the Anniesland College, Glasgow Metropolitan College, Cardonald College, Central College, Stow College and the Glasgow College of Nautical Studies as well as a number of teacher training colleges, and teaching hospitals such as the Glasgow Royal Infirmary. The Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, Scotland's national conservatoire, and the Glasgow School of Art.
Hospitals in Glasgow
Some of the more notable hospitals in Glasgow are Blawarthill Hospital, Drumchapel Hospital, Gartnavel General Hospital, Gartnavel Royal Hospital, Glasgow Homeopathic Hospital, Glasgow Royal Infirmary, and Glasgow Royal Maternity Hospital.
Commercial Places in Glasgow
Forget what you may have heard about Scottish food and the horror stories about deep fried mars bars–which were really little more than a fad that started out as a joke (although some chip shops in the country still serve this decidedly unhealthy calorie bomb!).
Scotland is actually a country where you can find a wealth of food options at all points of the taste and price spectrum. You have a choice of either sampling quality traditional Scottish food or International dishes from the many restaurants and smaller pubs and bistros that dot the city.
A couple of good places to begin your gastronomic exploration are the West End and the Merchant City districts where numerous quality Chinese, Indian, Italian and French restaurants abound. The West End is a particularly good example of the sophistication and style that has characterized the Glasgow restaurant scene in recent years, yet thankfully the prices remain surprisingly reasonable. The main shopping centers in the city are the Buchanan Galleries and the St Enoch Center and for more upscale shopping there is the Prince’s Square and the Italian Center. A fuller description was shared in a post at the Britain Expat Forum last April 1, 2009:
Glasgowis full of things to do,
Try this website www.seescotland.com
There are some great days out listed there.
The Shopping Environment
Shopping is an equally rewarding pursuit in Glasgow, what with the city being considered one of the best shopping centers in the United Kingdom, second only to London. Some if the more elegant shopping centers around are the Princes Square, the Argyll Arcade, and the St Enoch Centre. For something a bit more casual and closer to the local color, the weekend Barras market is a definite must visit.
Service Establishments of Glasgow
Glasgow currently serves as the seat of the Scottish national media and is where both the headquarters of BBC Scotland and STV–formerly known as Scottish Television–can be found. Numerous newspapers are published in the city, among them The Herald, the Evening Times, the Sunday Mail, The Sunday Herald, and the Daily Record. In addition, Scottish editions of both the Trinity Mirror and News International are also printed in the city.
The largest utility company that services Glasgow is Scottish Power Limited, which has a combined clientele of over five million customers across England, Wales, and Scotland. They handle virtually every type of utility service for the city including electricity, gas, and water supply and wastewater services. Scottish Power Limited can be reached at Customer Service, SP EnergyNetworks, PO Box 8729, Bellshill, ML4 3YD. You can also email them at [email protected] or visit their web site at www.scottishpower.com .
Embassies in Glasgow
Many of the embassies and consular offices of other countries in Scotland are based in Edinburgh, although London by far houses more embassies and high commissions from around the world. Nevertheless, there are a few consulate offices in Glasgow: the German Consulate, which can be found at Pentagon Centre on 36 Washington Street, the Indian Consulate, which is at the 6th Floor of the Fleming House on 134 Renfrew Street, the Netherlands Consulate, which can be found at 3 Annandale Terrace, the Norwegian Royal Consulate at 80 Oswald Street, the Rwandan Consulate at 7 Stirling Drive, and the Thai Consulate at 4 Woodside Place.