Scotland’s largest metropolitan area, Glasgow (pop. 700,000) has re-invented itself several times, and the mark of each era remains today. It rose to prominence during the Victorian period, exploiting heavy industry to become the world’s leading center of shipbuilding and steel production, as evidenced by the soot and cranes that once littered the River Clyde. Yet Glasgow’s urbanization had its positive side as well, the legacy of which can be observed in the grand architecture that still characterizes the city centre. Across the river, the daring curves of a new multimillion pound Science Centre shimmer brilliantly. Free museums and international cuisine add cosmopolitan flair, separating the city from its industrial past At night, Glasgow’s pubs explode as Scotland’s largest student population and its football-mad locals live up to their national reputation for nighttime fun.
Flights: Glasgow Airport (GLA; 887 1111), 15km west in Abbotsinch. Citylink buses connect to Buchanan Station (25min. 6 per hr. £3.30).
Trains: Central Station, on Gordon St. (U: St. Enoch), leave for London King’s Cross (5-6hr. every hr. £82) and Stranraer (2V2hr. 3-8 per day, £16). From Queen St. Station, on George Sq. (U: Buchanan St.), trains go to: Aberdeen (212hr. 11-24 per day, £31); Edinburgh (50min. 2 per hr. £7.40); Inverness (3V4hr. 5 per day, £31). Bus #88 runs between the 2 stations (4 per hr. 50p).
Buses: Buchanan Station ((0870) 608 2608), on Hanover St. 2 blocks north of Queen St. Station. Scottish Citylink ((08705) 505 050) to: Aberdeen (4hr. every hr. £26); Edinburgh (lWhr. 2-3 per hr. £6); Inverness (312-412hr. every hr. £26); Oban (3hr. 2-3 per day, £12). National Express ( (08705) 808 080) buses arrive daily from London (8hr.; every hr.; £22, round-trip £28).
Public Transportation: The circular Underground (U) subway line, a.k.a. the “Clockwork Orange,” runs M-Sa 6:30am-llpm, Su llam-5:30pm. 90p. The Discovery Ticket is good for one day of unlimited travel. M-F after 9:30am, Su all day. £1.70.