GBT Guide: Why a Bike Tour is Better than a Walking Tour of Glasgow
If you’re coming to Glasgow on holiday and getting to know the city, then the first thing the Glasgow Bike Tours team would say is that we’re pretty jealous! We know how great our city is, so we know you’re going to have a good time exploring, both on your own and as part of a guided tour.
Glasgow has an amazing restaurant scene, fantastic craft beer, wines and whisky served in authentic bars and restaurants. We also have live music every night of the week, comedy most nights, stunning architecture, and a bunch of fun things to do in Glasgow. One of the most enjoyable things to do in Glasgow is to take a tour, and we’d like to make a case for why a bike tour is better than a walking tour of Glasgow.
Why tour Glasgow with a local guide?
Whether on a walking tour or a bike tour, we think it is always better to see Glasgow with the help of a local guide. This helps you enjoy the best of the city through the eyes of someone who knows it. Touring Glasgow with a local also means you can explore the city without worrying about getting lost; it’s simply far less stressful to follow someone around a big city than it is to use a map or your smartphone to get around. And… you can’t fully appreciate Glasgow’s incredible architecture if you’re glued to your phone, looking on Google Maps!
Part of the enjoyment on a tour is the journey you take through a city — it’s not just seeing the biggest sights you’ve read about online. The time spent travelling between the sights is when you will see real Glasgow life; it’s when you can enjoy chatting with other members of your tour group and sharing general observations and travel tips.
Guided tours are especially good for bringing people together by giving them a shared purpose. It’s a bonding experience, making it perfect for families, friends, or just other like-minded travellers, some of the longest lasting memories you will take away and hold on to are experiences which you have shared with others.
At Glasgow Bike Tours, our guides are all locals (some are musicians too), so you know you’re going to get an authentic experience cycling along with them.
Should you take a bike tour or a walking tour through Glasgow?
Walking tours can be a great option for travellers with specific interests, such as museums or attractions. Walking tours allow you to get up close to things and learn from a guide in a way that you simply couldn’t do on your own. However, if you are looking to see more of the city and to get the lay of the land (figuring out where else you’d like to visit), then a bike tour of Glasgow is the answer. But there are more reasons to take a bike tour through Glasgow…
If you take a bike tour and walking tour of approximately the same length of time, a walking tour would limit you to as little as 1 square mile. This means that you would be restricted to the very centre of Glasgow, causing you to miss out on some of Glasgow’s best bits — such as the West End. The West End of Glasgow is amazing for lots of reasons — not least because of the buildings and attractions found there. You’ll find the Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery, Glasgow University (with its beautiful quadrangles and cloisters), the River Kelvin Walkway, the natural beauty of the Forth & Clyde Canal, the Mackintosh Church at Queens Cross, and the historical centre of Glasgow’s shipbuilding. You would also miss out on the very chic Finnieston area, which was recently voted one of the coolest places to live in the world!
You absolutely should go on a walking tour of Glasgow if there’s something specific you’d like to see, but if you want to explore the city as a whole, then a bike tour will let you discover more of the city, while still being able to get off the bike and talk about some of the sights. Our bike tours aren’t non-stop pedalling — they’re casual, winding journeys through our wonderful city!
With a walking tour you will spend nearly all of the tour on pavements, which means being next to traffic and all that that brings with it: noise, pollution and hustle and bustle. With our 3-hour Glasgow Sightseeing Bike Tour, less than a mile is spent on roads with traffic, making the whole experience more tranquil and peaceful — not to mention less polluted. There are some parts of the tour which are so quiet, leafy and green that visitors have felt like they’ve been teleported to the countryside and back again.
Calories and exercise on a bike tour
It turns out that cycling uses approximately 600 calories per hour (speed dependent) as compared to walking, which burns 300 calories per hour. So, what does this mean for a person on vacation? For some very health-conscious travellers, this will allow you to stay fit on your trip. However, for us at Glasgow Bike Tours, it means that after a 3-hour bike tour you have a credit of around 1800 guilt-free calories. Deep-fried mars bar anyone? Burger? Fish and chips? Pint of craft beer or glass of wine? The options are mouth-wateringly unlimited and you will know all the best places to get them thanks to your local tour guide.
If you’re interested, read a little more about us and please get in touch if you have any questions. Glasgow is a beautiful, vibrant, safe, modern city and we look forward to showing you the best of it… by bike.