GBT Guide: 5 Things to do in Glasgow if you have Kids
Last month we wrote a blog detailing what we believe to be the 5 most fun things to do in Glasgow. It’s our hope that our knowledge and insights into the city will help people get the most out of their visit to Glasgow or that it will help people already living here discover one or two great places or activities on their doorstep. So, following on from last month’s blog, we thought it would be useful to offer some help to parents looking for fun things in Glasgow for kids to do. This blog isn’t a Buzzfeed-style list of “27 unforgettable things for kids to do in Glasgow” — it’s a shorter, more considered list and we hope it’s useful!
Disclaimer about Glasgow Bike Tours
While we stick to cycling routes throughout Glasgow, avoiding roads whenever possible, we still go onto a few roads. This means that our standard bike tours through Glasgow are only open to 10years and older (private tours are a good option). It’s not that cycling in Glasgow is dangerous — far from it, in fact — it’s just that there are legal limitations. So, while we hope this guide helps a few parents to have fun in Glasgow with their we’uns, we can’t include our 5-star-reviewed bike tours on this list. Perhaps if you have grown-up kids and you’re visiting Glasgow, you can come on one of our tours.
Glasgow Science Centre
Glasgow Science Centre isn’t like any old average science museum; it’s a vibrant hub of fun and entertainment. You’ll find it on the River Clyde, just to the west of Glasgow’s city centre. It’s easy to find as it’s the large silver building with an observation tower beside it. A lot of time and resources have been put into the centre, resulting in a staggering range of exhibits and interactive experiences. Science really is fun, and Glasgow Science Centre clearly understands that children are its main audience and it has adjusted accordingly. On top of astronomy, physiology, quantum technologies, etc, you’ll also find family events, such as a Halloween Spooktacular event, Little Explorer days, and various other seasonal experiences that make a second or third visit more than worthwhile. Glasgow Science Centre is guaranteed fun and it even advertises autism-friendly hours for families who need the lighting and noise to be a little dimmer and quieter than usual.
The Riverside Museum of Transport and Travel
Just along the river from the Glasgow Science Centre, you’ll find the Riverside Museum of Transport and Travel — usually just referred to as the Riverside Museum. This isn’t your typical museum experience — it’s a vibrant, interactive extravaganza filled with anything you can imagine that relates to transport. And we should stress the interactive aspect of the museum as children will always want to climb on things, push buttons, and see how things work. There are touch screen displays, films, and so much more to keep the little ones amused and engaged. If you’re looking for a sneaky way to get your kids interested in history, then the Riverside Museum is a must!
Visit Glasgow’s Parks or Botanic Gardens
There’s so much more to Glasgow than museums; in fact, it has some of the best-kept, most popular public parks in the UK. The only tricky decision you’ll have to make is figuring out which park to visit. Location may be the deciding factor for you, with the beautiful Glasgow Green park just to the east of the city centre. This park has fewer trees than some of the other parks, but it has plenty of beautiful fields and pathways — it also has the impressive People’s Palace, with its gardens and fountain outside. If the west end of Glasgow is handier for you, then Kelvingrove Park and the Botanic Gardens will be the best choices for you. Botanic Gardens is just off Byres Road and Great Western Road and it’s packed with interesting plant life and nooks and crannies for your kids to explore. Kelvingrove Park is much bigger and it’s full of trees, hills, and other features — and the River Kelvin runs through the whole park. Another great feature of Kelvingrove Park is that you’re right beside Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, which is the next location on our list.
The Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
This is the one suggestion that features on both this list of activities for kids and our general list of things to do in Glasgow for adults. While some of the activities on this list would appeal to adults, Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum is probably equally fun and interesting for your granny and your we’uns! There is a huge selection of art from many of the world’s masters, but there is also a wide range of animal and dinosaur fossils, an Egyptology section, and loads of interactive features that make museum exhibitions fun for children. This is the third most visited museum in Scotland and it’s absolutely free (but there are suggested-donation boxes). There’s always more to see at the Kelvingrove, so it’s great to revisit it at different points, when your children are older, as they become more interested in the more adult exhibitions.
Flip Out Glasgow
We didn’t want to only include parks and museums, so it’s lucky for Glasgow that it has one of the biggest, best indoor trampolining centres in the UK. Flip Out Glasgow is a huge indoor trampoline centre with a range of horizontal and even diagonal trampolines, which allow for some really crazy antics. There are bigger trampolines for bigger kids and smaller trampolines for the smaller kids. Flip Out is located on Southcroft Road to the south of Glasgow Green, south of the River Clyde. Keep in mind that Flip Out is the kind of place where you need to sign a waiver; it has good safety policies, but kids can always find ways to injure themselves and their siblings! We’re sure they’ll be fine, but you might want to give them the safety talk before you set them loose on the trampolines…
There it is: Glasgow Bike Tours’ 5 things to do in Glasgow if you have kids. There are so many more things to do in Glasgow, and we may make another list in the future, but we hope this guide helps a few readers ensure their children have a great time in Glasgow. If you are interested in our Glasgow Bike Tours, you may like to read a little more about us, and please get in touch if you have any questions!