Go Away to Glasgow (yes, really!)

Feature by Melissa Thomson | 14 Aug 2006

Take a day out of your busy Edinburgh festivals schedule to discover Scotland's other city. Most of you will already know the best boozers, club nights and shops in Glasgow and if you don't, then go to the tourist information office and find it out, you lazy middens.

What we can tell you about Glasgow is everything that you might not find in your guide book or at the tourist office either because it's slightly odd, deserves more attention that it gets, or is not an obvious tourist attraction for an obvious tourist...

You'd be a sovvie short of a full ned if you didn't know that Tennents sponsored music festivals in Scotland, but did you know that they also produced something called the i-Tour? Forget historical tour buses telling you what to see, i-Tours' 'Glasgow: Sounds of a Music Capital' uses the latest technology to create a guided walk round the city which can be listened to on iPods and other MP3 players, or burned onto CD.

Grab your map and get 'talked round' the city by music journalist Jim Gellatly, taking you to some of the city's best venues, the creative hotspots and some great hidden gems: discover what musical item David Bowie took home from the city, why the traffic cone permanently stays on the head of the Duke of Wellington statue outside the Gallery of Modern Art and where the late John Peel's favoured jukebox can be found.

Another place you'd think you'd get booted out of pronto if you weren't a student is the Art School. But if you bypass the Vic bar (will power!) you are actually allowed to have a tour if you just go in and ask politely. Wander round the fascinating Charles Rennie Mackintosh designed hallways, or just sit on the benches and smile at pretty, paint-splattered boys and girls walking by... then make your way to the bar.

On the weekends, bypass the high street shops and head east to The Barras. Aside from the crazy war memorabilia and the '80s rawk belt-buckles, the vintage clothes market is pretty decent, yet the real star of the show are the fish teas in the old school cafes, the traditional Glasgow meal of bread, butter, fish, chips and one veg washed down with a cup of Scottish Blend.

It is indeed a fallacy that 'pissy hill' in Kelvingrove Park, the park nearest to Glasgow University, is the best green space in Glasgow - there are loads more parks in the city that are much less crowded and have less 'morning after' club casualties with bongos. Get an all-day bus ticket and explore places like Pollok Park, three miles south west of Glasgow, where there are Highland cattle and a mountain-biking circuit, or the serene Victoria Park, beyond Partick.

All of these activities should make for a satisfying weekend away from the Festival madness of Edinburgh in August, and what'll make it even better is being able to understand the patter.

Here is a selection of our most loved Glasgow slang words (belters):

um urnae = i'm not
randan = drinking binge
telt = told
moan = come on now
ya bass = forever
emdy = anybody
fandan = idiot
peg = make love
coupon = face
gang = went
boatle a soup = Buckfast wine

Go Travel:
It's only 70 mins on the bus (£6.00) or 50 minutes on the train from Edinburgh (a cheap day return costs £8.90). The easiest way to move around is on the tube (also known as "the clockwork orange") or by First buses. You can plan your trip visiting the site www.travelinescotland.com

Go Sleep:
If you don't already live there or don't have a floor to crash on, try Eurohostels or Scottish Youth Hostels Association

Go Booze, Eat, Culture, Party:
Use www.itoors.com and select Glasgow to download
Try www.seeglasgow.com
read The Skinny!