Top Historic Sights in Glasgow, United Kingdom

Explore the historic highlights of Glasgow

Gallery of Modern Art

Opened in 1996, the Gallery of Modern Art is housed in a neoclassical building in Royal Exchange Square in the heart of Glasgow city centre. Built in 1778 as the townhouse of William Cunninghame of Lainshaw, a wealthy Glasgow Tobacco Lord who made his fortune through the triangular slave trade, the building has undergone a series of different uses. It was bought in 1817 by the Royal Bank of Scotland who later moved onto B ...
Founded: 1778 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Glasgow Cathedral

Glasgow Cathedral is the oldest cathedral on mainland Scotland and is the oldest building in Glasgow. The history of the cathedral is linked with that of the city, and is allegedly located where the patron saint of Glasgow, Saint Mungo, built his church. The tomb of the saint is in the lower crypt. Walter Scott"s novel Rob Roy gives an account of the kirk. Built before the Reformation from the late 12th century ...
Founded: 1136 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art

The St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art is located in Cathedral Square, on the lands of Glasgow Cathedral off High Street. It was constructed in 1989 on the site of a medieval castle-complex, the former residence of the bishops of Glasgow, parts of which can be seen inside the Cathedral and at the People"s Palace, Glasgow. The museum building emulates the Scottish Baronial architectural style used for the forme ...
Founded: 1989 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum is one of Scotland"s most popular visitor attractions. The museum has 22 galleries, housing a range of exhibits, including Renaissance art, taxidermy, and artifacts from ancient Egypt. The gallery is located on Argyle Street, on the banks of the River Kelvin. The construction of Kelvingrove was partly financed by the proceeds of the 1888 International Exhibition held in Kelvingrove ...
Founded: 1901 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Riverside Museum

The Riverside Museum is the location of the Glasgow Museum of Transport, at Pointhouse Quay in the Glasgow Harbour. The building opened in June 2011. The museum won the 2013 European Museum of the Year Award. As well as housing many of the existing collections of the Glasgow Museum of Transport, the city has acquired SAR Class 15F 4-8-2 steam locomotive, No.3007. Built by the Glasgow-based North British Locomotive Compan ...
Founded: 2011 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Provand's Lordship

The Provand"s Lordship of Glasgow is a medieval historic house museum located at the top of Castle Street. It was built as part of St Nicholas"s Hospital by Andrew Muirhead, Bishop of Glasgow in 1471. A western extension, designed by William Bryson, was completed in 1670. In the early 19th century the house was occupied by a canon supported by income from the Lord of the Prebend (or 'Provand') of Barl ...
Founded: 1471 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Glasgow Necropolis

The Glasgow Necropolis is a Victorian age cemetery on a low but very prominent hill to the east of Glasgow Cathedral. Fifty thousand individuals have been buried here. Typical for the period, only a small percentage are named on monuments and not every grave has a stone. Approximately 3,500 monuments exist here. Predating the cemetery, the statue of John Knox sitting on a column at the top of the hill, dates from 1825. T ...
Founded: 1832 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

People's Palace

The People"s Palace and Winter Gardens in Glasgow is a museum and glasshouse situated in Glasgow Green, and was opened on 22 January 1898 by the Earl of Rosebery. It is home to a collection of objects, photographs, prints and film which give a unique view into how Glaswegians lived, worked and played in years gone by to the present day.
Founded: 1898 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

St Andrew's Cathedral

The Metropolitan Cathedral Church of Saint Andrew is the mother church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Glasgow. The Cathedral, which was designed in 1814 by James Gillespie Graham in the Neo Gothic style, lies on the north bank of the River Clyde in Clyde Street. From the Scottish Reformation of 1560 until the beginning of the Catholic Emancipation process in 1791, with the Roman Catholic Relief Act of 1791 – whic ...
Founded: 1814 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

St Andrew's in the Square

St Andrew"s in the Square is an 18th-century former church in Glasgow, considered one of the finest classical churches in Scotland, and now Glasgow"s Centre for Scottish Culture, promoting Scottish music, song and dance. The church was built between 1739 and 1756 by Master Mason Mungo Naismith, and designed by Allan Dreghorn. It was the first Presbyterian church built after the Reformation, and was commissioned ...
Founded: 1739-1756 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

St Mary's Cathedral

The Cathedral Church of St Mary the Virgin is located on the Great Western Road. The current building was opened on 9 November 1871 and completed in 1893. The architect was George Gilbert Scott. It was raised to cathedral status in 1908. The total height of the cathedral is 63 metres. The other cathedrals in Glasgow are St Andrew’s (Roman Catholic), St Luke’s (Eastern Orthodox) and St Mungo’s, the city’s med ...
Founded: 1871 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Govan Old Parish Church

The current church building in Govan was constructed in 1888, although the site is one of the oldest places of Christian worship in Scotland. Unusually, the axis of the church was turned to orientate north-south rather than the traditional east-west orientation, but this allowed the main door to face south to the main street. It is believed that the site's earliest Christian activity began sometime in the 6th century AD. ...
Founded: 1888 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Crookston Castle

Crookston Castle is surrounded by a defensive ring-ditch that dates back to the 12th century when Sir Robert de Croc, who also gave his name to the village of Crookston, built a timber and earth castle. Remains of a chapel founded by de Croc in 1180 have been uncovered. Evidence of an even earlier fortification on the same site has also been found. The lands of Crookston were bought by Sir Alan Stewart in 1330, and passed ...
Founded: c. 1400 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St. Luke

Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St. Luke was designed by James Sellars and built in 1877 as the Belhaven Church for the United Presbyterian Church of Scotland. The church was built in Norman Gothic style, inspired by Dunblane Cathedral. A prominent feature of the church is the stain glass windows designed by Stephen Adam which depict scenes from the Old and New Testament. Following the amalgamation of Behaven Church with a ...
Founded: 1877 | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Provan Hall

Provan Hall is a historic place composed of two buildings built about the 15th century and situated in Auchinlea Park, Glasgow. The name 'Hall of Provan' was used in early records. Today, the use of the name 'Provan Hall' or 'Provanhall' is used to refer to the buildings collectively.
Founded: 15th century | Location: Glasgow, United Kingdom

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Saint-Eustache

The Church of St Eustace was built between 1532-1632. St Eustace"s is considered a masterpiece of late Gothic architecture. The church’s reputation was strong enough of the time for it to be chosen as the location for a young Louis XIV to receive communion. Mozart also chose the sanctuary as the location for his mother’s funeral. Among those baptised here as children were Richelieu, Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson, future Madame de Pompadour and Molière, who was also married here in the 17th century. The last rites for Anne of Austria, Turenne and Mirabeau were pronounced within its walls. Marie de Gournay is buried there.

The origins of Saint Eustache date back to 13th century. The church became a parish church in 1223, thanks to a man named Jean Alais who achieved this by taxing the baskets of fish sold nearby, as granted by King Philip Augustus. To thank such divine generosity, Alais constructed a chapel dedicated to Sainte-Agnès, a Roman martyr. The construction of the current church began in 1532, the work not being finally completed until 1637. The name of the church refers to Saint Eustace, a Roman general of the second century AD who was burned, along with his family, for converting to Christianity, and it is believed that it was the transfer of a relic of Saint Eustache from the Abbey to Saint-Denis to the Church of Saint Eustache which resulted in its naming. Jeanne Baptiste d"Albert de Luynes was baptised here.

According to tourist literature on-site, during the French Revolution the church, like most churches in Paris, was desecrated, looted, and used for a time as a barn. The church was restored after the Revolution had run its course and remains in use today. Several impressive paintings by Rubens remain in the church today. Each summer, organ concerts commemorate the premieres of Berlioz’s Te Deum and Liszt’s Christus here in 1886.

The church is an example of a Gothic structure clothed in Renaissance detail. The church is relatively short in length at 105m, but its interior is 33.45m high to the vaulting. At the main façade, the left tower has been completed in Renaissance style, while the right tower remains a stump. The front and rear aspects provide a remarkable contrast between the comparatively sober classical front and the exuberant rear, which integrates Gothic forms and organization with Classical details. The L"écoute sculpture by Henri de Miller appears outside the church, to the south. A Keith Haring sculpture stands in a chapel of the church.

The Chapel of the Virgin was built in 1640 and restored from 1801 to 1804. It was inaugurated by Pius VII on the 22nd of December, 1804 when he came to Paris for the coronation of Napoleon. The apse chapel, with a ribbed cul-de-four vault, has at its centre a sculpture of the Virgin and Child of Jean-Baptiste Pigalle that the painter Thomas Couture highlighted by three large paintings.

With 8,000 pipes, the organ is reputed to be the largest pipe organ in France, surpassing the organs of Saint Sulpice and Notre Dame de Paris. The organ originally constructed by P.-A. Ducroquet was powerful enough for the premiere of Hector Berlioz" titanic Te Deum to be performed at St-Eustache in 1855.