After a crazy three hour delay, switching of aircrafts, and a free slice of pizza courtesy of RyanAir, I boarded my Friday afternoon flight to Glasgow, Scotland. About four hours later I found myself in the center of a city where everyone speaks incomprehensible English and drives on the wrong side of the road.
Actually, I was pleasantly surprised by Glasgow. I honestly didn’t know what to expect other than cold weather and people with thick accents, but what I found was a cute, bustling city with plenty of things to do, places to eat, friendly people, and an impeccably clean underground subway.
I was traveling again with my American roommate, Vicky, only this time we had our friend Sam (who is studying in Glasgow) to show us around. It always makes a huge difference traveling with someone who knows the city, plus I love getting a glimpse at other people’s experiences abroad.
We ate that night at a cute restaurant in the West end and afterwards, Sam showed us where he goes to school. The university was absolutely stunning, it felt like I was in a castle. Later, Vicky and I checked into our hostel which was by far the best hostel I’ve ever seen. The rooms were clean, cozy, and had a private bathroom! (It was called Alba if any of you are ever planning to visit Glasgow on a budget).
On Saturday, we spent the day hiking in a park about twenty minutes outside of the city. This was the first time in a while that I have been surrounded by such beautiful nature. We also lucked out with the weather as it was sunny all day. My favorite part of the hike was actually when we first arrived and bumped into a field of sheep. For dinner, we ate Indian food back in the city center, it was delicious not to mention the waitress was possibly the most friendly person I’d ever met. At night, we went to a Scottish pub where a musician was playing live acoustic guitar. The best part was that everyone there knew all of the songs played and seemed quite happy singing the lyrics while drinking their beers. I don’t know if this is a common occurrence, but I hope so, since it made me so happy seeing so many happy people all together, listening to good music.
The next morning, after brunch in a tiny, hip cafe, Vicky and I walked around the Botanical Gardens. It was raining on and off but somehow we managed to wind up indoors just before every short shower. We met up with Sam again and got donuts and coffee and then more coffee. In the evening, he took us to a vegan restaurant for dinner where I had the best vegan burger I’ve ever had (even though I’m not vegan, I have had my fair share of vegan hamburgers and this one was by far the best tasting).
At around 10pm I headed back to Central Station, where I hopped on an airport bound train. My flight wasn’t until 6am the following morning, but there was no public transportation that early and I didn’t want to pay for a taxi so I set up camp in the airport. It was the coldest airport I’d ever been to and with that being said I’d like to take a moment to thank the friendly barista at the 24 hour airport Starbucks who gave me tea and an ice pack filled with boiling hot water because I was shivering.
I always love seeing my darling roommate and it was refreshing to not have to worry (too much) about trying to understand a new language and communicate in a foreign country. So, as far as favorite cities go, Glasgow is definitely up there (even though it was realllllly cold!).
On a side note, I was rather disappointed that Scotland does not have any unicorns, although they have more than enough sheep.