Glasgow is a vibrant ‘friendly’ city that has a constantly evolving calendar of music, arts, theatre and comedy but there is a cluster of productions that have become part of the city year on year and are now an annual programme of events that can be visited.
Traditional Events envelop you into Scottish History, either through music or art, while the popular Festivals draw entertainers and audiences alike from around the globe. All the events run so smoothly and appear effortlessly choreographed, with the pagentry and colour displayed throughout the city showing the true nature of the ever evolving community.
No matter what time of year you decide to take a short break in Glasgow, you are sure to be met with a huge choice of events to visit. Your difficulty will be in selecting which ones your should go to during your stay.
Read more on this destination in the AA Keyguide for Scotland.
Top 10 Events in Glasgow by month
Celtic Connections Festival
This is one of the largest most important music festivals in the world. Held at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall and spilling over into numerous venues throughout the city, over 100,000 music lovers will descend to enjoy a variety of Scottish, Celtic and international artists.
Glasgow celebrates the birthday of Scotland's national poet (25th January) with traditional haggis dinners and draughts of whiskey in hotels and restaurants all over the city, so be sure to book yourself a spot to enjoy the treat of the 'piping in of the haggis'.
Glasgow Film Festival
In cinemas all over the city but concentrated at the Glasgow Film Theatre, this is quickly becoming a renowned festival for the film buffs among us.
Glasgow International Comedy Festival
This is a large event and involves around 40 venues and 300 shows. The larger, will have the popular bigger names of comedy, while the smaller venues will entertain the new and upcoming comedians. In the past this event has attracted thousands to the city and continues to grow year on year.
Glasgow International Festival of Contemporary Visual Art
Attracting over 25,000 visitors to the exhibitions, seminars and talks, this festival is also known as the GI Festival. With an exceptional schedule of exhibitions, schedules and talks this firmly establishes Glasgow as a leading destination for international art fans.
Scotlands National Arts Fair
More than 40 galleries will exhibit work by more than 1,000 established and budding artists all of which are available to purchase.
West End Festival
An explosion of colour down the streets of Glasgow with parties and parades throughout the west End area. Sit back and enjoy as they pass or you by or take the opportunity to join in. In addition you can see a large number of events and performances taking place around the area.
Glasgow International Jazz Festival
Here you can see both Scottish and International masters taking time to perform some of the most amazing jazz sets.
Lord Provost's Procession
This is a particular favourite for tourists. Starting in Blytheswood Square, this procession offers the best of all things Scottish, from bagpipes to kilts. Full of colour and music this is traditional Scotland at its best.
Glasgow River Festival
On the River Clyde, this is one of Glasgow’s top events of the year, with the highlight of the Zapcat races (fast boats). The riverside celebrations include live shows and workshops, attracting around 90,000 visitors a year.
World Pipe Band Championships
At Glasgow Green, bands converge to battle for the coveted awards. This is not an event for the faint of heart. If you are looking for a quiet afternoon then do not head for this event. The fantastic music being belted out by some of the most talented pipers from across the world it truly inspiring.
German Christmas Market
Held in Enoch Square, this is the largest Christmas market to be found in Scotland. Whether you want to stock up with some fabulous Christmas treats, presents or decorations this is the place to visit. The smells and tastes from all the delicious food stall are far too tempting and with a beautiful warm Christmas atmosphere this is the perfect way to start the holidays.