The Gardener, Glasgow

LGBTQI+ guide to Glasgow

Modern and sophisticated with a down-to-earth attitude, Glasgow’s unique charm has seen it voted ‘the friendliest city in the world’ by Rough Guides. Its LGBTQI+ scene is equally as welcoming and vibrant, with pubs, clubs and cafes dotted around the revitalised Merchant City district. Explore our guide to LGBTQI+ Glasgow for the lowdown on the best neighbourhoods, hotels and events in the city.

Although restrictions are in place for now, here’s what you can look forward to once we’re all able to travel again…

DAYTIME DIVERSIONS

Swing by the ‘fiercely independent and Queer’ Category is Books for a page-turning look into LGBTQI+ culture. Pick up new and second-hand books, zines, comics and art celebrating LGBTQI+ stories, communities and history. You can also visit Glasgow Women’s Library, a vast collection dedicated to womens’ contributions throughout history, alongside a fascinating set of LGBTQI+ documents.   

Hailed by Travel Gay as ‘one of Glasgow’s friendliest gay bars’, The Underground in Merchant City is ideal for a relaxed afternoon drink or game of pool. This laid-back gay bar transforms into a buzzing club after dark.

 

OUT & ABOUT

Three smiling men standing at the bar at Delmonicas, Glasgow, Scotland.

The majority of gay venues are on and around Virginia Street in the pretty Merchant City district. With an alternative ambience and crowd, Speakeasy hosts quirky events including trash pop night 'The Trophy Room', while there are also romantic private boots to book. The Riding Room entertains gay trendsetters with burlesque, magic and live sets, while Scotland’s oldest gay bar The Waterloo Bar is traditional and unpretentious. Attracting a mixed, lesbian and gay crowd, Katie’s Bar is a popular venue with DJs, drag and quizzes.

 

 

 

STYLISH STAYS

citizenM

citizenM

Providing affordable luxury to a tech-savvy generation is the aim of citizenM Glasgow, located a short walk from the city’s LGBTQI+ district. With siblings in cities including New York, London and Amsterdam, this hip hotel scores style points with iconic Vitra furniture in the lobby and Frette linen on the kingsize beds, but keeps costs low with online reservations, automated check-in kiosks and a self-service 24-hour canteen serving hot breakfasts, barista coffee, delicious pastries and cocktails.

Radisson Blu Hotel Glasgow

Just a short walk from the gay scene, four-star Radisson Blu Hotel Glasgow is cool and contemporary. It is home to modern eatery Grahamston Kitchen & Bar, which offers delicious dishes made with locally sourced ingredients. Other facilities include a stylish bar, a 15-metre swimming pool, sauna and gym, and 247 rooms and suites in a choice of design styles.

15Glasgow

15Glasgow is a five-star gay-friendly 'sleep boutique' bed and breakfast in a restful residential neighbourhood. This Victorian townhouse has five large guest suites with an abundance of architectural features, including intricate cornicing and original shutters, complemented by elegant modern furniture. With no dedicated dining area, breakfast is served to your room – the full Scottish option includes the finest Ayrshire bacon and Stornoway black pudding.

 

DATES FOR THE DIARY

Glasgow PrideTBC - Pride Glasgow

A celebration of all things LGBTQI+, Pride Glasgow is a two day spectacle held every summer. A colourful rainbow parade runs through the city while Glasgow Green plays host to a music stage, bars and more. Expect a carnival atmosphere and lots of sexy kilt-clad Scotsmen.

5 – 18 October 2021 – Scottish Queer International Film Festival

Each October, Glasgow hosts the Scottish Queer International Film Festival (SQIFF). Celebrating LGBTQI+ film in Scotland, the festival is a non-profit event showing lesser-known and publicised material from the community.

 

 

GETTING HERE

Glasgow is in Scotland, four-and-a-half hours north of London by train. It’s also served by flights into Glasgow Airport, Scotland’s principal long-haul gateway with direct flights from the United States, Canada and the Middle East, and Glasgow Prestwick Airport. Flights from major European cities operate to both airports.

Explore our other LGBTQ+ city guides

Birmingham
Brighton
Cardiff
London
Manchester
Edinburgh
Newcastle
Bristol