Christmas in Glasgow

Christmas in Glasgow

Families, shoppers and festive revellers are set to travel from far and wide to soak up the magical atmosphere in Glasgow this Christmas

Hot on the heels of hitting the number one spot in the prestigious TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Destinations on the Rise 2012 list, the city is gearing up to welcome over 11 million visitors to the city centre over the Christmas season. 

Over a seven week period Glasgow will offer a jam-packed programme of festive events, such as the city’s first traditional Christmas parade, stylish Christmas shopping and great places to eat and drink .. all against a glittering city backdrop.  

Glasgow’s festive programme kicked off on November 13, the day that the city was awarded the number one UK destination and number six European destination in the TripAdvisor awards, which honour the global destinations that have seen the greatest increase in positive feedback and interest from travellers year-on-year. 

Some of the UK’s best Christmas shopping is just one of the city’s festive jewels. With over 1,500 shops to choose from, Glasgow is the largest and most successful shopping destination outside London’s West End. 

Famous family stores such as Scotland’s only Hamleys, independent boutiques and speciality shops, and high-end designers including the country’s only Vivienne Westwood, Agent Provocateur and Ralph Lauren, make the style mile the perfect place to get your Christmas shopping wrapped up. 

And specialist services such as personal shopping at John Lewis and House of Frasers’ gift wrapping service will ensure Christmas shopping is a treat not a chore. Hamleys will even entertain the little ones for you with breakfast or tea with Santa and his helpers.

There are over seven weeks of seasonal events being staged across the city centre from ceilidhs to choirs, pantos to puppet shows, skating to storytimes with Santa.  New for this year is the city’s first ever traditional Christmas parade led by Santa and a sparkling procession of fairies, elves, toy soldiers and superheroes. 

Culture vultures can also enjoy a variety of festive theatre performances including Jack and the Beanstalk with John Barrowman and the Krankies at the SECC, Scottish Ballet’s critically acclaimed The Nutcracker at the Theatre Royal and Cinderella at the King’s Theatre.

The Glasgow Loves Christmas event programme will run through to 6th January 2013 and includes:

Glasgow style mile Christmas Parade

Sunday 18th November 2012, 1.30pm – 3pm

The style mile will come alive with festive fun as the city welcomes its first ever traditional Christmas themed parade.  The spectacular procession, led by Santa’s Express Train, features a cast of Christmas dolls, toy soldiers, elves, fairies, dancing Christmas trees and superheroes, guaranteed to ignite every child’s imagination.  There will also be live music from 12noon including local talent and an Elvis Tribute Act performing a medley of Christmas favourites.

George Square events programme

Saturday 24th November 2012 – Sunday 6th January 2013, 10am – 10pm

George Square will be transformed into a sparkling hub of festive activity with free family-friendly entertainment seven days a week featuring traditional choirs, storytimes with Santa, pantomimes, puppet shows and dance events.

Glasgow on Ice

Saturday 24th November 2012 – Sunday 6th January 2013, 10am – 10pm

Festive revellers can once again get their skates on and skate under the stars in George Square, on Glasgow’s only open-air ice-rink. Families are encouraged to wrap up warm and get down to the Square for the ultimate Christmas experience.

Glasgow Christmas Market

Friday 16th November – 23rd December 2012, Mon-Sat 10am-7pm, Sun, 11am-6pm

The city’s St Enoch Square will again host Glasgow’s Christmas Market, a showcase of gifts, crafts and food and drink from around the world. Traders will travel from as far afield as Ecuador and Russia with one special visitor all the way from Lapland. Visitors can tuck into a warming mulled wine at the Gluhwein House, and a wild boar or crocodile burger for the adventurous, before picking up some unique, handmade presents from one of the fifty stalls.

Glasgow Loves St Andrew’s Day

George Square, Friday 30th November 2012 – 6th January 2013

As part of Scotland’s Winter Festivals celebrations, the city will host a FREE St Andrew’s Day Shindig. A celebration of traditional and contemporary Scottish culture, Shindig will offer revellers the chance to enjoy a packed weekend of live music with top ceilidh bands, dance and family entertainment including Scottish stories, a fiddle orchestra and appearances from Jacobite Clan and the Kilted Caricaturist.


Monday 31st December 2012, 12noon – 10pm

For the second year running, George Square will play host to a family-friendly celebration, Hogmanayday, with free kids activities including themed crafts, highland dancing, ceilidh bands, storytelling and traditional Scottish food and drink.   

For more information on what to see and do in Glasgow this Christmas, please visit or download the Glasgow Scotland with style app FREE from iTunes or Google Play.

Have you visited Glasgow? Tell us what you think of the city in the comment sbelow or tweet us @FemaleFirst_UK


Shabana Adam


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