posted on November 18th, 2016

Get to Glasgow

Ulster Tatler’s Joanne Harkness discusses her shopping day trip to Glasgow. 


It is that time of year again; Christmas shopping has to be done, whether you love it or hate it. So why not make an occasion out of it? Glasgow is the second best shopping area in the UK after London and getting there couldn’t be easier, so what better place to grab your gifts and enjoy a day out with friends and family?

‘People Make Glasgow’ very kindly invited me along for a day trip to Glasgow where I got to experience first hand how ideal it is as a shopping destination.

An early start was in order to catch the Stena Line. An early start that was eased by stepping into the luxury of the Stena Plus lounge. My eyes lit up at the sight of a breakfast bar with delicious pastries, fruit, juices and much more. I could then just sit back and relax in the comfortable seating area and enjoy my complimentary breakfast treats. Before I knew it we had arrived in Scotland; I was almost reluctant to leave what had felt like a lavish cruise ship. We hopped straight onto the coach to take us into Glasgow where I could stare out at the beautiful Scottish scenery, and of course, catch a few winks of sleep – after all I needed to recharge my batteries for the shopping trip ahead.

We touched down in glorious Glasgow just in time for lunch and headed straight to Buchanan Galleries for a bite to eat. The food court was made up of bespoke street food restaurants, a unique idea that I hope catches on here in Northern Ireland. I delved into a scrumptious pizza that was made fresh in front of my eyes and finished it off with a chocolate cupcake.


With my tummy filled I was more than ready to set off and explore the shops. First stop was to scour the vintage shops in Glasgow’s West End. It is always an experience getting to search through all the interesting pieces that appear in vintage shops, you never know what hidden gem you might find.

After stepping back in time in the vintage shops I then headed back to the city centre to see what the high street shops had to offer. It didn’t disappoint – every high street shop you could think of was available. I also made sure I popped into some of the Scottish shops to check out the kilts.

In perfect time, just as I had finished searching through the last shop on my list, it was time to catch the coach. Again, I think I might have caught another few winks of sleep on the journey back but I can put it down to a case of shopping ‘til you drop!’ I was eager to get back on the boat because there was another element yet to discover – the Nordic Spa. Yes that is right, there was a spa on the boat! It was complete luxury pulling on a cozy robe and slippers lounging by the jacuzzi and for the ultimate relaxation I had a back massage to take away strain from carrying all those shopping bags. A perfect end to a perfect day.

From as little as £10 for a day return on Stena line it would be a crime not to treat yourself to a day in Glasgow.