Botanic Gardens

Vacation Travel Guide
Botanic Gardens showing a garden

Tour the park and arboretum with century-old trees, have a picnic on the lawn, watch a concert, or admire the design of the impressive 19th-century glasshouses.

Discover tropical plants, stroll along the banks of the River Kelvin and picnic on the bright green lawns at the Glasgow Botanic Gardens. Glaswegian Thomas Hopkirk, a botanist, founded the gardens in 1817 with a core of 3,000 plants. The gardens moved to its current location in 1839 and opened in 1842 as a members-only garden. Today, this public park attracts almost half a million visitors per year.

Check the website of the park to see if you can join a free guided tour, or explore the park at your own pace. Start at the Kibble Palace, the glasshouse dominating the 42-acre (20-hectare) gardens. Inventor and engineer John Kibble designed the impressive structure in the 1860s for his private residence.

Enter the glasshouse to see the collection of Southern Hemisphere fern trees as well as sculptures and statues, including King Robert of Sicily by the famous Scottish sculptor George Henry Paulin. Find orchids, begonias and tropical plants in the Main Range houses, which are old Victorian buildings from the 1880s.

Pick up a map of the Heritage Trail inside the Kibble Palace and set aside two hours to complete it. Admire the 30 historical sites, including bridges and train stations. Check out the tall black oak and 200-year-old weeping ash tree in the arboretum. Enjoy a picnic on the lawns in front of the glasshouses or buy lunch in the garden’s café.

Come during the weekend to enjoy public events, such as crafts markets, theater, book fairs or concerts. Check the official Glasgow Botanic Gardens website for the calendar of events and live performances.

The Glasgow Botanic Gardens in West End is open daily, but closes at dusk. Entrance is free and there are public toilets. The glasshouses, the Visitor Centre and the Tearoom open mid morning and usually close earlier than the park grounds.

The site is a 40-minute walk from the city center. The Hillhead Underground Station is a five-minute walk away and you can also get there by bus or car from the city center. Free and metered street parking is available nearby.

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Top Hotels Close to Botanic Gardens

YOTEL Glasgow
YOTEL Glasgow
4 out of 5
Westergate, 260 Argyle St, Glasgow, Scotland
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is $61 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
Located in City Centre Glasgow, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Argyll Arcade, Merchant City, and Buchanan Street. George Square and Royal Concert Hall ...
4.1/5 Very Good! (202 reviews)
"Great stay. Very spacious room."

Reviewed on Jan 11, 2022

YOTEL Glasgow
Maldron Hotel Glasgow City
Maldron Hotel Glasgow City
4 out of 5
50 Renfrew Street, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $85 per night from Jan 20 to Jan 21
Located in City Centre Glasgow, this hotel is steps from Theatre Royal and Royal Concert Hall. Buchanan Galleries and Buchanan Street are also within 10 minutes. ...
4.8/5 Exceptional! (205 reviews)
"We liked everything it was all very good and we loved our stay. If I did not like anything and it is such a minor thing was the shampoo and body wash but everything was excellent and I would definitely go again."

Reviewed on Jan 3, 2022

Maldron Hotel Glasgow City
DoubleTree by Hilton Glasgow Central
DoubleTree by Hilton Glasgow Central
4 out of 5
Cambridge Street, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $96 per night from Jan 20 to Jan 21
Located in City Centre Glasgow, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of George Square and Gallery of Modern Art. Glasgow Cathedral and Kelvingrove Art Gallery ...
4.4/5 Excellent! (960 reviews)
"The pool was excellent for our kids and v central location"

Reviewed on Oct 23, 2021

DoubleTree by Hilton Glasgow Central
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Best Lodging Options Near Botanic Gardens

Kelvin Hotel West End
Kelvin Hotel West End
2 out of 5
15 Buckingham Terrace, Great Western Road, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $37 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
Kelvin Hotel West End
Maldron Hotel Glasgow City
Maldron Hotel Glasgow City
4 out of 5
50 Renfrew Street, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $85 per night from Jan 20 to Jan 21
Maldron Hotel Glasgow City
DoubleTree by Hilton Glasgow Central
DoubleTree by Hilton Glasgow Central
4 out of 5
Cambridge Street, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $96 per night from Jan 20 to Jan 21
DoubleTree by Hilton Glasgow Central
YOTEL Glasgow
YOTEL Glasgow
4 out of 5
Westergate, 260 Argyle St, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $61 per night from Jan 23 to Jan 24
YOTEL Glasgow
Jurys Inn Glasgow
Jurys Inn Glasgow
4 out of 5
80 Jamaica Street, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $67 per night from Feb 6 to Feb 7
Jurys Inn Glasgow
Carlton George Hotel
Carlton George Hotel
4 out of 5
44 West George Street, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $98 per night from Jan 18 to Jan 19
Carlton George Hotel
Hotel du Vin & Bistro Glasgow
Hotel du Vin & Bistro Glasgow
4 out of 5
1 Devonshire Gardens, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $133 per night from Jan 18 to Jan 19
Hotel du Vin & Bistro Glasgow
Crowne Plaza Hotel Glasgow, an IHG Hotel
Crowne Plaza Hotel Glasgow, an IHG Hotel
4 out of 5
Congress Road, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $86 per night from Jan 30 to Jan 31
Crowne Plaza Hotel Glasgow, an IHG Hotel
Argyll Western Hotel
Argyll Western Hotel
3 out of 5
6 Buckingham Terrace, Glasgow, Scotland
The price is $41 per night from Jan 19 to Jan 20
Argyll Western Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.