So it may have come as a surprise to some when the westwards city was recently named by National Geographic as one of 20 must-visit destinations of 2016, being listed alongside Bermuda and the Danube River.
While Glasgow might not have a city centre castle at its disposal, it is steeped in culture with enough things to do to ensure a return trip is needed.
Regardless of what time of year you visit, there’s likely to be a festival taking place.
It all kicks off this month with Celtic Connections, the premier folk and roots music festival, with hundreds of gigs all across the city.
That’s followed by film, comedy, literary, art, science and piping festivals, to name just a few.
And it’s not just in January there are hundreds of concerts vying for attention.
Ask any touring act what city they’re most looking forward to playing and the answer will likely be Glasgow, and that’s one of the reasons it has been named UNESCO City of Music.
From the 13,000-capacity Hydro to the world famous Barrowland Ballroom and its bouncing floor to smaller venues like King Tut’s and Stereo, there’s music to be found in scores of venues every night of the week, whether it be massive arenas or back rooms in pubs.
And with a number of theatres and a couple of comedy clubs, it’s not just music that can be found on Glasgow’s live stages.
Speaking of choice, there are enough museums to visit one every day of the week and two on Sunday.
Kelvingrove is the jewel in the crown with all manner of items among its 8,000 on display, including Dali’s Christ Of Saint John Of The Cross and a Spitfire fighter plane.
The Riverside Museum is part of the hugely regenerated Clydeside area, just along from the SECC, BBC HQ and Science Centre, and has more than 3,000 items on view, such as vintage cars, locomotives and trams.
On the edge of the city in the peaceful Pollock Country Park is The Burrell Collection, one of the greatest art collections in the world.
And in the midst of Glasgow Green is The People’s Palace, which charts the history of Glasgow’s people from 1750 to the end of the 20th Century.
It’s also hosting an exhibition of Billy Connolly’s artwork until February 21.
In addition, there is also Scotland Street School Museum, Gallery of Modern Art,
St Mungo Museum of Religious Life and Art and the Provand’s Lordship, built in 1471.
While you’re in the area of St Mungo and the Provand’s Lordship, it would be remiss not to visit the stunning Glasgow Cathedral and its fellow Gothic neighbour, the atmospheric Necropolis cemetery, which sits on a hill and provides panoramic views.
Glasgow is also Scotland’s shopping capital.
The style mile from Argyle Street up Buchanan Street and along Sauchiehall Street features all the big name stores you would expect as well as three malls – St Enoch, Buchanan Galleries and Princes Square – but there’s also plenty of independent retailers and little gems to dig up something unique on your visit.
Jump on the underground to the West End and sample the shopping and culinary delights of Byres Road and the surrounding area, before heading along to the east end of the city to experience the earthy magic of The Barras Market on Saturdays and Sundays.
While it might sadly have gained a reputation for counterfeit film and tobacco traders, there’s still plenty of genuine stallholders, bargains and patter to be had to make a visit worthwhile.
And you can’t mention Glasgow without talking about football.
Home to two of the best known clubs in the world as well as the national stadium, all three grounds – Ibrox, Celtic Park and Hampden – are steeped in history.
Hampden is home to the Scottish Football Museum, with more than 2,500 items on display including the world’s
oldest football trophy, the Scottish Cup.
Celtic give guided tours at the weekends, as do Rangers, who also have the unique Founders Trail, which takes a bus tour around the city charting the club’s roots before culminating at the stadium.
Just be careful with the football chat depending on which bar you decide to have a drink in afterwards!
Riverside Transport Museum and Tradeston Bridge are just two of the sights worth seeing.