Suffering in Glasgow’s never-ending winter? These nine things might help get you to spring

You’ve made it through January! Now what?


If you’re reading this then you’ve finally officially made it through the first month of 2024 – feel proud!

But, with February hailing uni deadlines, broken New Year’s resolutions and sickening talk of Valentine’s plans, it can be easy to fall victim to the winter blues.

So, as the days slowly but surely start to get brighter, here are nine fun ideas to push through that final stretch of Glasgow winter:

1. Attend Offshore’s Wednesday art drop-in

Offshore’s art drop-in, somehow unsure if a future career in painting awaits me…

At just a minute’s walk down from Glasgow University Union, the orange walls, high ceilings and slouchy sofas of Offshore make it the go-to café spot for a break between lectures – but did you know about their weekly drop-in art sessions?

Just grab a hot drink and head downstairs on Wednesdays between 1.30pm and 4.30pm to destress and get those creative juices flowing.

With all materials provided and no added costs, Offshore’s relaxing art session is the perfect mid-week spot for a fun catchup with a friend, discovering either their hidden artistic flair or a clear lack of creative talent (as pictured).

Equally, feel free to be the main character and go for a solo drop-in. The session’s friendly and relaxed atmosphere makes it the perfect place to chat with new people or simply create art alone. 

2. Try the Glasgow Uni sauna and steam room

If you have a UofG sport membership and haven’t made use of the Stevenson building’s steam room and sauna – what are you doing?! Get a break from the cold by heading downstairs to the steam room and sauna where can sit back, relax and practically feel last nights alcohol escape from your pores.

Proven to relieve stress and lower blood pressure, a trip here is the perfect way to unwind from a long day at uni.  

3. Go cold water swimming in Loch Lomond

Venturing into Loch Lomond’s waters

From one extreme to another, why not dive headfirst into February by embarking on a trip to Loch Lomond to brave its freezing waters! Cold water swimming has endless health benefits, improving mood, and blood circulation and if anything is an amazing bonding activity with friends.

From one extreme to another, why not dive headfirst into February by embarking on a trip to Loch Lomond to brave its freezing waters! Cold water swimming has endless health benefits, improving mood, and blood circulation and if anything is an amazing bonding activity with friends.

Valentine’s Day is overdone. Excessive displays of romance, soppy couples and insufferable Instagram stories – gross. So cast these aside for the day and dedicate it to a different kind of love – the platonic. 

Celebrate the friendships you love, message those you haven’t spoken to in a while and gather your favourite people for the evening to make February 14th truly something to look forward to.  

5. Experience live music

Waxy O’Connor’s live music schedule

Glasgow has been recently ranked 42nd in the world for its music scene, and for good reason. The endless array of live music and upcoming talent always ensures a memorable soundtrack to your evenings. If you’re after folk and trad tunes, head to Kitty O’Shea’s or Waxy O’Connor’s for a night of guaranteed Guinnessfuelled fun.

Alternatively, if blues and jazz are more your scene, stop by at The Howlin’ Wolf on Bath Street – a vibrant, basement bar showcasing local and international live blues talents, seven days a week.

The Box and Broadcast on Sauchiehall Street are also great options for live music, with a diverse array of bands, artists and DJs taking to their stages every week. 

6. Make a warming new recipe

Cooking is always a perfect way to unwind and this sweet potato dahl is an easy one-pot wonder that comes together in just 30 mins.

After those cold, dark winter days, this warming curry feels like a much-needed hug in a bowl and places nutrient rich sweet potatoes as the star of the show – perfect for February when sweet potatoes are at the height of the season!

7. Pop down to The Barras Market

Exploring the Barras market

Need daytime plans this weekend? Head over to the infamous Barras market where you’ll find food, fashion, antiques and handmade products from the dozens of traders that frequent its doors.

Situated in the East End, the market has been part of Glasgow’s history since 1921 so is the best place to hear stories from its traders and find yourself a bargain.

Due to being a covered, enclosed market, diving into the Barras’ treasure trove is the perfect activity for a rainy day and is a guaranteed way to find hidden gems. 

8. Explore Glasgow’s green spaces

A winter evening in Kelvingrove

When translated from its Gaelic name, “Glaschu”, Glasgow literally means “green glen” or “green hollow” – and it’s no wonder.

Glasgow boasts an impressive variety of parks and green spaces, ideal for winter walks on those rare sunny February days. Whether its Pollock park, Glasgow green or the familiar Kelvingrove Park, simply getting out into nature is a proven way to boost mood, get a break from screens and reduce stress.  

9. Laugh along at Rum Bongo’s comedy Sundays

Rum Bongo’s Sunday night stand-up

End your week on a high with an evening of free comedy.

Head down to Rum Bongo at the bottom of Byers Road from 7.30pm on Sundays to watch 12 comedians take the stage for a night of open mic comedy. Whether it leaves you cringing or cackling, stand-up comedy is the best way to beat the Sunday scaries – forget your own Saturday night hangiexty, and watch these comedy hopefuls sink or swim in front of a live audience.

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Related stories recommended by this writer:

• Bored of walking around Kelvingrove? Try going to these Glasgow spots that have been in the movies

• No partner, no problem: Here’s how to spend Palentine’s in Glasgow this February